The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) recently honored one of its assistant professors with the Ronald L. and David B. Allison Endowed Scholar Award. Dr. Drew Sayer was selected to receive the inaugural scholarship which is named after Indiana University School of Public Health-Bloomington Dean David B. Allison and his father, Ronald L. Allison.
"My father was an educator all his life," Dean Allison noted via a March 17 UAB news release. "He loved learning, teaching, and saw the beauty of mathematics and its power to help elucidate every corner of thinking in life. In my own career, education, science, data, evidence—all processed and viewed through the lens of quantitative science—have been and continue to be my touchstones for the pursuit and unvarnished communication of truth."
Allison directed the UAB Nutrition Obesity Research Center from 2003 to 2017. He subsequently joined Indiana University as Dean where he also serves as a distinguished professor and provost professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. He helped to create the award which is intended to assist junior UAB faculty members who have yet to be granted RO1 funds from the National Institutes of Health. Recipients may use Ronald L. and David B. Allison Endowed Scholar Award funding for research-related and professional development activities.
Regarding Sayer's appointment as the first Ronald L. and David B. Allison Endowed Scholar, Allison continued, "I can think of no one more deserving. My father would to be proud to have his name affiliated with so fine an up-and-coming scholar as Dr. Sayer."
Sayer is an assistant professor in the UAB Department of Nutrition Sciences as well as an associate scientist with the Nutrition Obesity Research Center. He intends to use the award funding to advance his research into the development of personalized, adaptive obesity treatment strategies.