Nixon receives RSA’s 2018 Henri Begleiter Award for Excellence in Research

Sara Jo Nixon, PhD
Sara Jo Nixon, PhD

Sara Jo Nixon, PhD, Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, has been awarded the Research Society on Alcoholism’s (RSA) 2018 Henri Begleiter Award for Excellence in Research.

This award is given to an individual demonstrating innovation, creativity and excellence in their research and/or someone whose work has a major impact on their field.

The Awards Committee unanimously recommended Dr. Nixon for the award this year to acknowledge her fundamental contributions to the understanding of the effects of alcohol and nicotine on human behavior, cognition, and physiology and her admirable capacity to inform health policy makers. Dr. Nixon will be presented with the award during the Research Society on Alcoholism’s 41st Annual Scientific Meeting in San Diego, California in June 2018.

From the committee:

The RSA Awards Committee unanimously voted to bestow the Henri Begleiter Excellence in Research Award to Dr. Sara Jo Nixon. 


After considering each of the nominees, the decision to vote for Dr. Nixon was enthusiastic and without contention.  The committee noted that the endorsers who signed the nomination letter represented luminaries in the field of alcohol research. The letter provides a thoughtful review of Dr. Nixon’s life work in alcoholism.


The following excerpts provide a relevant description of the importance of her work in the field of alcoholism:


“Sara Jo has made fundamental contributions to our understanding of the effects of alcohol and nicotine on human behavior, cognition, and physiology. She was a pioneer in conducting neuropsychological studies on effects of alcohol use disorder in Native Americans.  Her behavioral pharmacology work spans three decades and includes randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled designed studies of the relationship between nicotine and psychosocial stress in alcoholics.”


She has the admirable capacity to assemble and energize active research teams, to engage the public in the importance of alcohol use disorder, and to inform health policy makers with a strong collaborative and positive spirit.” The committee agrees with the nominators in concluding that, “Sara Jo embodies the essence of the Begleiter Award.”