Mark is a clinical instructor at the Kois Learning Center in Seattle, Washington. He is a member of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry and the Frances B. Vedder Society of Crown and Bridge Prosthodontics. He is a part time faculty member at Western Michigan University, where he also coaches the university’s rugby team. Mark practices dentistry in Kalamazoo. He earned his B.A. at K in chemistry and earned his D.D.S. from the University of Michigan (1981).
Keith is the founding director of the Computational Biology Institute at George Washington University. He studies computational biology, population genetics and bioinformatics, and he helps develop and test big data methods of DNA sequence analysis. He applies this work to the study of the evolution of both infectious diseases (especially HIV) and crustaceans (especially crayfish). Keith has published more than 250 peer reviewed publications, as well as three books. He has been a Fulbright Visiting Scholar to Oxford University (England) and an Allen Wilson Centre Sabbatical Fellow at the University of Auckland (Australia). He has received a number of awards for research and teaching, including the American Naturalist Society Young Investigator Award, an NSF CAREER Award, a PhRMA Foundation Faculty Development Award in Bioinformatics, Honors Professor of the Year award at Brigham Young University, ISI Highly Cited Researcher, and the Edward O. Wilson Naturalist Award. He recently was elected a Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). At K, Keith majored in biology and studied abroad in Madrid, Spain. After graduating, Keith served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Puyo, Ecuador. He earned his master’s degree (statistics) and his Ph.D. (biology and biomedical sciences) from Washington University.
Thomas received Virginia Tech’s 2015 Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine Outstanding Senior Award, which recognizes exceptional academic achievement and leadership by a graduating senior. Thomas received his D.V.M. degree in May. At K he earned his bachelor’s degree in biology. He also earned a minor in Chinese and did his study abroad in Beijing, China. At VMCVM he was a member of the Gamma Sigma Delta Agriculture Honor Society, received the Robert C. Brown Career Life Sciences Award in Leadership (2013 and 2014), and served as a research assistant, student member on the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine dean’s search committee, and as a student interviewer for the college’s class of 2018 applicants.
Last year Class Notes reported that David was named Physician of the Year in Sonoma County (California) for getting his small town of Healdsburg to raise the purchase age of tobacco products to 21 years. He said at that time that he hoped to make the change statewide within a year. Well, a year later he’s happy to report that this has happened. On June 9, 2016, California became the second state (after Hawaii) to set the tobacco purchase age to 21. Dave says it will make a huge difference in the health of the state! “And,” he adds, “It will spread nationwide soon. See what a K graduate can accomplish!”
Rob gave an interview on WUNC 91.5, North Carolina Public Radio, on May 18. He talked with radio host Frank Stasio about science in general and Rob’s latest book, The Man Who Touched His Own Heart. An article on Rob will appear in the December issue of LuxEsto.
In September of 2015 Dianne transitioned from working full-time (for more than 16 years with HealthPartners Geriatrics as a nurse practitioner) to a new position as clinical assistant professor with the University of Minnesota School of Nursing. There she teaches courses within the Doctor of Nursing Practice program and maintains a Faculty Clinical Practice with HealthPartners two days a week. In November 2015 Dianne became president of Minnesota Nurse Practitioners, where she is leading the organization to expand networking and professional support for nurse practitioners statewide.
Dianne also returned to Spain for the first time since her study abroad experience in 1978. She and her husband, Wes, participated in a three-week bike tour of more than 400 kilometers through the region of Catalonia. Dianne continues to live in Lake Elmo, Minnesota, with Wes. Their son, Taylor, is a recent computer and electrical engineering graduate from Michigan Technological University, now working in Helsinki, Finland, and their daughter, Katy ’12, is a master’s degree candidate at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan.
Theresa received her bachelor’s degree in psychology at K and her M.S.W. from Washington University in St. Louis. She is a Social Work Clinical Leader at Northwestern Medicine in Chicago. Theresa became certified as a Treatment Specialist in Diverse Populations and works with the most complex cases within the hospital. She has 10 years of experience in direct practice with mental health and health care, and she has expertise in crisis management, solution-focused therapy, severe mental illnesses, diverse populations and trauma. Theresa has presented at national conferences and webinars discussing innovative social work models for healthcare, and recently she published an article in the journal Collaborative Case Management that introduces a new team-based model for managing difficult cases within a hospital setting. In addition to her social work practice, she has taught undergraduate psychology courses for five years as an adjunct professor. Theresa and Justin Horowitz have been together for 14 years. They have been married for more than five years. They are expecting their first child this fall.
David is a board member of the Michigan Osteopathic Association and an instrumental member of its Task Force on Safe Opioid Use, which submits recommendations to Governor Rick Snyder’s Michigan Prescription Drug and Opioid Abuse Task Force. Opioid abuse has become a crisis in Michigan and nationally. David wrote a viewpoint in the Lansing State Journal titled “Medication-assistance treatment (MAT) for opioids.” In it he states the importance of MAT as the standard of care for opioid use disorder, clarifies (and decries) the reasons for its underuse, and applauds the allocation of new funding that, in part, will make MAT more widely available.
Paul received the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) Mastership Award during the AGD 2015 annual meeting, which took place this past June in San Francisco. The Mastership Award is the AGD’s highest honor and one of the most respected designations within the profession. To earn this award, Paul completed more than 1,100 hours of dental continuing education. As a Mastership Award recipient, Paul joins more than 2,200 active AGD Masters who have gone above and beyond the basic requirements to care for their patients’ oral health. The AGD has more than 39,000 members.
Péter is the co-editor of a new book titled Computational Neurology and Psychiatry. He also is the co-author—along with two K students, Takumi Matsuzawa ’16 and Tibin John ’15—of a paper included in that book. The paper is titled “Connecting Epilepsy and Alzheimer’s Disease: Modeling of Normal and Pathological Rhythmicity and Synaptic Plasticity Related to Amyloidβ (Aβ) Effects.”
Sometimes seeing more is a matter of new ways of looking. Such “new ways of looking” include the emerging scientific fields of computational neurology and computational psychiatry. The key word is “computational.” Researchers apply math and computer science to create computer models that simulate brain structures and brain activities associated with specific disorders (epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease, for example). Such simulations—and new techniques of analyzing the copious amount of data that emerges from such simulations—have the potential to reveal elements of brain structure and function associated with disease and disorders, elements that have heretofore been a mystery. In other words, these “new ways of looking” may result in seeing what’s never been seen before.
Computer modeling also offers advantages of cost and convenience compared to older ways (animal experimentation and laboratory set-up) of trying to model and see brain structure and (mal)function.
A book that pioneers these new scientific fields is exciting and important, says Péter: “Adopting advanced computational methods such as modeling and data processing raises hopes that one day we will more effectively treat neurological and psychiatric disorders.”
In other news, Péter has been appointed Vice President for Membership of the International Neural Network Societies.