Class Notes

Libby Bortz

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LIBBY BORTZ, BSPH ’57 (pictured above), Public Health Administration, recently was inducted into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame. She led efforts in Littleton, Colorado, to be the first suburban community nationally to create a Housing Authority in 1971. Bortz became one of its first members and continued to provide leadership and creativity for 47 years. She was instrumental in the effort to build a senior high-rise apartment building. What became the Bradley House was possible because after HUD rescinded the offer of funding, she organized a protest of senior citizens and the funding was reinstated. She convened all the housing authorities in the state and served as first chairperson of the Colorado Association of State Housing Authorities. She conceived of the idea of having the Housing Authority build an assisted-living facility. That facility today is the Libby Bortz Assisted Living Center. It was the first assisted-living center in the United States to be built by a housing authority.


MYLES P. LASH, MHA ’70, Hospital Administration, published the historical fiction novel, “Imminent Peril” (BookBaby), in February. The dramatic tale is set during the Civil War and tells the story of the Wolverine Brigade of Michigan’s Fifth Cavalry with a commentary on Michigan history.

DEBORAH R. McFARLANE, MPH ’74, Population and Reproductive Health, a professor of political science at the University of New Mexico, is co-publishing with Wendy L. Hansen the book, “Regulating Abortion: The Politics of U.S. Abortion Policy” (Johns Hopkins University Press), on May 28.

HARRY PERLSTADT, MPH ’79, Health Planning and Administration, professor emeritus in the Department of Sociology at Michigan State University, published the book, “Assessing Social Science Research Ethics and Integrity: Case Studies and Essays” (in Clinical Sociology: Research and Practice Series, Springer Publishing Co.), in January.


DR. STEPHEN M. MODELL, MS ’91, Clinical Research Design and Statistical Analysis, research and dissemination director in genomics within Michigan Public Health’s Department of Epidemiology, was appointed chair of the American Public Health Association’s Action Board and co-chair of its Joint Policy Committee at the 2023 APHA Annual Meeting in Atlanta. He was also honored with the APHA Genomics Forum’s Public Health Genomics Award for outstanding contributions to the field in four major areas: genomics education; CDC genomics implementation; promotion of genomics dialogue; and associated policy efforts.

RICHARD WESTON, PhD ’94, Health Policy, ran a 5,000-meter road race to raise funds for cystic fibrosis programs on Labor Day in Atlanta. He finished with a time of 38:11 to place fifth in the 75-and-older-group.


CHRISTINE BILLINGS, MPH ’02, Epidemiology, who served as incident commander for the Jefferson County, Colorado, response to COVID-19, established the JCPH Office of Pandemic Response, which evolved into a new division at the health department. Currently, she is the director of the Epidemiology, Planning and Communications Division. She also sits on the board of directors for the regional healthcare coalition and the FEMA regional advisory council.

Laprisha Berry Daniels
Laprisha Berry Daniels

LAPRISHA BERRY DANIELS, MPH ’05, Health Behavior and Health Education, is executive director for Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice. During the TED Countdown Summit held in Detroit in 2023, she delivered a talk on the main stage that highlighted how lessons from the past can help us better prepare for current and future issues related to climate change. Her talk was published in February.

DAVID HUNTER, MPH ’05, Health Behavior and Health Education, was promoted to the rank of Captain in the US Public Health Service in October. For the past 17 years, he has been stationed at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and has held a variety of roles. He currently serves as the deputy director of the Division of Workforce Development, where he leads the operations and management of the division’s fellowship and training programs to strengthen the public health workforce to meet the challenges of the future.

DARLA (WILLIAMS) BISHOP, MPH ’09, Health Behavior and Health Education, director of enrollee engagement at AmeriHealth Caritas in Washington, DC, published the financial literacy book, “How to Afford Everything” (Independent), in December.


THOMAS KLEIN, MHSA ’13, Health Management and Policy, was named to the Crain’s Detroit Business “40 under 40” list in October. Klein is the chief operating officer for Ascension Medical Group Michigan. He was nominated by his colleagues and peers and selected by Crain’s Detroit Business reporters and editors.

DR. SUSAN G. BORNSTEIN, MPH ’19, Health Management and Policy, recently transitioned from her OB-GYN practice to found The Asclepius Initiative (TAI), a nonprofit organization dedicated to making healthcare coverage more affordable, accessible and equitable. In 2023, TAI received a grant from the Kentucky Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Equity to improve health insurance literacy in underserved populations across the state.


DYLAN KILBY, MPH ’20, Epidemiology, who finished a three-year, COVID-19 response contract in June 2023, went on a five-month solo mountaineering trip in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. In total, he summited 190 peaks, gained more than 410,000 feet of elevation and traveled 1,300 miles. Kilby returned home to Colorado, where he volunteers at the Colorado Mountaineering Club while working in public health emergency planning.

BRANDON BOND, MPH ’22, Health Behavior and Health Education, a mental health and well-being student advocate in the Dean’s Office of the University of Michigan College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, was selected as a recipient of the 12th Annual Distinguished Diversity Leaders Award. This award is administered by the Equity, Civil Rights and Title IX Office and sponsored by the Office of the Provost and University Human Relations.

SARAH ROZENBLUM, PhD ’23, Public Health and Political Science, was awarded the John McCain Dissertation Award from the Munich Security Conference 2024 that honors outstanding academic achievements in the field of transatlantic relations. Rozenblum is a postdoctoral associate at Cornell University’s Jeb E. Brooks School of Public Policy and a researcher for the World Health Organization.

Dylan Kilby
Dylan Kilby