Supporting Future Health Care Leaders

Issue Date: 
July 12, 2010
David P. HunterDavid P. Hunter

David P. Hunter (GSPH ’70) has always understood the value of scholarships. When he was a student at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH), he benefited from a University scholarship that helped him pay for his tuition and books. Now, after years as a successful hospital executive and health care consultant, he watches as his own philanthropy—and the philanthropy of those closest to him—impacts future health care leaders at GSPH.

Both of Hunter’s parents worked as nurses; his father was also a hospital administrator. “Growing up, I spent a lot of time in hospitals with them,” he remembers. After Hunter completed his undergraduate degree at Ursinus College in Collegeville, Pa., his father encouraged him to continue his education.

“I was fortunate enough to be offered a position in what was then GSPH’s hospital executive track,” Hunter says. One reason he selected Pitt for graduate work was the financial assistance that the University offered.

Hunter went on to hold executive-level positions at several organizations—ranging from a rural hospital in Rochester, N.Y., to VHA, a national nonprofit hospital network—before cofounding The Hunter Group, a nationally recognized health care consulting and management company. In 2005, Hunter and his wife, Mary Roberts Hunter, endowed a scholarship at GSPH. “The quality of educational programs and students at Pitt is absolutely remarkable,” he explains. “We are so impressed with the academic achievement and research at the University.”

This year, the Hunter Group Health Policy and Management Student Scholarship was awarded to Keili Mistovich, a second-year student in GSPH’s Department of Health Policy and Management. A Springfield, Ohio, native, Mistovich came to Pitt to attend the School of Medicine. While in med school, she became interested in how policy-making shapes the practice of medicine. “I believe that understanding the greater picture of medicine is critical to providing the best care to my patients,” she explains.

Mistovich says she feels honored to be a scholarship recipient, adding that it’s “encouraging to know that others believe in me as I pursue my professional goals.” Mistovich says she is impressed by Hunter’s professional achievements. “He’s a very accomplished individual. And I think it’s great that he believes in giving back to the community that helped him to reach his own goals.”

But it is more than the Hunters’ generosity that makes the scholarship grow. David Hunter encourages his colleagues—both past and present—along with family and friends to make donations to the fund that bears his name. “Rather than give me gifts for my birthday or other holidays, I would prefer that people build on the scholarship and make it as big as we can!”  Thanks to the kindness of the Hunter family and friends, other promising GSPH students—like Mistovich—will be able to make an impact on public health as well.