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Department of Family and Community Medicine

Department of Family and Community Medicine

Residents

R5 Residents

Danielle Alexander, M.D. - R5 - 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

Amy Nuismer, M.D. - R5 - 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.

R4 Residents

Luz Contreras Arroyo, M.D. - R4 - 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)

Cassy Friedrich, M.D. - R4 - FM/Psych

Undergraduate: Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
Medical School: University of Illinois, Chicago
Special Areas of Interest: family planning, LGBTQ healthcare, mental health
Biography: After living in the Midwest my entire life prior to residency, I have found a true home and community here at UC Davis and in Sacramento. I grew up the child of a farmer in rural Illinois, and I still love playing outside! I have enjoyed the abundance of outdoor activities available here in Northern California, especially hiking, camping, backpacking and cycling. I feel fortunate to be getting this combined training so I can be a better advocate for vulnerable populations, especially women and the LGBTQ community.
Hobbies: Yoga, backpacking, hiking, biking

Susan Delmar, M.D. - R4 - 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

R3 Residents

Eveline Chu, M.D. - R3

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.

Wendy Diao, M.D. - R3

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 Gould, M.D. - R3

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 Bonilla-Larsen, M.D. - R3

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 Liu, M.D. - R3

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. - R3

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 Richards, M.D. - R3 - 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. - R3

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. - R3

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. - R3 - 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.
Hobbies:

Ellen Yang, M.D. - R3

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..

R2 Residents

Simone Asare, M.D. - R2

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. - R2

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-EXT

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, D.O. - R2

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. - R2

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. - R2

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.

Lauren Jansen, M.D. - R2

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

Cecilia Jojola, M.D. - R2

Cecilia Jojola, M.D. Undergraduate: Stanford University
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, D.O. - R2

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. - R2

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-EXT

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

David Roldan, M.D. - R2

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

Interns

Nathan Cade, M.D.

Nathan Cade, M.D. Undergraduate: Whitman College
Medical School: UC San Francisco 
Special Areas of Interest: Rural Medicine, Point of Care Ultrasound, Narrative Medicine
Biography: I grew up outside a mill town in rural northern California. After college in Eastern Washington I spent a year and a half teaching 6th-graders about biology, geology and ecology at an outdoor school in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. An opportunity arose to live and work abroad in Guatemala where I taught English in a town called El Naranjo Frontera on the Mexican border and volunteered afternoons and weekends at a promotor clinic that offered primary care and urgent care services to residents of Naranjo and surrounding villages. I was inspired by the promotores’ capacity to fortify their communities through provision of basic health care services as well as the leadership and advocacy that their roles entailed. Once I left Guatemala, I moved back to California, took a job with the San Francisco Health Plan helping to manage the city’s Medicaid and uninsured patient population, and finished pre-med classes at San Francisco State University. Family Medicine has always seemed like a natural fit for me. It is rooted in a tradition of advocacy and fostering community health and wellbeing. The holistic, generalist training that is at the core of FM is great preparation for a career in any setting, whether rural, urban or international, and I’m proud to be joining UC Davis for Residency.
Hobbies: Cycling, surfing, rock climbing and backpacking

Magi Aurora, M.D.

Magi Aurora, M.D. Undergraduate: University
Medical School: University 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography
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Danielle Fincher, M.D.

Danielle Fincher, M.D. Undergraduate: Rhodes College
Medical School: University of Alabama School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: reproductive and sexual health, intimate partner violence, sexual assault, LGBTQ health, public health, advocacy, policy
Biography:  I grew up in Huntsville, Alabama, and then completed my undergraduate degree at Rhodes College in Memphis, TN where I studied neuroscience and religious studies. After working with underserved women and children in Memphis, I realized the impact environmental and social factors have on people’s overall health. I decided to pursue a MPH degree at Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. There I competed a concentration in reproductive health and population studies and thesis research related to intimate partner violence. I then attended medical school at the University of Alabama School of Medicine in Birmingham, AL. I chose family medicine because it offers the opportunity pursue both of my passions: public health and caring for individual patients. I’m so excited to be part of the UC Davis Family Medicine residency program whose commitment to community health makes this program a great fit!
Hobbies: yoga, trivia, paddle boarding, exploring new restaurants and breweries

Nicole Gordon, M.D.

