Meet Our Residents
Our residents are among the most passionate, bright, and forward-thinking individuals in primary care. They come to us from all over the world, and bring an incredible breadth of wisdom and insights to the program.
Mustafa Alavi, MD
Mustafa was born in Chicago, IL and raised in a nearby suburb, Aurora, Illinois. He went to Illinois Wesleyan University where he received a Bachelor's of Science in Biology and minor in Spanish. Mustafa was also a member of the Cross Country and Track team throughout college and loved every second of it.
Mustafa knew early on that he wanted to pursue a career in medicine through taking care of his grandmother. She had immigrated to the United States to be his caretaker but as he grew older, their roles eventually switched. Mustafa began to take her to all her doctor's appointments and experienced firsthand the frustration patients go through every day to navigate the current healthcare system. This ultimately motivated him to choose primary care so that he could help advocate for patients just like his grandma.
He then went on to attend the University of Illinois at Chicago for medical school. There he was involved extensively with the Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG) and met fantastic family physicians who guided him towards the specialty. During medical school, he served student leadership roles with both the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and Society of Teacher of Family Medicine (STFM). These roles have guided his passion for medical student education, the workforce pipeline to Family Medicine and health care reform. He believes strongly that health care is a universal right and that our healthcare system needs a more robust foundation in primary care to overcome our current healthcare crisis.
Mustafa chose OHSU for the strength of the program and faculty but most importantly the residents. He felt extremely welcomed by all the residents and knew he would have a solid support system. He has never lived outside of Illinois and is thrilled to start his new adventure in Portland. However, he realizes that he owns zero flannel shirts and will need to go shopping. In his free time, you can find Mustafa running, biking, or hiking one of the many nearby trails. He hopes to be able to run a few half and full marathons as well.
Kristopher Azavedo, MD
Kristopher happily brings with him his busy family, complete with three kiddos and two dogs. He plans on enjoying all of the local hiking opportunities Portland has to offer, as well as hitting the music scene and dabbling in photography.
Cait Goss, MD
Cait loves family medicine because it gives her space to be very passionate about many things- Patient education! Evidence based prenatal care! Integrative medicine! Suturing techniques! Sexual health! Vaccine schedules! Epidemiology! Abortion!- and also gives her the opportunity to make faces at babies.
When not working, Cait enjoys spending time outside in the sunshine, making ridiculous art projects, writing letters to congress people, and naps. She came to OSHU as a mid-first year transfer, and is excited to be here in Portland with a brilliant group of family medicine doctors who are going to change the world.
Hans Han, MD
Hans hails from the high desert city of Albuquerque, New Mexico where the mountains glow red during lingering sunsets. As the child of Taiwanese immigrants in a city with a rich multicultural history, he developed an appreciation early to the diversity of human experience.
After high school, he studied sociology at UC-Irvine and was involved in a campus wide sexual assault counseling and peer education group. After college he spent the next three years in Japan teaching. One of his jobs had him working with physically handicapped children in Tokyo. It was here where he witnessed the impact that a coordinated and motivated team could make in improving the lives of those in need. Wanting to serve in richer and more meaningful ways, he returned and settled in Portland to continue his studies.
While in post-baccalaureate classes at Portland State University, he had the opportunity to volunteer at a local needle exchange. Here he regularly came into contact with some of the most vulnerable members of society. Here he saw the health disparities and the lack of access to health care that affect so many.
Early in medical school at OHSU, he was exposed to family medicine and was immediately drawn to the optimism and commitment towards making meaningful changes to improve care for patients while simultaneously considering the needs of the community.
Hans is thrilled to be continuing his training at OHSU. He looks forward to being surrounded by so many inspirational and accomplished faculty and residents. When not spending time with his wife and two children, Hans enjoys cooking, traveling, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Ben Hersh, MD
New to Oregon, Ben is incredibly excited to practice in an environment that embraces individuality while understanding the importance of our families and communities.
It wasn't until after graduating from UC Berkeley with a degree in Public Health that Ben discovered his true passion for medicine. Ben's experiences working with the underserved at the Berkeley Free Clinic and as a counselor-educator at his local Planned Parenthood inspired his desire to address healthcare disparities.
During his time at Boston University School of Medicine, Ben's commitment to primary care, LGBT health, patient advocacy, women's health including comprehensive family planning, and addiction medicine have only grown. While in Boston, Ben also had the opportunity to work as a research assistant at The Fenway Institute researching pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention.
Now in residency, Ben is grateful to be involved in institutions that are dedicated to their patients, deeply engaged with their communities, and are actively seeking innovations for providing better healthcare. Over the next few years, he hopes to help his patients take charge of their health through education and empowerment.
Zigzagging from Israel to Texas to California to Massachusetts and back, Ben is eager to start exploring all the Pacific Northwest has to offer. In his downtime, he can be found experiencing the incredible hikes around Portland, sampling the local cuisine, catching up on some reading or the latest blockbuster movie, and spending time with good friends.
Lisa Kipersztock, MD, MPH
Lisa is honored to follow in her mother's footsteps by becoming a family doctor. She loves the challenge of caring for a full spectrum of patient needs for people of all ages and genders, from newborns to grandparents to pregnant women. She spends a lot of time thinking about how stress, community, and social circumstances affect health, which led her to study public health in addition to medicine. Throughout medical school, she worked to advance women's health through advocacy, community organizing and lobbying. She also had the inspiring opportunity to work alongside community health workers to improve preventive care in an urban neighborhood in Nicaragua. Having successfully started a small herb garden on her porch, she is hoping to find a community garden here in Portland where she can lend a hand. Her other interests and hobbies outside of work include running, painting, travel, cooking, listening to podcasts and improving her Spanish.
Gabriel Plourde, MD, MPH
Gabriel is thrilled to be joining Kaiser Permanente Beaverton as a Family Medicine resident. He is excited to offer full-spectrum care from pediatrics to obstetrics but is most interested in forging treatment and wellness plans for patients with chronic disease so that they may live healthier lives on their own terms. Gabe is interested in the science of behavior change and in partnering with his patients to help them meet their health care goals. When he finds the time Gabe likes to cook and take advantage of Portland's thriving music scene. His yellow lab Barley likes to wake him up early with her snoring. Gabe loves to hike, but anything over 6 miles gets a little too long for Barley, so the number of short trails with brilliant views in Oregon have been a welcome treat.
Jessica Rein, MD
Dr. Rein provides care for the entire family, from newborn infants to grandparents and everything in between. She enjoys being able to provide full-spectrum primary care. In her spare time, Dr. Rein enjoys traveling, baking, singing, and enjoying local arts and music.
Kelly Shaffer, MD
Kelly grew up in the Cereal City, Battle Creek, MI. She attended
University of Michigan (Go Blue!) for undergraduate majoring in Chemistry and
Biochemistry and minoring in Spanish. She obtained her MD from Vanderbilt
University School of Medicine in Nashville, TN. Kelly has an inquiring scientific mind, and has participated in numerous
research projects in the fields of chemistry, biochemistry, cell biology, and
immunology. She is now shifting her research focus from the bench to patient
care and will start delving into clinical and epidemiological studies. Kelly has traveled to many foreign countries
and recently lived and worked in Stockholm, Sweden for 2 years. She also enjoys outdoor activities including
rock climbing, skiing, hiking, and horseback riding.
Because of her travel and outdoor adventure
experiences, she has special interests in Global Health and Wilderness
Medicine. Kelly chose to pursue family
medicine because of the diversity of patients she will be able to treat, the
broad skill set family physicians develop that enable them to help patients
worldwide, and the focus on patient and family centered care. She is excited to train in the OHSU family
medicine residency program where she feels she will obtain an excellent
broad-based education with the opportunity to personalize her experience in a
chosen area of concentration.
