Core faculty members are individuals with a Virginia Commonwealth University faculty appointment who are actively contributing to the various research, educational and policy activities of the center. Applications for core faculty status will be reviewed on a rolling basis by center leadership. If you're interested in becoming a core faculty member of CPPI, please feel free to reach out to us at

John Bucheit headshot

John D. Bucheit, Pharm.D.

Associate Professor


John Bucheit has been collaborating with CPPI since 2017. He is a clinical pharmacist at CrossOver Healthcare Ministry, the largest free health clinic in Richmond and one of CPPI's practice partners.

Research interests: hypertensive urgency, chronotherapy, diabetes, interprofessional education

Dave Dixon's head shot

Dave Dixon, Pharm.D.

Professor, Department Head


In addition to his role as professor of ambulatory care, Dave Dixon serves as department chair for the Department of Pharmacotherapy & Outcomes Science and is an affiliate faculty member of VCU's Pauley Heart Center. He is the primary investigator on CPPI's Project InnoVAte as well as its 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring project.

Research interests: lipid disorders, hypertension, diabetes, chronic heart failure, pharmacist-physician collaborative practice models

David Holdford's head shot

David Holdford has been collaborating with CPPI since 2017. He has been a professor at VCU since 1995 and brings a background in pharmaceutical marketing and leadership development to the center. His expertise in developing business models and considering the economic side of CPPI's projects helps the center create sustainable innovations that can be applied across a broad spectrum.

Research interests: applied pharmacoeconomics, pharmacist entrepreneurship, marketing pharmacist services and pharmaceuticals, health outcomes

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Gary R. Matzke, Pharm.D.

Professor Emeritus


Gary Matzke is one of the original members of CPPI, initially called the Center for Pharmacy Practice Transformation. He has since retired but maintains his position on CPPI's core faculty. 

Research interests: public policy, nephrology, chronic kidney disease, drug development, regulatory science

Lauren Pamulapati headshot

Lauren G. Pamulapati, Pharm.D.

Assistant Professor


Lauren Pamulapati joined VCU and CPPI as an assistant professor in 2017. She practices under a collaborative practice agreement at the Hayes E. Willis Health Center, a family medicine clinic affiliated with VCU Health, where she leads rotations for pharmacy and medicine students. For CPPI specifically, she serves as the student engagement point person by showing Pharm.D. students in her classes and rotations the career paths available to them beyond traditional pharmacy. 

Research interests: diabetes, transitions of care, telehealth, practice advancement, post-graduate training for pharmacy students

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Vasco Pontinha, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor


Vasco Pontinha, Ph.D., joined VCU as an assistant professor of pharmacoeconomics in 2023. He earned his Ph.D. from VCU in pharmacoeconomics and health outcomes, focusing on the development of group-based trajectory models to identify patterns of long-term medication adherence and implementation of machine learning algorithms to examine value-based health care policy. Prior to completing his Ph.D., he received his pharmacy degree from the University of Lisbon and a Master’s in Management from the Católica-Lisbon School of Business and Economics. 

Pontinha brings his economic expertise to CPPI by helping demonstrate the economic value that pharmacists generate in their many interventions. 

Research interests: economic evaluation of non-pharmaceutical interventions and how those can inform health care benefit design and policy; pharmaceutical services reimbursement design.

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Dayanajan Wijesinghe, Ph.D.

Associate Professor


Dayanjan (Shanaka) Wijesinghe has been at VCU as an assistant professor since 2015. He earned his Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology at VCU in 2008. Most of his research focuses on the biochemical changes that occur in the body during the onset of a disease, which he explores in the School of Pharmacy’s Laboratory of Pharmacometabolomics & Companion Diagnostics. With his role as lab director and background in pharmacometabolomics, he brings an alternate perspective on innovation to CPPI.

Research interests: pharmacometabolomics, precision medicine, big data, augmented reality

Kristin Zimmerman headshot

Kristin Zimmerman, Pharm.D.

Associate Professor


Kristin Zimmerman has been an associate professor at VCU since 2016. She joined VCU after working in a variety of positions with the Boston VA for nearly eight years. She uses her background in geriatrics in her clinical appointment at VCU Health's Center for Advanced Health Management.

Research interests: medication regimen complexity, de-prescribing, geriatrics, cognition