Skip to main content
Department of Family and Community Medicine

Department of Family and Community Medicine


R5 Residents

Matthew Gibson, M.D. - R5 - FM/Psych

Matthew Gibson M.D. Undergraduate: UC Davis
Medical School: Ohio State University
Special Areas of Interest: Healthcare for the underserved, women's health/perinatal mental health, public health / advocacy, holistic care.
Biography: Matthew Gibson is a Sacramento native, and returned home as quickly as possible after attending The Ohio State University for medical school. The combined residency program in both family medicine and psychiatry aligns perfectly with his approach of seeing each patient as a whole human being. He has a passion for working with the marginalized in society, particularly those who are homeless. As often as he is able, he can be found walking the streets and hiking the riverbanks in Sacramento, bringing hope, medical and mental health care to those who are "off the grid" in those areas. He is hoping to do this full time after graduation. When Matthew is cultivating wellness in his own life, he can generally be found in the company of his wife and three children, or else with his nose buried in a good book.
Hobbies: Running, martial arts, puzzles, baking, camping/hiking when I can!

Jea-Hyoun Kim, M.D. - R5 - FM/Psych

Undergraduate: Stanford University
Medical School: SUNY Downstate Medical Center
Special Areas of Interest: International health, underserved medicine, cross-cultural psychiatry, faith and medicine
Biography: Originally from San Francisco, I moved to Los Angeles after college and worked as a Medicare counselor in LA County. I went to SUNY Downstate for medical school, because I was drawn by their mission to focus on the urban underserved in Brooklyn. During medical school, I traveled to Mozambique and then Haiti to explore international health opportunities. My trips to Haiti especially highlighted the need for primary care and mental health services in developing nations. After many snowy winters in New York, I am ecstatic about being back in California for the Family Medicine/Psychiatry program. I am excited about the opportunities to become involved in the community around UCD to address health care disparities. In addition, I am looking forward to more opportunities to practice medicine abroad.
Hobbies: Going to the beach, independent films, traveling, reading fiction.

R4 Residents

Danielle Alexander, M.D. - R4 - FM/Psych

Danielle Alexander M.D. Undergraduate: UC Berkeley
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Biography: I am passionate about universal access to essential medical care and systems change. I think I caught the wonk bug when I was working in Washington, DC on a Masters in Alternative Medicine learning about how culture and history influence how people heal and treat.  I went on to lobby at the National level on matters of health justice before going to medical school. While a student at Albany Medical College in New York, I cultivated an interest in mental health and feel lucky to have joined the combined Family Medicine/Psychiatry program at UC Davis. Having grown up in the Northern California foothills, it is a terrific homecoming to be here. I envision ultimately practicing in multiple venues, including as an out- patient integrated general practitioner, psychiatric consult to my colleagues, and also in health program development.
Hobbies: Tap dancing, yoga, musical theatre enthusiast, bicycling, hiking, intermural basketball

Megan Ash, M.D. - R4 - FM/OB

Megan Ash M.D. Undergraduate: Univ. of Colorado, Boulder
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Special Areas of Interest: women's health, maternity care, full spectrum family practice, family planning, advocacy
Biography: I grew up in Colorado exploring the outdoors, then decided to explore the East Coast for a while, living in Boston for a few years and doing medical school in Albany, NY.  In medical school, I met my husband who also happened to be from Colorado so we were ecstatic to come back to the west for residency. Now I'm absolutely in love with Sacramento, a very accessible place for lots of fun adventures, be it escaping to Tahoe, the beach or SF for the weekend. Also, the people here are amazing and extremely knowledgeable. I truly love all my co-residents. And I'm very confident that I will get the training I need to practice full spectrum family practice when I get done.
Hobbies: Outdoor adventures- hiking, biking, skiing. Cooking. Travel

Amy Nuismer, M.D. - R4 - FM/Psych

Undergraduate: St. Louis University
Medical School: St. Louis University
Special Areas of Interest: I am an intern in the FM/Psych program and am ultimately interested in providing both primary care and psychiatric services to the underserved.
Biography: I am a Midwesterner born and raised in Kalamazoo, Michigan.  I moved to Saint Louis for college and studied theology-specifically liberation theology in Central America and at my alma mater- Saint Louis University (which is Jesuit like the pope!)  I liked school so much I just kept on going and stayed at SLU for medical school living in a house with three, sometimes four, other med students and living the dream!
Hobbies:I have a plethora of interests, including but not limited to being a yoga teacher, international travel, and outdoor outings.

