Distinguished Scientist Matthew Rizzo, M.D.

January 13, 2017

Image with caption: Matthew Rizzo, M.D.

Matthew Rizzo, M.D.

This profile is part of a series to highlight the researchers who will be honored at a ceremony for UNMC's 2016 Scientist Laureate, Research Leadership, Distinguished Scientist and New Investigator Award recipients.

The Distinguished Scientist Award

The Distinguished Scientist Award -- which is sponsored by the chancellor -- recognizes researchers who have been among the most productive scientists at UNMC during the past five years.

  • Name: Matthew Rizzo, M.D.
  • Title:
    • Francis and Edgar Reynolds Professor
    • Chair, Department of Neurological Sciences
    • Clinical Leader, Neurosciences Programs
    • Director, Great Plains IDeA Clinical and Translational Research Network
  • Joined UNMC: 2014
  • Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.

Research focus:
Brain and behavior

The goal of my research is to advance multidisciplinary research programs and activities of personnel devoted to basic, translational, and clinical research on human neurocognitive performance across laboratory and real-world settings.

My research will make a difference because it will advance mind and brain health, mobility, and quality of life across the lifespan.

The best advice I've ever been given is:

  • Never give up.
  • Don't judge.
  • Listen hard.
  • Be generous.
  • Find greatness in everyone.

Three things you may not know about me:

  • I applied to be an astronaut twice and tested Shuttle candidates at NASA.
  • Ran multiple marathons.
  • My college chemistry advisor also was Isaac Asimov's advisor.


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Tom O'Connor
January 13, 2017 at 10:04 AM

Dr. Rizzo is truly one of our stars. Congrats on being named a Distinguished Scientist!

Diego Torres-Russotto
January 13, 2017 at 9:45 AM

We are very lucky to have Matt at UNMC. He is an international leader in Neurology, and his research makes a difference on millions of people every day. Congratulations!

Lisa Houdesheldt
January 13, 2017 at 7:58 AM