WISSP - Faces of WiSSP

Faces of WiSSP

Elizabeth W. McPherson, MD.
Former WiSSP Director

Elizabeth W. McPherson, MD, Former WiSSP DirectorDr. McPherson is the Chair of Medical Genetics at Marshfield Clinic where she has been providing services for individuals and families with all types of genetic concerns for many years. She received her BA from Pomona College and her MD from the University of Washington in Seattle. She completed her residency training in Pediatrics and fellowship training in Medical Genetics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She is board certified in Pediatrics and Medical Genetics and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Medical Genetics.

Dr. McPherson’s professional interest in stillbirths dates back to her medical school training when she had the opportunity to work with several outstanding pathologists including Dr. Bruce Beckwith and Dr. Thomas Shepard. During her genetics training at the University of Wisconsin in the late 1970’s, she had the opportunity to spend several months in pathology where she learned more about the evaluation of stillbirth. She has continued this interest throughout her career. Just prior to returning to Wisconsin, she spent 10 years at Magee-Womens Hospital in Pittsburgh where she was very actively involved in the Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment Center which combined the management of high risk pregnancy with intensive efforts to determine the cause of pregnancy losses and stillbirths. Since coming to Marshfield, she has personally evaluated all the infants stillborn locally (over 400 between 2003 and 2013) and has offered counseling to all of their families.

Dr. McPherson and her husband have been fortunate that all three of their children, Caitlin, Knut, and Olav, have been healthy and are now young adults with careers of their own.


Richard M. Pauli, M.D., Ph.D.
WiSSP Founder

Richard M. Pauli, M.D., Ph.DDr. Pauli was a medical geneticist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is retired, but remains a valuable resource and consultant for WiSSP. He received both his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Chicago, and completed his postdoctoral training in Pediatrics and in Medical Genetics at the Children's Orthopedic Hospital and Medical Center and the University of Washington in Seattle. He is Board Certified in Medical Genetics and is a Fellow of the American College of Medical Genetics.

Prior to his retirement, Dr. Pauli was the Director of Clinical Genetics Services and Professor of Pediatrics and Medical Genetics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Dr. Pauli's career was devoted to clinical research and caring for individuals with genetic disorders or birth defects at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Clinical Genetics Center. He established the Midwest Regional Bone Dysplasia Clinic, and was awarded a lifetime membership to Little People of America in recognition of his work with families with bone growth disorders. His stillbirth-related activities have been recognized through presentation of the Callon-Leonard Award by the Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care, for outstanding contributions on behalf of mothers, infants and families.

Dr. Pauli's establishment and continuing commitment to the Wisconsin Stillbirth Service Program initially arose because of the stillbirth of his son, Zachary. He and his wife have five other children -Brian, Michael, Erin, Jonathan, and Benjamin.