R3 Residents

Reshtina Alamzai, D.O. - R3

Reshtina Alamzai D.O. Undergraduate: UC Berkeley
Medical School: Touro University
Special Areas of Interest: Women and children’s health, preventative medicine, holistic care, working with underserved populations
Biography: Having lived in Northern California almost my entire life, I couldn’t be happier to continue living in the best place on earth. Some of my most fulfilling volunteer work as a UCD undergrad was right here in Sacramento, at Clinica Tepati and UCDMC. I later graduated from UC Berkeley and after spending several years focusing on my growing family, I returned to pursuing my passion for medicine. I am blessed to have come back to Sacramento for residency and to have the opportunity to work with the diverse population that makes this community so special. I fell in love with Family Medicine because of the many ways a family physician can positively influence a patient’s life and the crucial role they play in guiding the community towards a higher state of health. I look forward to building bonds with patients across all generations and helping shape their lifestyles for optimum health, both of the mind and the body. I am truly confident that my training here at UCDMC will provide me with the necessary exposure and skills to be the competent family physician I hope to become. I adore my intern class as well as the amazing faculty, staff and residents. I am thrilled and honored to be a resident here at UCDMC!
Hobbies: cooking, art, spending time with family and friends, traveling, enjoying the wonders of the bay area and raising my three amazing kids

Christine Bourgeois, D.O. - R3

Undergraduate: Michigan State University
Medical School: Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Osteopathic Manual Medicine, Nutrition and Chronic Disease/Food as Medicine, Healthcare for the Underserved, Integrative Medicine
Biography: I was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan where I developed a passion for medicine and caring for the underserved at a young age. In college I received my bachelor’s degree in Nutritional Sciences with a specialization in Bioethics, Humanities, and Society from Michigan State University (Go Green!). I also studied Spanish and subsequently studied abroad in Costa Rica where I practiced the language, learned about disparities in healthcare on a global level, and spent time volunteering in disadvantaged communities. In medical school I continued to work with the underserved through local student-run clinics for the homeless and Spanish-speaking populations, and I also developed my interest in teaching nutrition and mind-body wellness by volunteering at community education events and facilitating a stress management group at my university. I’m so excited now to be a part of UC Davis where there are so many opportunities to continue my passions in a supportive and wellness-oriented program. Everyone here is amazing and my co-interns are already like family to me. And of course living in northern California, a short drive from both beaches and mountains and where the sunshine is plentiful, is a dream!
Hobbies: Vegetarian cooking, trying anything new, traveling, hiking, live music, being outdoors and any activity on the water.


Luz Contreras Arroyo, M.D. - R3 - FM/Psych

Undergraduate: UC Davis
Medical School: UC Davis School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: "whole" family care, mental health awareness, healthcare to underserved, community involvement and education
Biography: I am from Stockton, Ca, but born in Mexico. I went to UC Davis School of Medicine, and I stayed at UC Davis for residency because I know how great the program, faculty, and patients are. I am hoping to be able to work in a setting where I can use both my Family Medicine and Psychiatry training in the future. I am the oldest in my family, and am happy to be living 1 hour away from them so that I can visit my family and spend time with my little brother and nieces. I got married two month before starting residency, and am very lucky to have a loving husband who understands the commitments to my new job. I am excited to learn from my faculty, co-residents, and especially my patients the next few years I am here. PS: Hablo espanol.
Hobbies: Camping/hiking (wish I did more of it), reading for pleasure, relaxing outdoors (especially by lake/river/ocean), spending time with loved ones, including my dog, puzzles (1000 pcs)

Queena Dai, M.D. - R3

Undergraduate: UC Berkley
Medical School: Saint Louis School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Global health, integrative medicine
Biography: Born in Montreal, Canada, I moved to the south bay at the ripe age of 10. I went to undergrad at UC Berkeley and double majored in psychology and integrative biology. After taking a year off after undergrad to coach swimming and work at a private family practice, I found myself in Saint Louis for medical school. I was drawn to work with the immigrant and underserved communities in Saint Louis at our free clinics and community screenings, and became interested in learning about ways to overcome cultural and socioeconomic barriers to healthcare. Eventually, I was lucky enough to do some international work in Antigua, Guatemala and Chengdu, China. I hope that during my years here at UCDMC I will gain more experience with global health on both the local and international fronts and apply what I learn to my future practice.
Hobbies: I love running outdoors, traveling, exploring neighborhoods, trying new restaurants, playing board games, and salsa dancing with the fiancé. I'm down to try anything and I am currently trying to pick up biking!

Cassy Friedrich, M.D. - R3 - FM/Psych

Undergraduate: Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
Medical School: University of Illinois, Chicago
Special Areas of Interest: underserved care, "alternative" medical tradiations, the mind-body connection, women's health
Biography: After living in Illinois my whole life, I am excited for this West Coast adventure! I grew up the daughter of a farmer in rural Illinois, and I still love playing outside. I am looking forward to taking advantage of camping, hiking, and skiing opportunities in nearby Tahoe while I am here. I feel very fortunate to get to train in both family medicine and psychiatry because I believe it will help me be a better advocate for my underserved patients. UC Davis is going to be a great place for me to learn and grow among amazing faculty and colleagues!
Hobbies: yoga, running, hiking, camping, biking places, food

Julie Garchow, M.D. - R3

Julie Garchow M.D. Undergraduate: UCLA
Medical School: University at Buffalo, SUNY
Special Areas of Interest: International health, underserved communities, teaching, refugee health, humanism in medicine, women’s health
Biography: I was born in Bakersfield, CA, but lived most of my life in Ontario, CA. I received my bachelor’s degree from UCLA, majoring in biology and minoring in American Indian studies. I worked as a research technician in ophthalmology and analytical chemist for several years before attending medical school at the University at Buffalo. I am very interested in global health and refugee populations in the US. I have volunteered at the Bwindi Community Hospital in Uganda and worked with the growing refugee population in Buffalo. I am also very interested in teaching, both in the community and with medical students. I was a student coordinator for the Friends of Night People medical clinic that serves the homeless population of Buffalo, and am very interested in working with this vulnerable group.

