Team members

Debra L. Waters

Debra WatersDebra L. Waters, Ph.D. was born in Chicago, Ill. and started an undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences at DePaul University where she discovered the field of exercise physiology. She moved to North Dakota and completed her undergraduate work before completing a PhD at the University of New Mexico.   She received her PhD with an Exercise Science emphasis and went on to become the Co-Director of the New Mexico Aging Process Study in the School of Medicine.  In 2005 she moved to New Zealand and is currently the Director of Gerontology Research and Research Professor at the University of Otago (UoO), Dunedin New Zealand.  In 2022 she returned half-time to the University of New Mexico as a Research Professor in General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics. She currently splits her time between UNM and UoO. 

Her research is focused on the assessment and treatment of older adults with sarcopenia and frailty, and community interventions to prevent falls and frailty, including work with indigenous communities in New Mexico and New Zealand.  She serves on the International Conference on Frailty and Sarcopenia (ICFSR) task force and on the Editorial Boards of:  Journal of Nutrition Health and Aging, Journal of Frailty and Aging, Australasian Journal on Ageing (former Editor in Chief), and Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics.

Janice E. Knoefel

Janice E. Knoefel MD, MPH is a neurologist and geriatrician with 40 years' experience.  Born and raised in Columbus Ohio, she graduated from the Ohio State University College of Medicine and is trained in internal medicine, neurology, geriatric neurology and public health.   She has been on the faculty of the University of Cincinnati, Boston University and the University of New Mexico.   

Dr. Knoefel is Professor of Medicine (Geriatrics) and Neurology at UNM.  She participates in clinical care, education, and research.  She is experienced in the care of individuals with neurological diseases of aging, most importantly Alzheimer Disease and dementias.  She has lectured on prevention, risk factors and precursors to aging and dementia illnesses.  She has been the director of the Center for Memory and Aging Clinic at UNM’s Health Sciences Center for the past 10 years.  With the creation of the NIH-funded New Mexico Alzheimer Disease Research Center in August 2020, she became co-director of the administrative core.  

Christophe Lambert

Christophe LambertChristophe Lambert, PhD, is a Professor of Medicine, with secondary appointments in Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, and Computer Science at the University of New Mexico. He is the Interim Division Chief for Translational Informatics in Internal Medicine and the Informatics Core Lead for the UNM Clinical and Translational Science Center. Before joining UNM in 2014, for nearly 15 years, Dr. Lambert was the founder and CEO of Golden Helix, a bioinformatics company headquartered in Bozeman, Montana. Dr. Lambert’s research interests span clinical research informatics, translational bioinformatics, cheminformatics for drug discovery, and systems thinking for personal and organizational improvement. Dr. Lambert grew up in Canada. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Montana State University and a PhD in Computer Science from Duke University.

Mark McCormick

Mark McCormickThe McCormick Lab studies the basic biology of aging. We use multiple model systems to look for conserved biology that will help us understand aging and hopefully eventually delay the onset of age-related diseases in humans. Prior to joining UNM, Dr. McCormick completed a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology studying the basic biology of aging at the University of California San Francisco, and a postdoctoral fellowship at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging. He also has a BS in Mechanical Engineering and a BS in Biology from the University of Texas at Austin.

Ann L. Gibson

Ann GibsonAnn L. Gibson, PhD is a Professor in the Exercise Science program within UNM’s College of Education and Human Sciences.  Her primary lines of research are related to physiological responses to exercise and body composition assessment methods and models.  She holds Fellow status and certification as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist with the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) as well as Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist certification with the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).  Her academic accolades include numerous peer-reviewed publications, multiple international presentations and co-authorship of the 7th - 9th editions of the renowned textbook Advanced Fitness Assessment and Exercise Prescription.

Paul Nathanson

Paul NathansonPaul Nathanson is a national leader in the world of legal services and elder justice, he has dedicated his career to ensuring that legal services lawyers on the national, state, and local level can effectively fight senior poverty and address barriers for those who face the largest disparities in health and wealth.  Paul founded Justice in Aging (formerly the National Senior Citizens Law Center) and was the Executive Director from 1972-1980.

He returned to lead Justice in Aging from 2008-13 and currently serves as special counsel, working on projects such as the organization’s efforts to restore and improve the Supplemental Security Income program. In between, he was the director of the University of New Mexico (UNM) Institute of Public Law, and a member of the UNM Law School faculty where he is now emeritus. ​Paul is a past president of the American Society on Aging and a founding member of the ABA Commission on Law and Aging.  He has also served as National Secretary of the Gray Panthers and is a past Chair of the Board of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare (NCPSSM); he is currently on the NCPSSM Board.

Paul is a graduate of Duke University (JD) and the University of Chicago (MCompLaw).

He has returned to his home state of Florida, and he is committed to increasing advocacy resources and advancing health and economic justice in Florida and other Southern states.