Dr. Tomlinson Speaks at McClain Commencement
Baird Tomlinson

Dr. Heather Tomlinson, Konneker-Cutler Scholar ‘00, was the speaker at McClain High School’s Commencement on May 20.

Dr. Tomlinson graduated from McClain High School in 1996 and attended Ohio University where she obtained a bachelor of science in biochemistry and a minor in business.

As part of the Cutler Scholars Program, Dr. Tomlinson held a community service internship at The Ohio Hunger Task Force, a business internship at Diagnostic Hybrids, Inc., in Athens, and traveled abroad to do medical research at the University of Udine in Italy. After graduating with honors from OU, Dr. Tomlinson obtained a Ph.D. in pharmacology from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, studying the mechanism of evolution and drug resistance of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

Dr. Tomlinson says that the inspiration for her speech was Dr. Konneker’s life. She focused on the saying: “Sometimes you just have to take a leap and build your wings on the way down” by Kobi Yamada.

She further discussed the difficult circumstances that Dr. Konneker overcame to become such a successful and influential person.

“My goal” wrote Dr. Tomlinson, “was to remind the graduates that, at this crossroads and in the future when they face obstacles, they should meet challenges head-on — even if those challenge seem insurmountable.”

Tomlinson recently moved to the Columbus area with her husband Adam, where she will be an active member of the Ohio University 2013 Fund Campaign for the Cutler Scholars Program and a member of the Ohio Project Lead the Way Executive Council for the Ohio Department of Education.

Story and photo courtesy of the Times Gazette in Hillsboro, Ohio