Gary Garcia, M.D. - R3

Gary Garcia M.D. Undergraduate: UC San Diego
Medical School: University of Utah
Special Areas of Interest: Global health, Sports Medicine
Biography: I grew up in Southern California and went to UC San Diego for my undergraduate degree in Human Biology. Before college, I enlisted in the Army as a radar engineer and during my active duty I participated in Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. To help decide whether medicine is right for me, I became involved with the Flying Samaritans, a non-profit organization that provides free health clinics in underserved areas of Mexico Baja peninsula. I was the clinic coordinator for about 4 years and it was a amazing learning opportunity about myself and about helping the underserved communities. I am interested in global health and sports medicine. I feel very privileged to be a part of the UC Davis Family Medicine Team. It is a friendly and supportive learning environment!
Hobbies: basketball, tennis, road and mountain biking, fly-fishing, hiking/camping, travel

Brent W. Hanson, M.D. - R3

Brent W. Hanson M.D. Undergraduate: UC San Diego
Medical School: Tufts University School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Underserved medicine, Latino health, Global Health
Biography: I grew up in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in Grass Valley, California, playing sports and hanging outdoors with my siblings. I headed south for undergrad to San Diego where I learned to surf and keep the sand out of my books while studying for a Spanish major and Biology and Chemistry minors. After graduation, although I knew I wanted to go into medicine, I opted for an adventure in Johannesburg, South Africa, performing behavioral HIV prevention research with UCLA’s Program in Global Health. What was initially a six-month commitment turned into three years abroad where I learned how to implement public health research in resource-poor settings and was privileged to travel to amazing countries to do so. I returned to the US and pursued medical school in Boston where I found my personal and professional interests coincided best with the field of family medicine. Its wide scope of practice and the central role we play in a patient’s health make it forever challenging and forever rewarding. I’m thrilled to be back in Northern California at UC Davis for residency and am looking forward to pursuing both career and home interests while here.
Hobbies: Cooking, running, camping, movies, child’s pose.

Jarrod McGahan, M.D. - R3

Jarrod McGahan M.D. Undergraduate: University of Kentucky
Medical School: University of Louisville School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Integrative medicine for the underserved, Mindfulness, Nutrition, Food Justice
Biography: I found my passion for medicine during college on a medical relief trip to Jamaica. Being a part of a clinic in the mountains of Christiana, I also made house calls under a family physician. The chance to be a part of the intimate setting of someone’s home while being a part of medical care for the underserved is a dear memory to me. While in medical school, I pursued interests in integrative medicine, with a main focus in acupuncture. I mean to be certified during my residency at UC Davis and bring this knowledge back to Family medicine. I hope to make evidence-based medicine like acupuncture, mindfulness, and advanced nutrition a meaningful part of patient care.
Hobbies: Cooking, Mountain biking, cycling, running, weightlifting, hiking and backpacking, drums, guitar, singing, meditation.

Susan Mead, M.D. - R3 - FM/OB

Susan Mead M.D. Undergraduate: Macalester College
Medical School: University of Michigan Medical School
Special Areas of Interest: Women's health, Obstetrics, Integrative Medicine, Public Health, Advocacy
Biography: Born and raised in the Merrimack Valley of Massachusetts, I began my westward journey after high school, stopping first in St. Paul, MN to attend Macalester College. I took my anthropology degree to Aflao, Ghana, where I worked in an HIV/AIDS NGO and interviewed women living with HIV. Returning to the United States, I worked as a clinical literature analyst for a medical device company. I then attended medical school at the University of Michigan. Desiring a return to my anthropological roots, I took a break to study public health at Harvard University. I am excited to continue my medical training at UC Davis in the family medicine/obstetrics program.
Hobbies: photography, story slamming, yoga, running, biking, cooking

Chirag Patel, M.D. - R3

Chirag Patel M.D. Undergraduate: USC
Medical School: Drew/UCLA
Special Areas of Interest: Men's health, Medically Underserved
Biography: I was raised in Las Vegas, the last of four children. I attended the University of Southern California and earned a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering. Following my undergraduate degree, I obtained an M.S. in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry. After spending a year tutoring junior high school students in Math and Science, I completed a Ph.D. in Industrial Hygiene (Occupational Epidemiology) from the University of Illinois - Chicago. I come to UC Davis from Charles Drew/UCLA Medical School.
Hobbies: I am/was an avid bicyclist and runner, reader and watcher of sci-fi and fantasy, aspiring vermicomposter, and I enjoy spending time outdoors with my son and wife.

Upal Sarker, M.D. - R3

Upal Sarker M.D. Undergraduate: Cornell University
Medical School: The Commonwealth Medical College
Special Areas of Interest: Healthcare for the underserved, Sports Medicine, Behavioral Medicine
Biography: I was born in Nashville, Tennessee, grew up in State College, Pennsylvania, branched out a little to attend Cornell University for undergrad, and returned to Pennsylvania for medical school. Now, I have made the move across country to California for residency to live with my partner, Kriszta. I am excited to be a part of family medicine at UC Davis and to explore a new area! I look forward to spending the next three years reaching out to the local community, serving a diverse patient population, and growing as a physician in a very supportive program. My fellow interns and residents are a great group and I look forward to working with and getting to know them better.
Hobbies: I love playing (and watching) almost any sport and hope to become more outdoorsy over the next three years! I also enjoy reading, playing board and video games, and doing puzzles.

R2 Residents

Eveline Yen Chu, M.D. - R2 - FM/OB

Eveline Chu, M.D. Undergraduate: UC Berkeley
Medical School: Virginia Commonwealth University
Special Areas of Interest: Medically underserved, Hot Spotting, Women's Health, Global Health, Obstetrics, Intergrative medicine
Biography: The Bay Area is my home. I was born in San Francisco and raised in the East Bay (Go Warriors!). I graduated from UC Berkeley (Go Bears!) with a major in Molecular & Cell Biology and a minor in Art History. Being the first of my family to graduate college, I wanted to take time to explore various jobs to ensure that I’d be passionate about my ultimate career path. Coaching swimming, working in retail, volunteering in a CHF clinic, and doing wet lab experiments helped me realize that Medicine was where my true passion was. I moved to the charming and historical city of Richmond, VA for medical school at VCU (MCV), where I continued to work with the medically underserved population and was a part of the Hot Spotting project sponsored by Camden Coalition. While I absolutely loved my time in RVA (also commonly referred to as “River City” for the James River), I am so happy to be here at this River City where I am closer to my family and friends. I am thrilled to be a part of the FP/OB program where I have the opportunity to work with two incredible departments here at UCDMC.
Hobbies: Swimming, yoga, running, hiking, traveling, SCUBA, hugging dogs, being a foodie, being a kama'aina.

Wei (Wendy) Diao, M.D. - R2

Wei Diao, M.D. Undergraduate: Dartmouth College
Medical School: Thomas Jefferson University
Special Areas of Interest: Healthcare for the underserved, adolescent medicine, global health, medical education, cross-cultural barriers to care
Biography: I grew up in Vancouver, Canada where I developed a deep respect for primary care. I studied biology and anthropology at Dartmouth College, where I had the opportunity to go to Nicaragua to work with patients and teach health education in rural and urban communities. I went to medical school at Jefferson in Philadelphia, where I volunteered at a women and children's homeless shelter every week and was fortunate enough to work with the same families week after week. Family medicine emphasizes the importance of practicing medicine in the rich context of the patient's family, culture, and community. I also love the flexibility it offers, the diverse patient population it allows, and its heavy emphasis on preventative health. I am ecstatic to be a family medicine resident at UC Davis! I have found so many colleagues  who also believe in the mission of family medicine and are determined to create social change through medicine. I feel that here at UC Davis, I have truly found a supportive community and look forward to my residency experience. I am excited to develop the skills to become a compassionate and culturally-sensitive family physician and create change on the individual, family, and community level in North American and abroad.
Hobbies: Painting, hiking and reading.

Jessica Brazil Gould, M.D. - R2

Jessica Gould M.D. Undergraduate: Claremont McKenna College
Medical School: UC San Francisco
Special Areas of Interest: Underserved medicine, Women's health, Global health
Biography: I was born and raised in Davis, California, so training in Family Medicine at UC Davis feels like coming home! I was initially drawn to medicine because of the way it merges social justice and public health. As a pre-med student at Claremont McKenna College, I enjoyed playing tennis, volunteering, planning elaborate theme parties (like Famous Duos Night) with friends, and pretending that my evening O Chem labs were actually the Hogwarts’ potions dungeon. After I graduated, I was awarded a Fulbright grant to study maternal health in Nicaragua. While there, I worked with some amazing health promoters and nurses providing prenatal care in underresourced communities, helped to start a pregnancy support group, met some of the kindest and most resilient women I have ever encountered, and consumed my body weight in gallo pinto. Yum! I attended medical school in gorgeous San Francisco, and especially enjoyed working at a free clinic in the Mission neighborhood for Spanish-speaking patients and coordinating Remedy, a club that collects unused medical supplies for donation abroad. I am thrilled to be back home in the Davis area, and I look forward to the next three years.
Hobbies: Harry Potter, spending time with family and friends, biking, puzzles, reading, gardening, travelling.

Joel Adam Bonilla-Larsen, M.D. - R2

Joel Adam Bonilla-Larsen M.D. Undergraduate: University of Michigan
Medical School: Albany Medical College, New York 
Special Areas of Interest: Preventative Medicine
BiographyI was born in Sacramento and spent most of my life in Southern California. Many of my summers growing up were spent in Sacramento visiting my grandfather.  I found my love for medicine before college as I shadowed my uncle at his clinic in México.  My uncle is a family physician with 30 years of experience.  Every summer I would spend time working at my uncle's clinic and with each visit I became more convinced I was destined to be a Family Physician.  My time at my uncle's clinic would serve as my inspiration for my studies during undergraduate and medical school.  I attended the University of Michigan for my undergraduate studies, where I majored in Neuroscience.  I spent four great years at Albany Medical College in Albany, New York and decided it was time to return home for residency.  The Family Medicine Residency at UC Davis was the perfect choice for me: Sacramento is my home, my family is here, and the faculty and residents from the UC Davis Family Medicine program put the "Family" in Family Medicine.
Hobbies: fixing anything, restoring cars and motorcycles, kayaking, playing guitar and piano, and rollerblading.

Valerie Therese Liu, M.D. - R2 - FM/Leadership

Valerie Therese Liu D.O. Undergraduate: Michigan State University
Medical School:Touro University Medical School
Special Areas of Interest: Women and Children's health, Holistic care, Family Medicine Leadership
BiographyAs a native Michigander used to enduring harsh seasons, I am delighted to be in beautiful Northern California enjoying the mild weather and beautiful scenery. Practicing medicine in a community so culturally diverse with such excellent teachers and support staff is an extraordinary gift for which I am very thankful. I believe the best care is provided when you assess the whole self, mental and physical, within the context of a patients community. We are not a collection of body parts, but integrated whole beings, creators and products of our own health and environments. Realizing this truth made Family Medicine a natural choice for me. Unlike other specialties, Family Medicine doctors have the unique opportunity to see multiple generations in a family, from newborn babies to grandparents, which helps us understand how both environment and genetics work together to impact health. Completing my training here at UC Davis in the Family Medicine Leadership track is the culmination of a long held dream for me. I feel very fortunate to be here with my brilliant co-residents and look forward to the next few years!
Hobbies: Exploring the Bay Area with my husband and two beautiful children, singing, sewing and yoga.

Christine Marechal, M.D. - R2

Christine Marechal, M.D. Undergraduate: University of Calgary
Medical School: Midwestern University - Arizona College of Ostepathic Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: International medicine, women's health, medically underserved, preventative medicine
Biography: I was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta where I grew up skiing, hiking and enjoying everything that the Rocky Mountains have to offer. My first career was as a Geophysicist and I worked for a large oil and gas company before deciding to return to school to become a physician. I enjoyed my job however I lacked the feeling that I was doing something meaningful in my work. As a child I lived in Yemen and traveled extensively, I was exposed to an incredible variety of cultures and living situations. I saw that I had been fortunate to have the opportunities that I do and that knowledge grew into a desire to work with underserved populations both locally and internationally. When I couldn’t find a way to incorporate my goals into my first career I decided to shadow a physician and I knew immediately that I had found the right fit. I eventually moved down to Arizona with my husband Mitch and our dog Painty where I attended medical school at Midwestern University. Along the way our daughter Ayla was born. She definitely keeps us busy but parenthood has been the most wonderful experience that we’ve had so far. We were thrilled to match at UC Davis and move our family to Sacramento where we are closer to friends, family and all of the outdoor activities that we enjoy so much. UC Davis is full of incredibly intelligent, warm and welcoming people and I am so excited to be able to spend the next three years with them.
Hobbies: Spending time with my family, skiing, hiking, traveling, drawing.

Kate Marie Richards, M.D. - R2 - FM/Psych

Kate Richards, M.D. Undergraduate: UC Davis
Medical School: UC Davis School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Behavioral Health, Underserved medicine, Health Disparities, International health
Biography: My interest in Family Medicine-Psychiatry developed from my love of people and their stories. In college, I pursued a double-major in Biological Sciences and Psychology, because I felt both subjects were necessary to understand a person. I explored internships in physical therapy, optometry, public health, and social work and discovered that I enjoyed integrating what I had learned in each field. I began volunteering in college at the Willow Clinic, a student-run medical and psychiatric clinic for the homeless and found my calling in medicine. As I heard the patients' stories, I understood the importance of social context within medicine and saw how often patients with mental illness fall through the cracks of the health care system. I am passionate about integrating Family Medicine and Psychiatry to provide comprehensive care. I chose UC Davis because of the strong support for combined training (FM-Psych, IM-Psych, FM-OB), the dedicated teaching faculty/mentors, the value on clinical primary care, the cutting-edge research university, and the emphasis on community outreach/service. I look forward to reaching out to a wide variety of patients, taking time to build relationships, hearing my patients' unique stories, using a variety of skills for healing, and understanding the context of each patient's life within the community.
Hobbies: Hiking, camping, anything outdoors, making crepes, quilting and traveling.

Susana Torres, M.D. - R2

Susana Torres, M.D. Undergraduate: UC Berkeley
Medical School: USC Keck School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Underserved medicine, Latino Health, At-risk Populations
Biography: As a child, I suffered from frequent asthma exacerbations, which subsequently led to frequent doctor visits. It was during these visits that I first experienced the intricacies of the patient physician relationship. I became the first person in my family to attend college at the University of California, Berkeley, and I decided to attend the UC Davis pre-medical post-baccalaureate program after college. I moved to Los Angeles to attend the USC Keck School of Medicine where I experienced my family medicine rotation in a community clinic in South Central Los Angeles. It was one of my dearest experiences of medical school because I felt as if I was opening the door to a new world, to new signs and symptoms, to new challenges, and to a new opportunity to make a very positive impact in a one person’s life. I am thrilled to be back at UC Davis where I may continue my training and I look forward to the possibility of treating entire families through the generations.
Hobbies: Traveling, hiking, trying new foods, movies.

