The reasons for celebrating National Physician Assistant Week, Oct. 6-12, at Des Moines University keep pouring in. The latest cause for celebration is news that Luan Montag, who graduated from DMU’s physician assistant program in 2000, was honored as the Physician Assistant of the year by the Iowa Physician Assistant Society (IPAS). She received the award at the annual Iowa Physician Assistant Society on Oct. 4 in Coralville, IA.
Candidates for this nomination must work as a physician assistant and promote their profession by volunteering and being involved in their community.
Montag is a medical provider at Family Practice Clinic in West Bend, IA, her hometown. She began her career there as a medical assistant, practice manager and emergency medical technician. After graduating from DMU, she returned to her hometown clinic and continues to serve as its primary medical provider. A preceptor for DMU physician assistant students and clinical students from the University of North Dakota and Rocky Mountain College, she has served in numerous organizations and community roles and published a weekly column, “Montag on Health,” on the Palo Alto County Health System website that addressed current health topics and promoted healthy lifestyles.
Montag isn’t the first physician assistant associated with DMU to earn the Iowa PA of the Year title. Last year’s recipient was Laura Delaney, PA-C’99, another graduate and now assistant professor in DMU’s PA program. Delaney recently was named the 2016 DMU College of Health Sciences Alumna of the year, too. Past IPAS Board president, she remains active in the organization and also serves on the volunteer leadership board of directors of the American Lung Association in Iowa. In addition, Delaney was the DMU’s first faculty member to be named an Iowa Campus Compact (IACC) Engaged Scholar Fellow, for 2015-2016. IACC is a statewide association of college and university presidents who are committed to educating students for active citizenship and building strong communities.