Meet Our Board

John Myers, CFP President

John Myers began his affiliation with RAM in 1985. He became a member of RAM’s first Board of Directors. His early volunteer duties involved flying Aircraft on survey missions, fundraising, general administrative guidance and almost anything else. John currently serves as President, Board of Directors and chairs the Finance Committee. He also serves on the Development Committee and Executive Committee. John’s “day job” is Senior Vice President, with a global financial services firm. He lives in Knoxville, TN with his wife, Lisa, and their two dogs. They have two daughters and three grandchildren.

Chris Sawyer, MD Medical Director, Vice President

Dr. Sawyer has been Remote Area Medical’s Medical Director since 2010. He grew up in Maryville, TN and attended the University of Tennessee for both his undergraduate and medical degrees. Dr. Sawyer is trained and board certified in Family Practice and is certified in acute wilderness life support, trauma life support, and cardiac life support. During his time with RAM, Dr. Sawyer has traveled extensively both locally and around the world. He has responded to medical needs in the Amazon Jungle, Chile, Venezuela, Haiti, Guyana, and many other countries. He also leads the annual suture class at RAM headquarters. Outside of his medical career, Dr. Sawyer is the lead trumpet player for the TN Wind Symphony where he has played at Carnegie Hall, London, and Washington.

Janet H. Southerland, D.D.S., M.P.H., Ph.D.

Dr. Southerland is a Professor in the Department of Nutrition Metabolism and Vice President of Interprofessional Education, Institutional Effectiveness, and the Health Education Center at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). She completed her undergraduate studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After receiving her DDS at the UNC School of Dentistry in 1989, Dr. Southerland completed a two-year General Practice Residency Program where she spent a third year as a fellow and completed a MPH with a focus on Health Policy and Administration, and a PhD in oral biology, all at UNC. Dr. Southerland is a dedicated long-time RAM volunteer and has been a member of the Remote Area Medical Board of Directors since 2013.

Dick Stoops

Upon retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel from serving his country for twenty-five years in the U.S. Army and Kentucky Army National Guard, Dick served the public as a paid fire patrol pilot for the Kentucky Division of Forestry for nine years. Dick has flown extensively in Guyana, South America in support of RAM’s free air ambulance service to the indigenous people of the wilderness interior. He also serves as the pilot coordinator for the Guyana RAM pilot program. Dick has accompanied the RAM disaster teams on multiple expeditions including, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita efforts and Haiti on several occasions. Dick has been a member of the Remote Area Medical Board of Directors since 2013.

Dr. Hazel Harper, DDS, MPH

Dr. Harper is a graduate of Howard University College of Dentistry and the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health. She maintains a part –time private practice in general dentistry in Washington, DC. She is President and CEO of Hazel J. Harper & Associates, LLC, management

She is an ardent proponent of health equity for vulnerable populations and has served her profession in many leadership roles including: a member of President Bill Clinton’s Health Reform Task Force; National Spokesperson for the American Dental Association; Transition Teams of District of Columbia mayors Sharon Pratt Kelly and Marion Barry; and a reviewer of the first ever Surgeon General’s Report on Oral Health in America, under the direction of U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher (2000). Dr. Harper was a contributing author to the 2020 Surgeon General’s Report.

A woman of many firsts, Dr. Harper was the first woman to serve as President of the National Dental Association (NDA), Chairman of the NDA Board of Trustees, and President of the Howard University College of Dentistry Alumni Association. She was one of the founders of the Student National Dental Association; longtime editor of National Dental Association (NDA) Journal; and created many NDA programs including: The Women’s’ Health Symposium, NDA-Corporate Roundtable, and the Eddie G. Smith Leadership Institute. She co-founded and directed the Deamonte Driver Dental Project (DDDP), school-based, mobile dental project, in Prince George’s County, MD named in memory of the 12-year-old boy who died in 2007 from untreated tooth decay. She is currently the Founding Director of the award-winning NDA HEALTH NOW® Project and architect of the Inter Professional Student Leaders Colloquium and Summit. Since Deamonte’s death, Dr. Harper has devoted her energies and creative talents to developing, implementing and supporting inter professional health education programs and community outreach events in cities across America and around the world. She currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the American Dental Education Association Gies Foundation and Remote Area Medical (RAM).

Her reputation for innovation and success in community projects, collaborations and interprofessional programs has merited awards from several foundations including the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Coca Cola Foundation, Henry Schein Cares Foundation, Aetna Foundation, GE’s African American Forum, the Pew Charitable Trusts, the DentaQuest Foundation and the Dental Trade Alliance Foundation to name a few. She received an Honorary Doctorate from Medgar Evans College in Brooklyn, NY. Dr. Harper lectures and writes extensively on health equity and in 2019, she was lead author of book chapters in Oral Health in America: Removing the Stain of Disparities, published by the American Public Health Association. Most recently, Dr. Harper was featured in and was a contributing author to Undaunted Trailblazers. Minority Women Leaders for Oral Health (2021).

She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and the Links, Incorporated; and enjoys traveling with
her husband, Robert S. Johns.