Rachel Sircar, MDRachel grew up in North Carolina and attended UNC Chapel Hill - America's first public university and the home of the Tar Heels! Having grown up watching North Carolina basketball from the age of 3, she considers herself a true Tar Heel (born and bred) and truly believes that March madness is the best time of year. As an adult, she had the opportunity to explore several countries by traveling to Costa Rica for a tropical biology field-research program, to India to visit family, and to France, where she spent a year teaching middle school English. Due to an interest in animals and environmental issues, she worked for a few years in a biophysics lab in addition to teaching before deciding to consider medicine as a career.
The opportunities to teach and be involved in the community drew Rachel to family medicine. She enjoys discovering the different ways people learn and seeing how their unique perspectives can enrich their capacity to care for their health. OHSU's distinctive curriculum, with the chance to explore an array of learning experiences that the field encompasses excited her. Meeting the faculty and residents on her interview trail further endorsed the program's strengths.
Rachel would say that her incoming co-residents are already some of the greatest people she has met, and she is looking forward to learning with them and seeing the ways they will impact their own communities. She feels lucky to have the chance to explore such a beautiful state with her pup, a little brown dog. She firmly believes that animals, goat cheese, art, and laughing make life worth living and hopes to experience all of these in Oregon.
Sarah Skog, MD
Dr. Skog is passionate about Family Medicine. She believes a holistic approach to patient care is essential to keeping patients happy and healthy. She believes providing excellent primary care is the best way to assure patients get the most out of life no matter where they are in their journey. Dr. Skog has interests in Maternal and Child Health, Geriatrics, Diabetes Management and Integrative Medicine. When she is not in the hospital or clinic, Dr. Skog enjoys relaxing with her husband and their dog. She loves to bike, hike and enjoy the culinary wonders of Portland. When time (and money) allows, she and her husband love to travel abroad, experience different cultures and even scuba dive.
Michael Tudeen, MD
Michael is the newest, proudest member of OHSU's Family Medicine Residency. He hails from the distant state of Florida after having grown up in the small college town of Gainesville where he was so indoctrinated in the local culture that he stuck around to attend both undergrad and medical school at the University of Florida – Go Gators!
Between college and medical school, he volunteered in rural Mozambique through the Peace Corps where he helped organize and facilitate public health projects regarding food security, health education, and microfinancing of community groups all relating to HIV/AIDS. Although the trip was incredibly formative and memorable on many levels, no greater result came from it than meeting his future wife, Amanda – a fellow returned PCV who never ceases to inspire him with her love and desire to serve others. They don't have any children yet, but they keep our hands full with their "furbaby," a chocolate lab named Jetty whom they adopted in 2014. When they aren't goofing around with the pup, they love to cook, play board games, and get out in nature in whatever way they can.
Looking for a residency program to call home, Michael and his wife were initially drawn to OHSU due the combination of Portland's great livability and the program's national reputation for being a leader in Family Medicine. After a lot of thought and prayer, they felt the 4 year curriculum was the perfect opportunity to allow him to live his dream of becoming a full-spectrum family medicine physician while also starting to actively engage as a leader in the larger societal discussions regarding health care reform. After completing residency, he will be working with the National Health Service Corps for at least 3 years in a rural or urban health care shortage area before he and his wife decide if we will be heading back oversees to serve abroad. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact him!
Jenna Walters, MD
Jenna grew up in Minnesota before moving to the East Coast in her early twenties. She studied Anthropology as an undergraduate at Hunter College in New York City where she was within walking distance of the historic offices of cultural anthropologists Franz Boas and Margaret Mead at the American Museum of Natural History. Habitually, she would traverse Central Park to be inspired by their incredible archives. Anthropology taught her the importance of understanding people within their historic contexts and socioeconomic environments. In health care this means recognizing that a person's physical and mental health is affected by circumstances such as housing status, food access, prejudice, violence and injustice.
Jenna's mission as a doctor is to be an advocate for her patients, especially those disadvantaged by poverty, discrimination and inadequate access to medical care. Her service-learning experiences in Oaxaca, Mexico and Dharamsala, India have informed her of the need for sustainable community-based health programs in resource-poor areas where people too often succumb to preventable illnesses. As president of the Physicians for Human Rights student organization as a medical student at the University at Buffalo, Jenna learned about the health inequalities within the city of Buffalo, NY. She used the opportunity to develop a lecture series for students covering topics such as the social determinants of health, Medical Anthropology and Single Payer health reform.
In her free time Jenna loves both national and
international travel, watching things grown in her garden, playing the drums,
making dumplings and learning to juggle three objects simultaneously. She came
to OHSU as a PGY1 transfer from a small program in Boston, MA that had a sudden
and unfortunate dissolution. She is extremely grateful to have a new big family
with OHSU Family Medicine. She is constantly inspired by this group of
residents that work incredibly hard and yet still manage to be welcoming, thoughtful
and hilarious. Jenna is honored to be in such great company and to be of
service to the community of Portland.
Maggie Wells, MD, MPP
Originally from Southern California, Maggie completed her MD and Masters in Public Policy at Stanford University. She chose Family Medicine because she is most fulfilled by caring for children, women, and men throughout all life stages. Her primary goal is to empower each of her patients to live the life of their choosing. She believes that maximal health, happiness, and functioning can only be achieved by enhancing both emotional health and physical health. She considers each patient as a whole person in the context of their family and their broader community. She has special interests in LGBTQI patient health, health-related public policy, and in providing comprehensive family planning services. Patients report feeling comfortable with and truly cared for by "Dr. Maggie."
When not in the hospital or clinic, Maggie can be found hiking, camping, and enjoying sci-fi novels and shows alongside her furry companion, Leeloo.
Amanda Aninwene, MD
Amanda is a New Jersey native, born and raised. Sadly, many people have noticed that she does not bear an accent. She went to the University of Pittsburgh and completed her BS in Chemistry and BA in Japanese with a certificate in Asian studies. Amanda played Judo for her four years at Pittsburgh and even got to join a club while studying abroad in Nagoya, Japan.
Amanda has been interested in medicine her whole life with the role models of two aunts and an older cousin as physicians. "Obstetrics & Gynecology" were her fanciest words as a five year-old.
After working for a year as a patient care technician, Amanda attended the University of Pittsburgh School of medicine. There, she found a passion for Family Medicine and rekindled her love of teaching.
Why did I choose OHSU? I appreciate the strong commitment to patient care, the hospital and community's emphasis and embrace of family medicine, ample teaching opportunities, and reputation for creating solid physicians. Most of all, Amanda loved the warm community of residents, staff, and faculty!
In my free time, I play tennis and try new sports. I especially look forward to trying kayaking and paddleboarding. I'm also excited to try my hand or, should we say, boots, on this beautiful pacific northwest terrain!
Dominic Caruso, MD, MPH
Dominic Caruso grew up in Portland, Oregon and is thrilled to be back in his hometown to complete his family medicine residency at OHSU. He really loves Portland, particularly given the wealth of outdoor recreational activities and the thriving food and beverage culture. Dominic decided to pursue family medicine because of the opportunities it presents to form long-lasting, supportive relationships with a wide variety of patients. He has a background in public health and health policy and believes strongly in the important role of primary care physicians in listening to and advocating for the needs of their patients.
Dominic also has strong interests in global and rural health, owing to a variety of experiences in India, Latin America and the southern United States. Given the poverty and health disparities he witnessed both before and during his medical studies, he has a particular desire to provide primary care to low-income and marginalized patients, and he believes that health and health care are universal human rights.Outside the clinic, Dominic enjoys biking, hiking, camping, kayaking, gardening, traveling and just about anything else that's outdoors. He also loves to cook, bake, grill and brew all kinds of food and drink, and he particularly enjoys just hanging out and sharing these creations (and good conversation) with family and friends.
Melissa Logan, MD, MS
Melissa Logan was born and raised in San Jose, California. She swam competitively for fourteen years and earned a swimming scholarship to San Jose State University, where she majored in Kinesiology. She has always been passionate about sports medicine because of her love for helping people and her own athleticism. However, her interest in medicine was broadened while working as a physical therapy aide during undergrad.
