M.D. Class Notes

Please note: all class notes submitted prior to March 2020 are indicated with an asterisk (*). Any views expressed are those of the submitter and not of the UW School of Medicine.



*Alan L. W. Gunsul, M.D. ’55, writes, “I survived endocarditis and the congestive heart failure this spring. There were a few complications, but I’m still up and going. I’m trying to regain enough strength to restart ballroom dancing. I will not be going to Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo after attending all from 1968 Mexico to 2016 Rio, interest Light Athletics (Track & Field).”


James Bremner, MD ’56, writes, “Retired psychiatrist, living in Olympia. Health good so far. Of note, in 1956, then-Dean Richard Blandau and I first started the UW Medical School Alumni Association.”


Manus Kraff, MD ’57, writes, “I retired on September 30, 2021, 60 years after finishing residency (6/31/1961). I am in good health – work out daily, read a book a week, and I’m interested in working in the longevity clinic. I have 5 children, 11 Grandchildren, 8 great grandchildren. Life is great. UW started it all for me. I was still visiting Seattle yearly until COVID – looking to return this year!”


Overhead photo of a sailboat with green and purple sailHenry Kleinberg, MD ’58, writes, “I retired from Kaiser in 2019 after 62 years as an interventional radiologist. Four children and five grandchildren. Sold Primordial Sloop after 31 years of racing on San Francisco Bay.”



*Eldon Bell, MD ’60, Eldon Bell, M.D. '60 with fiancee Mr.s Barbara Ann Knott.writes, “On 31 May I received a 50 year award for Medical Practice in the State of South Dakota. I am pictured here with Mrs. Barbara Ann Knott of Rapid City, South Dakota, to whom I became engaged in 2018.”



*Melvin Freeman, MD ’60, wRussell Van Gelder, M.D., Ph.D., Chair, Department of Ophthalmology, Nanette and Mel Freeman, M.D., FACS.rites, “Melvin I. Freeman, MD, FACS (UW Med Class of 1960), Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology, Emeritus, was recognized at the UW Department t of Ophthalmology’s Resident and Fellow’s graduation ceremony for his 50 years of active affiliation with the department.

Photo (L to R) Russell Van Gelder, MD, PhD, Chair, Department of Ophthalmology, Nanette and Mel Freeman, MD, FACS.”


Rollin Odell Jr., MD ’61, writes, “After many years in the San Francisco Bay Area, Clarice and I have decided to spend the rest of our years on the Kitsap Peninsula near Kingston, where we have a house on the beach. We will enjoy sailing, fishing and other water-related activities. We will enjoy many activities the Kitsap peninsula offers, as well as occasional ferry rides into downtown Seattle.”

C. Gordon Strom, MD '61C. Gordon Strom, MD ’61, Captain (MC) USN, RET., writes, “After 33+ years in the U.S. Navy and 24+ years as a surveyor with The Joint Commission, I have decided to retire. It has been a rather unique career, something I never envisioned while in medical school. My original goal was to be a pediatrician in Port Angeles, WA. Instead, my path was Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery. There have been many clinical and administrative responsibilities that have taken me to over 20 foreign countries and all the U.S. states except Delaware. I am very thankful to the University of Washington that allowed me to become a Doctor. I was a rarity in that I failed biochemistry twice. I am especially thankful to the late Dr. Ted West of the Dept. of Pharmacology, who encouraged me to continue. Also, the many classmate friends especially George M. Hall, Hugh Wang, Bill Foege and Gail Thompson, to name a few. Now, I plan to spend more time with my wife, kids, grand kids and great grand kids. Also, spending more time sailing the good sloop NANGOR on the San Francisco Bay, and just ‘bumming around.’”


*Frank Backus, MD ’62, Res. ’68 (psychiatry/behavioral sciences), writes, “My wife and I travelled to Romania for a wedding of a grand-niece. Also spent 2 weeks in Brittany and Normandy. Enjoying life at Aljoya senior residential congregate care facility at Northgate and keeping active with Thornton Creek Alliance. We spend summers in Bend, OR, to be with grandchildren and enjoy the outdoor life here. Life is good.”


