Pharmacy's Kavookjian named president-elect of ADCES

Published: November 03, 2020

Article body

Dr. Jan Kavookjian, associate professor in the Harrison School of Pharmacy’s Department of Health Outcomes Research and Policy, has been elected as president-elect for the Association of Diabetes Care and Education Specialists, or ADCES.

ADCES is an interdisciplinary professional membership organization dedicated to improving prediabetes, diabetes and cardiometabolic care through innovative education, management and support. Kavookjian, who has been a member of the organization for 13 years, has previously served on the Board of Directors.

“This is an honor and a joy. I have been contributing to and working with ADCES, formerly AADE, for over 13 years in one realm or another, involved for several years on the Research Committee, bringing my outcomes research perspectives and experiences to persons successful in their practice focus and who have been eager to learn how to conduct research,” Kavookjian said. “I am delighted to be recognized and valued as a behavior scientist by an association at the forefront of diabetes care and education across health professions.”

A National Diabetes Prevention Program, or DPP, Lifestyle Coach, Kavookjian has been teaching national DPP classes for people with prediabetes and conducting ADCES trainings in motivational interviewing for National DPP Lifestyle Coaches. Kavookjian will serve as the ADCES president-elect in 2021, president in 2022 and immediate past president in 2023.

Kavookjian has a long history with the association, including being named as an ADCES Fellow earlier this year. She serves as chair of the National Practice Survey Research Committee, previously served as chair of the Psychosocial/Behavioral track of the annual meeting program committee and as chair of the committee to compose the official ADCES definition for behavioral health.

“Being recognized and elected as president-elect by interprofessional peers at the national level for my contributions to the collaborative table is a career high achievement that motivates me to work hard to bring my very best,” said Kavookjian. “The leaders within this organization are the most outstanding leaders I've ever worked with – health plan administrators, CDC division directors, pharmaceutical and device manufacturer leads, CMS representatives, technology and state-of-the-art online peer support organizations and passionate practitioners in the diabetes realm who all recognize that those practicing within the specialty of diabetes care and education have significant influence on the outcomes for persons with or at risk for diabetes across the age spectrum.”

She also has been passionate about research and training others in motivational interviewing, or MI, a technique used in behavior counseling with several diseases, including diabetes. Kavookjian is a leading speaker and trainer of MI and feels embraced by the interprofessional and varied membership of ADCES, including dieticians, nurses, pharmacists and many others.

“The ADCES audience is an interprofessional group of practitioners who appreciate the evidence-based approach of MI since much of the historical ADCES focus has been about self-management behavior training and goal setting to achieve optimal diabetes outcomes,” said Kavookjian. “Practitioners join ADCES because of a passion for care and education of persons with or at risk for diabetes. It is incredibly energizing to work alongside cream-of-the-crop practitioners in diabetes care and education across health professions who recognize and value the importance of collaborative, team-based patient care.”

Submitted by: Matt Crouch