Maritza Wilson, M.D. - R2

Maritza Wilson M.D. Undergraduate: Loyolla Marymount
Medical School: Quillen College of Medicine, Tennessee
Special Areas of Interest: Preventative Medicine, Hispanic/ Latino Health, working with underserved populations
Biography: I was born and raised in a suburb north of San Francisco. grew up in a bicultural home and was heavily influenced by my mother’s Hispanic culture. Every other year, I spent my summers with my family in Caracas, Venezuela. I decided to study medicine in Puerto Rico at San Juan Bautista School of Medicine where I would be able to learn medicine both in Spanish and English. During my second year of medical school in Puerto Rico, they temporarily lost their accreditation and Quillen College of Medicine in East Tennessee, offered me a position in their second year medical school class, so I moved to Johnson City Tennessee and finished my schooling there. In both, Puerto Rico and Tennessee, I had the opportunity to learn about rural medicine and take care of underserved populations. Although I have truly enjoyed living in different places around the US these last 10 years, the phrase, “there’s no place like home” resonated with me when I interviewed with UC Davis Family Medicine. Now that I have begun my residency training at UC Davis I can say with full confidence that I am where I am supposed to be. My class connected instantly and we already have been so supportive of each other and the faculty is incredibly helpful.
Hobbies: hiking, dancing, makeup, trying out new restaurants

Rachel Woodside. M.D. - R2 - FM/Psych

Rachel Woodside, M.D. Undergraduate: UC Berkeley
Medical School: USC
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography: Understanding both medical ailments and psychosocial stressors allows me to work together towards a goal of healing, not just treating.  In a combined Family Medicine and Psychiatry residency, I will use my natural ability to communicate with patients, my experience as a health educator, and my leadership skills to become an effective primary care physician. Working with diverse populations has shaped my belief that everyone deserves access to medical services regardless of income, ethnicity, or personal beliefs.  Both Family Medicine and Psychiatry embrace these values and allow me to see patients across the life spectrum. The chance to practice specialties that value both relationship-building and continued academic learning encapsulates why I want to pursue a combined Family Medicine and Psychiatry residency.  My empathy and experience in health education and leadership roles will aid me in fulfilling my goals of providing exceptional and compassionate medical care. Skillful communication relies not just on listening to patients, but on being able to effectively educate them about their health.  I am thrilled to be a part of the UC Davis combined Family Medicine / Psychiatry program to be a part of their cutting edge research and supportive faculty and mentors that value clinical primary care.

Ellen Yang, M.D. - R2

Ellen Yang M.D. Undergraduate: Pomona College
Medical School: New York Medical College
Special Areas of Interest: Preventative Medicine
Biography: I was born and raised in SoCal, where I pursued Environmental Chemistry at Pomona College. During my time there, I had the chance to collaborate with underserved communities both locally and abroad in the Peruvian Altiplano to expand educational opportunities for youth. While I was studying abroad in Denmark, I learned firsthand about the General Practitioner’s role as the gatekeeper to health care. I felt that Family Medicine would enable me to take on a similar role in the US. When I ventured over to the East Coast for medical school, I became actively involved in our Family Medicine Interest Group and fell in love with the flexibility and full scope of Family Medicine. My interests in women’s health and preventive care grew during my time spent leading our student-run women’s health clinic in East Harlem and developing wellness workshops for community organizations. I am ecstatic to be back on the West Coast for residency and at a program that is as committed to the community as it is supportive of its residents.
Hobbies: Food excursions, hiking, baking, Pilates and Yoga..

R1 Residents

Simone Asare, M.D. - R1

Simone Asare, M.D. Undergraduate: Stanford University
Medical School: University of Illinois in Chicago
Special Areas of Interest: adolescent medicine, immigrant/refugee health, addiction medicine, public health, mitigating health disparities for underserved populations
Biography: Originally from Sacramento, I am excited and grateful to be returning home! My educational experiences have afforded me invaluable opportunities to learn about the health and social welfare of individuals and communities around the globe, which has inspired me to pursue Family Medicine so I can be an advocate for the health needs of the underserved. I studied Human Biology at Stanford and during my senior year, I studied International Women's Health at Oxford; both of these experiences motivated me to pursue public health to better understand community health. After conducting a nutrition microfinance project in Ghana and providing educational and social services to underserved adolescents through a Christian non-profit in East Palo Alto, I pursued my MPH at Yale. My background in public health motivated me to pursue medicine to improve the health of individuals, leading me to pursue medicine at the University of Illinois in Chicago. I am thrilled to be part of the UCD Family & Community Medicine residency and am excited to be trained to care for patients holistically.
Hobbies: spending quality time with my fiancé, family and friends; dancing, eating, cooking, traveling, mentoring, running

