Ames Laboratory’s Occupational Medicine department has a new physician, Dr. Margaret Evans. Evans, who replaces the retired Dr. Steven Sheldahl, joined the Lab on July 23 and will work a Monday through Wednesday schedule.
A native of southwest Minnesota, Evans’ path to Ames Laboratory is a winding one. She worked early in her career as a medical lab technician, but was sidelined by a layoff and having a family – she and husband Kevin have six children.
As her children got older, she went back to school and earned a B.S. degree from Mankato State (now Minnesota State University) and scored well enough on the MCAT med school admissions test to be accepted into the osteopathic medicine program at Des Moines University, where she graduated in 2001. After completing a family medicine residency at Iowa Lutheran in Des Moines, she returned to Minnesota to practice in Worthington and Montevideo.
“But our children and grandchildren were here (central Iowa) so I took a position with the Boone County Hospital,” Evans said. “We moved back into the house we still owned in Madrid that my daughter had been living in.”
Evans enjoys hiking and biking, especially on the High Trestle Trail, which passes through Madrid just one block away from her home. She also likes collecting antiques, traveling – she’s made five trips to Europe – and reading. Seven grandchildren, with two more on the way, also keep her occupied.
Most recently, she worked for Mercy Medical Center’s long-term care program, providing geriatric care for patients in 11 different nursing homes.
“I really enjoyed working with older patients,” Evans said, “but the program wasn’t able to support the staffing at that level. When this position came along, I jumped at the opportunity to work part-time and be back on a university campus. I’m looking forward to meeting more of the Ames Lab staff so stop by and say hello.”