MPH Student Advisory Council Members

Below are the current SAC members.

MPH SAC - Samantha Case 

Samantha Case, Anchorage, AK / email:

Samantha Case moved to Anchorage in 2012 after receiving her BS in Microbiology from the University of Vermont. Her interest in public health grew during her time as a medical volunteer in Peru and an intern at the Vermont Department of Health Laboratory. Since then, she has trained as an Emerging Infectious Disease Training Fellow with the CDC Arctic Investigations Program and taught undergraduate microbiology labs at UAA. Currently, Samantha is a Health Program Associate for the State of Alaska Division of Public Health. Her job involves working on Healthy Alaskans 2020 and internal quality improvement projects. She entered the MPH program in the Fall of 2013. Outside of school and work, Samantha enjoys running, cycling, hiking, camping, and learning photography.

Tammy Choromanski - SAC

Tammy Choromanski, Anchorage, AK / email:

Tammy lives in Peters Creek with her husband Nick and daughter Ashley. She has worked as a Research Associate in the Liver Disease and Hepatitis Department for two years at ANTHC focusing on Lupus and Autoimmune Hepatitis. Tammy graduated from UAA with a BS in Natural Science and a BS in Medical Technology in 2008. She began the MPH program in 2010 and hopes to start her thesis in 2013. When not working or doing homework, Tammy is chasing her daughter, hiking, camping, fishing, and hunting with her family. She also enjoys reading, and arts & crafts.

SAC member - Chris Nelson

Chris Nelson, Anchorage, AK / email:

Chris Nelson is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing from the University of Washington. He is currently living in Odense, Denmark on a Fulbright Student Scholarship for the 2013-2014 academic year. Chris is beginning this fall as a student in both the UAA Masters of Public Health and the University of Oulu’s Masters of Circumpolar Health and Wellbeing. His research emphasis is on rural and remote health with a circumpolar specialty, and his current study involves Registered Nurses at health stations in the North, specifically the expanded nursing scope of practice necessary in isolated arctic settlements. Chris is from the Florida Keys, and keeps moving further north to avoid the heat!

SAC Member - Natasha Pineda

Natasha Pineda, Anchorage, AK / email:

Natasha Pineda began working on her MPH in spring of 2012. She is the mother of two children and wife to a commercial fisherman. Natasha is a Certified Prevention Professional through the state of Washington. She received a BA from Alaska Pacific University in Business Administration Management and, in May 2012, completed the School for Prevention Leadership, sponsored by Partners in Recovery. Natasha is a member of the Mat-Su Borough Health and Social Services Board, supporting the Title VI working group as a member of the Internet Sales Subcommittee. She is passionate about supporting a comprehensive prevention system in the state of Alaska. Natasha recently worked with the Problem Gambling Prevention efforts in Oregon, as well as served the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Behavioral Health, Section of Prevention & Early Intervention for three and a half years. Natasha provided leadership for the Alaska Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking, and participated on many projects ranging from domestic violence prevention to Healthy Alaskans 2020.

Melissa Viator

Melissa Viator, Wasilla, AK / email:

Melissa Viator began her MPH in Public Health Practice in Fall 2012. She has served 12 years in the military as a commissioned officer with assignments in South Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, and the US Military Academy. Melissa has a BA in International Relations & Latin American Studies from Syracuse University, an MA in Management & Leadership from Webster University, and a teaching certificate from the US Military Academy. She hopes to work as a public health director within the Department of Homeland Security where she can utilize her managerial skills in developing and implementing emergency operations, planning, policies, and public health service objectives. During her coursework, Melissa plans to participate in community health programs in Anchorage and the Mat-Su Valley. She enjoys spending time with her husband and dog, snowboarding, hiking, and competing in CrossFit Competitions.

Previous Student Advisory Council members include:

  • Joy Britt
  • Christie Flanagan
  • Audra Henderson
  • Lynda Hernandez
  • Jennifer Jones
  • Graham Knapp
  • Emily Donna Ravelle
  • Shannon Deike
  • Doreen Leavitt
  • Shawne Johnson, MPH
  • Litia Garrison