Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky gives UK $1 million for endowed co-chairs in rural health policy

Tyrone “Ty” Borders in the University of Kentucky College of Public Health’s Department of Health Services Management, and Brady Reynolds in the UK College of Medicine’s Department of Behavioral Science, have been named the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky endowed co-chairs in rural health policy.

A $1 million gift from the foundation to the College of Medicine was matched by the state Research Challenge Trust Fund, better known as “Bucks for Brains.” The gift has the goal of enriching Kentucky’s research capabilities in regards to rural health issues and rural health policy.

Reynolds earned doctoral and master’s degrees in life-span developmental psychology from West Virginia University. He also holds a master’s degree in general/experimental psychology and a bachelor’s degree (magna cum laude and with distinction) from James Madison University. His research has focused on nicotine use by adolescents, drug use, gambling and other addictive behaviors. In recent years Reynolds has begun research to promote smoking cessation among pregnant smokers in rural Appalachia.

Borders earned doctoral and master’s degrees in health administration, as well as a master’s degree in epidemiology from the University of Iowa, and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Kansas. His research focuses on the conduct and analysis of population-based studies to identify subgroups of persons at risk for poor health and problems obtaining health services, with an emphasis on rural populations.

“Drs. Reynolds and Borders have skills in intervention research and rural health policy expertise that can help the University remain at the forefront of rural health policy work in today’s rapidly changing healthcare environment,” said Susan Zepeda, president and CEO of the foundation.

The mission of the foundation is to addresses the unmet health care needs of Kentuckians. Mission objectives are advanced through two initiative areas: promoting responsive health policy and a new children’s initiative named “Investing in Kentucky’s Future.” Foundation work aims to improve access to health care, reduce risks and disparities, promote health equity and healthy lifestyles. Since 2001, over $22 million has been invested in health policy research and demonstration grant projects across Kentucky

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