Biographies for Board of Directors Election


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Candidates for President

Ron Gerrits
Milwaukee School of Engineering
Milwaukee, WI

HAPS member for 15 years

Attended 3 HAPS national meetings and 1 regional meeting in the last 3 years

HAPS Service

  • 2002-2009: Active member of the Curriculum and Instruction committee
  • 2009-2013: Chair of the Curriculum and Instruction committee (2 terms)
  • 2013-2016: Chair of the Steering Committee
  • Presented workshops or posters at 8 national and regional HAPS conferences over the past 8 years.
  • Served as the Biology Scholars primary liaison for HAPS in 2010.
  • Worked on the POGIL project, which resulted in several activities posted to the HAPS Resources page.

As I enter my 15th year as a HAPS member it is easy for me to reflect on the many opportunities that HAPS has provided me during this time. These include learning from like-minded individuals, leveraging resources generated by others, contributing to discussions about both physiology and education, generating resources that can be used by physiology educators (such as learning outcomes and guided inquiry activities), and various leadership roles. And what I enjoy most is that the opportunities come from an intimate, friendly environment that I never felt when attending the much larger scientific meetings prior to my discovery of HAPS. HAPS has been a great fit for me and I would be honored to help lead the society going forward.

As a new educator, I attended my first HAPS conference in 2002. After attending one of the lunch "informational" committee meetings, I found myself on the Curriculum and Instruction committee. At the time the committee was in the planning stages for learning outcomes, which is a project that I was heavily involved with over the next several years. In 2009 I became the chair of that committee, leading it through a transition of using various web based platforms to complete its work and updating web pages and position statements. At the completion of my term I was asked to chair the Steering committee, which included running monthly e-meetings of the chairs of the various HAPS committees and being involved with several conference activities. Along the way, there have been other HAPS activities as well, including the POGIL project and working with Open Learning Initiative Anatomy and Physiology project, which utilized some HAPS generated resources in its work.

I am a firm believer in not only taking advantage of the benefits of a professional society, but also in giving back. If elected, it would be further opportunity for me to help ensure that the society continues to engage its members in a way that all find beneficial as well as make sure there are opportunities for all members to participate.

Mark Nielsen
University of Utah
Salt Lake City, UT

HAPS member for 21 years

Attended 3 HAPS national or regional meetings in the
last 3 years

HAPS Service

  • Presented a unique and different workshop on anatomy, each of which were designed to increase anatomy knowledge among our members, for 14 of the last 21 years.
  • I will be hosting the HAPS conference in Salt Lake City in 2017.

I have benefited greatly over the years through my involvement with HAPS and have met so many wonderful colleagues. I would love to have the opportunity to give back and become more involved in helping HAPS continue its strong and important mission in undergraduate anatomy and physiology education. As someone who is inherently shy, I would love to see our society create a stronger platform to showcase the diversity and strength of our membership, especially for our newer members and those who do not have the opportunity to attend the HAPS conference. That would be my goal as president - to create the appropriate mechanism roster, member profile newsletter, etc. to help the HAPS membership gain a better appreciation for the many wonderful people that comprise HAPS.

Candidates for Secretary

Karen A. McMahon
Instructor of Biological Science
The University of Tulsa
Tulsa, OK

HAPS member for 18 years

Attended 4 HAPS national or regional meetings in the last 3 years

HAPS Service

  • Hosted 2012 HAPS national meeting
  • HAPS Treasurer (2014-2016)
  • Chaired the Safety Committee
  • Served on Conference, Nominating, Partnership, Safety, & Steering committees
  • Presented posters and workshops at national and regional HAPS meetings
  • Written articles for the HAPS EDucator
  • Student of HAPS-I course (Using Cadavers to Teach Human A&P)

It would be an honor to continue as HAPS Treasurer for a second term. During my first term, I have instituted several improvements in the way the budget and financial matters are now handled. I represented the BOD in negotiating the renewal of the contract with ASG, the management group for HAPS. Working with the BOD and Executive Director, I produced a HAPS annual budget, incorporating line item changes in order that expenses and income can be better anticipated and compared from year. I have also supported and approved the motion of the Foundation and Scholarship Committee to move funds into higher interest bearing accounts. As host of the 2012 Annual Conference in Tulsa, I have the experience and insight about the most significant income source for HAPS. From my years as Chair of the Safety Committee and serving on the Steering Committee, I have a working knowledge of the policies and procedures of HAPS. If elected to a second term, I would continue to ensure that HAPS funds are managed wisely and that expenditures are kept affordable to maximize participation of our membership at HAPS conferences and HAPS-I courses.

Peggie Williamson
Professor of Biological Sciences
Central Texas College
Killeen, TX

HAPS member for 6 years

Attended 4 HAPS national or regional meetings in the last 3 years (3 national and 1 regional)

HAPS Service

  • Edit Blogs for Communications Committee (2015-2016)
  • Served on Membership Committee (2015-2016)
  • Completed HAPS-I course - Anatomia Italiana (2014-2015)

After being a member of this society for over six years, I would consider it privilege to serve as the HAPS Treasurer for the 2016-2017 term.

