Professor; Senior Advisor for Advocacy, Health Policy & Global Development
I graduated from the MEDEX program with Class 11 (1978) and returned to practice in Ashland OR as the community’s first PA. My undergraduate degree is from Southern Oregon State College and I also earned a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Washington (1997). After working clinically in both family practice and public health, I joined the MEDEX faculty in 1981 and became the Program Director in 1985. The program expanded significantly during my directorship and I’m proud to have provided leadership for those changes. I was promoted to the rank of Professor of Family Medicine in 2013.
On May 1, 2014, I stepped down from the MEDEX leadership role to take on another full-time position as Senior Advisor on Advocacy, Health Policy and PA Global Development. I serve as one of two historians for the PA History Society and also am Director of International Affairs for the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants. I have been actively involved in the development of the PA role in a number of countries including Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United Kingdom. I typically travel about 40% of my time. In 1999, Barry University in Florida awarded me an honorary doctorate in recognition of my political and policy leadership in the PA profession. In 2012, I was awarded the AAPA’s Eugene Stead Award—the PA profession’s highest award—in acknowledgment of my role in promoting PA education and the PA profession.
My interests include healthcare access, women’s health care concerns, oral health and rural health issues. I lecture on these topics nationally and internationally. I’m a mom and a grandmother, too. My daughter and her husband live in the Seattle area and my son and his wife live in southern California. Between my family and business travel I like to joke that my home town is an Alaska Airlines 737 with a population of 110 and an altitude of 32,000 feet.