Our Mission Statement

The mission of the Outreach, Recruitment, and Engagement (ORE) core is to investigate the best ways to reach and engage the community, especially through relationships with populations that often bear a disproportionate burden from Alzheimer's disease and related dementias. To do this, the ORE core seeks to develop relationships to help coordinate, engage, and provide awareness for participation in clinical trials and other research activities. It will also strengthen these partnerships by providing opportunities for community engagement that will address the knowledge of Alzheimer's disease and its impact on marginalized communities, as well as ensure that clinical research is accessible and disseminated to the community at large.




Ishan C. Williams, Ph.D., FGSA

Dr. Ishan Williams is an Associate Professor at UVA's School of Nursing who conducts health disparity research with often-marginalized populations, with specific experience studying issues of African American families and their care partners. She conducts research that strives to be inclusive of culturally acceptable and relevant research procedures in the design of recruitment and engagement/outreach strategies. Her research further concentrates on understanding the health care needs of older adults and their family care partners within social, cultural, and geographical contexts. Her work integrates quantitative and qualitative methods from multiple disciplines to characterize family care partner's behavior and health management practices to further develop interventions that ultimately benefit both the care partner and the health of the older adult living with ADRD or other chronic conditions. Dr. Williams also teaches courses in health policy, evidence-based practice, health promotion, and population health, where she strives to incorporate materials and resources across diverse perspectives. 


Email Dr. Williams at [email protected].


Portrait of Ishan Williams

Travonia Brown-Hughes, Ph.D.

Dr. Travonia Brown-Hughes is an Assistant Professor at Hampton University in the School of Pharmacy. Her research focuses on minority aging and health disparities. She actively engages African American populations in research through community engagement and outreach in the eastern part of the state of Virginia. She also has experience leading focus groups and educational discussions around Alzheimer's disease. Her role in the ORE core will be pivotal to increasing awareness of and participation in the VADC among African American adults in the Hampton Roads area and surrounding rural localities.


Email Dr. Brown-Hughes at [email protected].


Portrait of Travonia Brown-Hughes

Randy Jones, Ph.D., RN, FAAN

Dr. Randy Jones is a Professor and the Associate Dean for Partner Development and Engagement at UVA's School of Nursing, as well as the Faculty Assistant Director of the Community Outreach and Engagement Core at UVA's Comprehensive Cancer Center. His research focuses on health disparities, decision making, cognitive impairment, palliative care, and leveraging technology to improve cancer care and other chronic diseases. He has received funded research grants from organizations such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, American Cancer Society, and the American Nurses Foundation. In particular, Dr. Jones has been active in the community, providing education, recruiting, and informing the public about clinical trials and different diseases that affect vulnerable populations. Dr. Jones is also a member of the iTHRIV Clinical Research Access Committee, which helps to spread information on clinical research throughout the local community, especially for minority groups and rural populations. 


Email Dr. Jones at [email protected].


Portrait of Randy Jones