*Alex Sytman, MD ’63, Fel. ’67 (cardiology), writes, “It was great to have been educated at UW Medical school. I became aware of my great education when I compared my training at UW to the interns and residents trained elsewhere. RHW as the first case reported in the NEJM in an article reporting the first use of a temporary pacemaker during an DMI in 1963 or 64 when I was an intern in NYC.”


James A. Margolis, MD ’64, writes, “Turned 81, still rowing, skiing, teaching and seeing patients two half-days per week. COVID-19 has had a big impact on patient care — using Zoom and teaching — no direct medical student teaching for several months, have had to do very carefully planned out accommodations for ski patrol first-aid training (candidate is paired with housemate as patient and individual instructor). Did have a recent setback; my usual slow pulse got too slow and had a pacemaker installed. I’m doing well, but can’t row or play golf for another two months — not good for my mental health. Hope everyone is healthy, happy and in good spirits.”


*Raymond Vath, MD ’65, Res. ’69 (psychiatry/behavioral sciences), writes, “I have received thankyou letters from recipients of the scholarships initiated by our class of 1965. There are four letters from the 25th Anniversary fund that are credited to our class as it was started by Jack Pearce. There are four scholarship letters from the class of ’65 scholarships, and one from the Vath Family Scholarship for a total of seven scholarships from our class. That is more than any other class of our outstanding medical school. l want to thank all of you who have made this possible.”


Roger W. Rochat, MD ’66, was the recipient of the 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Family Planning. The Society of Family Planning Lifetime Achievement Award, created in 2005, is for individuals and/or teams who have dedicated their careers to advancing the science of abortion and contraception, and have supported others in achieving their own success.


Anthony Komaroff, MD ’67 is still a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. He ended his practice of general internal medicine 6 years ago, and spends all of his time now on research: NIH-funded studies of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, and the similar illness (“Long COVID”) seen following COVID-19, as well as illnesses linked to human herpesvirus-6. He also has organized a program to mentor inner city middle school and high school students interested in careers in healthcare.


Lyle Griffith, M.S., M.D. ’68, Res. ’74 (urology), writes, “I was honored this summer to be included in the book, A Tribal Manifesto, published by Lawney L. Reyes, a UW graduate and well-known Seattle artist, curator and author, and Theresa Kennedy Johns. They compiled the life stories of more than 50 American Indian tribal members who have made significant contributions to the Indian community. I was born on the reservation at Pine Ridge, SD, and am an enrolled member of the Oglala Sioux tribe. During residency in the early 1970’s I spent many hours volunteering in a free clinic for American Indians and Alaskan natives, and then helped to found the Seattle Indian Health Board. I was one of its volunteer doctors and President of the Board of Directors throughout residency. During my many years of urology practice, I continued to be involved in Native American health care issues and received honors several times from the Seattle Indian Health Board as it grew into a nationally recognized organization. I retired in 2018 and now live in Boise, Idaho.”


Elizabeth A. Phillips, MD ’69, writes, “I retired as a Hematologist/Oncologist from White Plains Physician Associates at the end of 2021—52 years after graduating from medical school. I am still adjusting, but love looking out the window at the snow and ice instead of going out into it! Jack is still commuting to NYC to teach Latin and the Econ and Law courses he created. He loves the teaching, but not when it’s remote—and the commute is a pain.”



*Paul Chrzanowski, MD ’70, writes, “I moved back east after graduation and have been in NYC ever since. I escape to Vermont pretty often to get some clean air and go skiing (winter ) do a little hiking and swimming (summer). My wife and I try to get our grandchildren up there too. I am still practicing medicine not quite full time (solo practice) to keep my mind active. Many interesting people on the upper west side of Manhattan these days, and they seem to like all my grey hairs.

I have been involved professionally over the years in pulmonary disease (emphysema research) , geriatrics (medical directing and teaching) and always some general IM which is what I always wanted to hold on to. I really liked the UW spirit and friendly students and nurses. I did find some of the professors kind of intimidating, but that was many years ago.”


