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Biology Department News Faculty/Staff


Brown (Backstrom), Ruth - Ruth came very close to having a B.S. in Pre-Med and Dietitics from Muskingum but could not fit a needed course into her schedule. Then, finances interrupted her next plan of going to Duke University for a Hospital Dietetic Internship. After graduation from Muskingum in 1952, Ruth accepted a position as Youth Director at Pleasant Grove U.P. Church in Youngstown, Ohio, thinking she would still eventually go to Duke University.

While in Youngstown, Ruth became acquainted with Bob Brown, MC x52, while he was home on leave from the USAF. They married eight months later and have had a good life with three children, four grandchildren, and two great grand children. Ruth remains an investigative-type person, keeping up with dietary and medical information and is helping a bit with two younger children and their interest in biology and science by providing books. She has been a researcher and public speaker in religious subjects.

Ruth says, "A biology class in my senior year of high school opened a door to this wonderful field."


Kelvington, Elaine - Elaine is doing well and still working as a Medical Practice Administrator. Elaine states that this is a field that is becoming increasingly more difficult.


Horn, Jim - Jim has been the pastor of the Presbyterian Church of Havre de Grace in Maryland since January 2009. He graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary with a M.Div in 1977 and graduated from Columbia Theological Seminary with a D.Min in 1993.


Gregoire, Cecilia - Cecilia's husband of 22 years, Wayne Golnazarian, passed away four years ago. She was recently remarried to Michael Gregoire and has accepted a new position on the faculty at Plattsburgh State University as Lecturer o Anatomy and Physiology.


Bacu (Burrows), Lisa - Lisa and her husband Ron welcomed a baby girl into the family this year. Rebecca Kathryn Bacu was born on November 21, 2008 at 8 lbs., 20.5 in. long. She joins her big sister, Elizabeth (5) and big brother, Christopher (3).


Tolman (Aultz), Carrie - Carrie got married in September to Jason Tolman. Lisa Koenig Kumpfmiller (19915) and Carrie Busack Sedor (1995) were both present. Carrie has also moved back to Columbus and is back at Nationwide Children's Hospital working as a nurse practitioner in the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition and Bariatric Clinic.


Cole, Sara - Sara's significant other is Richard A. Kowalski, a Research Specialist at Catalina Sky Survey Lunar Planetary Lab at the University of Arizona. Sara is currently involved in managing the oversight of the building of our new Diamond Children's Medical Center and a new bed tower and emergency department for University Medical Center in Tucson.

Richard was recently in the world news (October 5/6) as the discoverer of the TC3 asteroid that entered Earth's atmosphere over Sudan. This was the first time in human kind that an asteroid was discovered and tracked, knowing when and approximately where it would hit the planet. That was a most exciting week for Sara and Richard and his survey team.

Sara also has two cats, Sydney and Dharma.

Address: 2902 N. Cloverland Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85712
Phone: (520) 834-2296

Friesenborg (Musgrave), Jen - Jen has been accepted into the Doctoral Program at Miami University in the Educational Leadership Program. Her degree will be in curriculum and development with a minor in supervision. Her focus is the improvement of science education.

Smith, Misty - Misty is engaged to Malcolm (Trey) MacKay, III. She is currently the Senior Scientist for the Anticonvulsant Drug Development (ADD) Program and in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. She is an adjunct faculty member in the Biology Department at Salt Lake Community College. Trey is a construction superintendent for R&O Construction in Salt Lake City. Misty graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Medicine Department of Pharmacology and Physiology with a Ph.D. in Biomedical Science. A spring wedding is planned in Salt Lake City.


Abels (Kavy), Jennifer - Jennifer was married on July 14, 2007 to Collin Abels of Englewood, Ohio. Brianna Maria Abels was born June 6, 2008. Jennifer is a school-based Physical Therapist for Montgomery County in Dayton, Ohio.


Smith (Heim), Lisa - Lisa is now teaching eighth grade science, and their daughter, Noraa Mehrin Smith, had her first birthday on October 27, 2008.


