EPARC comprises a team of interdisciplinary researchers with decades of experience in various domains, including preventive medicine, exercise science, and technology.
Kevin Patrick, MD, MS - Director
Dr. Patrick is Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UCSD, Director and co-founder of EPARC and the Center for Wireless and Population Health Systems at Calit2, and past Editor-in-Chief of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, and. His research focuses on the use of information and telecommunications technology to measure and improve health-related behaviors of individuals and populations. He is a Senior Advisor to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Active Living Research program and a member of the National Advisory Committee of the RWJF Health Games Research initiative. He has served on the Secretary’s Council for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention of the US Department of Health and Human Services and on the Armed Forces Epidemiological Board. Dr. Patrick is Co-founder of Santech, Inc. of San Diego, California, which is developing web and mobile systems for health promotion and wellness.
Linda Hill, MD, MPH - Clinical Director
Dr. Hill is Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UCSD, and the Medical Director and co-founder of EPARC. She is also Director of the UCSD/SDSU General Preventive Medicine Residency. San Diego Family Care, a Federal 330 Community Health Center, is the site of her clinical activities, as Medical Director from 1980 to 2001, and Senior Staff Physician since 2001. She is the Medical Director of the UCSD Training, Research and Education for Driving Safety (treds.ucsd.edu) and Co-Director of the UCSD Injury Epidemiology and Prevention Research Center. She is engaged in prevention research and teaching with current/past support from the NIH, the California Office of Traffic Safety, Robert Wood Johnson, American Cancer Society, and Health Services Resource Administration, and the AAA Foundation For Traffic Safety, including research in injury prevention, driving safety, obesity, decision making, compliance, physician training, physical activity, and refugee health. Her hobbies include classical piano and ocean sports.
Jeanne Nichols, PhD, FACSM - Scientific Director
Dr. Nichols is Professor Emeritus in the School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences at San Diego State University (SDSU), and the Scientific Director of EPARC in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UCSD. Her broad research interest is in exercise and musculoskeletal health across the lifespan, in populations ranging from young female athletes at risk for energy deficiency, to frail elderly. She is the former Director of the SDSU Adult Fitness Program and on-going consultant to the San Diego County Aging and Independence Services, which is the federally designated Area Agency on Aging, where she advises on program implementation, evaluation, and instructor training on a County-wide exercise and fall prevention program for older adults, with the overall goal to prevent falls, fractures, and loss of independence. She was the 2009 recipient of the Distinguished Faculty Award from the SDSU College of Professional Studies & Fine Arts, and the Excellence in Research Award in 2010 from the Sports Physical Therapy Section of the American Physical Therapy Association.
David Wing, MS, CPT, CDT - Laboratory Director
David is the Laboratory Director of EPARC, where he oversees all aspects of its day-to-day operation and is involved in design, delivery and dissemination of multiple research studies and educational initiatives. Of particular note, he has made a substantial contribution to the design and dissemination of an Exercise Is Medicine® curriculum based on a global initiative to change healthcare practice to include physical activity as a “vital sign” when assessing patient health status, and to prescribe exercise for primary and secondary prevention of chronic disease. He began his professional career as a political consultant, working on public health initiatives designed to reduce smoking in public spaces and increase funding for state and national parks. A decade later he returned to academia and earned his M.S. in exercise physiology from SDSU. His research interests include the use of technology to provide scalable “just-in-time” interventions promoting physical activity, the development of functional exercise tests for individuals with neurological disease, the links between cognitive function and physical activity across the lifespan, and the potential role(s) of exercise in long-term management of clinical depression and anxiety. He is an avid exerciser and certified personal trainer who has worked with special populations including, among those, individuals with type 2 diabetes, cystic fibrosis, and multiple sclerosis.
Job Godino, PhD. - Director of Applied Research and Technology
Dr. Godino is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UCSD and the Director of Applied Research and Technology at EPARC. His current research focuses on the development and evaluation of interventions that utilize mobile and wearable technology (e.g., smart phones, accelerometers, and heart rate monitors) to promote healthy changes in physical activity, sedentary behavior, and diet. Dr. Godino’s research is based in the Center for Wireless and Population Health Systems, which he joined in 2014 after completing a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Epidemiology and Biostatistics of Aging at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. In 2013, he received his PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Cambridge, where he studied the effects of brief personalized information on objectively measured physical activity. Throughout Dr. Godino’s education and training, he acquired expertise in the objective measurement of physical activity, fitness, and function, and utilized a variety of accelerometers, heart rate monitors, and combined sensors; electrocardiographs and indirect calorimeters; and instruments for balance and gait assessment. He is actively engaged in the analysis of data derived from the aforementioned measurement tools, and he is currently leading studies on the validity of personal health data collected by consumer-level wearable devices.
Michael Higgins, M.S. - Measurement Specialist
Michael holds a master’s degree in exercise physiology from San Diego State University, and is a Measurement Specialist at EPARC focused on coordinating the dissemination and aggregation of large-scale actigraphy studies, most notably, the Physical Activity Follow-Up Study arm of the Long Life Study for the Women’s Health Initiative. He is also involved in the development and dissemination of best practices for wrist worn accelerometry and is a key member of the EPARC team that is exploring the potential of commercial devices for large scale research and clinical practice. His research interests include evaluating and validating new wearable devices for assessing physical activity, and the psychosocial aspects of exercise and training. In his free time, Michael enjoys beach activities, hiking, working out, and enjoying San Diego’s food and bar scene with his wife and friends.
Zachary Bellicini, B.A. - Intervention Specialist and Site Coordinator
Zach is an Intervention Specialist and Site Coordinator for EPARC’s community-based exercise trials. Following active duty service in the U.S. Navy, he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Sport Management, became certified as a personal trainer by the National Council on Strength and Fitness (NCSF), and eventually coached for an elite athletic training facility. In this capacity, he worked closely with professional and amateur athletes in a variety of sports, specializing in developing speed, agility, quickness, and strength for optimal sport performance with an eye toward “prehab” for injury prevention. He later became interested in expanding his knowledge of exercise to primary and secondary prevention of lifestyle-related diseases. He gained invaluable experience working with clinical populations in cardiac rehabilitation, diabetes prevention, and in rehabilitation for combat wounded veterans. His blend of performance-related and clinical expertise will be highly useful in developing and implementing interventions for a variety of populations.