Bruce Noonan, M.D., and his wife Deanna*Bruce D. Noonan, M.D. ’71, writes, “Retired from ophthalmology practice at Moses Lake Clinic (Confluence Health) 16 years ago. Playing golf, traveling abroad, volunteering with Boy Scouts of America. I’m in my final year as Grand Columbia BSA council president. See photo of my wife Deanna and me heading to Camp Fife for camp accreditation June 16.

Son Dan and daughter Deeanna both live in Mesa, AZ. Son Steven lives in Bellevue and is a programmer for Valve Corp.”

*Lawrence H. Tew, M.D. ’71, writes, “I attended the UW School if Medicine in 1971 and retired in 2014. In the interim, I was an emergency specialist for 8 years, in 7 hospitals in San Francisco Bay Area; a general practitioner for 18 years; surgeon for 14 years; saw and treated over 100,000 patients and performed over 10,000 surgeries; saved 9 people’s lives by stopping at freeway crashes; started the first Urgent Care center in the East Bay; started the first 2 medical air evacuation companies in Bay Area; was the founder and director for the Center for Comprehensive Healthcare and Well-Being; gave many lectures and wrote many articles; remained one of the few physicians who did house calls to patient’s homes; took 3 10 day vacations per year (prior to retirement); taught the first paramedics in the Bay Area; trained in acupuncture, hypnotherapy, auyervedics, nutrition, massage and phycical therapy, and yoga; wrote The Essence of Healing; and wrote my own Hippocratic Oath: Healing is a miraculous and universal experience of life. My responsibility is to assist you in that experience when requested and when appropriate to do so. Using the the techniques, understandings, and knowledge of disease and health given to me, I seek to encourage the disease-to-health recycle tp be a freely flowing and personally satisfying process for you. To let go, to learn, to love, to be conscious.

Thank you to UW Medical School and all my wonderful teachers and colleagues!”


Richard A. Horvitz, MD ’72, writes, “I have been enjoying retired life in the four years since I left my position as a clinical pathologist at Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I have no problem keeping myself busy. I still maintain an active interest in what is going on in the field of medicine and still regularly read some journals and online medical news sources. I have been taking emeritus courses at a local college, and have done a fair amount of traveling, with five cruises in the last few years. I have also stayed physically active. Before COVID-19 hit, I worked out at a local YMCA two to three times a week with strength training, running and swimming. The YMCA has been closed due to the outbreak, but I have been keeping up with my running very regularly. The ‘stay at home’ time I have been through has even given me a good chance to catch up with the backlog of magazines, articles and other items I have long been wanting to find time to read. My wife and I are bearing this out OK, and we are both doing well.”


Dan Wiklund, MD '74 Book Cover - Tapestry of HumanityDan Wiklund, MD ’74, writes, “Clinical Professor Dept. Medicine x 40 years and twice awarded teacher of the year and now after 20 years of doing remote medical mission work in Africa, Asia and India have written a book titled Tapestry of Humanity describing the beauty of the diversity of our world plus a few stories of global health. This book soon available on Amazon.”


William R. Phillips, MD ’75, writes, “My exciting Fulbright fellowship to the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland, suffered ‘COVIDus interruptus’ after just three weeks. Our research, teaching and travel were all canceled. We knew we were in trouble when they closed the university, shuttered the pubs and canceled St. Patrick’s Day.”

Paul V. Williams, M.D.*Paul V. Willams, M.D. ’75 retired from clinical practice at Northwest Asthma & Allergy Center in August of 2021, but was just elected to the position of Secretary/Treasurer of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. This position ascends to the presidency in two years.


Suzanne Spencer, MD '76, dressed as RGBSuzanne U. Spencer, M.D. ’76, writes, “Tough year 2020, I hated being retired and not helping with COVID-19. So volunteered for Moderna’s Phase 1 study for the elderly. NEJM 383;25 Dec 17,2020 Otherwise husband and I skiing in Winthrop, WA and hiking.

Grieved RBG’s death, so hence the photo in her memory. Greetings to all the old classmates.”

Phyllis Senter, MD ’76, writes, “Despite the sadness of these unprecedented times, I am hopeful there will continue to be movement towards a more compassionate society. During these past four-plus months of ‘sheltering in place,’ I’ve been volunteering for a local organization, ISOCARE, which gives support to people who need to isolate/quarantine — simple but important work. Otherwise, I am happy in retirement, enjoying time with my husband John (also retired) and looking forward to when we can hug our kids/grandkids again! May we all continue to stay safe and be well!”