Melissa loved the continuity of care and patient-provider relationship that developed over time as she watched them improve. She especially enjoyed working with the older adult patients. Being able to hear about their lives and share in their achievements throughout their physical rehabilitation was one of the major reasons she chose to pursue a career in medicine. Ultimately though, her desire to care for all ages was solidified when she had the amazing opportunity to go on a mission trip to the Dominican Republic, conducting medical clinics for a Dominican community and a Haitian Refugee camp as well as installing water filtration systems. This experience showed her first-hand the importance and the impact of quality healthcare.
During medical school at Chicago Medical School in North Chicago, IL, Melissa was able to learn from many knowledgeable and caring physicians. They helped confirm the importance of developing long-term supportive relationships with patients and their families. She realized then that her past interests and future goals were encompassed in the compassionate specialty of Family Medicine.She is so honored to begin her Family Medicine Residency at OHSU because this program embraces everything that she seeks in a residency: an impressive four year full-spectrum training, dedication to quality care for the underserved, ample exposure to sports medicine and geriatric patients, and a commitment to developing leaders in family medicine. She is proud to be a part of a community that echoes the patient-centered care she hopes to provide in the future.
In her free time, Melissa enjoys swimming and watching movies. In addition, she is an aspiring foodie and is excited to explore all of the great restaurants in Portland!
Mustafa Mahmood, MD
Hello! As of 2016 there are officially two Dr.Mustafa's on OHSU's campus. Luckily, we don't work at the same continuity clinic because that would be very confusing. I have also willfully accepted the nickname "Little Mus (pronounced Moose)" which was given to me by "Big Mus". I am originally from Mosul, Iraq. I spent my formative years in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) where I received my high school diploma from the International School of Choueifat. Having lived in the UAE meant that I crossed paths with people from all walks of life. In my graduating class alone, there were students from 100 nationalities. This, among other experiences, made it impossible for me to entertain any homogeneous notion of community. I was taught early on to love and respect each and every person that entered my life. Given the political state of the Middle Eastern world, I made the difficult decision to leave my family and move to the United States. Portland, Oregon was an obvious choice because my elder brother had moved there in 1997 so I decided to follow suit. I attended Portland State University where I studied Micro/Molecular biology. After graduating, I spent a year working at the Trauma Research Department at OHSU, and then another year working in an administrative role at a health care clinic. There, I met Dr. Mark Bajorek, whom some of you know. He is still a beloved friend, mentor, and one of the champions that made me fall in love with Family Medicine. During medical school, I was class president during my pre-clinical years where I learned very quickly how much I loved leadership, mostly because I was in a unique position to learn from each of my classmates and impart what I had learned onto my entire class. Following my pre-clinical years, I was selected for a student fellowship in pathology where I worked independently in the capacity of a first year pathology resident. I gained fundamental knowledge in surgical pathology, autopsy, dermatopathology, cytopathology, and oral pathology. I also conducted research that resulted in a journal submission. Following my fellowship, I loved each and every rotation, therefore solidifying my decision to apply into Family Medicine. In my last year at OHSU, I helped found a clinic that provided free mental health care to the Muslim community in Portland. This was in response to the unique needs of the Muslim community given the anti-Muslim rhetoric that is pervasive in our society.
The reason I ranked OHSU #1 was because my experiences have been nothing short of amazing. All the faculty are incredibly knowledgeable, but before that, they are wonderful human beings. They have a way of treating you like their equal, a rare trait in this hierarchical medical society. I also have to give credit to Dr. Tovi and Dr. Hans for making my Sub-I experience worthwhile. I will forever be grateful for their guidance, and will work hard to re-create the team dynamic we had. It was a busy service, yet our teamwork was seamless.
I am married to my amazing wife, Noor. She is a general dentist with Multnomah County Health Department. We have a curly-haired rascal of a son, Jadd. He is the light of our life. We love going on hikes with him because we feel at peace outdoors as he sits silently in our Osprey backpack. We also love going to OMSI and the Zoo. We regularly have jam-out sessions at home in our small music corner. We also love eating! I am excited to stay on at OHSU, because I want to give back to this community, the same community that opened its arms wide and gave me a great big hug when I first moved here.
Ryan Manns, MD
Ryan was born in Kelowna, British Columbia but spent the first year of his life in Portland, where his father attended school, before returning home to Canada. He attended the University of British Columbia Okanagan where he earned a degree in Biochemistry with a Medical Focus.
It was during high school that he first became interested in a career in medicine after participating in medical mission trips to Belize and the Philippines. Between undergrad and medical school he took a year to work with at-risk youth in his community at the Okanagan Boys and Girls Club and really enjoyed building relationships and advocating for the youth he worked with there. Ryan has also experienced firsthand the results of having a good family physician, which first sparked his interest in pursuing Family Medicine. After his rotation with Family Medicine at Loma Linda University in California he knew this specialty was right for him. He is incredibly excited for the opportunity to train at OHSU in a specialty where he can build lasting relationships with his patients. Ryan is especially interested in adolescent medicine, sports medicine, global health, and providing comprehensive whole person care to each of his patients.
Outside of medicine Ryan loves to be outdoors whether it be hiking with his dogs, fishing, swimming, camping, or snowboarding. He is looking forward to exploring the wide range of outdoor activities Oregon has to offer.
Claire Montaigne, MD
Claire grew up in a small suburb of New York City with her sister and parents, who are both journalists and instilled a sense of adventure and storytelling in her. She ventured down south to the University of Virginia for college and has been lucky to call Charlottesville, Virginia home for the past nine years. Claire took a year off before following in her grandfather's footsteps and starting medical school. She worked at an HIV clinic in New York City and moved back to Charlottesville to work as an SAT tutor and babysitter. Despite applying all over the country, she couldn't bear to leave the city she loved found herself back at UVA for medical school.
During medical school, Claire was lucky to be a part of the Generalist Scholars Program, where through wonderful mentorship and clinical opportunities she found her passion for family medicine. After enjoying (almost) every clerkship rotation, she knew family medicine was the best fit. She was drawn to family medicine for ability to develop long-lasting relationships with patients of all ages and holistically care for the individual and their families. She spent time volunteering at the Charlottesville Free Clinic and founded an organization for women's health advocacy. During her first year of school, in the middle of anatomy, Claire and her now-husband made the best decision of getting a puppy, Maggie, who is very excited to have a backyard in Portland.
After her interview day with all the incredibly welcoming residents, faculty and staff, Claire knew OHSU was her ideal residency program and she was thrilled when she opened her letter on Match Day. She was attracted to the innovative four-year curriculum that she knew would provide her the opportunity to pursue her clinical interests in obstetrics, pediatrics and reproductive health while also developing the leadership skills necessary for the evolving field of medicine and primary care.
Outside the hospital, you can usually find Claire outdoors or exploring the amazing food scene in Portland with her husband, Matt, and dog. She loves to cook, run, hike and is currently attempting to start her first vegetable garden. She is looking forward to all the amazing outdoor and culinary opportunities that the Pacific Northwest has to offer.
Brit Nilsen, MD
Dr. Nilsen loves to be part of the community and wants to work together to build and maintain healthy families and neighborhoods. She practices full spectrum family medicine and enjoys working with everyone- from prenatal care and pediatrics to the elderly. She loves to get to know her patients well and be someone they can depend on while helping manage chronic issues as well as any new medical concerns that come up.
When she's not in the clinic, Dr. Nilsen explores the various neighborhoods in Portland and samples the food. She likes to garden, take walks along the river and paddle board when the sun is out. She never misses an opportunity for travel or adventure and tries to visit her two little nephews as often as possible.
