Army Col. (Dr.) Geoffrey Grammer, director of Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, presented Dr. Louis French with the Deborah L. Warden Lectureship Award last month for his outstanding contributions to the care and treatment of those with brain injuries.
French, a clinical psychologist, serves as the deputy director of operations at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence Directorate at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. He is principal investigator on seven major studies on traumatic brain injury (TBI) and neuropsychology and author of more than 50 peer-reviewed journal articles.
The annual award is dedicated to Dr. Deborah Warden, a neurology professor and former national director of the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC). Award recipients are professionals who have exhibited outstanding devotion, guidance and commitment to medical science, clinical care and the well-being of traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients.
“[It is] amazing to [be] among titans,” Grammer said.
French’s career shows his dedication to improving TBI care. French led a 15-year study of the history of TBI in military service members, among other work. He is co-director of the Phenotyping Core with the Center for Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine, a program that integrates research efforts on TBI and posttraumatic stress disorder between the Defense Department and the National Institutes of Health. In addition to research articles, he has written book chapters on military TBI and neuropsychology.
French said Warden served as a mentor to him early on and that DVBIC plays a key role in advancing care.
“When I first started learning about TBI, [Warden] was one of the people that shaped my knowledge and mentored me in the way to interact with patients, and how to understand the impact of traumatic brain injury on individuals,” said French. “We need to maintain our knowledge [and] readiness, and need to have good organizations that are providing the right kind of care and the right kind of research.”
Grammer also gave kudos to Warden for pioneering TBI awareness in the military and at DVBIC.
“The dialogue we have in this country is because [Warden] caused a shift in the way we think about TBI … I applaud [her] for bringing forth this program,” said Grammer. “One of the greatest honors is leaving a legacy and permanent impression on the way we lead research.”