Book cover showing a swan titled "The Estrogen Question"Sandra C. Rice, MD ’78, writes, “After a 37-year career in private practice internal medicine, I retired several years ago and was able to fulfill a long-time goal of writing a book to help women better understand the benefits and risks of hormone replacement therapy after menopause, entitled The Estrogen Question: Know Before You Say “No” to HRT. Beyond that, I have enjoyed having free time to improve my tennis game, garden, and explore the great northwest with my husband in our camper.”

Dr. Jean Tsigonis with familyJean Tsigonis, MD ’78, writes, “I earned a master’s in public health in 2016 and retired in May 2019 from the Tanana Valley Clinic. I am still active in the Alaska Chapter of Family Physicians. I am currently chair of the Physician Wellness Committee at our Fairbanks Memorial Hospital. I have been volunteering at the Literacy Council, teaching English as a second language. I am enjoying being a wife, mom and grandmother after 38 years of Family Medicine.”


*Susan L. Blough, M.D. ’79, writes, “Retired! After 26 years in primary-care internal medicine, starting as the first woman in internal medicine in Boise, Idaho. I was also the co-founder of St. Luke’s Internal Medicine. Now, with our only grandchild living in Munich, we’re planning even more trips to see her.”

Dr. Teusink with wifeTimothy Teusink, MD ’79, Res. ’82 (family medicine), writes, “Living in France, teaching bioethics in several countries around the African and Asian continents. No teaching travel since the confinement, but I keep in touch with international colleagues and doing some teaching via Zoom. Looking forward to live teaching again once things normalize.



Robert L. Bridges, MD ’80, writes, “Dr. Stephen Tower (MD ‘83) and I continue to appreciate the international reception of our recently completed study on the neurological effects of arthroprosthetic cobalt toxicity as published in the European Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging. Late last year and in the early part of this year, both of us were consulted by the staff of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ to provide clinical information for a story arc on cobalt toxicity for the character Dr. Richard Webber, which became part of episodes 19–21 this year.”

Headshot of Charlie Clements, M.D.*Charlie Clements, M.D. ’80, writes, “As many of you know my career ended up at the intersection of human rights and public health. While Executive Director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, I helped focus attention on a female judge in Venezuela who was jailed for a year without any charges brought against her, terribly abused by guards and other female prisoners when she was incarcerated for almost three years until our advocacy resulted her in being transferred to house arrest. I was pleased yesterday that an Op-Ed about her that I wrote with Noam Chomsky, one of my co-conspirators, was published in the NYT.”

*E. Frank Livingstone, M.D. ’80, Res. ’83 (physical medicine and rehabilitation), MOT ’83, writes, “I am alive and well at 70, a paraplegic for 52 years, and Physiatrist for 35 years. Living and working in Lake Havasu City, AZ. I am doing primarily diagnostic work, electrodiagnosis and musculoskeletal diagnosis and treatment. I have developed an effective pathophysiology paradigm and treatment approach to myofascial pain syndrome, if anyone is interested. Jason, my oldest son is starting his 4th year of medical school at the U. of Texas, San Antonio. Life is good, Praise the Lord!”

*Robert S. Hurlow, M.D. ’80, writes “I just left my long term continuity practice on Bainbridge Island after being a full time family doctor for over 35 years. I am now working as a locum for Swedish Primary care to open up more personal time. Leaving my practice was emotionally challenging but what I did not expect was the reaction of my long term patients. Of course there were well wishes, bottles of wine, cards and even some tears. But the most surprising gift came from a patient who is a relatively well known classical composer, who wrote an extended piano work in my name, played and recorded it on a disc and presented it to me. I was the one with tears. What a privilege to have this job!”


*Paula Terhaar, M.D. ’81, Res. ’84 (family medicine), writes, “I am happily retired having left my practice 2 years ago. I loved my career in family medicine but now am loving the freedom to create my own daily structures.”