Kristen Otto, MD, MSc
Kristen Otto is a newcomer to the Pacific Northwest. Hailing from San Diego, CA, Kristen developed a love of the ocean and the outdoor life growing up, as well as a strong connection to people and community. While building up to her love for doctoring, Kristen was an avid group singer and lover of travel. While in undergrad at USC (Go Trojans!) and in graduate school at Duke (Go Blue Devils!), Kristen pursued studies in health, humanity, and even a bit of religion. She was involved in women-centered organizations in college, with a special focus on philanthropy and community outreach. Her master's studies were in the field of global health, where she had the opportunity to pursue a thesis project around infectious disease and maternity care in Lima, Peru.
Before medical school, Kristen worked on global health projects related to HIV transmission and migration at the US-Mexico border, Guatemala, and Namibia.While in medical school at the Keck School of Medicine of USC (again, Go Trojans!), Kristen gradually shifted from a passion for only women's health to a love for full-spectrum family medicine. During a longitudinal clinical experience in an FQHC, she connected with the satisfaction of treating patients of many ages, life stages, and cultural backgrounds. She also became involved in several integrative health initiatives, and hopes to pursue a fellowship in Integrative Medicine as a family doctor.
Yet, Kristen still maintains a love for women's health and maternity care, planning to train in surgical obstetrics and full-spectrum reproductive health during her time at OHSU.Kristen is excited to be embarking on this journey with engaged faculty and a fun, compassionate, supportive group of fellow residents.
When not in the hospital or clinic, she enjoys spending time with her husband (in the military) and her two energetic dogs. She is always looking forward to her next adventure, whether local or international, and enjoys hiking, camping, road tripping, scuba diving, and singing. She is always happiest when near the water or with when spending time with those she loves.
Maria Palazeti, MD
Maria Palazeti was born and raised in Northville, Michigan, a suburb 30 minutes outside of Detroit.As a child, she greatly admired her grandfather who was a physician and aspired to be just like him when she grew up. She attended Michigan State University for her undergraduate work. Following college, she did a year of AmeriCorps volunteer service with the American Red Cross before starting medical school at Wayne State University School of Medicine in downtown Detroit.
While in medical school, Maria was confronted with the devastating health disparities often found in an urban setting. She spent time volunteering as an HIV test counselor for the county jail and as an after school tutor for elementary school children. As she progressed through medical school,she became passionate about providing excellent, comprehensive and compassionate primary care for the entire family.
She believes strong patient relationships and an understanding of individuals within the context of their community is essential to providing that care. When looking for a family medicine residency,she believed OHSU would equip her with the strongest training in all her areas of special interest including maternity/obstetrics, women's health, pediatrics, long term care of chronic conditions and office procedures.
In her spare time, she enjoys biking, hiking, cooking and watching Michigan State Big Ten Football.
Caitlin Williamson, MD
Dr. Williamson grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico and developed an interest in medicine early in her childhood. She attended the University of Texas at Dallas for her bachelor's degree, where she had the opportunity to study abroad in Europe, Mexico, and Argentina.
While in Texas, she found herself working in a microbiology lab, performing in musical theater, and even auditioning for American Idol.For medical school, Dr. Williamson returned to her home state and attended the University of New Mexico. There she developed a love for family medicine, and gained understanding of the challenges of working with underserved patients. She also developed interests in maternal-child health, integrative medicine, and addiction medicine.
Dr. Williamson is ecstatic to be joining the OHSU Family Medicine Residency. Though she will miss the sunshine of the Southwest, she is excited to be in the vibrant city of Portland. During her free time, she can be found spending time with her cat and dog, watching more exotic animals at the zoo, being active outside running, hiking, or biking, learning to rock climb, or singing. She also enjoys reading and knitting.
Jean Yau, MD
Born and raised in Albany, OR (about an hour and a half south of Portland), Jean took a leap and left home to attend Wellesley College outside of Boston, MA. After college, she joined Teach For America and taught middle school science and physical education in Houston, TX for three years before starting medical school. Completing the loop, Jean is thrilled to be returning to Oregon to join the OHSU family for training in family medicine.
Jean is excited to provide comprehensive care for the whole family, from newborns to grandparents. She is interested in all aspects of medicine, with a special interest in reproductive health and maternity/obstetrics. These interests led her to develop a sexual health program for adolescents in a Houston high school with plans to continue her work on sex education here in Oregon. Above all, Jean is looking forward to forming lasting relationships with her patients and their families and recognizes the privilege of being welcomed into patients' lives. Given the variety of care provided and the possibility for long-term relationships, family medicine is the ideal fit for Jean.
Outside of the hospital and clinic, Jean enjoys spending time with her husband and cat, exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and savoring the delicious food of Portland. When they are able to take some time off, they enjoy traveling across the country or around the world. She also loves doing a variety of crafts, including knitting, crocheting, sewing, and embroidery. It is a wonderful feeling to be able to create a gift for treasured friends and family!
Stuart Zeltzer, MD
Stuart was born in Southfield, MI and raised in the Detroit suburb of Farmington Hills, Michigan. He attended the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (Go Blue!!) where he completed a dual Bachelor of Science degree in immunology/microbiology and Spanish while completing an honors thesis in microbiology. During college Stuart also found time to run, sing in a campus choir and lead a Pre-health honors society Alpha Epsilon Delta.
Stuart knew from a young age that he would likely practice medicine, following the example of his mother, who was a practicing family physician for over 30 years. He found great interest in working with his mother and her practice both in the office and the hospital over the years. He continued to seek out opportunities to engage the medical field with his mother, including weekly screenings of the television drama ER.
Stuart then went on to medical school at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. This five year program is highlighted by an extensive focus on group work and reflective practice while becoming innately familiar with clinical reasoning and evidence based medicine. Aside from his studies, Stuart help lead the international outreach program, The Peru Health Outreach Project, sit on the school wide committee on medical education, help reform the wellness and nutrition curriculum, while participating in the student run variety show DocOpera and working extensively with the Cleveland young professional communities. His love for both evidence based medicine and the health of the community ultimately led to his choice to pursue family medicine.
Stuart also took medical school as an opportunity to participate in the American Academy of Family Physicians by serving as a state delegate for Ohio during the National Conference of Students and Residents and as the student representative on the AAFP National Commission on Membership and Member Services.
Stuart ultimately chose OHSU family medicine because of the many great opportunities to further his diverse interests in evidence based research, community medicine and leadership in health care as well as becoming a highly competent and diverse clinician. It goes without saying that he is extremely excited to join the OHSU family and to learn from the great set of residents, faculty and patients in the Portland area. In his free time you will likely find Stuart training for his next marathon (7 during medical school was apparently not enough), exploring the outdoors with his new road bike, hanging out with the local Portland communities or trying to finish the multiple books that he started during the last year of medical school.
Joshua Cohen, M.D.
Josh was born and raised in Vermont's forests and ski slopes. After high school he decided to move to the only place colder than Vermont, Montreal, Quebec, where he studied Kinesiology at McGill University. Several major life events happened during those college years, one of which being the decision to pursue a career in medicine, and another was meeting the woman who would later become his wife!
Between university and medical school, Josh worked as a caregiver and educator for adults with physical disabilities. In this role, he developed skills in care giving, teaching, communication, and patience which would serve him well during medical school.
He went back home (literally to his childhood bedroom) to attend the University of Vermont for medical school. He enjoyed all of his clinical rotations but always knew that he was too interested in the big picture to do anything other than family medicine. His favorite part of medical school was working with interesting people from all walks of life, including patients, peers, and teachers.He is looking forward to completing his training at OHSU, where there will be ample opportunity to develop skills in high quality, full spectrum family medicine. Although the latitude of Portland, Oregon (45.5o N) is actually closer to the north pole than that of Burlington, Vermont (44.5o N), Josh is glad that the climate is more temperate. He enjoys travelling and cooking with his wife, tennis, boxing, bike riding and drinking coffee all day!
Ben Colburn, M.D.
