UNMC Alumni Association honors six individuals

Barbara Hurlbert, M.D., a 1971 graduate of the UNMC College of Medicine, received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the College of Medicine Alumni Engagement Council.

Barbara Hurlbert, M.D., a 1971 graduate of the UNMC College of Medicine, received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the College of Medicine Alumni Engagement Council.

The University of Nebraska Medical Center Alumni Association honored six individuals for contributions to their respective professions during the annual University of Nebraska Medical Center Alumni Reunion held Oct. 7-8 in Omaha.

More than 200 UNMC alumni from the College of Medicine, College of Nursing and the Graduate Studies Program returned for the reunion. Alumni attending the reunion represented class years ranging from 1956 through 2006 and hailed from 26 states.

Activities during Alumni Weekend included:

  • walking tours of campus, including stops at the Gross Anatomy Lab, Clinical Skills Lab, Anatomage Table, and the McGoogan Library of Medicine;
  • a student poster session;
  • a narrated Ollie the Trolley tour of Omaha;
  • the Welcome Back lunch;
  • class parties across Omaha;
  • the College of Nursing Alumni Leadership Lecture and Dean's Reception; and
  • the annual Celebration & Awards Banquet.

At the Celebration & Awards Banquet, the alumni engagement councils recognized five alums and one honorary alum, including two inaugural Graduate Studies Awards. The award recipients included:

  • Barbara Hurlbert, M.D., Class of 1971, College of Medicine Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award
  • Jim Medder, M.D., College of Medicine Alumni Engagement Council Honorary Alumnus Award
  • Anita Brenneman, Class of 1961; College of Nursing Alumni Engagement Council Dorothy Patach Spirit of Service Award
  • Teresa Lynne Krieger Anderson, Ed.D., College of Nursing Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award
  • Jim McClurg, Ph.D., Class of 1973; Graduate Studies Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award
  • Ernie Prentice, Ph.D., Class of 1976; Graduate Studies Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award

Here is additional background on the six award winners:

Barbara Hurlbert, M.D., Class of 1971, College of Medicine Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award

Dr. Hurlbert is currently professor emeritus in the UNMC Department of Anesthesiology. A 1971 cum laude graduate of the UNMC College of Medicine, Dr. Hurlbert was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha, the national medical honor society.

An anesthesiologist specializing in liver transplantation, she co-founded the liver transplant program at Nebraska Medicine and has performed anesthesia on more than 2,000 liver transplants.  She helped build UNMC/Nebraska Medicine as a destination in the country and world for liver transplantation.  One of her most challenging cases in her career was providing anesthesia for the separation of conjoined twins. Both children survived with a good outcome.

Dr. Hurlbert has received a high number of teaching awards, including the College of Medicine “Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award” (three times), the Golden Apple Award from the students numerous times, and has been listed as one of the “Best Doctors in America” yearly since 1998. 

She has chaired and been involved with committees and groups within and outside the Department of Anesthesiology.  She has served in several leadership positions in organizations at the state and national level, including the Nebraska Society of Anesthesiologists and the American Society of Anesthesiologists.

An accomplished researcher, Dr. Hurlbert’s research interests include: anesthesia for liver and kidney organ transplantation, quality improvement, high fidelity simulation, and advances in cardiac resuscitation.

She has inspired many medical students to pursue a career in anesthesia, including one of her two grown daughters. She is married to Merle McAlevy, M.D., a fellow College of Medicine graduate from the class of 1971. 

Jim Medder, M.D., M.P.H., College of Medicine Alumni Engagement Council Honorary Alumnus Award

Dr. Medder is a board-certified physician in family medicine and preventive medicine. He earned his medical degree in 1976 from the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine.  He did his residency in family medicine at Deaconess Hospital in Evansville, Ind., before earning a master’s degree in public health from the University of California Berkeley in 1989. He also completed a preventive medicine residency at UC-Berkeley in 1990.

Dr. Medder joined UNMC’s Department of Family Medicine in 1990. He has devoted his entire career to preventive medicine, public health, service to the community, and the education of health sciences students.  He currently serves as associate professor and as director of the M.D./M.P.H. dual degree program.

