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Q&A with Dr. Alice Ann Holland, FABBS Board Member

April 28, 2022 

Dr. Alice Ann Holland is a current Board Member of the Federation of Associations in Behavioral and Brain Sciences (FABBS), serving since 2020. As a member of the nominations committee, we asked Dr. Holland to speak with us about her experience with FABBS and why others might be interested in running for the board.  

What led you to serve on the FABBS Board? 

I was familiar with FABBS from my role as a Council representative for the National Academy of Neuropsychology. I was impressed by the work FABBS was doing and wanted to be a part of that. To my knowledge, there is no other organization that advocates broadly for behavioral and brain sciences at the federal level, and that is such important work.  

FABBS tracks federal legislation and policies that may impact our disciplines. FABBS often responds to requests for information from federal agencies and Congressional offices, sharing our sciences to help inform policy. We shouldn’t take for granted that legislators and government entities are going to prioritize funding for research in the behavioral and brain sciences. FABBS is keeping our research at the forefront of conversations when funding allocation decisions are being made. 

What has been the most rewarding or challenging aspect of your service to the Board? 

Even though I had an R01 during most of the time I was involved in FABBS and thought I was reasonably familiar with the NIH and related federal agencies, learning the nuances of what all of these different entities do has been really interesting. It’s sometimes challenging to keep it all straight, especially if you don’t have direct experience with a particular agency, but it’s also been a fantastic chance to learn more about the complex world of government-funded research. Don’t let this intimidate you—our executive director is a wonderful field guide in this jungle and is always happy to answer questions. You aren’t expected to know everything, even well into your time serving on the Board! 

What might a researcher hope to get out of their experience serving on the FABBS board? 

In addition to learning more about the complex world of federal grant funding, serving on the FABBS Board is a wonderful way to meet like-minded colleagues who believe in the importance of brain/behavior research and are eager to volunteer their time to protect and grow funding for our fields. On that note, FABBS represents a wonderfully diverse assortment of societies, and it’s been so interesting to meet their representatives and learn more about areas of research that are quite different from my own, yet still related to brain and behavior.  

The annual meeting—usually in D.C. in non-pandemic times—is such an incredible perk of Board membership, too, always featuring a lineup of impressive and engaging speakers. Being involved in FABBS is a joy for anyone who loves learning, as it is a continual learning experience. It is also an incredibly rewarding experience to have the opportunity to contribute to the important advocacy work that FABBS does. 

About Dr. Holland:

With a doctorate in Clinical Psychology, Dr. Holland is Board Certified in Clinical Neuropsychology through the American Board of Professional Psychology and the American Board of Clinical Neuropsychology. She also serves at the Children’s Medical Center Dallas (CMCD) as a Neuropsychologist and Research Director, at UT Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW) as an Associate Professor in Psychiatry and is a fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) — a member society of FABBS. Dr. Holland has experience in psychological and neuropsychological assessment of medically complex children and adolescents, particularly specializing in pediatric cancer populations and rare brain diseases, as well as neurodevelopmental disorders such as ADHD, autism, and learning disabilities.  

Read more on Dr. Holland at the links below: 

Alice Holland, Ph.D. – Faculty Profile – UT Southwestern 

FABBS Announces Incoming and Returning Board Members 

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