Member of the Month: Dale Moquist, MD
Longtime TAFP leader reflects on career, volunteering and the importance of being involved
By Kate Alfano
Dale Moquist, MD, is a longtime leader at the state and national levels of organized medicine. He served as president of the TAFP Foundation for 10 years and was instrumental in securing a research endowment and other scholarships. He has been highly decorated as TAFP Philanthropist of the year, TAFP Presidential Award of Merit, TAFP Physician Emeritus, and North Dakota Family Physician of the Year, among others.
He has been married to his wife, Carol, for 48 years. They have three sons, three daughters-in-law and five grandchildren. He grew up on a farm in northeast North Dakota; the population of the local town was 300 and his graduating class was 20 students. He jokes that he grew up 30 miles south of the border, which most Texans assume is Mexico and not Canada. He completed his undergraduate degree at the University of North Dakota and his medical degree at Southwestern.
Why did you become a physician?
Mother was a RN and the physicians who took care of me growing up were the old family physicians/general practitioners. I wanted to be like them. I never considered another specialty.
What is your favorite memory in my family medicine career?
I have many great memories but I feel being involved in more than 1,000 deliveries is my fondest memory. I delivered the babies of two women whom I had delivered. I also delivered two future physicians! I also delivered a baby who became a star hockey player for the University of North Dakota and his mother taught all three of our boys.
What inspires you to be involved in organized medicine?
My motto is simple: “Get involved and do what is right for my patients.” In that aspect I am the only family physician from North Dakota to serve on the AAFP Board of Directors. In my involvement with the AAFP I was instrumental in getting the national Academy to buy the ALSO (Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics) course. This was developed at the University of Wisconsin and I attended the first course because, of all of the members of the AAFP Obstetrics Task Force, I lived the closest to Madison, Wis. On the AAFP I helped to increase the number of international members of the AAFP. After my term on the AAFP BOD I got involved in the AAFP AMA delegation and ended up chairing the delegation. Our delegation was instrumental in changing the culture of the AMA to being more friendly to primary care.
My involvement with the TAFP has been mainly in the area of education. I was chair of the CME Commission when the TAFP bought the National Procedures Institute. With the help of Jessica Miley we started doing Knowledge Self Assessments for the American Board of Family Medicine. As a group we answer 60 questions on a certain medical subject. These have become very popular and the TAFP does about 10 per year now. With the combined advocacy of our members we got the AAFP and ABFM to award “live” credits for these workshops. I was fortunate to be president of the TAFP Foundation for 10 years. We developed a research endowment and other scholarships. However, I was involved in the election of Jim Martin as AAFP president, Roland Goertz as AAFP president, and Lloyd Van Winkle to the AAFP BOD.
What are you doing in your retirement?
Since retiring, my wife, Carol, and I are busy with volunteering. I was elected to St. Peter’s Lutheran Church Council and in my last year I was president. I chaired the fundraising for our new building project. I have been involved with Blessings in a Backpack, which has helped deliver food to 160 children. Carol and I have also helped support The Helping Center in Marble Falls. They are building a new facility and distributing food to needy families. We are busy.
I also continue to help the TAFP with Knowledge Self Assessments (Jessica Miley is my boss!) and I have also continued to do presentations on Geriatrics.
TAFP’s Member of the Month program highlights Texas family physicians in TAFP News Now and on the TAFP website. We feature a biography and a Q&A with a different TAFP member each month and his or her unique approach to family medicine. If you know an outstanding family physician colleague who you think should be featured as a Member of the Month or if you’d like to tell your own story, nominate yourself or your colleague by contacting TAFP by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (512) 329-8666. View past Members of the Month here.