Sleep Research Consortium Mission
The Sleep Research Consortium facilitates research, programs, and initiatives that promote population and individual health through healthy sleep and sleep-related chronic disease prevention and reduction.
- To promote the health and well-being of Tennesseans through information sharing, and development and implementation of research, programs and projects that focus on healthy sleep, and sleep-related chronic disease prevention and reduction, obesity prevention and reduction, and improved population and individual health.
- To collaborate and share best practices with other researchers, clinicians, public health practitioners, and community stakeholders.
- To develop and implement research, programs, and projects which meet a need and improve the health of Tennesseans, and that may be replicated nationally.
- To advance and support interdisciplinary scholarly and research activity specific to healthy sleep.
- To develop and strengthen partnerships within the university, the community, the state, and nationally who have vested interest in healthy living, specifically healthy sleep and reduction of obesity and chronic disease which may be associated with poor sleep.
- To serve as a resource to the MTSU community on projects and initiatives related to sleep, obesity, chronic disease reduction and population health.
Executive Leadership Team:
William Noah, M.D., Dr. William H. Noah serves as the Chair and Medical Director of the Sleep Research Consortium which he co-founded in 2017. Dr. Noah has over 25 years of medical leadership experience from multiple arenas including academic, clinical, public policy, corporate medicine, and even humanitarian aid.
During his training, Dr. Noah was selected by the faculty as Chief Resident of the University of Tennessee Medical Center, an appointed staff position. He was awarded the Plitman Memorial Scholarship for Medical Public Policy and was elected national chairman of the Resident Physician section of the American Society of Internal Medicine, now named the American College of Physicians. He was the first resident physician appointed to the residency review committee by the American Board of Internal Medicine. He subsequently became a nationally known speaker and writer on public policy issues in medicine.
Dr. Noah was also successful in the research laboratory and was awarded a prestigious Parker B. Francis National Research Fellowship but decided to leave research and focus on patient care. In 1993, he founded the Middle Tennessee Center for Lung Disease, and later founded the Sleep Centers of Middle Tennessee which have treated over 50,000 patients and currently employ eleven doctors (eight MDs and three PhDs), as well as a combined 60 employees. Dr. Noah currently sits on the National Accreditation Committee of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine which determines and governs the standards in the field of Sleep Medicine.
After developing new and more successful ways of supplying positive airway pressure therapy to patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), he, along with Craig Salazar, formed MD CPAP, Inc. which changed national treatment standards for OSA. Phillips-Respironics then recruited Dr. Noah to educate major insurance companies on how to improve outcomes while reducing costs in sleep medicine.
In 2006, Dr. Noah initiated several clinical research projects in conjunction with Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) addressing issues in sleep medicine and founded the Sleep Research Consortium in partnership with MTSU Center for Health and Human Services in 2017.
Cynthia Chafin, M.Ed., MCHES Cindy serves as the Sleep Research Consortium’s Director of Research, Projects, and Programs, and co-founded the Consortium with Dr. Bill Noah and other partners. Ms. Chafin has served as a project director and consultant for MTSU Center for Health and Human Services since 2002 and was appointed interim director for the center in 2015. The CHHS’s mission focuses on promoting better health and well-being for all Tennesseans through research and service projects, education, and training across the spectrum of public health issues of importance to Tennessee. The CHHS recognizes healthy sleep as an important component of good health and established the Sleep Research Consortium to facilitate research and community-based programs and services that promote population and individual health through healthy sleep. The CHHS has a specific interest in obesity and chronic disease prevention, and healthy sleep.
Gabriel Toban, M.S., serves as the Sleep Research Consortium’s Director, Data, and Technology. Mr. Toban is a student in the Computational Science PhD program at MTSU. He assisted Dr. Gary and Dr. Noah in the creation of a 5-year research plan in the field of sleep medicine. Mr. Toban has developed analyzation and reporting applications and tools for EHR, EMR, and PM data and standards that enhance the efficiency, productivity, and quality in medical offices and hospitals across the united states during the last 10+ years. It is his intent to help support and improve healthcare with statistics and data mining research completed through the Sleep Research Consortium.
Todd Gary, Ph.D., serves as Research Consultant for the Sleep Research Consortium and was previously with MTSU Office of Research. Todd is currently the Associate Vice President of Research and Community Development at Trevecca Nazarene University. He received his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from Vanderbilt University and completed a NIH research fellowship in Vanderbilt’s Department of Medicine. He was a visiting scholar at WPC healthcare where he helped develop the Sepsis Condition Awareness Platform, a data science product for identifying patients at risk of sepsis. Todd helped develop MTSU’s research partnership with Dr. Bill Noah focused on sleep apnea research and predicting patient compliance.