Alumni Profiles

UI College of Public Health graduates are leaders throughout Iowa, across the United States, and around the world as they work to improve the health and well-being of people where they live and work. Learn more about the varied career paths of our alumni.

Portrait of Peggy Brinkman, MPH '09, practicing veterinarian program.Peggy Brinkman, MPH ’09
Brinkman earned a Master of Public Health degree in the practicing veterinarian program in 2009. “Public health is a great extension of veterinary medicine,” Brinkman says. “It is amazing how much overlap there is between human and animal diseases.” Her public health degree has given her a better understanding of food safety, workplace safety, and public health administration that she uses to help her clients provide a better-quality product in a safe environment.

Portrait of Stephanie Kliethermes, MS ‘09, PhD ‘13 Biostatistics.Stephanie Kliethermes, MS ’09, PhD ’13
Kliethermes, Research Director at the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine in Madison, Wisconsin, credits her CPH biostatistics professors with helping her get to where she is today. With their guidance, she was able to identify her strengths, get experience, and discover the numerous career paths in the field of biostatistics. She says, “They gave me confidence as well as the ability to knock down doors and create my own path.”

Portrait of Chris Klitgaard, MHA '99.Chris Klitgaard, MHA ’99
An internship at UI Hospitals and Clinics while pursuing a Master of Healthcare Administration degree, gave Klitgaard the insight to create MediRevv. The company educates customers about their bills and payment options, and works with insurance companies to maximize insurance-covered payments. “We basically found out there was a huge opportunity for improvement in the service providers,” Klitgaard said. Published in The University of Iowa Entrepreneur: 101 magazine, produced by the Corridor Business Journal, September 2015.

Portrait of Elise Klopfenstein.Elise Klopfenstein, MPH ’11
As a Registered Dietitian at Henry County Health Center in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, Klopfenstein’s primary role is education. She focuses on changing food environments and helps define “healthy” for her clients. She says, “My hope is that my clients walk away empowered with knowledge, not blindly following my advice, but informed to make healthy choices.”

Portrait of Jill Kluesner.Jill Kluesner, Certificate ’12
As a Mental Health First Aid Instructor, Kluesner teaches an 8-hour course that provides training on how to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. Kluesner says, “What excites me most about this work is when a past training participant says, ‘Thank you, your class gave me the confidence to reach out and help someone in my life.'”

Portrait of Tim Link.Tim Link, Certificate ’05
An Environmental Sanitarian at the City of Dubuque Health Services Department for over 20 years, Link says, “I enjoy interacting with people and teaching them about public health to avoid an illness or injury.” While working in the City of Dubuque Health Services Department, Link chose to broaden his knowledge by obtaining a Certificate in Public Health in 2005.

Portrait of Danielle Pettit-Majewski, MPH '10.Danielle Pettit-Majewski,  MPH ’10
As the Public Health Administrator for Washington County, Iowa, Pettit-Majewski might be educating the public about the importance of vaccines one day and making a presentation about distracted driving the next. “There are so many public health aspects of daily life that people don’t often see or think about,” she says. “I love seeing the impact we’re able to have on the community.”

Portrait of Mark Richardson.Mark Richardson, MA ’83
As President and CEO of Great River Health Systems (GRHS) in West Burlington, Iowa, Richardson’s tenure has seen the creation of more than 1,000 jobs and his organization has become the largest employer in Southeast Iowa. GRHS is a regional health system that includes a 378-bed hospital, retail pharmacies, retail medical equipment and supplies providers, and over 20 physician clinics. “I have been a hospital CEO for over 30 years and I can’t imagine another job that could be so self-fulfilling,” he says.


Questions or comments? Contact Tara McKee. This page was last reviewed on June 20, 2017.