During my first conference in Denver, I was flooded with new names and faces but felt an immediate connection with each person I met. After attending the workshops, I was amazed at how willing everyone was to share ideas and materials, and I admired the obvious dedication to excellence in teaching. By the time I left, I had not doubt about the impact this organization truly has on the quality of education, and I knew right away that I wanted to become a part of it. Since then, I have excitedly attended each national conference where I learn better methods of content delivery, collaborate with others, visit old friends, and welcome new members into what I truly believe is an outstanding organization.

Recently, I became a part of both the Membership and Communication Committees, so I have a new appreciation of all the work that goes into making this organization run smoothly. HAPS really does have a group of dedicated members who wholeheartedly give themselves and act as wonderful role models to new and seasoned instructors alike. Several HAPS members inspired me to complete my second Master's Degree in Human Anatomy & Physiology Instruction from New York Chiropractic College. This online program not only made me more technologically savvy; its faculty inspired me to create a more challenging and engaging classroom. I was also thrilled to have the opportunity this past year to complete my first HAPS-I course - Anatomia Italiana - where I joined several A&P enthusiasts for an unforgettable tour of Italy to learn more about the contributions that Italian culture had on the development of human anatomy as a science. I would have never even known of these opportunities were it not for HAPS.

My involvement in HAPS over the past several year has tremendously influenced me personally and professionally, and I would love the opportunity to give back to HAPS and its membership. The strengths I bring are my organizational skills, attention to detail, enthusiasm, and ability to collaborate. If elected as Treasurer, I will do all that I can to ensure that our members' voices are heard and that we continue to accomplish our mission as we face new challenges in the future.

Candidates for Central Regional Director

Leslie Day
Acting Chair and Associate Clinical Professor
Northeastern University
Boston, MA


HAPS member for 15 years

Attended 4 HAPS national or regional meeting in the last 3 years

HAPS Service

  • Eastern Regional Director on Board of Directors 2014-present
  • Cadaver Use Committee Chair 2012-2014
  • Presented workshops at HAPS annual conferences, most recent workshop was "I'm Ready to Flip! Now what?"
  • Member of Membership Committee 2014-present

It has been such an honor representing the membership as the Eastern Regional Director of the Board of Directors for the past 2 years. I feel I have made a positive impact on the society as we continue to grow and I hope that you will allow me to continue representing you on the board for another term. Over the past 2 years I have gotten to know more committed educators who care about improving the quality of their teaching and the lives of the students they educate. Through these conversations, i have listened to your thoughts and kept them in mind as I represent you on the board. I feel this society has offered so much to so many people, and I think it has even more potential to grow, both in increased number of regional conferences, annual conference locations and offerings, and non-conference resources on the website for those that can't make the conferences.

HAPS has become the place for educators to share their passion for teaching and their desire to shape the lives of future health care providers and other students interested in learning about the human body. Our society is a fabulous one, with great opportunities and resources for all of its members. If re-elected for another term, I hope to help continue to steer the society towards one that every member can be proud to be a part of, as much as I am.

Elizabeth Hodgson, M.S.

Instructor of Biology
York College of Pennsylvania
York, PA

HAPS member for 14 years

Attended 3 HAPS national or regional meetings in the last 3 years

HAPS Service

  • Member of Web Committee (2005-2006)
  • Member of Membership Committee (2006-2009)
  • Chair of Membership Committee (2010-2011)
  • Co-Chair of Membership Committee (2011-2013)
  • Chair of Communication Committee (2013-2014)
  • Member of Animal Use Committee (2015)
  • Served on HAPS Steering Committee as Committee Chair (2010-2014)

It is with great pleasure that I accept the nomination for Eastern Regional Director. I have been coming to HAPS annual conferences since testing the waters in Philadelphia many years ago. In the following years, I got to know and become friends with many of the members of HAPS. I joined the Membership Committee in 2006 so that I could become more involved and have been involved in some capacity since then.

One of the best things about HAPS is the camaraderie shown, not only to old friends, but to the newest of members well. This fosters an excellent environment to learn new information, exchange ideas, as well as ask questions, regardless of how simple they may be. I constantly am learning because of the help and information afforded by this organization and would like to continue to give back as the Eastern Regional Director. Serving as the Coordinator of the Radiography program and the Nuclear Medicine Technology Program at York college and serving on the Steering committee for HAPS has prepared me well for the position of Regional Director. The Coordinator positions require the ability to work with administration, to view the bigger picture of how the programs interrelate within the college as a whole, as well as to work with a variety of personalities (students, parents, adjuncts, clinical coordinators, etc). The Steering Committee requires similar abilities plus to be able to bring forward ideas that can improve the functionality of HAPS as a professional society.

