Altoona Area School District, Altoona PA
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Dr. Robert E. Black

Dr. Robert E. Black, a Class of 1963 graduate who resides in Severna Park, MD. Since 1985, he has been professor and chairman of the Department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, widely recognized as the most prestigious department of international health in the country.

Dr. Black developed extensive expertise in the epidemiology and treatment of infectious diseases and his academic career has been dedicated to research which finds ways of improving health and nutritional status of infants and children in resource-poor countries. As a result, he has become a leading authority on this area.

He earned an AB from Cornell University and became a medical doctor after attending Hahnemann Medical College in Philadelphia. He also earned a Master's in Public Health from UCLA.

Dr. Mark L. Dembert

Dr. Mark L. Dembert, a graduate of the Class of 1967 who currently lives in Norfolk, VA. He is the District Director for the Western Tidewater Health District for the Virginia Department of Health. Dr. Dembert retired as a Captain in the U.S. Navy Medical Corps in 2002.

During his 27-year Navy career he distinguished himself in the fields of diving and submarine medicine, preventive medicine and psychiatry. He led the Navy Psychiatric Rapid Intervention Team in a number of missions including the Swiss Air Flight 111 recovery at Nova Scotia, the TWA Flight 800 recovery in Long Island Sound and the aftermath of the attack on the USS COLE in the Middle East.

He graduated from Bucknell University and completed his medical education at Jefferson Medical College. He also earned a Master's in Public Health from Yale University School of Medicine.

Marjorie Holtzinger Helsel

Marjorie Holtzinger Helsel, a Class of 1942 graduate who passed away in November, 2003. She was the publisher of the Altoona Mirror and the Pennsylvania Mirror and was actively involved in many community organizations including the Altoona Chamber of Commerce and Penn State Altoona. She was an active member of the Altoona Area High School Alumni Association and helped raise the money for the Mt. Lion statue that stands on the high school campus.

She raised seven children, all of whom are Altoona High School graduates. Mrs. Helsel graduated from Penn State with a BS degree in animal husbandry.

Ben L. Irvin

Ben L. Irvin, a 1952 graduate who lives in Sarasota, FL. He was the senior partner in the international trade law firm of Aitken, Irvin & Lewin and Roshanian, Paymam & Irvin.

He has held senior level positions with the United States Government over a distinguished career in the fields of international trade and customs matters. He has provided technical assistance in 38 foreign countries in an effort to help them become part of the World Trade Organization.

Mr. Irvin, who speaks Russian and German in addition to English, earned a BA from Penn State and an LLB from the University of Baltimore School of Law.

Neil Port

Neil Port, a 1957 graduate who resides in Hollidaysburg. Currently, he is assisting small entrepreneurs through Neil Port and Associates, LLC.

He helped develop two small businesses into national prominence, Sky Brothers Food Distributor and Delta Heath Systems, now known as Siemens Health Services, an industry leader serving 450 home health agencies in 47 states.

Mr. Port has been active in many community organizations and has been involved in countless philanthropic activities related to the United Way of Blair County, Penn State Altoona and Home Nursing Agency to name just a few. He holds a BS in industrial engineering from Penn State University.

Joy Counsel Ufema

Joy Counsel Ufema, a Class of 1960 graduate who lives in Airville, PA, is a clinical specialist in thanatology for the Upper Chesapeake Health System in Bel Air, MD.

Over the years, Ms. Ufema accumulated an unusually specialized array of experiences in attending to the needs of the terminally ill. She became a leading voice in support of the hospice movement. Her lectures, publications and innovative ideas have helped expand the ever-growing Science of Thanatology. Her story was told in the CBS made-for television film, "A Matter of Life and Death" starring Linda Lavin.

She is a registered nurse who earned a BS and an MS from Columbia Pacific University.

 


 

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