Margaret Wacker, MD ’82, writes, “At a time when many people consider retirement, I just finished another degree — a master’s in health policy and law from UCSF/UC Hastings. Years of working in public hospitals have made me want to address the system to improve healthcare for all. I’m now working to determine how I can best use this new education in my career.”

Thomas Monk, MD ’82, writes, “I’m still working full-time as a primary care pediatrician on Bainbridge Island, where I have practiced since 1986. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected my family in subtle ways; our daughter was studying in Rabat, Morocco, when the travel ban went into effect and was eventually evacuated by the U.S. State Department along with other students. Since then, she has been staying in her childhood bedroom and working on her senior thesis remotely. My wife has been working remotely from our dining room, our niece moved in with us to be able to shelter more safely, and out of an abundance of caution, I moved into the guest cabin across the driveway from our main house. Our clinic never closed, and I have been adapting well to video virtual visits and swabbing people’s noses in the tent in our back parking lot, all of which proves that old dogs can learn new tricks! I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy.”

*Barbara J. Doty, M.D. ’82, was installed as the new Asst. Clinical Dean for WWAMI Alaska in 2017, overseeing the 20 WWAMI Alaska student clinical clerkships and WRITE sites in Alaska.


Jonathan K. Porter, MD ’82, writes, “Four years ago I took a new position as founding medical director of the Comprehensive Pain Program at the University of Vermont Medical Center. Individuals experiencing chronic pain attend weekly 90-minute group sessions framed around Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and medical group visits framed around cornerstones of mindfulness, spirituality, self-compassion, and connection and community. During the 16-week program, participants have access to integrative therapies including acupuncture, craniosacral therapy, massage, reiki, psychologically-informed physical therapy, nutrition and culinary medicine, EMDR, and hypnotherapy. Pre/post outcomes include comfort, quality of life, and system utilization/financial costs to date are very positive.”


Andrew L. Bennett, MD ’84, writes, “After practicing Family Medicine in rural Montana and rural Washington, we moved to Papua New Guinea, where I worked as a medical missionary at a remote, rural, resource-challenged general hospital for 14 years. Judy worked in a number of support roles there. We returned to the US in 2017 and worked the mission department of our church for 2 ½ years, retiring in February of 2020, just in time for the pandemic! I have worked part-time at the campus clinic of Northwest Nazarene University in their Covid mitigation program. We were able to maintain a low case-rate and still maintained in-person instruction most of the school year. Judy and I live in Nampa, Idaho.”

Dr. John Jarstad HeadshotJohn Jarstad, MD ’84, writes, “John Jarstad was recently promoted to Professor – Department of Ophthalmology, University of Missouri School of Medicine, Columbia, MO. He has accepted a position as professor of clinical ophthalmology – University of South Florida School of Medicine for fall 2020, where he will continue his research in mega-dose dietary riboflavin and sunlight in treating keratoconus, medical treatment of ophthalmic migraine and inventing instruments and equipment for cataract surgery for use in developing countries. His daughter, Dr. Allison Jarstad, is a cornea specialist in Long Beach, California.”

Dr. Annie Biedel HeadshotAnne E. Biedel, MD ’84, Res. ’88 (family medicine), writes, “I am in private family practice in Lahaina, Hawaii. My father is 93 and in lockdown at a nursing home in Canada. We cannot visit due to the border closure. In this very difficult time, I take joy in the daily patient care that is my privilege. Every morning, the wild chickens and cats greet me at the office. My staff are multinational, so we have great potlucks. Life is very good to me in my golden years.”

John C. Graham, MD ’84, Res. ’87 (internal medicine), Res. ’89 (neurology), and Jan L. Graham, MD ’84, Res. ’86 (internal medicine), write, “John and Jan Graham, MD, class of 1984, are celebrating their 40th anniversary in August. They are retiring from 25 years of practice in Spokane with Kaiser Permanente, formerly Group Health. John was a founding member of the Spokane GHC Hospitalist group and the clinical chief for 20 years. He served on the board of Washington Permanente Medical Group. Currently, he is running a Hepatitis C program and performing cardiac stress tests with plans to retire later this year.