Nicole Gordon, M.D. Undergraduate: Stanford University
Medical School: Frank H. Netter School of Medicine, Quinnipiac University 
Special Areas of Interest: Health Disparities, Health Policy, Healthcare for the Underserved, Adverse Childhood Experiences and PTSD in Chronic illness
Biography:  Hi Everyone! I grew up in the Bay Area of California, and attended Stanford University for my undergraduate studies where I majored in Human Biology. After graduating, I spent one year doing health services research on emergency department closures and health disparities. I spent another year as a Community Health Corps volunteer at LifeLong Medical Care in Oakland, CA. It was during this time I developed an interest in the effects of childhood trauma on the ability of adults to care for their chronic illnesses. Medical school took me to the East Coast to the Netter School of Medicine, where I helped open our first student-run free clinic. I’m thrilled to be back on the West Coast, and even more excited to be joining UC Davis’ Family Medicine residency program, where I immediately felt “at home” on my interview day!
Hobbies: Cooking, Traveling, Hiking, Hanging out with my husband (Dave) and our dog (Lilly-bean)

Jeremy Johnson, M.D.

Jeremy Johnson, M.D. Undergraduate: University
Medical School: University 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography
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Ian Kim, M.D.

Ian Kim, M.D. Undergraduate: University of Virginia
Medical School: University of California, Davis, School of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: piano/keyboards, community building and organizational development, running
Biography:  My pathway into medicine was a bit untraditional. I was a policy advocate, social justice coalition organizer, and nonprofit organization builder for more than ten years before I came to UC Davis for medical school and residency. I come from a family of healthcare providers. When I was a child, my father was the only pediatrician in a rural South Carolina county, caring for children from all communities and socioeconomic strata. A career in medicine called to me from a young age. However, community building and social change also called. I completed pre-med coursework at the University of Virginia, and then I took a detour. I earned an MBA at the Yale School of Management, and worked for a decade on juvenile and criminal justice reform. I am deeply grateful to now be learning and practicing medicine. I strive to bring kindness, curiosity, and listening to my daily practice. I believe that all people should have excellent healthcare, and I am committed to expanding access to healthcare for all people. My wife is trained as a psychotherapist and manages mental health programs for low-income and immigrant families. We have a daughter who loves reading, swimming, and music. I am very pleased to join the UC Davis Family Residency Program to complete my training!
Hobbies:

Vinu Ninan, M.D.

Vinu Ninan, M.D. Undergraduate: Drexel University
Medical School: Drexel University College of Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Sports Medicine and Preventative Medicine
Biography:  I was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and went to Drexel University for both my undergraduate and medical education. Growing up in a big city, I’ve had the opportunity to work with many different individuals from various socioeconomic backgrounds as well and cultures. I’ve become very aware of the cultural differences in the perception of illness as well as obstacles patients face in seeking care. My passion for family medicine comes from the diversity of the field as well as the opportunity to make long-term relationships with patients. My experiences have increased my interest in both patient education and preventative medicine. My professional goal is to help patients¬ manage chronic conditions as well as acute physical injuries to enable patients to continue living their lives as well and as long as possible. I am very excited to move to Sacramento with my wife and start our professional careers on the west coast. I look forward to continue my training and providing holistic care to my patients with the UC Davis Family Medicine Program!
Hobbies: In my free time, I enjoy reading, board games, rock-climbing, and cooking

Arunima Kohli, M.D.

Arunima Kohli, M.D. Undergraduate: Stanford University
Medical School: Stanford University 
Special Areas of Interest: LGBTQIA+ health, Medical education, Women’s health, Healthcare for underserved communities, Humanism in medicine
Biography: I was born and raised in New Jersey, until my family moved to the Bay Area when I was in high school. I went to Stanford for my undergrad, where I majored in Biology, minored in English, and (practically) lived in the Music department. I then spent two years researching food and environmental allergies, including working on food allergy therapy clinical trials and studying associations between pollution and secondhand smoke exposure and asthma and allergies in children. This research, in combination with my years volunteering at Arbor Free Clinic, gave me a deep and abiding interest in environmental and socioeconomic determinants of health. During medical school, also at Stanford, I found myself drawn to primary care, and specifically to Family Medicine, because of its attention to these determinants of health, and to addressing these through preventative medicine and advocacy. I also loved Family Medicine's holistic approach to patients and families, and the close personal bond I saw between patients and their primary care doctors. I look forward to delving deeper into all that Family Medicine has to offer over the next three years, and I’m thrilled that I’ll be doing that here with all the wonderful people at UC Davis!
Hobbies: Singing (solo and choral), reading, knitting, cross-stitch, spending time with friends and family

Emilie Dempsey, M.D.

Emilie Dempsey, M.D. Undergraduate: University of Tulsa
Medical School: University of Oaklahoma-Tulsa School of Community Medicine
Special Areas of Interest: Preventative Medicine, Family Planning, Behavioral Health
Biography:  I grew up in Ashland, Oregon and moved to Oklahoma to attend the University of Tulsa (TU), where I majored in Biology and Political Science. I spent the year after graduation in Bloomington, Indiana, working low-wage jobs, dancing, and going to museums. I returned to Oklahoma to attend the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, first in Oklahoma City and then Tulsa. My third-year rotations convinced me that Family Medicine is where I belong, and where I can best pursue my interests in patient education and preventive medicine while working with the underserved. I’m so excited to have matched at my dream program, UC Davis, and to return to the Southern Oregon/Northern California region!
Hobbies: Nature walks, pub trivia, music, movies/TV shows

Victoria Belle Shin, D.O.