Palm, (Horsky), Marcie - Marie graduated in 2003 with a Conservation Science major and a Biology minor. She now teaches Kindergarten at St. Andrews School of Math and Science in Charleston, South Carolina. This is a magnet school and they have just opened an inquiry lab for science. Marcie also got married in 2008. She has her masters in Environmental Education from Cal State San Bernardino.

Marcie say "Hi," to Jim Dooley!


Cummings, Deirdre - Andrew Newburn (class of 2004) is a first-year pediatric resident at Akron Children's Hospital. He, and his wife, Deirdre Newburn (formerly Deirdre Cummings) live in Akron, Ohio. Deirdre has completed her M.A. in Clinincal Psychology, but will be returning back to graduate school in the fall of 2009 to obtain her M.A. in Occupational Psychology.


Klenk, Erin - Erin recently had her master's thesis defense and passed. She will be graduating in June from the University of Cincinnati with a Master of Science in Immunobiology. She is also starting to work her Mary Kay business with the goal of becoming a Director and driving a free car.

Voelker, Bryan - Bryan began graduate studies at The University of California, Berkeley, in the fall of 2008. As part of the Environmental Science, Policy and Management Department, he is working towards his M.S. in Range Management. Bryan's thesis work includes developing a comprehansive management plan for a ranch here in California, using field cameras to perform wildlife research, and conducting research on a herd of Tule elk that utilize the ranch property via capture and attachment of radio collars that track individual elk.


Hesson (Sayre), Heather - Heather was married on October 7, 2006 and she and her husbanc, Jeremy Hesson finished building their first new home in June 2007. Heather is employed at Caldwell School District and taught 7th and 8th grade science and wellness for two years. Her third year was spent at the high school teaching Biology, Physiology, Zoology, and Ecology. She is expecting her first child (boy, Grady Ray) March 4, 2009.


Campbell, Ashley - Ashley was a Conservation Science major and has just finished her first year of study at the Vermont Law School. This institution is internationally known for its program in environmental law.

Grennell, Jon - A Conservation Science major at Muskingum, Jon is currently serving with the Nevada Conservation Corps as a part of the Americorps Program. He has been building trails and removing invasive plant species. Joh anticipates applying for graduate school within the next couple of years.

Miller, Craig - Craig is currently in medical school at Ohio State and sent Muskingum this update:

"Doing dissections on the cadavers is incredibly interesting. It is amazing how much you can learn from doing dissections and how unique each individual body is. My anatomy group of 6 was lucky in that our body was fairly in shape. His muscles are well defined, making it easier for us during lab. I love the material and being here, and am definitely thrilled with my choice of coming here. I was at first a little hesitant as to whether I would be as capable as most of the other students because of my attending of a small high school and small college. However, I am getting through it better than most and feel that I am doing great, and hope that I am representing my fellow Muskies well. I have definitely learned that Muskingum prepared me just as much, if not more than a lot of the other schools that the other medical students attended.

Our curriculum is divided into blocks. Currently, I am on the anatomy block, which entails gross anatomy and some embryology lectures. This block is subdivided into three divisions, each with its own exam. The first division ended this past friday (my first medical school exam). It went very well, and I am thrilled with the result. Because we approach the body regionally, the first exam covered everything (all systems) relating to the back and upper limb. The embryology section was based on the first few weeks of development.

The second division of the anatomy block is also a regional approach, and will cover the thorax, abdomen, and lower limb. Thus far we have covered the thoracic region and are beginning the abdominal region. The final division will include the head and neck.

One other part of the current curriculum is a clinical development component performing medical interviews on standardized patients including giving physical exams. It is kind of odd trying to act like these "set up" interviews are real, but I think it gives us great practice for the real setting. The standardized patient actors actually do a great job of acting like a real concerned patient.

Besides studying and going to class, the main highlight has been the football games. I bought tickets to every home football game. These are, of course, amazing and a great way to get away from all of the studying. It is definitely good to clear your mind after a very long week of studying."

Waynick, Elizabeth - Elizabeth is currently enrolled in a veterinary assistant program at the Vet Tech Institute in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Whitt, Bonnie - Bonnie has been accepted into a Master of Veterinary Public Health Program at The Ohio State University.