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My twin sisters and I grew up in the Midwest, and since both of my parents were educators, our childhood summers were filled with traveling and exploring the West and Southwest, or camping and wandering up and down the Mississippi River in our boat. I graduated from The University of Iowa in 1987 with a BS in Biology and a minor in Mathematics, and then worked for several years as a Research Assistant in a Cell Biology Laboratory. In 1989, I entered PA school at The University of Iowa. After graduation, my family and I moved to a remote corner of NE California, where I worked as a Family Practice PA in an independent non-profit rural health clinic (quite a rarity these days!). When our daughter was old enough to enter school, we moved back to NE Iowa, and for four years, I worked as the only provider in a rural health clinic in the tiny town of Arlington, IA. During that period, I also earned my Master's of Physician Assistant Studies degree through the University of Nebraska Medical Center. I started as Director of Clinical Education in May of 2001 and transitioned to the role of Director of Curriculum & Evaluation in 2004. I also continue to work part-time in clinical medicine with the UICMS Urgent Care clinic system.
My interests outside of medicine include gardening, boating and fishing, tai chi, and reforestation.