Victoria Shin, D.O. Undergraduate: University of Oaklahoma
Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences
Special Areas of Interest: Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM), Integrative Medicine, Medical Acupuncture, Nutrition, Mental Health, Psychosomatic Medicine, Sports Medicine, Dermatology
Biography: I was born and grew up in Oklahoma City with my Korean mother. When I was seven, I traveled to Moscow with my mom who was a missionary at a Russian bible college. This experience of seeing so much disparity in the world at a young age sparked my reason for being a doctor. I attended the University of Oklahoma where I majored in Biochemistry with a minor in Medical Humanities. Wanting more opportunities, I moved to LA where I completed graduate Christian studies at Fuller Theological Seminary focusing on cross-cultural healthcare & urban health missions. While attending osteopathic medical school at Western University of Health Sciences in California, I developed a strong appreciation for the compassion, variety, and fortitude of Family Medicine. I received the US Air Force Health Professions Scholarship and went on to serve as a Flight Surgeon at Scott AFB near St Louis and Kunsan AB in South Korea. My ultimate goal as a physician is to care of my patients as whole persons: mind, body and spirit. I’m honored to take the next journey in my learning as a part of UC Davis’ Family Medicine residency program
Hobbies:

Romero Santiago M.D., M.P.H.

Romero Santiago, M.D. Undergraduate: University of Pennsylvania
Medical School: University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, TX
Special Areas of Interest: Preventive, Lifestyle & Integrative/Holistic Medicine, Pain Management, Mental Health, Health Policy/Advocacy
Biography:  Born in Gainesville, FL and raised in the Houston, TX area, I was greatly influenced by the actions of my grandmother and her family physician. These rich childhood experiences encouraged me to pursue medicine as my vocation. While studying Economics and Music at UPenn, I had the unique opportunity to explore connections between health services research and medicine. These experiences motivated me to join the pioneer class of the four-year MD/MPH program at UTSW and the UT Health Science Center Houston School of Public Health. I found my true home during my 3rd year clerkship in Family Medicine. Since then, I’ve enjoyed co-directing our Family Medicine Interest Group and participating in the Texas and American Academies of Family Medicine. The UC Davis Family Medicine Residency Program here in Sacramento is truly the perfect fit for me; from a well-rounded training experience to second-to-none opportunities in health policy/advocacy and academic family medicine, laced with immense opportunities for public health outreach to a diverse underserved population.
Hobbies: Cello, piano, vocal (tenor), table tennis, cricket, basketball, soccer, geography/travel

Kristina Soman-Faulkner D.O.

Kristina Soman-Faulkner, D.O. Undergraduate: University
Medical School: University 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography
Hobbies:

VyVy Trinh M.D.

Elyse Trinh, M.D. Undergraduate: Brown University
Medical School: Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography:  I grew up in the Bay Area and attended Brown University's eight-year Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME). As an undergraduate, I immersed myself in history, social sciences, and creative writing, ending up with the very broad major of Human Biology with a focus on Race and Gender Studies. Much of my real education took place outside the classroom, where I spent every summer working with K-12 youth in a variety of settings. Throughout medical school I balanced a second job directing an organization called BRYTE, which has for the past ten years fostered community, confidence, and joy among refugee youth and families in Providence, RI through in-home tutoring, summer camp, and youth organizing. I'm thrilled to join the UC Davis family and to continue discovering my passions and interests in medicine, as a member of the FM/OB combined program!
Hobbies: Cooking, community organizing, drawing comics, creative writing, spontaneous adventures

Mary Kathryn Orsulak M.D.

Mary Karthryn Orsulak, M.D. Undergraduate: University
Medical School: University 
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography
Hobbies:

Nikos Karakashian M.D.

Nikos Karakashian, M.D. Undergraduate: University of California, Davis
Medical School: University of South Florida
Special Areas of Interest:
Biography:  I grew up in the Bay Area and went to college at UC Davis. My focus changed from chemistry to international development before settling on medicine. I attended medical school at the University of South Florida before coming home to UC Davis for residency. In my career, I want to keep a global perspective and leverage broad training in Family Medicine and Psychiatry to contribute to a cultural dialogue about what healthy living means. Among other things, I find joy passing time with friends and family, running, podcasting, road trips, and rock climbing.
Hobbies: