Margaret J. Sullivan
April 4, 1957- June 2, 2001
Margaret Sullivan was born April 4, 1957 in Phoenix, AZ to Howard and Esther Sullivan. She was the first of four children and their only daughter. During her childhood Margaret’s family moved several times living in Arizona and Southern California.
Margaret graduated from Blue Ridge High School in Lakeside, AZ during 1975. While in high school, she edited an award-winning yearbook, won the Betty Crocker Homemaker of the Year Award and was class valedictorian. She moved on to Northern Arizona University, her parents’ alma mater, where she received a B.S. in biology (1979) and a M.S. in genetics (1983). Margaret then attended Washington State University where, under the mentorship of J.W. Wright and J.W. Harding, she studied the central metabolism of angiotensins in the spontaneously hypertensive rat. At Washington State University, she completed both an M.S. and a Ph.D. in Physiological Psychology by 1986. Margaret began her postdoctoral training at the University of Iowa with A.K. Johnson.
Margaret married in 1988 and moved to Montreal later that year for additional postdoctoral training at McGill University with L.P. Renaud. After completing her work in Canada, which included a move to the Loeb Research Institute at the Ottawa Civic Hospital, Margaret returned to the University of Iowa where she worked with F.M. Abboud.
In 1995, Margaret accepted a position as a Research Assistant Professor at the Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center and the Department of Physiology at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Her research interests included the central control of fluid and salt ingestion and the role of peptide neurotransmitters in body fluid homeostasis. This work was funded by the American Heart Association and the National Institutes of Health. Margaret was also active in teaching. She participated in the Frontiers in Physiology and the Local Outreach Team programs sponsored by the Education Committee of the American Physiological Society. Margaret also served a small group tutor for the problem-based learning curriculum at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Medicine. An annual award has been established in her name to recognize excellence in this area of teaching.
Margaret was a strong and loving person who successfully balanced her faith, her career and her love for her family. She was a great friend and colleague, and she will be deeply missed by all who knew her. Margaret is survived by her parents Howard and Esther Sullivan of Chandler, AZ. and two brothers Richard and Donald. She was preceded in death by her brother Michael. Margaret’s husband of thirteen years, J. Thomas Cunningham, and her two children Sean and Kathryn reside in Columbia, MO.