Working across all aspects of Alzheimer’s disease, UW-Madison is positioned and ready to develop the next big breakthrough in finding a cure. Our scientists are working tirelessly to bring hope to the millions of people affected by Alzheimer’s disease, but we need you. Here, we believe memories matter. And your support will help fuel new discoveries, improve care models, expand public health efforts, and address existing health disparities. Join us in the fight!

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Where Memories Matter

The UW Initiative to End Alzheimer’s is the shared vision of two world-class organizations at UW–Madison: the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (Wisconsin ADRC) and the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Institute (WAI). Collectively, they employ complementary approaches to improve the treatment and care of patients with Alzheimer’s disease, with the long-term goal of curing and preventing the disease.

The UW Initiative to End Alzheimer’s addresses these missions through biomedical research, primary prevention research, public health and community engagement, reductions in disparities, and improved models of care. Both the Wisconsin ADRC and the WAI recruit diverse participants for research studies and educate communities about recent advances in Alzheimer’s disease research and patient care.  The Initiative to End Alzheimer’s has several key priorities that we need to help move forward through gifts from patients, community members, and supporters.

UW-Madison is home to one of only 32 Alzheimer ’s disease Research Centers in the nation.

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THE UW Initiative to End Alzheimer’s

The UW Initiative to End Alzheimer’s (IEA) is a transformational leader in world-class Alzheimer’s disease research and state-of-the-art public health programs. Cutting-edge prevention research, innovative education, and comprehensive community engagement are hallmarks that distinguish the institute as a visionary in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease.

Our program exemplifies the Wisconsin Idea, in Wisconsin and beyond, through leading-edge research, education, and outreach programs with an emphasis on those populations that are underserved and at a greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Through its extensive network of primary care and specialty clinics, the division supports a breadth of clinical activities providing state-of-the-art medical care to thousands of geriatric patients referred from across Wisconsin and beyond.

Comprised of over 30 faculty members, the division sponsors one of the oldest Geriatric Medicine Fellowship programs in the country, training numerous highly-successful academic geriatricians including those currently providing national leadership to the field of gerontology. It has a distinguished history of providing widely-acknowledged leadership in geriatric education and training in addition to conducting cutting-edge research across the full-spectrum of gerontology, including dementia, the biology of aging, patient care, health services, community-based and dissemination studies. 

The division is internationally recognized for its extensive research programs in aging and geriatrics. The current total research funding for the division exceeds $60 million. This funding supports cutting-edge investigations in several areas of primary research interests of geriatrics faculty, including Alzheimer’s disease, transitional care, metabolism of aging, dysphagia, community-based studies, and geriatric education and training. Notably, the majority of research funding comes from NIH, the Department of Veterans Affairs, national research foundations and philanthropy. In addition to research funding, the division receives grant support to train and create a pipeline of young, talented investigators in all aspects of aging research. The current training grants include an NIA-funded T32, the Advanced Geriatrics VA Fellowship, and the HRSA-funded Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program.

The UW Division of Geriatrics works collaboratively with the Madison VA GRECC, 1 of only 20 Centers of Excellence in aging research in the country. The Madison GRECC was established in 1991 to coordinate and enhance all aspects of aging research throughout the Madison VA and UW campus. The GRECC supports the nationally renowned UW Geriatric Fellowship Program that has trained over 100 geriatric fellows over the past 25 years.

The division faculty directs several nationally renowned centers and institutes, focusing on aging research and training. Among these include the NIH-funded Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (Director: Sanjay Asthana, MD), Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Institute (Director: Cynthia Carlsson, MD), Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center (Director: Sanjay Asthana, MD), the Center for Women’s Health Research(Director: Molly Carnes, MD), and the Osteoporosis Clinical Center and Research Program (Director: Neil Binkley, MD).



In the early 1960s, Lou Holland Sr., a hard-working farm boy from Racine, came to UW-Madison and instantly found his footing on the football field as a dynamic running back for the Badgers. After college, he found success in the financial world, becoming an investment professional and a highly respected regular on the long-running PBS program, Wall $treet Weekwith Louis Rukeyser. Later in life, Lou Sr. was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

Despite a crushing diagnosis, Lou Sr. spent little time knocked down, and instead decided to tackle the disease with the same tenacity that he exhibited in his athletic and professional careers. With his family by his side, they committed to fight the disease together. Lou Sr. lost his battle to Alzheimer’s disease in early 2016, but his son, Lou Jr., and the entire Holland family, have in his name, created the Louis A. Holland Sr. Professorship in Alzheimer’s disease at the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Institute (WAI).

Cynthia Carlsson, MD, MS, is the first recipient of the award. Dr. Carlsson is the Associate Director of the WAI and Clinical Core Leader of the Wisconsin ADRC. Her overarching goal is to better understand how vascular risk factors contribute to the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease and how treating these vascular mechanisms may delay or prevent the onset of dementia.

This prestigious award not only honors the remarkable Lou Holland Sr., but also exemplifies the passion and dedication of the entire Holland family. This award recognizes the work of a consummate academic physician in the field of Alzheimer’s disease.

Please join Lou Jr. and his family in advancing a cure through discovery, care and service through your support of the UW Initiative to End Alzheimer’s. Together, we can make a difference!

Lou Holland Jr and his father, Lou Holland Sr.“It means everything to me to have Pop’s name associated with this amazing University, and to have this Professorship carry his legacy forward in our fight against Alzheimer’s disease.”

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