Ben was raised in southern Virginia and attended college in New England, but is now firmly anchored to the West Coast. He trained in medical anthropology and has worked to address domestic and global health inequities for the past decade. His mission as a doctor is to co-create healthier, happier communities that celebrate diversity as an asset. His mission when he's not a doctor is to spend as much time creating art and being in nature as humanly possible.
As an undergraduate at Brown University, Ben worked on public health programs in Mali and Ecuador as well as the local Providence community. He also conducted original thesis research on health issues affecting gender non-conforming communities in New England that received national recognition. After graduating in 2010, he moved to San Francisco to figure his life out. He briefly joined a health policy think tank working to expand coverage under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), then spent most of the next three years researching sudden cardiac death at UCSF. Throughout this time, he volunteered with several local health services agencies, including: a hospice for patients with HIV/AIDS, a playroom for hospitalized children, a homeless outreach agency, and a public health clinic for sex workers. He also volunteered at a residential LGBTQ retreat center in upstate New York and coordinated a creative arts retreat for homeless LGBTQ youth.Ben attended medical school at UCSF and accidentally fell in love with family medicine's commitment to relationship building and community engagement. As a medical student, he studied medical Spanish in Guatemala and served on the board of directors for an LGBTQ retreat center in northern California.
Ben also performed at multiple local storytelling events to humanize medicine and rally public support for healthcare activism. In his remaining spare time, he taught himself to paint and ran a small business painting commissioned acrylic pieces.
Ben is thrilled to join the OHSU family as an ally to all of Portland's communities during this period of rapid change. He is excited to work with local leaders of all kinds to help keep Portland weird and above all, healthy.
Colleen Cooper, M.D.
Colleen is a Michigan native who is excited to be in the Pacific Northwest wonderland. After growing up in Troy, MI, she attended Michigan State University (Go Green!) where she studied human biology and music. As she worked diligently towards her ambition of going to medical school, playing the oboe through her music studies provided a welcome relief and exercise of the creative side of her brain.Inspired by a family physician mentor, she entered into medical school at Wayne State University with a career in primary care in mind.
As a medical student in the heart of Detroit, she had the privilege of serving her community through many different channels. She spent time volunteering at free student-run clinics, leading lessons on health and science for inner city elementary students, and mentoring overweight children through a program to learn exercise, healthy eating, and emotional coping. Throughout medical school, she continued to play oboe within the Detroit Medical Orchestra, and as its student president, guided the group towards its mission of connecting music and healing.
What Colleen loves most about family medicine is the long-lasting relationship between the doctor and each of her patients. She enjoyed aspects of every clinical rotation in medical school, but could not find another field as fulfilling as family medicine, where she can address each aspect of her patients' illness and health. She is thrilled to join the OHSU family, having been drawn to the program for its exceptional four-year curriculum and depth of training, emphasis on underserved medicine, and extremely friendly and welcoming residents and faculty.
Her areas of interest are women's health, pediatrics, and underserved population medicine. In her free time, Colleen enjoys running, playing oboe, doing yoga, drinking way too much coffee, and spending time with her husband. The two of them are looking forward to having a doggie addition to their family in the near future.
Di Deng, M.A., M.D.
Di was born and raised in Changsha, the provincial capital of Hunan province in southern China –a "small" city with 7 million people by China standard. When she began college at Clark University in Worcester Massachusetts, it was her first time travelling abroad: besides the expected culture shock, it took her the longest time to get used to having cold milk with cereal for breakfast rather than starting her day with a savory bowl of warm noodle soup.
During college, Di discovered her love for traveling (and sampling all the food that she could get her hands on) as she backpacked to Alaska for the glorious northern lights, immersed herself in the cultural heritages of Florence, and travelled to Siem Reap Cambodia for the sights of Angkor Wat, one of the world wonders. Combining her interest in science with a strong desire to help people from all different cultural background, Di found her true passion of life in medical service. As a member of Dartmouth's Rural Scholars Program, she went on service trips to Indian Reservations in Minnesota and learned about challenges with health care in rural NH/VT. After completing her family medicine clerkship in Valdez Alaska –a town of 4,000 people at the port of Prince William Sound –she was amazed at the care four family physicians could provide for the town from vaginal deliveries, C-sections, endoscopy or colonoscopy, to hospice care.
Di is thrilled to begin her training at OHSU family Medicine Residency Program as well as a journey to become a family physician with broad spectrum training that would allow her to practice wherever she lands and to provide care to whoever is in need.
Alexander Domingo, M.D.Alex was born in Texas and grew up near St. Joseph, Missouri where he spent his childhood working on the family farm and exploring the countryside with his 3 siblings. His parents, a spiritual healer and an organic farmer inspired his passion for the care of people and the environment. He returned to Texas to attend the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied psychology and environmental science to prepare for a career bridging humanistic medicine and sustainability.
In line with this interest he volunteered with non profit organizations focused on sustainable development in Northern India and Ecuador, and with various local environmental groups. Global medical experiences in Latin America and the Philippines inspired a passion for disease prevention and reducing health disparities, leading him to pursue research in diabetes prevention on the Texas-Mexico border and leadership in a campus anti-tobacco campaign. During medical school at Yale he enjoyed opportunities to provide care for underprivileged patients as a leader in Yale’s student-run free clinic and through a family medicine rotation on the Chinle Navajo reservation. He focused his thesis on community-engaged research methods in diabetes prevention, and rekindled his passion for bridging medicine and sustainable development during a rotation with Health in Harmony/ASRI in Borneo.
Alex felt that family medicine was the field most in-line with his mission to provide holistic medicine to people at all stages of life, and to provide care for underprivileged patients at home and abroad. He was drawn to OHSU by the amazing family medicine community and the strong, balanced training in inpatient and outpatient medicine, obstetrics, procedures, and academics that will prepare him to practice medicine wherever his journey takes him. In his free time, Alex enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife Sarah and pup Oliver. He also enjoys yoga (he is a registered instructor), meditation, cooking and playing ukulele.
Jenan Hilal, M.D.Jenan was born and raised in a small town in Eastern Kentucky to a Lebanese father and a mom from Northern Indiana. Many of her world views were shaped by travel throughout the Middle East, Europe, and the US during her childhood. It also instilled a love of travel early in life. Despite this love of travel, she stayed close to home for college, attending the University of Kentucky. Here she studied biology and fell in love with community involvement when she began volunteering with local nonprofit organizations. She worked as a writing consultant at the university's writing center, which gave her the privilege to work with students who speak English as a second language and invaluable insight into the importance of communication. Directly after college, Jenan continued her steady westward migration through Kentucky by starting medical school at the University of Louisville. During medical school, she became passionate about women's health after training and serving as a hospital advocate for a local rape crisis center.
Given her love of developing meaningful connections with people and community engagement, family medicine was a natural choice. In her biggest move westward yet, Jenan is ecstatic to be joining OHSU Family Medicine. She was drawn to their four year curriculum, which provides ample opportunity to explore her various interests, as well as the incredibly welcoming faculty and residents she encountered on her interview day. She and her partner, Kevin, are excited for their new adventure in the Pacific Northwest.
In her spare time, she enjoys reading as many science fiction & fantasy novels as possible, painting, trying new food, and spending time outdoors running, hiking, and biking.
Roheet Kakaday, M.D.
Raised in California, Dr. Roheet Kakaday has happily adopted Oregon as his new home. He grew up in a tight knit family and was raised on a strict diet of scholarship and sports. After attending the University of California, San Diego, where he majored in Bioengineering and minored in Political Science, he enrolled into OHSU School of Medicine, from which he graduated early in 2017.
Although a physician now, Roheet's path to medicine was long. During college, he began volunteering in a local hospital ICU every weekend and quickly discovered how interacting with, and helping, patients gave him a very strong sense of purpose and happiness. To test his mettle, he volunteered in a rural leprosy colony located in a terrorist-plagued region of rural India. After dodging malaria, monsoon rains, and man- eating tigers whilst treating some of the most vulnerable patients in India, he affirmed that becoming a doctor was his only path.
