A sense of continuity is very important to an educational institution. One important element of that continuity is the participation of retired faculty members in the life of the University. They provide a source of wisdom about the experiences that led to the present, and this becomes one element in determining the future direction of the University. Western University of Health Sciences, COMP promotes participation of its retired faculty members by granting the title of Emeritus/a Professor to those retired faculty members who have distinguished themselves in service to the University and particulary COMP.
The following individuals have been awarded Professor Emeritus:
Vidalita G. Grunden, M.D.- Professor of Pathology, Emerita
Dr. Grunden came to the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific (COMP) as an Associate Professor of Pathology in 1980 from the Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine. She came to COMP with her husband Lee Grunden, Ph.D. Dr. Grunden received her medical degree from the University of Santo Tomas in the Philippines, completed her residency in Pathology at the University of Kansas Medical Center and a fellowship in Clinical Pathology at Bergen Pines Community Hospital. She served as the Pathology Discipline Leader from 1981 to 1993. Dr. Grunden retired in 1993. Dr. Grunden was proud of building COMP’s pathology museum and laboratory. Drs. Grunden have a son and a daughter.
Gayle H. Nelson, Ph.D. - Professor of Anatomy, Emeritus
Dr. Nelson came to the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific (COMP) in 1979 as a Professor of Anatomy and Assistant Dean of Basic Sciences from Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine where he was Head of the Department of Anatomy. He served in COMP for 18 years. He earned his B.A. in Biology at Walla Walla College, M.S. in Entomology at the University of Michigan and Ph.D. in Human Anatomy at the University of Michigan. At COMP and Kansas City students voted him outstanding professor 10 times. In 1993 his faculty voted him Outstanding Basic Science Faculty. Dr. Nelson retired from COMP in 1997, but continued his research and teaching of human anatomy. Dr. Nelson’s research involved a life-time study of wood-boring beetles. He published over 70 plus papers on beetles and was considered a world expert. He belonged to several professional organizations and served on a number of major College committees. Dr. Nelson was married his wife Jean and was the father of five children. In his spare time he enjoyed singing, bowling and playing softball and tennis. Dr. Nelson remained active in publishing and teaching medical students until his death in 2006.
Lee R. Grunden, Ph.D. – Professor of Pharmacology, Emeritus
Dr. Grunden came to the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific (COMP) as an Associate Professor of Pharmacology in 1980 from the Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine. He came to COMP with his wife Vidalita Grunden, M.D. Dr. Grunden received his Bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University and Doctorate from the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. From 1981 to 1985 and from 1988 to 1998 he served as the Pharmacology Discipline Leader. In 1984 he was promoted at COMP to Professor of Pharmacology. In 1985 he was appointed Assistant Dean of Basic Sciences. In 1988 he returned to full time teaching. During his time at COMP Dr. Grunden chaired the Faculty Council three times and served on many faculty committees. The National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners appointed him for several COMLEX committees between 1984 and 1994. Dr. Grunden received a Student Body Basic Science Teaching Award from his student in recognition of his love of teaching and was twice recognized by faculty with an Excellence in Teaching Award. He also received a “special recognition award” from SOMA & the Student DOctor in 1994 for his five years of writing the “Pharmacology Update” section of the publication, “Student DOctor”. Dr. Grunden retired in 1998. Drs. Grunden have a son and a daughter.
Alice Oglesby, Ph.D. – Professor of Microbiology, Emerita
Dr. Oglesby came to the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific (COMP) in 1979 as a part-time instructor and was appointed Assistant Professor of Microbiology in 1982. She received her B.S. from the University of Oklahoma, M.S. from the University of Kansas and Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. In 1993 she was promoted to Professor of Microbiology. Dr. Oglesby was chair of several committees at COMP including the Faculty Council from 1985 to 1986, Student Promotion from 1989 to 1998, and Financial Aid from 1986 to 1996. For a number of years she was the faculty advisor for Delta Omega, the sorority for women osteopathic medical students. Students in 1984 and 1988 presented her with Outstanding Basic Teaching Award, and the faculty selected her for the Excellence in Teaching Award in 1992 and 1995. She was particularly interested in HIV and AIDS. In 1990-1991 she reviewed manuscripts for books on AIDS for McGraw Hill Publishing Co. Between 1988 and 1992, she gave guest seminars on AIDS at Pomona College and California Polytechnic University, Pomona and in various other locations for the American Red Cross. One of her favorite student related activities was playing Mrs. Santa Claus at the annual “Santa’s Workshop”. Dr. Oglesby and her husband Larry have two sons.
Rafi Younoszai, Ph.D. – Professor of Anatomy, Emeritus
Dr. Younoszai came to the College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1979 as an Associate Professor of Anatomy from the University of Minnesota. He received his B.S. degree from the University of California, Berkeley in 1957 and Ph.D. in Anatomy in 1971 from the University of Minnesota. In 1986 he was promoted to Professor of Anatomy at COMP. He has been involved in Human Gross Anatomy course and started the Intensive Summer Anatomy Course in 1995. He was involved from the beginning with Pomona Community Health Action Team and the Pomona Homeless Outreach Project. He established the International Clinical Elective Rotation. He retired in 2008 and in that year received the Pumerantz Lifetime Fellowship of Excellence in Osteopathic Medical Education Award. He is presently Professor-Director of Community and International Health, Department of Social Medicine and Healthcare Leadership at COMP. Dr. Younoszai’s wife, Barbara, is a professor and taught Spanish and Latin American Studies and they have two sons. He has two immediate goals: to increase the endowment level for the Dr. Younoszai MSIV International Clinical Elective rotation Scholarship and have WesternU colleges pool their resources and provide quality interdisciplinary services opportunities. In April 2005 he competed in the Big Sur 20 mile power walk.
Richard A. Sugerman, Ph.D. – Professor of Anatomy, Emeritus
Dr. Sugerman came to the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific as an Assistant Professor in 1980 from Wichita State University to specifically teach neuroanatomy lectures and laboratories. In 1984 he was promoted to Associate Professor, in 1992 Professor of Anatomy, and 2011 Professor of Anatomy, Emeritus. He earned his B.A. in Zoology at San Diego State University in 1967. At the University of New Mexico he earned his M.S. in Biology in 1971 and Ph.D. in Biology in 1975. At COMP/WesternU he had been Chairman, Department of Anatomy, Assistant Dean for Basic Science and Research, Director, and Executive Vice President for Academic Program Development (and assisted in starting the Dental, Optometry, Podiatry and Biomedical Science colleges). Currently he is Director of Service Learning Projects for three colleges. Special academic interests include neural correlates of behavior in reptiles, computer/video assisted instruction, interprofessional education, and community service. He was chairman during his tenure of numerous College and University committees. He has written over 33 research articles/neuroanatomy book chapters and written/cited in 23 abstracts. He married Beverly (Katz) in 1972 and they have two children Benjamin and Rachel. Dr. Sugerman retired with the rank of Major from the United States Army Reserve, Medical Service Corps in 1995 after 27 years of service.