In 1997, Dr. Medder was a founding member of the faculty advisory committee of the UNMC SHARING Clinics.  SHARING (Student Health Alliance Reaching Indigent Needy Groups) is UNMC’s inter-disciplinary student-run clinic that provides medical care for Omaha’s underserved population.

Dr. Medder staffed the weekly SHARING Clinics from their inception until 2015, serving as faculty physician for nearly 1,000 clinic sessions. During his time with SHARING, the enterprise grew from one clinic to five clinics and to hosting two annual community outreach events. More than 12,000 patient visits have occurred under his watch with students and faculty participating in the student-run clinics, which have been nationally recognized.

For the majority of his years at UNMC, Dr. Medder interacted with nearly every UNMC medical, pharmacy, and physician assistant student in addition to many physical therapy, nursing, medical laboratory science, public health, and medical nutrition students.

Anita Brenneman, Class of 1961, College of Nursing Alumni Engagement Council Dorothy Patach Spirit of Service Award

After graduating from the UNMC College of Nursing in 1961, Anita Brenneman began her career as a nursing and community leader. Her first full-time nursing position was as a staff nurse at Lutheran Community Hospital in Norfolk, Neb. Two years later, she was named surgery supervisor.

Brenneman joined Northeast Community College in 1968, serving as coordinator of the practical nursing program. In 1978, she was named dean of the Health, Science and Drafting Division and held that position until 2003.  In 1988, she developed and implemented the Early Childhood Program, and in 1989, she implemented the Associate Degree in Nursing Program.

Brenneman earned her Master of Science in Education degree from Wayne State College in 1991.  She currently serves as president of the board of directors of Faith Regional Medical Center in Norfolk.

Her strong commitment to the community includes service to her church (Grace Lutheran in Norfolk), the American Red Cross, and volunteering at a local elementary school.

Her list of accomplishments and awards is extensive, including First Lady of the Year, Beta Sigma Phi Society, 1991; Distinguished Service Nursing Award in Nebraska, UNMC College of Nursing, 1992; Sigma Theta Tau, Gamma Pi Chapter, International Honor Society of Nursing, UNMC College of Nursing, 1993; Norfolk Chamber of Commerce, Business/Education Council, Certificate of Commendation for Commitment to Excellence in Teaching, 1995-1996; and the Chief Executive Officers’ Award from Nebraska Community College System, 1996.

Brenneman has two grown children and enjoys spending time with her grandchildren.

Teresa Lynne Krieger Anderson, Ed.D., College of Nursing Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award

Teresa Anderson earned her associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the UNMC College of Nursing. She received her doctorate in education from the College of Saint Mary in Omaha.

Early in her career, Dr. Anderson served as   a 1st Lieutenant and registered nurse in the United States Army Reserves.  As a practicing nurse, she worked in several specialty areas including labor and delivery, mother-baby, gynecology, neonatal intensive care, medical, and home health.

With the growth in Dr. Anderson’s nursing experience came teaching roles, whether it was patient education or educating nursing students and colleagues. She has served in as a teacher at Metropolitan Community College, Creighton University, Bexar County Hospital in San Antonio,  Alpena Community College in Alpena, Mich.

Dr. Anderson has worked in clinical nursing, teaching, administration, and consultation, including much work with the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Magnet Recognition Program (a special designation for health care organizations that excel in quality patient care, nursing excellence and innovations in professional nursing practice).  She has served as a national consultant for the Magnet Recognition Program for the American Nurses Association since 2005, assisting dozens of hospitals to be recognized for nursing excellence. 

Since 2000, Dr. Anderson has had a sustained interest in leadership development and support of nursing staff primarily at the Alegent Health Center for Nursing Excellence. She led submission of Mercy Hospital’s Magnet application in 2005 and served as Magnet Program Coordinator at Children’s Hospital & Medical Center in Omaha in 2014.   