During medical school, Roheet's passions evolved to incorporate technology and patient- centered design in medical care. This passion led him to be selected by Stanford University School of Medicine as an advisor for their premiere medical technology conference, Medicine X, and his subsequent invitation to the White House to advise the President Obama's Precision Medicine Initiative. His passion for holistic forward-thinking care naturally brought family medicine to the forefront. Roheet aims to provide cutting edge, comprehensive, and compassionate care to patients of all ages, sexes, genders, and backgrounds.
In his free time, Roheet enjoys Portland's incredible food scene, spending time with his family and friends, playing sports, and often stares at pictures of shelter dogs in the hopes of one day adopting one. You can find him running out and about enjoying everything the northwest has to offer.
Melissa McCoy, M.S., M.D.
My mom, the oldest in the family, grew up on a dairy farm in small-town Minnesota. She went on to college in Colorado to study art and created all sorts of beautiful, thoughtful things. While there, she became a radio DJ and worked on the road polishing cowbells for Blue Oyster cult before they went on to become nothing special. She now works for the county, connecting folks of all backgrounds to health insurance and other resources they have been denied. My mom is not only a creative soul and adventurer, but an appreciator of complexity and a deep listener to the stories that surround her.
A generation after escaping the Irish potato famine, my dad's family settled on a farm with no running water in even-smaller-town Minnesota. With extreme hard work, he graduated high school and is now a geniusly inclined mechanic and all around creative handy-man. My dad is a man of few words, a maker of mechanical solutions, a creative fixer of problems, and fiercely loyal to those around him.
I grew up as an only child in small-ish town Minnesota where I witnessed violence in my community at a young age - mental illness and addiction consistently fueled by cyclic poverty. With relative global privilege, I stepped into the world of textbooks but always managed to be pulled to the rest of the world for months at a time. For a few years in medical school I was back and forth between ivory towers and real life where I was captivated by the collective voice of community health workers in Cameroon pushing for increased preventive services, empowered as I witnessed my Ugandan classmates demand adequate staffing in rural health centers, and moved as I saw my Haitian colleagues directly challenge the U.N. to acknowledge its role in Haiti's cholera epidemic. Systematically perpetuated social and economic inequities the world over urge me to pursue a practice of family medicine that embraces the complexity inherent to our imperfect system as a means of fighting for a better status quo in my community and around the world. I grapple daily with the true meaning of accompaniment and partnership, but deep conversations with close friends from vastly diverse walks of life keep me motivated toward a practice of medicine rooted in social justice and liberation.
I have moderate distaste for buzzwords, defining myself through my CV and biosketches, rigid social hierarchies, Eddie Vedder's voice, horror films, government surveillance and journalistic censorship.I like good stories, bad puns, sharing big ideas and giving small gifts, cultivating my elegantly-disheveled Northwesterly look, dreaming of alternative societal structures, playing with my Balinese cats Karma and Huxley and my blue-nose pitbull Nym
John Mitchell, M.D.
John was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska. He moved to Portland with his wife, Roxanne, who is also a resident physician at OHSU. John went to college at the University of Kansas (Rock Chalk!) and medical school at the University of Nebraska Medical Center where he also studied public health with an emphasis in health policy. John was attracted to Family Medicine based on his desire to provide care for a diverse community of all age groups and social backgrounds.
John feels strongly that the role of a family doctor is to care for the whole patient by understanding and addressing all facets of life that contribute to a person's health. He hopes to incorporate both traditional and complementary forms of medicine into his practice as well as work to promote the health of the population through community involvment and cultural competency. Additionally, he believes that keeping people healthy is the best form of treatment and he values preventive medicine, wellness, nutrition and physical activity.
John is thrilled to be at OHSU where he can pursue his interests in medicine and public health simultaneously. He is also excited to be living in Oregon where he can explore all the Northwest has to offer. He looks forward to expanding his list of hobbies which includes cooking (and eating), hiking, camping, snowboarding and pretty much anything that occurs outdoors.
Katie Putnam, M.D.
Katie grew up in Tacoma, Washington and is thrilled to continue her training in Oregon. After undergraduate training in biology and psychology, she moved to Washington, D.C. to serve as a research assistant in a rare genetic and metabolic disorders lab at the National Institutes of Health. She returned to the west coast to pursue medical school in a joint MD/MPH program at OHSU.
During medical school, Katie traveled to Palau for both clinical and research work at the Ministry of Health, focusing on maternal and child health. She additionally volunteered at a safety-net clinic and women's clinic through the Southwest Community Health Center. These experiences inspired her to provide community and family-centric care while working to address population health needs through public health research.
Katie is ecstatic to stay at OHSU for residency. She chose OHSU's family medicine program because of its strong clinical training, accomplished faculty, welcoming residency community, encouragement of innovation in their trainees, supportive and overall commitment to being a leader in health care reform. She looks forward to becoming a truly well-rounded family medicine physician with chops in the clinical, population health and advocacy realms.
Outside of the hospital, you can find exploring the outdoors, playing group sports with limited athletic talent, navigating Portland's food scene, cultivating her home garden, listening to podcasts, reading, traveling the globe, and spending time her husband and two poorly behaved cats.
Megan Quinlan, M.D.
Megan is a born and bred Michigander. Originally from Canton, Michigan, she has been lucky enough to call Ann Arbor home for the past 8 years while completing her undergraduate degree and medical school at the University of Michigan (Go Blue!). Although she is a proud midwesterner, she decided it was time to explore another part of the country and is thrilled to be training in family medicine in beautiful Portland.
After volunteering at the local VA and children's hospital during undergrad, Megan knew she wanted to be a doctor. She took a more circuitous path towards family medicine, originally entering medical school with aims of becoming an orthopedic surgeon after undergoing an ACL reconstruction. Throughout medical school she found herself drawn more and more towards the unique physician-patient relationships of primary care. After working in an adolescent clinic in an underserved area caring for the physical, mental and emotional needs of young pregnant women and their children, she knew family medicine was the field for her. OHSU is the ideal family medicine program for her, due to a clinic first curriculum, autonomy to develop her passions within family medicine during a fourth year, incredible faculty and residents, and of course the beautiful city of Portland.
In her free time, Megan and her significant other, Jack, love to be active and outdoors. She loves to exercise, practice yoga and run. A self-proclaimed book worm, her ideal rainy Portland Sunday includes a new book and endless cups of coffee. She also enjoys travel, music and spending time with her family.
Daniel Slowey, J.D., M.D.
Dr. Slowey is delighted to have the the chance to train at both OHSU and Kaiser Permanente, and to serve the local community as a family medicine physician. He loves that the practice of family medicine allows him to develop long-term relationships with his patients, and is committed to listening, learning, and working to help them live the happiest, healthiest lives possible.
He and his wife live in Northwest Portland, and have two small dogs who are actually quite friendly, so long as you are not a squirrel. In their spare time, they all enjoy being outside as much as possible, although the dogs are sometimes a bit wimpy about the rain. Dr. Slowey particularly enjoys hiking, biking, camping, and snowboarding, and feels very lucky to live in a place that's so beautiful and adventure-friendly. When he is stuck indoors, he enjoys reading (mostly fiction, although he's trying to branch out), and cooking interesting new meals (with a wide variation in success).
Nathan Andrews, MD
Nate was born and raised in Oregon, and had the privilege of growing up with a large tight-knit family. This instilled in him a strong sense of community, as well as a lifestyle centered around family. He believes the better he knows his patients, the more holistic the care he can provide. He strives to care for patients as a whole person and partner with them to build healthy and purposeful lives. Nate is also passionate about preventive medicine and aims to keep his patients doing what they enjoy and love most.
