Jon Drummond spotlight image; he is wearing a black t-shirt, wearing glasses, and has short, grey hair

KYLEND Trainee Spotlight: Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Drummond USAF

Meet Lieutenant Colonel (Lt Col) Jonathan Drummond USAF (retired)! Jon comes to the University of Kentucky with an M.S. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology (Kansas State University) and an M.A. in Social Psychology (Princeton University). Jon is a research assistant for the University of Kentucky’s Human Development Institute and is pursuing a PhD in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion. 

Jon’s primary research interest is the therapeutic value of sequenced physical activity (ie., martial arts, dance, climbing, etc.) for those with neurodevelopmental and other disabilities. Other research interests include:

  • Project NEXT: An effort focused on improving academic success in college and job placement for those with autism and traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Understanding and addressing the growing epidemic of dynapenia and obesity in youth
  • Physiological and psychological aspects of and benefits for women who engage in stereotypically non-feminine sports (ie., powerlifting and fighting)
  • Optimization of strength and explosive power in competitive athletes

Lt Col Drummond retired from the United States Special Operations Command in 2010 where he worked with many U.S. allies in the Middle East and ran the Counter-Radicalization Branch. Prior to coming to UK, he created training, education standards, and content for eleven career fields across all military services. 

Finally, Jon has a competitive history in multiple sports with his prime achievement being six world championships in the sport of powerlifting.  

Jon is currently enrolled as a trainee in the University of Kentucky Human Development Institute’s Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) program. LEND is a five-year grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration Maternal and Child Health Bureau in partnership with the University of Louisville and Eastern Kentucky University. 

These programs share the overall mission of improving the health of infants, children, and adolescents with autism and other neurodevelopmental disabilities. LEND aims to increase the number of professionals with the knowledge and skills to provide evidence-based screening and diagnosis, as well as support to individuals and families.

Visit to learn more. Contact the Kentucky LEND Project Director with any questions or to schedule an informational session for your department and interested students!