As a Regional Director, it is important to be open to the new members of HAPS, welcoming them to their first Annual Conference as well as to continue to foster the positive relationships with the seasoned members. I believe I can do this and serve the position well. I look forward to seeing everyone in Atlanta!

 Candidates for Southern Regional Director

Becky Brown
Instructor, Life & Earth Sciences Department
College of Marin
Kentfield, CA

HAPS member for 10 years

Attended 3 HAPS national or regional meeting in the last 3 years

HAPS Service

I attended my first HAPS Annual Conference held in San Diego ten years ago and I was hooked, and have been attending annual conferences every year since. The welcoming and sharing spirit of HAPSters, along with excellent workshops and update seminars, have helped me immensely with my teaching career and strive for teaching excellence. My educational background is in the discipline of zoology, and I fell into teaching Human Anatomy and Human Physiology as my teaching assignments early in my career. I was thrilled with the creation of the HAPS-I courses, and am proud to have been a student in the very first HAPS-I courses (Renal Physiology and Problems in Biological Education). Since then, I have enrolled in and completed four additional HAPS-I courses.

While my HAPS service is limited, I have had extensive leadership experiences at my institution, serving as department chairperson and academic senate secretary. These experiences have prepared me for the leadership opportunity of the HAPS Western Regional Director. The Western region has many opportunities for outreach and planning for regional conferences.

It would be an honor to serve the HAPS community by continuing the "HAPS spirit" as the Western Regional Director.


Jon Jackson
Fellow in the History & Philosophy of Science
Institute for Philosophy in Public Life
Grand Forks, ND


HAPS member for 14 years

Attended 4 HAPS national or regional meetings in the last 3 years.

HAPS Service

  • Presented a poster or workshop at every HAPS meeting since 2004
  • Current HAPS Western Regional Director
  • Current member, Education Task Force
  • Served on Regional Conference Planning committee (Minneapolis, 2014)
  • Past Chair, Membership Committee
  • Service on Cadaver Use, Testing, and Steering Committees
  • HAPS Credentialing Task Force (AACA Liason)
  • Have contributed to HAPS-Ed and hapsblog
  • Have participated in a HAPS-I course (Renal Physiology)

Since joining the HAPS discussion-forum in 2001, I have found HAPS to be a friendly, inclusive place dedicated to serving and supporting all of its members through information, collaboration, opportunity, and many other helpful resources. The HAPS meeting is the one meeting I never miss, even when I have to pay out of pocket, because after a couple of year, it is much more like a fun family reunion than a drab, academic conference. The students that I have brought to HAPS meetings over the years have said the same thing.

I'm proud to be part of the world's premier organization for A&P education. As we ready ourselves for a 4th decade of service and support to A&P instructors, it's my wish that we tap into the experiences of members - irrespective of their ability to attend the annual meeting - to use their skills and experience in creating new resources to support the teaching and research of all HAPSters.

Dag Hammarskjold once said - "there is no one from whom you can not learn." This is not merely the wisdom of the ancients; it is a promise that HAPS keeps to its members each year. If the membership sends me back onto the Board for a final term, I will look forward to helping fulfill that promise with energy and distinction.

Glenn Yoshida
Professor, Emeritus (Biology)
Los Angeles Southwest College
Los Angeles, CA

HAPS member for 27 years

Attended 2 HAPS national meetings in the last 3 years

HAPS Service

  • Served on HAPS Safety Committee (2004-Present)
  • Served as Western Regional Director (2008-2010)
  • Served on HAPS Board of Directors as Western Regional Director (2008-2010)
  • Served as a member of the HAPS Administrators Advisory Group that made recommendations to the Board to eliminate barriers to new people attending HAPS conferences (2007)
  • Co-Author in HAPS-Educator (2015 Annual Conference Edition) entitled "Instructor's Liability for Student Inquiries in the Lab: Are We Covered?"

One of my first rewarding experiences as a Los Angeles Southwest College A&P instructor was attending a national Human Anatomy & Physiology conference in 1988 at Triton College in Illinois. That conference was an eye opener after 12 years of teaching - I had never met so many teachers of A&P all in one place! The update seminars and hands-on workshops, the camaraderie and collegial atmosphere, together with networking opportunities, gave me a sense of pride and excitement as an instructor. I have attended every annual national conference since then (except 2014). Even though I retired in 2012 after 36 years of teaching A&P, I continue to attend HAPS conferences and look forward to renewing friendships and growing professionally each year.

If elected as the Western Regional Director, I plan to continue the HAPS spirit of promoting teaching excellence in a friendly, collegial environment. I will communicate with my constituency and promote increased involvement of the region's membership in HAPS activities. I will also work with the Board of Directors to ensure continued success and collaborative activities through planning and evaluation. In addition, I will explore possibilities of a western regional HAPS conference in the greater Los Angeles area. I am honored to be a nominee as the Western Regional Director and will strive to maintain the mix of professionalism and excitement that has continued since the inception of HAPS.