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Army veteran chosen as new chief medical officer at Campbell County Health

Dr. John Houk (Campbell County Health)

GILLETTE, Wyo. — Dr. John E. Houk, a U.S. Army combat veteran turned doctor, has been tapped as Campbell County Health’s new chief medical officer, the healthcare organization announced this week. 

Houk comes to Gillette after a 31-year military career that started in the United States Military Academy and subsequent commission as an Infantry 2nd Lieutenant that saw him assigned to various leadership positions with the 82nd Airborne Division, per CCH. 

After joining the Colorado Army National Guard in 2000, Houk trained for Special Operations at the JFK Special Warfare Center and School, recommissioning following his graduation in 2001 as a Special Forces officer following the attacks on 9/11 and deploying to Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Houk’s path toward medicine began after significant events in Fallujah in 2004. He returned to the United States in 2005 and taught ROTC courses while completing undergraduate pre-med coursework, CCH says. Houk started medical school in 2006 at the Kansas University of Medicine and Biosciences but didn’t graduate until 2011 due to being called to combat in Iraq in 2007. 

After graduation, Houk was commissioned as a Medical Corps officer. As a physician, he completed two residencies — one through the Army and the other through the U.S. Navy — and attained a Master of Public Health from the University of West Florida, per CCH. 

Born and raised on a farm outside Clinton, Missouri, Houk wanted to bring his maturing family to a place similar to the one he grew up in, ultimately choosing to come to the clean air of Wyoming and join CCH, the healthcare organization says.