The Administrative Core

The Administrative Core leads, implements, and supports RDAR's evolution toward a sustainable, nationally recognized Center dedicated to understanding the challenges and harms of rural drug use and developing appropriate interventions.

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Rick Bevins

Rick BevinsPrincipal Investigator and Center Director

Dr. Bevins leads the RDAR Center with 20 years of research experience ranging from psychology to immunology, cognition to neurochemistry, methamphetamine and tobacco addiction, vaccine development and medication testing, as well as robust translational science and model development. Previously, he has served as Associate Director for the Center from its inception in 2019. As Director, he now works closely with Center Coordinator Crawford and Associate Director Buch to guide its development. As the main point of contact with other regional COBRE/INBRE centers, Bevins interacts with other institutions working on issues of health and wellness in the Great Plains and across the United States.

Full Rick Bevins bio

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Shilpa Buch

Shilpa BuchAssociate Center Director

As Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Neuroscience at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and as Director of UNMC’s Nebraska Center for Substance Abuse Research, Dr. Shilpa Buch advises the RDAR Center on emerging opportunities in biomedical research on addiction. She also serves as the main point of contact for the Center at UNMC, helping to identify new hires and early career scholars that could participate in RDAR’s programs as Project Leaders or Pilot Project investigators.

Full Shilpa Buch bio

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Tim Nelson

Tim NelsonAssociate Center Director

Dr. Nelson is a professor of psychology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and started as Associate Director of the Center in 2020. His research focuses on the interplay between cognitive development, environmental factors, and high-impact health behaviors. He brings expertise in intensive, multi-method longitudinal studies across a variety of physical and mental health outcomes. As Associate Director of the Center, Dr. Nelson works closely with the leadership team to provide guidance on Center research activities and project leader career development.

Full Tim Nelson bio

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Devan Crawford

Devan CrawfordCenter Coordinator

Ms. Crawford provides administrative oversight for all aspects of the Center. She has expertise in financial operations and a strong background in strategic planning/project implementation. Over the last 15 years, she has served as Project Manager for more than 10 R01 level projects on substance abuse and addiction. As part of her work with the Admin Core, she supervises Center management, leads grant workshops, reviews Project Leader project implementation plans, monitors contractual agreements, and supervises day-to-day Center activities.

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Kirk Dombrowski

Kirk DombrowskiFormer Center Director

After two decades of interdisciplinary addiction research and project leadership, Dr. Dombrowski was the lead architect of the Rural Drug Addiction Research Center. Dombrowski has taken a new position at the University of Vermont as Vice President for Research, but remains a close research partner of the RDAR Center through various other research and mentoring collaborations.