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College of Health Sciences

CHS Distinguished Alumni of 2018

Each year, during the fall semester, a graduate from each of the divisions and schools in Health Sciences are recognized as distinguished alumni, based on outstanding accomplishments within their professions, excellence in education and ways they have benefited their communities. While visiting campus for Homecoming events, these health care professionals take time to meet with students pursuing similar health career goals and offer insight into what students can expect once they begin their journey into the health professions. 

The College of Health Sciences has been formally honoring its distinguished alumni, recognizing their outstanding achievements, since 2009.

This year's Distinguished Alumni include: 

Division of Kinesiology and Health

William J. Kraemer, Ph.D.

Dr. William J. Kraemer, Distinguished Alumnus for the Division of Kinesiology and Health.William J. Kraemer received his Master of Science in Exercise Physiology in 1978 and his Ph.D. in Zoology and Physiology in 1984, both from the University of Wyoming. Prior to becoming one of the world’s leading experts in resistance training and top sport scientists, he taught physical education and coached wrestling and football at the secondary level. While completing his Ph.D. at UW from 1980-1984, Kraemer worked in the Human Energy Research Laboratory and ran the American Heart Association’s Wyoming Cardiac Rehabilitation program.

He is currently full professor at The Ohio State University where he leads the Neuroscience and Neuromuscular Laboratory. 




Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing

 Susan Polston Mills, Ph.D., MSN, RN, BSN

Photo showing Susan Mills, 2018 Distinguished Alumna for the School of Nursing.

Susan Mills is a 1996 BSN graduate from the University of Wyoming. In 2001 she earned her Master of Science in Nursing at the University of Texas at Austin with a focus in public health. Ten years later, Mills completed her Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing at Austin, with a portfolio in Women and Gender Studies.

She has filled the position of vice-president of quality improvement with Superior HealthPlans of Texas since 2008.

“In that position,” states a nominator, “she demonstrates great integrity, accountability, and leadership to all that work with and for her. Mills is a wonderful contributor to her profession, community, and team. She always leads by example, volunteers for several community organizations, and is not afraid to fight for what she believes is right, especially if it impacts her team or patients.”


Division of Social Work

Pamela Oiler, BSW, LCSW

Photo of Pam Oiler, the 2018 Distinguished Alumna for the Division of Social Work.

Pamela Oiler graduated for the University of Wyoming with her Bachelor of Social Work in 1999. She also holds a Master of Social Work degree from Colorado State University.

Oiler is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and Assistant Lecturer at the University of Wyoming Family Medicine Residency Program in Cheyenne. She has been a Social Services Director in long-term care and prior to joining the faculty at the Residency Program, was at Cheyenne Regional Medical Center, providing discharge planning and case management services to patients/families on in-patient units. She also serves as a mentor and provides field instruction, on-site supervision and teaching for social work practicum students (Bachelor and Master Level students) at the University of Wyoming Family Medicine Residency program. Oiler provides off-site supervision to additional students who are completing their practicum at other agencies in Cheyenne. 

She holds professional membership to the National Association of Social Workers. Oiler enjoys playing the piano, cooking, camping, hiking, skiing and speaks French.

School of Pharmacy

John A. Pieper, Pharm.D., FCCP, PAPhA

Dr. John Pieper, the 2018 Distinguished Alumnus for the School of Pharmacy. John Pieper received a Bachelor of Arts in Molecular Biology from University of Colorado, a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy from University of Wyoming, and a Doctor of Pharmacy and postdoctoral fellowship training at State University of New York at Buffalo School of Pharmacy.

Pieper became the fourth President of St. Louis College of Pharmacy on August 1, 2010. Prior to his appointment at the college, Pieper served as professor and dean of the College of Pharmacy at University of New Mexico (UNM), with concurrent appointments as vice president for research and deputy executive vice president at UNM Health Sciences Center in Albuquerque. Pieper was also a senior fellow at the Robert Wood Johnson Center for Health Policy at UNM and was adjunct professor, facultad de farmacia, at Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos in Cuernavaca, Mexico.

Currently, he serves on the Board of Directors for the United Way of Greater St. Louis, the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis and the Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College.

Pieper and his wife Patty live in St. Louis and have two grown children, Katie, an attorney in Chicago, and Johnny, who works in insurance in Charleston, South Carolina.

Division of Communication Disorders

Maggie Scarlett, SLP, MS

Maggie Scarlett, the 2018 Distinguished Alumni for the Division of Communication Disorders.Maggie Scarlett received her Bachelor of Science from the speech-language pathology (SLP) program at the University of Wyoming in 1963 and a Master of Science from Colorado State University in 1965.

She worked as an SLP for over 21 years in Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah in both school and medical settings, including Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City and Denver Children’s Hospital. Scarlett also served on the board of the Teton Literacy Program and has worked for two important cultural intuitions, The National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson and the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody. She received an honorary doctorate degree from UW in 2018 for her lifetime of contributions.

Margaret Webster “Maggie” Scarlett was born and raised in Cody, Wyoming. During her time as a practitioner, Scarlett experienced firsthand the challenges of providing services in rural settings, as well as the obstacles to obtaining continuing education and updated information on clinical practices.

The annual Maggie Scarlett Summer Speaker Series, which is held during the month of June, offers important educational instructions and professional insights for both students and speech-language pathologists from throughout Wyoming.

Division of Medical Education

Mark McKenna, MD 

Dr. Mark McKenna, the 2018 Distinguished Alumnus for WWAMI Medical Education. Mark McKenna received his Bachelor of Science degree in biology and chemistry at the Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana. Immediately following, he completed a graduate degree from the University of Wyoming and his medical degree from the University of Washington School of Medicine WWAMI program in 2005. Following that, McKenna underwent his residency in orthopedic surgery at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania. He then completed his education and training with a shoulder and elbow fellowship at the University of Washington.

A native of Casper, Wyoming, McKenna joined Premier Bone & Joint Centers in 2011, where he currently practices.

In addition to his practice commitments, McKenna serves as a team physician for the University of Wyoming athletics. He also teaches and is a preceptor at the University of Washington Medical School WWAMI program. In his free time, he stays active through volleyball, basketball, golf, hiking, and wine collecting.



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Phone: (307)-766-3495

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