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Michigan Educator Elected Speaker of House of Delegates and Vice President of American Academy of Physician Assistants
William H. Fenn, Ph.D., PA-C, DFAAPA, faculty member in the Western
Michigan University Physician Assistant (PA) Department, has been
elected vice president of the American Academy of Physician Assistants
(AAPA) and Speaker of its House of Delegates (HOD). AAPA is the only
national organization to represent the nearly 70,000 physician
assistants practicing in all medical and surgical specialties and all
Fenn is one of few tenured “full” professors in his field and the
first to reach that rank in his department, where he previously served
as chair and program director. An experienced clinical PA, Fenn also has
extensive experience as a health policy analyst – serving as a
consultant at levels ranging from small local organizations to national
health departments of several nations.
Fenn has served in a leadership role on the AAPA Board of Directors
since 2003. He is a former director at large and served as HOD first and
second vice speaker. He has also chaired the board’s International
Affairs Committee and is widely recognized as an expert on international
Fenn has also served in leadership positions in the Michigan Academy
and in PA specialty organizations, including as president elect of the
Veterans Affairs Academy of Physician Assistants, chief delegate to the
HOD from the Society of Air Force Physician Assistants, and vice
president of the Michigan Academy of Physician Assistants. He has
received the AAPA House Outstanding Service Award, Michigan PA of the
Year Award, and several WMU Distinguished Scholar awards.
Fenn is a decorated veteran, retiring from the U.S. Air Force as a
lieutenant colonel. He is the sole PA appointed by Michigan’s governor
to serve as a member of the state Board of Medicine, as well as the
chair of the state PA licensing body.
Originally from Midland, he and his wife currently reside in Oshtemo Township.
Physician assistants are licensed health professionals who
practice medicine as members of a team with their supervising
physicians. PAs deliver a broad range of medical and surgical services
to diverse populations in rural and urban settings. As part of their
comprehensive responsibilities, PAs conduct physical exams, diagnose and
treat illnesses, order and interpret tests, counsel on preventive
health care, assist in surgery, and prescribe medications.
AAPA is the only national organization to represent physician
assistants in all medical and surgical specialties. Founded in 1968, the
Academy works to promote quality, cost effective health care and the
professional and personal growth of PAs. For more information about the
Academy and the PA profession, visit the AAPA’s Web site, www.aapa.org.