In medical school Nate consistently sought out rotations that provide opportunities to build longitudinal relationships with preceptors and patients. During his first year, he had a longitudinal preceptorship once per week with Dr. Scott Fields, an OHSU family physician. Additionally, through the Oregon Rural Scholars Program, he had the privilege to rotate for three months in the rural community of John Day, OR. Through these experiences he discovered he is motivated by the one-on-one conversations and opportunity to teach patients about their health. He found that family medicine not only offers this every clinic visit, but also the challenge and opportunity of talking to each patient in an individualized manner. He is passionate about community health and is looking forward to being molded into an impactful rural family physician.
Nate and his wife are high school sweethearts and are currently living in Portland. In their spare time they enjoy being outdoors, gardening, and trying new restaurants.
Annie Buckmaster, MD
Dr. Annie Buckmaster is originally from Rochester, NY but has lived in Portland since 2008. She graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in 2005 with a B.A. in history and environmental studies. After undergraduate, Annie returned to the east coast to work in local politics in her home state of New York and then moved to Montgomery, Alabama, where she served as an AmeriCorps VISTA in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. It was during her time in Alabama that she began to appreciate the relationship between structures and health. She completed her post-baccalaureate pre-medical studies at Bryn Mawr College but would take another few years until she applied to medical school. In that time, Annie moved to Oregon where she worked on voter registration and engagement in the 2008 election, joined a local choir, and served on
the board of directors for a local non-profit. After some extended international travel, Annie started working for the OHSU Foundation where she spent the next few years raising money for OHSU and Doernbecher Children's Hospital. She spent one year working at the Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences while applying to medical school.
During her time in medical school at OHSU, Annie was very involved with the Family Medicine and Health Policy Interest Groups and was inducted into the Gold Humanism Honor Society. Annie welcomed her first child during her third year of medical school and took the better part of the following year to spend time with her at home before applying to residency in Family Medicine.
She feels both honored and privileged to be continuing her training in Portland at OHSU, which she chose for it's exceptional commitment to patient care across the spectrum that is family medicine: from teams that approach trans care and MAT with an equity lens to highly effective implementation of interdisciplinary teams in all areas of full spectrum care. In addition to the excellence in training, Annie was very committed to training in Oregon, a place she now calls home and plans to settle for a long time. She hopes to make a difference in the lives of her patients and in the broader community and state throughout her career as a family physician.When Annie is not in clinic or the hospital, you will find her cycling, singing, or traveling, but most likely you will find her spending time with her daughter, Eleanor, and her husband, Jacob
Nicole Cairns, MDNikki was born and raised in the snowy land of Minnesota. Originally from Rochester, Minnesota, she moved further north to call Minneapolis home for 8 years to complete her undergraduate and medical training at the University of Minnesota. She then made her way even further north to join you all here in beautiful Portland, Oregon.She spent her time in undergraduate studying Biochemistry and Mathematics, where she fell in love with the science and numbers of medicine. Through her time at the University of Minnesota Medical School she came to realize the scope of medicine could reach far beyond the four walls of clinics and hospitals, and she found joy in creating community partnerships to help her patients achieve health and wellness. Through these partnerships, she became passionate about health equity, medical education, LGBTQ health, addiction medicine, and women’s health. With these interests, Nikki found herself attracted to family medicine where she could provide full spectrum, holistic care while developing meaningful relationships with patients, their families, and her community.
Nikki is thrilled to be joining OHSU Family Medicine. She is excited about the four year curriculum that will help her further explore her interests and make her a better advocate and physician for her patients. In her free time, Nikki enjoys spending time outdoors with her adorable dog Harley. She also enjoys cooking, baking, reading, and exploring the Portland foodie scene.
Elizabeth Corwin, MD
Elizabeth is a Pacific Northwest native, born and raised in the rainy city of Seattle. She left the west coast to attend Boston College, where she earned an undergraduate degree in Psychology. Upon graduation, Elizabeth moved to San Francisco to serve as an AmeriCorps member at Glide Health Services, a comprehensive community clinic dedicated to caring for underserved individuals. At Glide, Elizabeth served as a case manager and also was part of their harm-reduction team for which she worked with individuals with substance use disorders and provided education on opioid overdose prevention.
Elizabeth moved the following year to Ann Arbor to attend the University of Michigan Medical School where she further developed her passion for primary care and underserved medicine. She spent her time as a student coordinator for a free-clinic, in student organizations dedicated to health equity, and teaching middle school students the importance of nutrition, exercise, and healthy relationships. Elizabeth was drawn to Family Medicine due to the emphasis it places on caring for the whole person and providing patient and family-centered, holistic and preventative care, as well as the ability to care for patients across the lifespan. Elizabeth has many interests within family medicine, including preventative medicine and nutrition, women's reproductive health and obstetrics, pediatrics and adolescent medicine, mental health, addiction medicine, transgender care, and geriatrics.
Elizabeth is thrilled to be returning to the Pacific Northwest to join the OHSU Family Medicine Residency Program. She chose OHSU due its innovative and comprehensive four-year curriculum that gives residents an excellent foundation in full-spectrum family medicine in diverse clinical settings, while also developing research, clinical, and advocacy skills.
Outside of work, Elizabeth enjoys spending time with her fiancé,
her beloved cat, Harry, family and friends. She loves any activity that
involves being in nature, including hiking, biking, running, skiing and
gardening, even in the rain!
Ishak Elkhal, MDDr. Ishak Elkhal is an Oregon-native; born and raised in Gresham, he attended Centennial High School where he would meet the woman who would later become his wife. He then attended college at Portland State University. Captivated by the magic of Science, he pursued degrees in both Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and spent several years dedicated to working on research in Prebiotic Chemistry. Though lab work was interesting, he discovered his love of patient care.In the pursuit of his medical degree, Dr. Elkhal (and his wife) attended OHSU's medical school. While studying to become a physician, he grew increasingly interested in the growing body of research surrounding the social determinants of health; Ishak helped start research surrounding Oregon's first Medical-Legal partnership in an attempt to better understand how legal issues may predispose patients to worse health outcomes. Immersed in his research and passion for OHSU's drive towards excellent patient care, Dr. Elkhal decided to continue his training here in hopes he can one day contribute to the health of all Oregonians.While not in the hospital or clinic, Dr. Elkhal and his wife (an OHSU pediatrician) spend their time hiking and playing board games. He also enjoys playing video games and experimenting with 3D printing.
Justin Lee, MDJustin was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. After growing up in the natural splendor and rainy embrace of the Pacific Northwest (in a time when there were far fewer coffee shops and breweries), he went to Davidson College in North Carolina, lived abroad in both Spain and Tanzania, and graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in Religion. Upon graduation, he found his way to Washington D.C. where he worked for a year in health policy. Finding that work inadequately invigorating on its own, Justin followed in his mother's footsteps and joined the U.S. Peace Corps and moved to a small village in northern Peru, where he lived for two years working as a community health educator.
Seeing the incredible beauty of a close-knit and interdependent group of people alongside a deeply troubled infrastructure and public health system (and eating many many bananas), he recognized the importance of context, environment, and the powerful role that a physician can play within a community. He was then thrilled to have the opportunity to return to Oregon for medical school at OHSU, where he grew his passion and commitment to better understanding and working to improve the broad social, political, and structural issues that impact health, along with deepening his curiosity about people and what makes them tick. Justin was drawn to family medicine because it's a specialty that allows him to care for the comprehensive needs of a diverse and full spectrum of people, and moreover because it's a specialty that equally values the profound stories of the individual in conjunction with the big picture systems and forces that shape health and society.
Justin's hope is to be a physician leader and advocate for his patients and community, and in particular for the disadvantaged and discriminated against. He is excited to be joining the OHSU Family Medicine Residency because of it's innovation in broad spectrum training, incredible diversity of sites and opportunities, flexibility to tailor learning to fit the expanding needs of physician-leaders, and the chance to learn and work alongside some of the brightest, most passionate, and kindest people he's ever met.