Paiyuam (Pi) Asnaashari, D.O. - R1

Pi Asnaashari, D.O. Undergraduate: UC San Diego
Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences
Special Areas of Interest: Lifestyle Medicine, Preventive Medicine, Sports Medicine, Patient Engagement, Global Health
Biography: I was born and raised in Sacramento, went to UC San Diego for undergrad, finished medical school at Western University of Health Sciences, and grateful to return to the city that's always been close to my heart. Why I aspired to study medicine initially stemmed from my experiences as a college soccer player. I loved learning from Sports Medicine Doctors how nutrition and physical activity affected our human physiology. Throughout medical school I continued to supplement our traditional medical curriculum with diet and lifestyle readings to learn more about its importance, hoping to use it as a first line of treatment when appropriate. With the rise of chronic disease, empowering and engaging patients in their own health has been an area of medicine I've grown a strong passion for. I did a 1 month 4th year elective rotation here as a medical student, and as nervous as I was, the love and support the faculty and residents provided me while I was here went above all my expectations. UC Davis allows me to pursue all my areas of interest, and learn from such warm and nurturing team.
Hobbies: Soccer, basketball, tennis, reading, meditation, socializing, traveling, outdoor activities, conversational Spanish, calisthenics

Christina Bourne, M.D. - R1

Christina Bourne, M.D. Undergraduate: University of Arizona 
Medical School: University of Kansas 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography: Growing up in Tucson, Arizona prepared me for sunny Sacramento. I studied nutrition during college which has continued to be one of my passions to this day. My interest in becoming a physician was solidified while completing my Masters in Public Health where I learned about the impact that primary care doctors make in communities.  While in medical school I saw how difficult it was for patients who are poor, undocumented or underinsured to get mental healthcare services the need.  Beyond residency, I am looking forward to increasing access to contraception and abortions, and holistically combining family medicine and psychiatry while working in an underserved urban setting.  During my free time I love spending time with my friends, hiking, biking, doing yoga and eating delicious food.
Hobbies: Yoga, running and rock climbing

James Dodge, M.D. - R1

James Dodge, M.D. Undergraduate: Michigan State University 
Medical School: MSUCOM
Special Areas of Interest: Women's health, urban underserved populations, mental health parity, public policy
Biography: I am a Midwesterner at heart, having grown up in three different states around Lake Michigan: Indiana, Wisconsin, and Michigan.  I attended Michigan State University for my undergraduate degree in Psychology, as well as for my medical degree at MSUCOM (Go Green!). My interest in medicine initially grew out of a desire to help people on a one-on-one level, but as I became more aware of social justice issues in medicine - racial health disparities, mental health stigma, anti-choice legislation, and the marginalization of LGBTQ populations by the medical establishment - I began to view medicine as a powerful tool for enacting social change.  I am hoping to someday work on a public policy level to address social justice issues and their impact on the health of marginalized populations.  I am so excited to begin my Family Medicine journey here in Sacramento, alongside my amazing UC Davis coresidents
Hobbies: Walking, jaunting, traipsing, traveling by foot at varying paces, cooking and eating hot dogs, Norse mythology

Alex Fu, D.O. - R1

Alex Fu, D.O. Undergraduate: UC San Diego 
Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography: I grew up in San Jose, California and went to UCSD for my undergraduate education where I majored in General Biology and got a minor in Healthcare Social Issues. I worked for a year as an emergency medical technician/medical transporter where I had the opportunity to see, learn, and meet all kinds of people. I saw so many diseases that had a preventable cause which drove my passion for primary care. I went on to medical school at Western University of Health Sciences - COMP. I saw Family medicine as an opportunity to practice what I went into medicine for, to take care of people as a whole person. I’m so excited to be a part of UC Davis’ Family Medicine residency program, I couldn’t be happier with where I ended up!
Hobbies: Hiking, playing soccer and time spent with friends and family.

Lynda Gaitan, M.D. - R1

Lynda Gaitan, M.D. Undergraduate: Letourneau University 
Medical School: Texas A & M 
Special Areas of Interest: Urban outreach
Biography: The prospect of treating entire families excites me! As I journeyed through my clinical years, I’ve found myself drawn to the outpatient clinic where it gives me opportunities to teach patients about their illnesses. I admire the vast knowledge and skill sets that family medicine physicians have in dealing with complex diagnoses and their swift expertise in tailoring individualized care in a field that encompasses a wide spectrum of diseases. Compassion, diligence and optimism are at the core of my character. I have worked at a medical-student-run free clinic serving our local underserved population, and as medical volunteer in Peru where I gained valuable experience in the art of acute clinical care and cultural awareness. I enjoy teaching and look forward to teaching not only my patients but also medical students and all other healthcare personnel. My professional aspiration is to one day work in an urban region, where I, as a versatile and bilingual healthcare provider, can serve a diverse and multicultural population. I am especially excited to be a Resident at UC Davis where I will be in a program dedicated to training physicians in academic excellence, integrity, and service with a focus in community outreach.
Hobbies: Camping and playing volleyball.

Cecilia Jojola, M.D. - R1

Cecilia Jojola, M.D. Undergraduate: Stanford
Medical School: Medical College of Wisconsin
Special Areas of Interest: ethics, religion and spirituality in medicine, fertility awareness-based methods (FABMs) and natural family planning (NFP), conscience policies, policy and advocacy
Biography: Before pursuing medicine, I spent time abroad studying theology and philosophy at Oxford, and further pursued these interests by earning my Masters in Religious Studies at Stanford. One of my favorite aspects of medicine is where science and philosophy intersect: ethics! I’ll always want to learn more about your point of view. Other interests of mine include policy-writing and advocacy, especially in the context of medical education and organized medicine. Lastly, I have a special interest in teaching patients to understand their fertility through menstrual cycle charting, also known as Fertility Awareness-Based Methods (FABMs) or Natural Family Planning (NFP). I’d love to meet you and talk more!
Hobbies: hanging out with family and friends, dancing, volleyball, meeting new people, seeking out local treasures - especially of the culinary variety

