University of Iowa Athletics
Director of Sports Psychology and Student-Athlete Mental Health

Patricia Espe-Pfeifer

Patricia Espe-Pfeifer -  - University of Iowa Athletics


Dr. Patricia Espe-Pfeifer was named to the position of director of sports psychology and student-athlete mental health services for University of Iowa Athletics in June, 2022.

Espe-Pfeifer joins the UI Athletics staff after serving as a clinical professor and neuropsychologist with the UIHC Department of Psychiatry since 2004. Espe-Pfeifer is a faculty member and provider within the UIHC Stead Family Children’s Hospital and has served as director of child psychology and pediatric neuropsychology services with child psychiatry. She works closely with UI Sports Medicine Concussion Clinic and is an interdisciplinary team member for the Neurocritical Care, Tuberous Sclerosis Complex, and Pediatric Epilepsy clinics.

Espe-Pfeifer also provides group therapy interventions through the Outpatient Adolescent Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Program. Her areas of clinical interest include traumatic brain injury, sports-related concussions, epilepsy, stroke, eating disorders, ADHD and learning disabilities.

Espe-Pfeifer earned her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Nova Southeastern University in 2002 and completed her postdoctoral fellowship in neuropsychology from the University of Virginia Medical Center in 2004. She earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and biology from Jamestown College and her master’s degree in clinical psychology from Austin Peay University.

Espe-Pfeifer has authored more than 20 publications and creative works and nearly 50 published abstracts.

Her professional memberships include the Sports Neuropsychology Society (SNS), International Neuropsychological Society (INS), American Psychological Association (ASA) and the National Academy of Neuropsychology (NAN), while holding service roles in numerous additional professional organizations.

Espe-Pfeifer is married to Jason Pfeifer. The couple have three children — Raina, Nikolaus and Amara.