In his free time, Justin likes to be outside with his rambunctious and ridiculously adorable dog Wally, explore coffee shops and restaurants around Portland, travel to new places, cook food, read fiction, and spend time with family and friends. He is optimistic (perhaps naively so) that in reality his free time, interests, and self beyond medicine are not reducible to a single sentence.
Laurence Moore, MD, MPH
Laurence was born and raised in London, coming to the West coast for college at Stanford University where he majored in Psychology and Economics. He studied how we respond in ways both rational and irrational to problems and incentives. During college, he also became involved in mental health and was trained in crisis counseling for fellow students. After working in Silicon Valley, he pursued a Master's in Public Health at UC Berkeley where he saw how systems of economic, racial and historical injustice, cognitive biases and profit-maximizing corporations could hold people back from living their full potential in good health.
Moving with his partner to Portland, he worked as an Emergency Technician at OHSU's Emergency Department where he cared for many patients who lacked access to primary care. Seeking a specialty in which he could form strong and trusting relationships with his patients, he matched into Family Medicine. His interests in mental health and public health persist, and he looks forward to including both in his future practice.In addition, Laurence looks forward to creating a welcoming environment for a diverse array of patients. He has professional interests in behavioral health and mental health, addiction care, maternal care, affirming care for Transgender-identified patients, and welcoming care for those across the LGBT+ spectrum.
In his spare time, Dr Moore enjoys exploring Oregon with his partner and his Shar Pei, Libby, sampling Portland's food scene, running and hiking. He loves travel and learning new languages.
Kristin Prewitt, MD
Kristin Prewitt grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in English Literature. While at University of Wisconsin-Madison, she worked on multiple public health projects examining health care disparities in women’s health; served as an editor for a literary criticism journal and a newspaper; established the university’s first national humanities conference on language and literature for undergraduate students; and founded an organization for humanities outreach, supporting the Writers in Prisons Project and Wisconsin Books to Prisoners. It was as an undergrad that she developed a passion for the nexus between the humanities, medicine, and activism.
After enduring many Wisconsin winters, she decided it was time to explore warmer climates. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a dual M.D. and M.P.H. in Epidemiology degree. Kristin’s passion for reproductive health access led her to serve on the international nonprofit Board of Directors of Medical Students for Choice while in medical school. In addition to nonprofit work, she worked at the Florida Department of Health in the Infectious Disease Epidemiology department, helping with disease surveillance during the Zika outbreak. Witnessing the Florida Medicaid gap and seeing its impact on the community, she became the Executive Director of a state-grant funded, student-run free clinic serving uninsured patients. Through the clinic, she became involved in numerous quality improvement projects working to address barriers to medical care in a low-income, primarily Spanish-speaking population. She also started and received funding for a research project with Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida, examining social support in the abortion procedure room. She has written articles and given talks about health care activism.
As a teenage parent, she experienced the weight of social stigma and the pressure of having to navigate an identity continuously defined by stereotypes. Because of this, she is dedicated to utilizing medicine as a means for societal improvement and providing care to those most often neglected by the medical community–values at the core of Family Medicine.
After living in the Midwest and the South, she’s excited to join OHSU in the Pacific Northwest and to be surrounded by like-minded people who care about the health of the community, who are advocates for social justice, and who are committed to keeping Portland weird. In her free time, she plays piano, reads, and tries to go trash-free with her daughter and two cats.
Melinda Ruberg, MD
I am honored to be providing full spectrum care to the entire family, regardless of age, race, illness, religion or income. I look forward to establishing lasting relationships with patients that will allow us to work together to not only treat illness, but to prevent illness by looking into the root causes involving stress, sleep, exercise and nutrition. I chose to practice family medicine in order to have the ability to treat almost anything that comes in the door. Therefore, my interests are broad: preventative medicine, behavioral and mental health, addiction medicine, prenatal care and women's health, adolescent health, geriatric medicine and palliative care. When specialty care is necessary I appreciate the opportunity to be an ally and representative for my patients.
When I am not scheming how to change the landscape of the healthcare system, you can find me cheering on the Bengals, looking at pictures of my niece and nephew, and enjoying the Portland weather as a refuge from Kentucky humidity.
Arisa Takeuchi, MD
Arisa was born and raised in Japan, but spent seven years in Singapore during her childhood. It was through the volunteer work during these years that shaped her decision to become a doctor. She returned to Japan at 15 years old, and completed six years of medical school at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, Japan. She finished internship at USNH (United States Naval Hospital) in Okinawa, and Internal Medicine Residency Program at Japan Association for Development of Community Medicine (JADECOM) in Tokyo, before coming to OHSU as part of the residency program.
At USNH Okinawa, Arisa was able to expand her insight into American medical practice. During this period, she was inspired by the warm personal relationships American family physicans developed with their patients, which were established on the foundation of a longituidinal approach. This positive firsthand experience working in an American-style hospital eventually lead her to pursue a training in the US.
At JADECOM, she dealt with acute medical problems in the hospital setting as well as end-of-life care and chronic disease treatment for patients of various ages, backgrounds, and medical conditions. She has always found joy in treating a diverse population, and began to think of expanding her medical knowledge, and further developing her patient care skills and pursuing a specialty that would enable her to treat a broad range of processes and patient populations. She figured family medicine offered the perfect opportunity to work with patients on deeper level. She has a special interest in geriatrics medicine, palliative care, and preventive medicine. In her personal time, Arisa enjoys running, playing the flute and watching movies. She is excited to explore the city of Portland in the next four years!
Patty Tran, DO
Patty was born and raised in a Chinese family in Vietnam before moving to Boise, Idaho when she was in high school. She completed her undergraduate study at Washington State University, majoring in Biochemistry, Cell Biology and Genetics. After graduation, Patty spent a year working as a certified nursing assistant, a teaching assistant for several classes, and continued her research project in DNA repair mechanisms. She also went on a medical mission trip to Vietnam providing medical care to patients in the most remote and impoverished areas.
Patty’s interest in medicine began early in her childhood, after she grew up witnessing many family friends suffer severe consequences from their unmanaged illness due to financial disadvantages. After experiencing personal challenges that most new immigrants face in accessing health care, Patty wants to pursue a career in family medicine and become a healthcare advocate for this population group. Patty attended medical school at Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences.Patty is very excited to spend the next four years at OHSU. She shares the program’s commitment in serving its culturally and financially diverse community. In addition, she appreciates the opportunity to work with very supportive and innovative groups of faculty and colleagues.
In her spare time, Patty enjoys cooking, hiking, hanging out with friends, and practicing Chinese calligraphy. She loves traveling around the world and exploring different cuisine and cultures.
Robin Vest, MD
Dr. Robin Vest was born and raised in the lone star state of Texas, where she stayed for college at Rice University and then medical school at The University of Texas Southwestern. While in college, she first discovered her love for Family Medicine while pursuing a minor in the unique area of Poverty, Justice and Human Capabilities. Through this field of study Robin learned about disparities in healthcare and the importance of understanding patient's lives and their communities holistically to truly effect health improvements. She further explored these ideas while interning at a non-profit for preventing childhood obesity, where she fostered a life-long love of nutrition, exercise, community gardening, and policy advocacy all to help patients lead healthier lives. In an effort to understand differences and inequalities in health on a global scale, Robin went on several global health trips throughout college and medical school, including leading medical students on a trip to a rural clinic in Guatemala, as well as spending a summer working at a group home for patients living with HIV in Costa Rica. These trips exemplified the concept of healthcare as a human right to Robin, and furthered her passion for learning about different cultures and how to be the most effective and compassionate healer for every patient no matter where they come from.
Robin is ecstatic to continue her career learning and working in Family Medicine at OHSU. She is interested in broad spectrum care that is focused on the patient as a whole. In her spare time, Robin loves to hike, cook, play volleyball, travel and brew her own kombucha.