James Liao, M.D. - R1

James Liao, D.O. Undergraduate: Stanford University
Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences 
Special Areas of Interest: Preventive Medicine
Biography: I was immensely fortunate to grow up in Hong Kong during its 1997 handover. I attended Stanford University and majored in History. It was during this time I became an Emergency Medical Technician and developed a keen interest in pre-hospital medicine, which sparked my desire to become a doctor. As a non-traditional pre-med, I spent several years completing post-bac courses before attending the Western University of Health Sciences for medical school. During my clinical rotations, I found that family medicine was a natural choice for me - I love the versatility of family medicine doctors, and their breadth of practice. I feel incredibly lucky to be part of the UC Davis family, and thankful to be part of such an amazing community-focused Family Medicine program.
Hobbies: Hiking, film, confusing people with my twin brother, and trying to steal my co-resident Alex’s dogs

Caroline McCormick Ornellas, M.D. - R1

Caroline McCormick Ornellas, M.D. Undergraduate: UC Santa Cruz 
Medical School: Georgetown University 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography: Primary care offers the ability to broaden our knowledge of health and the human condition as we gather knowledge across disciplines and multiple specialties. I was drawn to medicine because I desire a career that requires a lifelong commitment to learning, a career whose aim is to alleviate suffering, and a career that mandates intimate conversations. I came to family medicine when I observed the power of the physician-patient relationship in practice, and I am committed to family medicine because I want to be the net that catches all my patients’ issues. I possess a dogged sense of determination and a deep love of medicine. My medical training has given me a robust skill set and an excellent fund of knowledge.  I believe the UC Davis residency program will continue to train me to be a caring and effective physician and  I am confident that I will be an excellent resident physician. I will motivate my personal abilities for the good of the patient, while supporting my colleagues.   I am excited to be a part of UC Davis Family Medicine!
Hobbies: Yoga, cycling and traveling

Rachel Mitchell, M.D. - R1

Rachel Mitchell, M.D. Undergraduate: Univ of Texas at Austin
Medical School: UC Davis 
Special Areas of Interest: Integrative/Holistic Health Care, Health Advocacy, Medical Education
Biography: I was born and raised in East Texas and completed a degree in Biology at the University of Texas in Austin. I then spent two years doing missionary work, after which I got my Master of Public Health degree from Brigham Young University in Utah. I was able to work as an intern with the WHO in New Delhi in the sustainable development department as well as partnering with aid organizations in East Africa and Mongolia regarding women’s health. During this time I met and married my husband Derek and had our first child. I had two more children during my time at UC Davis School of Medicine, and also participated in health policy work and student teaching. I developed an interest in family medicine and psychiatry when I saw the great need for physicians that could address both physical and mental health synergistically, especially in caring for the underserved. I hope to continue fostering my interests in health advocacy and medical education while at UC Davis
Hobbies: Rock climbing, swimming, playing piano and guitar, playing with my kids

Lauren Jansen, M.D. - R1

Lauren Rafka, M.D. Undergraduate: University of Connecticut
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Special Areas of Interest: Medical education, women's health
Biography: I grew up in Stonington, Connecticut and spent many glorious days and evenings at the beach.  I am a lifelong camper and camp counselor -- I worked at YMCA Camp Watchaug for 10 years!  The values and skills I learned at camp still inform my life today.  I attended the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Connecticut and earned a B.S. in Chemistry in 2012.  Following college, I attended medical school at Albany Medical College in Albany, New York.  I developed an interest in family medicine after realizing that I wanted a career that would allow me to continue to take care of all patients - from infants to the elderly and everyone in between.  Now I'm thrilled to join the UC Davis program and I am excited to explore the West coast and learn about all that Sacramento has to offer!
Hobbies: I enjoy decorating cakes, making balloon animals, kayaking, gardening, and hula hooping

David Roldan, M.D. - R1

David Roldan, M.D. Undergraduate: UC Santa Barbara 
Medical School: UC Davis 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography: In my experience one of the biggest injustices I've found is lack of access to medical care. In the majority of places the problem has a common denominator; the lack of primary care physicians.  As part of the UC Davis Rural-PRIME program I’ve had the opportunity to work for three months in a rural setting with primary care physicians.  Most doctors have taken care of four generations of patients and they became an integral part of the patients’ lives and community. Seeing this type of continuity of care and the effect on patients has made me feel an even deeper connection to family medicine. This is the type of physician I want to be, using relationships to build trust that lead to healthier communities. I have had the privilege to attend amazing universities and learn from the best in the world. Outside of academics I've found ways to prepare myself in different settings, including volunteering at free-clinics, learning the administrative side of medicine by working as a medical assistant in rural or underserved clinics in various specialties, and finding opportunities to learn from other health systems by volunteering in hospitals and health centers abroad.  I am excited to be able to continue my Residency at UC Davis in Family Medicine. I believe my patience, work ethic, humor, compassion, multi-cultural skills and experience will help me become a great family physician.
Hobbies: Soccer, basketball, traveling and photography