Diane Beatty (B.S. ’87, Ph.D. ’94)
School of Biological Sciences
What began as a little girl’s dream of working in medicine and helping people has become a reality for the first female Ph.D. to graduate from UMKC’s School of Biological Sciences. Diane Beatty is vice president of pharmaceutical sciences at Beckloff Associates, Inc., where in addition to helping with the development of a wide range of therapeutic drugs, she serves as a liaison with the FDA, and European and Canadian regulatory agencies.
Beatty’s work has been published in numerous journals, including The Journal of Neurochemistry, and she has been an invited speaker at institutions in Rome and Copenhagen. She is presently supporting research and development of drug initiatives with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the KU Medical Center oncology department.
Harold Sprague (B.S.Ci.E. ’80)
School of Computing and Engineering
When Harold Sprague was a student at UMKC, he didn’t know where his degree would take him. “All I knew at the time was that I could get a good job as an engineer,” he says.The 1995 bombing of the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City changed his outlook, instilling in him a drive to create designs that would resist blasts or seismic shocks. He became a renowned expert in the field and was asked to help study the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.
Sprague founded and served as the chairman of the Building Seismic Safety Council Technical Subcommittee 13 and served on the American Institute of Steel Construction Seismic Manual Committee and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Seismic Performance Design Committee. An adjunct instructor at UMKC, Sprague has been recognized as one of the Outstanding Scientists of the 20th Century, in Who’s Who in Engineering and Science, and as an American Society of Civil Engineers Fellow, one of only five percent of the organization’s membership to earn that title.
Ray Storm (D.D.S. ’78)
School of Dentistry
Ray Storm heard the call to medicine before he heard the call to duty with the U.S. Navy and the Marine Corps, but his experiences in Vietnam caused him to change directions. During his last tour, Storm met a dentist who suggested that Storm’s medical background and interest and ability in art made him a good candidate for a career in dentistry. The dentist he met was right. Storm has won numerous awards and honors, including several Golden Apple Awards from the American Dental Association, and he was twice named Missouri Dentist of the Year by the Missouri Dental Association.
A community volunteer, Storm has served as president of PATCHES, a not-for-profit dental missionary organization. He also founded and served as president of Give Kids A Smile, an organization that brings quality dental care to the underserved. “To date,” Storm says, “we have seen over 8,200 children and have provided over $3 million in services.” Storm also works with his wife in their general practice in St. Peters, Mo.
Paul Rutherford (Ph.D. ’99)
School of Education
While an officer in the U.S. Navy’s Electronic Warfare Department, Paul Rutherford decided to volunteer for the Big Brothers and Big Sisters program. After a few months as a Big Brother, Rutherford knew what he wanted to do: he wanted to teach. Now more than 25 years into his career as an educator, Rutherford has won numerous honors, including membership in the Mid-America Education Hall of Fame, the MU Fellows Teaching Award and the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching presented by the National Science Foundation.
Rutherford’s commitment to teaching was also demonstrated as a founding member of Summit Technology Academy. Presently, Rutherford is serving the urban core, training elementary science teachers for the Kansas City, Missouri, School District, a position he says has yielded “some of the most rewarding professional and personal experiences of my life.”