Jan is retiring from both clinical family practice and administrative work as the medical director of quality for the Spokane region this summer. During COVID-19, she provided care virtually and was pleasantly surprised at the extent that patient care could be effectively performed.

We are looking forward to traveling in the future as well as spending time with family and at our lake cabin. We have three grown sons and four grandchildren.”

Dr. Linda Gromko HeadshotLinda Gromko, MD ’84, Res. ’87 (family medicine), writes, “Our family practice provided telephone medicine services beginning in March. Ironically, the pandemic has given me more time to focus on the book I just completed, ‘A Practical Guide for Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Adults.’ I sought input from many colleagues, and one of the surgeons commented, ‘l’ll help. I have some time on my hands!’ See more at www.LindaGromkoMD.com.”

Andrew Faulk, MD ’84, reflects on COVID-19 and the AIDS epidemic in his memoir.

When the COVID-19 outbreak began, Andrew Faulk, MD ’84, felt a shock of déjà vu. In the 1980s, during the height of the AIDS epidemic, he practiced at clinics in San Francisco and Los Angeles, primarily serving patients with AIDS. And the connection went even deeper: Faulk himself was diagnosed with HIV in 1985.

In his memoir, “My Epidemic: An AIDS Memoir of One Man’s Struggle as Doctor, Patient and Survivor,” Faulk describes the terrifying early days of seeing patients and friends struck down by a mysterious disease. As a gay, HIV-positive physician, he grieved deeply for his community, and he writes candidly about the emotional burdens of enduring so much loss.

Faulk also compares the AIDS epidemic to today’s COVID-19 response — and offers his insights on how the U.S. can be better prepared for the next pandemic.

“Writing this memoir was a catharsis,” says Faulk. “I’ve come to realize that telling, and listening to, our stories can be a source of healing.” As another path to healing, Faulk generously created the Andrew M. Faulk, MD, Endowed Fund for HIV/AIDS in 2017 to support research at UW Medicine.


*George Birchfield, M.D. ’85, writes, “I stepped down from my Heme-Onc practice in late June 2018. The non friendly EMR and the hours needed to document a busy clinic day took their toll. I now work part time for EvergreenHealth at the Hospice Inpatient Unit there. I am also busy volunteering for various NPOs such as FoodLifeline, and the UWSOM Admission Committee (doing so makes me more incredulous I ever got into Med School). Best wishes to all my E81 classmates!”

*Doris S. Mugrditchian, M.D. ’85, writes, “I’ve settled on the shores of Lake Leman in Switzerland. Classmates and friends, be sure to stop by and say hello on your way to the Montreux Jazz Festival or to the slopes in Zermatt and Verbier!”


Michael McNamara, MD ’87, writes, “Now over 20 years in Anchorage, Alaska, practicing hand, elbow and shoulder surgery. Love Alaska. Two kids (Kirsten and Shannon) are married, Jake not married yet. Kirsten and Jake work in my office with me, a godsend! Joanne cares for my elderly 86-year-old mom. Busy protecting against COVID-19! Still flying Cessna and Super Cubs.”


Andrew S. Duxbury, MD ’88 remains on the geriatric medicine faculty at the University of Alabama Birmingham where he has been for nearly a quarter century. He recently published his first book ‘The Accidental Plague Diaries’, a personal journey through the first year of the coronavirus pandemic.



Dr. Afrassiabi with his family at NASA*Ali Afrassiabi, M.D. ’90, writes, “Life is so short. Amazing changes are happening in our lives and society. We are almost 30 years out of medical school. We have lost a few accomplished classmates and there are many good and heartfelt memories to be shared. I hope to hear some of those from my fantastic classmates. How about we start working on a great 30 year reunion party, and maybe give back a little to the school. I am already working on the t-shirts!

I always thought I would do medical research later in life but private practice and family life have left little time. Is it too late to go back to school? I do not feel old but last time I was in Iran, I got on a city bus and a young kid got up and offered his seat to me. I guess I looked tired, or maybe it was the white hair.