In recent years, Dr. Anderson has served as president of the Nebraska Nurses Association. She led the NNA Board of Directors to streamline association governance, advance toward virtual member engagement, and support practice changing legislation in Nebraska. In 2006, she was honored as the NNA District 2 Nurse of the Year.

In an effort to consolidate resources and achieve more cost effectiveness, Dr. Anderson worked with other state nursing associations and the American Nurses Association to pilot a regional alliance known as the Midwest Multi-State Division.

Ernest “Ernie” Prentice, Ph.D., Class of 1976, Graduate Studies Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award

Dr. Prentice earned his Ph.D. in anatomy from UNMC in 1976. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida and his master’s degree from the University of Iowa. He also served in the United States Air Force from 1960-1964. He has served on the faculty at UNMC since 1973 in the Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Anatomy.  He is a tenured full professor.

He has played a substantial role in mentoring students, as he has served on the supervisory committees of 35 master’s level students and eight doctoral students in the UNMC College of Medicine.  In addition, he has a courtesy appointment in the UNMC College of Public Health.

He served as director of the UNMC Institutional Review Board (IRB) from 1981-1985 and as the IRB Co-Chair until 2006.   He also served as co-chair of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) for 12 years beginning in 1985.

In conjunction with his roles on the IRB and IACUC, Dr. Prentice served as assistant dean of research and then associate dean of research before becoming the associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and regulatory compliance, a position he has held since 2000.

Dr. Prentice has published extensively with more than 70 peer-reviewed publications. He has authored or co-authored 19 book chapters and a number of instructional teaching programs. He has presented hundreds of invited lectures and research ethics training courses across the United States.  His expertise is widely sought as a consultant to IRBs and IACUCs across the country, as well as legal firms.  He regularly serves as a member of federal task forces related to human subject and animal research.

Dr. Prentice’s service to professional associations involving animal welfare and science, as well as protection of human subjects, has been extensive. He is currently on the board of trustees and is immediate past president of the Scientists Center for Animal Welfare (SCAW).  He has also served in a number of other roles including chair of the Ethics and Education Committees for the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) and as chair of the External Advisory Board for the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI). From 2004-2007 Dr. Prentice served as chair of the HHS Secretary Advisory Committee for Human Research Protection.

James McClurg, Ph.D., Class of 1973, Graduate Studies Alumni Engagement Council Distinguished Alumnus Award

Jim McClurg is president of Technical Development Resources Company, a consulting firm. He is chairman of the board of Hudl, a global software company, and serves on the board of Racenote, an Omaha start-up company.

He currently serves on the board of UNMC Medical Center Development Corporation and is chair of the Cancer Center Development Corporation, which oversees the design and construction of the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center at UNMC. He also serves on the board of Nebraska Medicine, the University of Nebraska University Technology Development Corporation, and the University of Nebraska Foundation Board of Trustees.

He served as president and CEO of Harris Laboratories, Inc, from 1984 until its acquisition by MDS (NYSE:MDZ) in 1996, and as senior vice president and chief scientific officer at MDS Pharma Services from 1996-2008.  Dr. McClurg served on the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska from 2002 until 2012 and was chair in 2006 and 2012.

He has served as a director of Assurity, Inc. of Lincoln, Streck Laboratories of Omaha, Beijing MDS Pharma Services Joint Venture (chairman), The Smithers Group, Akron Ohio, BioNebraska (chairman), the Nebraska Life Sciences trade association, UNeMed, Inc. (chair), the technology development company of UNMC, and Lincoln General Hospital (chair).

He has received alumni achievement awards from Nebraska Wesleyan University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, has published a number of scientific articles, and holds a U.S. patent in the field of laboratory testing.  Prior to joining Harris in 1976, he served on the biochemistry research faculty at UNMC.  He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry from UNMC in 1973 and his B.S. in biology from Nebraska Wesleyan University.

Dr. McClurg is married to Lori McClurg.

We are Nebraska Medicine and UNMC. Our mission is to lead the world in transforming lives to create a healthy future for all individuals and communities through premier educational programs, innovative research and extraordinary patient care.

Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Instagram  |  YouTube  |  Flickr