John Osborn DDS, FACD, FICD Dental Director, Secretary
Dr. Osborn has been a RAM volunteer since 1992, and Dental Director /Volunteer Corps Board member since 1997.
Born in Riverside California, he grew up in Asheville North Carolina, and is a 1988 graduate of Meharry Medical College School of Dentistry. Dr. Osborn is a Past-President of the Tennessee Dental Association and the Second District Dental Society. He’s a former delegate to the American Dental Association and the Tennessee Dental Association. He also serves as a member of the Union County Tennessee Board of Health.  Dr. Osborn maintains a general dental practice in Maynardville Tennessee, with his son Andrew, and lives on a nearby horse farm with his wife Laurel, a long time RAM volunteer and nurse. Dr. Osborn is an avid pilot who learn to fly to support RAM’s mission.
Jim McFarland, Treasurer

Jim calls Corbin, KY his hometown. Jim is a graduate of Corbin High School in Corbin KY and Eastern Kentucky State College in Richmond, KY.  Jim retired from a career at Chevron as the Accounting Manager at their Port Arthur Texas plant in 1997 and moved to Tennessee where he and his wife currently live. He serves on the following Boards: Lions Volunteer Blind Industries since 2008, District 12N Charities Board since 2007, Tennessee Lions Charities since 2009, Smoky Mountain Lions Charities since 2005 and Remote Area Medical since 2016.

Jim has volunteered for Remote Area Medical since 2001 and completed many missions to assist in providing medical services to the people in the area who were in need. He has received many Lions awards from the Lions Club International including the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor granted by the association to its members.

Karen Wilson

Karen Wilson began her career as a freelance writer. She began working with RAM as a volunteer in 1992 and served the organization as Executive Director, Executive Advisor and Special Advisor to the President until her retirement in 2019. 

Joseph E. Gambacorta, DDS

A native of Buffalo, New York Dr. Gambacorta currently serves as the associate dean for clinical affairs and a clinical associate professor at the University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine. He graduated from the University at Buffalo in 1989 with a degree in biology and earned his dental degree from the School of Dental Medicine in 1993. He completed a general practice residency at Buffalo’s Millard Fillmore Gates Circle Hospital in 1994. Dr. Gambacorta then established a private practice and began working in community clinics throughout Western New York. In 2002, he began as clinical instructor at the School of Dental Medicine and in 2012 he accepted a full-time appointment as the assistant dean for clinical affairs and assistant clinical professor in the Department of Restorative Dentistry. In his role as co-faculty director of Buffalo Outreach and Community (BOCA), a School of Dental Medicine organization dedicated to providing care to underserved areas, he has led students on international and domestics missions outreach missions since 2006. Most recently travelling to Sierra Leone in a collaborative effort with Adama Martha Community Health Center and Jericho Road Ministries to establish the delivery of dental services to the Kono District. Dr. Gambacorta is the past president of the University at Buffalo Dental Alumni Association. Currently, and is currently the Secretary and Chairman of the Council on Dental Education and Licensure for the Eighth District Dental Society and the New York State Dental Association (NYSDA). He resides in Buffalo with his wife Charlotte and children Sarah, Patrick, Nicholas, and Claire.

Robert Denovo, DVM

Robert Denovo is a professor and the associate dean at the University of Tennessee’s College of Veterinary Medicine since 2007. He holds an undergraduate degree from Arizona State University and a Master’s of Science in Clinical Pathology from the University of Georgia where he also did his veterinary internal medicine residency. He has served on the Remote Area Medical Board of Directors since 2016.

Wayne Hughes

Wayne Hughes first became involved as a volunteer with Remote Area Medical in 2004 by working with a Community Host Group and hosting two clinics in his commercial maintenance hanger at the Oneida Scott County Airport.  Wayne volunteered as a pilot with RAM Airborne on several domestic and international missions and provided maintenance and inspections on some RAM’s aircraft before joining the Board of Directors in 2013.  Wayne serves as Chairman of the Aviation Committee and International Affairs Committee.

In his professional life Wayne is President and CEO of ATS-Tennessee, Inc. a Tennessee corporation founded in 2000.  ATS is a heavy maintenance facility specializing in light jets and turboprop aircraft.  Wayne is also a partner in Big South Fork Aero, Inc. where he serves as Chief Pilot and Director of Maintenance. 

Doug Beeler

Doug Beeler is Owner of Saf-T-Inc. and assists RAM with its security, as well as RAM Rangers’ Ranch with over 25 years of experience in the Industrial Construction field. A Knoxville native, Doug is an alumni of Gibbs High School. Doug is a founding member of the Gibbs Youth Athletic Association where he served as a board member. Doug is an ATTSSA certified instructor from the U.S. Department of Transportation: Federal Highway Association and the National Highway Institute. Among many other accomplishments, Doug is an active member of his Knoxville community and has been on the board since 2012.

Adam Carerra M.D.

Dr. Adam Carrera earned a B.S. in Cell and Molecular Biology at King University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2011 and then continued on to earn his M.D. at East Tennessee State University’s Quillen College of Medicine in 2016. He completed his residency and internship at Hamilton Eye Institute at the University of Tennessee, Memphis.

Dr. Carrera began his professional career in the United States Air Force as an Airman 1st Class. Following his time in the military, he chose to pursue his medical degree with the dream of becoming a physician. Even before he knew he would become an ophthalmologist, he knew he wanted to be a physician that focuses on developing long term relationships with his patients.

In his free time, Dr. Carrera enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter. As an avid fly fisherman, he loves spending time outdoors in the mountains of East Tennessee.

Patrick DeGroot

Patrick Nigel de Groot has been in the poultry business since 1975 when he joined the family business working as a teenager at Bounty Farm Limited after he completed secondary school at St. Stanislaus College in Guyana.  He pursued higher education at Tuskegee University in the USA from 1978 to 1982, achieving a Bachelor of Science in Animal & Poultry Science with Highest Honors.  He returned to Guyana and joined the management team at Bounty Farm Limited taking full control of the operation in 1987 when production was only eighteen hundred (1,800) birds per month.  Today the operation produces in excess of half a million birds per month.  Under his stewardship as Managing Director, the business thrived and developed into a fully integrated poultry operation with state of the art equipment in hatchery, feed production, processing and storage facilities and a supermarket chain, making his company the leader in poultry production in Guyana. Mr. de Groot joined the RAM Board of Directors in 2019.