Our twin 14 year olds are set to start at Gig Harbor High School this year. Last year Nick Kahlstrom and a few friends and I did a 390 mile bike ride over a week from Santa Barbara to near Big Sur, CA and back. It was a blast and I highly recommend it. There are many wineries along the way. 🙂 Lately, I have been biking to work. It is very refreshing to cross the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in early morning, although I am cheating a little on an E bike.

About 20 years ago, I started an endowment to support Persian Studies at the UW. Look at the NELC UW website. It has had amazing impacts. We had 750 people and a waiting list to attend this year’s fundraiser in the HUB at the equinox of spring and the start of the Persian new year. If you are in Seattle you are all invited to next year’s event. It will be on the weekend before or after March 21st, 2020.”

*Steven Alberts, M.D. ’90, writes, “The years have gone by quickly since graduating. I have been fortunate to have a lot of opportunities at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and have now risen to chair of Medical Oncology, interim chair of the Department of Oncology, and Deputy Director of Clinical Research in the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center. I still see GI cancer patients several days a week. Mayo has been a great place to be, but I do miss the Pacific Northwest.”

*Sam Salama, M.D. ’90, Res. ’93 (general surgery), writes, “24 years in practice after residency; I work at CHI Franciscan doing Advanced Laparoscopic and Robotic Surgery and bread and butter General Surgery. I have one child in college and one child starting senior year in high school.”


*Gwenyth McConnell, M.D. ’91, Res. ’95 (psychiatry and behavioral sciences), has temporarily closed her private practice in Pike Place Market. She is working with the fledgling TelePsychiatry program at Providence. Her intention is to bring the art of medicine to the new world of technology, and to bring mental health treatment to rural areas nationally. She would appreciate getting together with other UW alums who want to stay connected during these changing times in our field.


Larry Deal, M.D. with his father and son in front of the Grand Canyon.*Lawrence “Larry” D. Deal, M.D. ’95, recently celebrated turning 50 by hiking the Rim to Rim at the Grand Canyon in one day with his son Bruce. Larry’s dad, Edson “Fred” Deal M.D. ’65, dropped them off at the North Rim and drove around to meet them at the South Rim. Larry has been practicing family medicine in the Twin Cities since 1998 and Fred (retired orthopedic surgeon) continues to enjoy family and friends from his home in Wenatchee WA.


Wesley Leigh, M.D. and his family at the beach.*Wesley Leigh, M.D. ’96, is an active Emergency Physician and author of “Ligature” (available in paperback and e-book format on Amazon).


Teal book cover with red lung/pulmonary system illustration. Book titled "Breathing Lessons"MeiLan K. Han, MD ’99 is a Professor of Pulmonary medicine at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She does research with and is a spokesperson for the American Lung Association. In conjunction with W.W. Norton, Dr. Han published a book on lung health, Breathing Lessons: A Doctor’s Guide to Lung Health.



Family holding hands standing in front of a sign that says "Center Street"Casey N. Isom, MD ’00, Res. ’06 (reconstructive plastic surgery), writes, “I’ve been practicing in Logan Utah since 2006. Jenn and I have 6 children. Anika 22, Max 19, Sophia 15, Isabella 13, Olivia 9, Spencer 6. Life is good and we love hearing about our med school classmates. Come visit and ski with us.”


*Carl Wigren, M.D. ’01, Res. ’05 (pathology), writes “Recent move from downtown Seattle to new office in Renton courtesy of a small business administration loan. Presenting workshops in pediatric injury analysis for American Academy of a forensic Sciences and American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. Currently working with the King County Medical Society to draft legislation to move 33 of the state’s 39 counties from a coroner system to a state medical examiner system. The goal is to provide consistency in death investigation within our state.”

Bret A. Nicks, MD ’01, writes, “Happy 2022! I just published a book — Standing Naked in the Rain — and it is now available online. It’s about Toby, a beloved Labrador-hound mix, and the laughter, tears and lessons that come from each exciting adventure on his life’s journey. These short stories pay tribute to the unconditional love and unmatched loyalty of our fourlegged family members, reminding us that treasured gifts aren’t always wrapped in a box, and sometimes an old dog can still teach us a few new tricks. Some levity to start out the new year is just what the doctor ordered.”


*Blair Washington, M.D. ’02, writes, “On a mission! I had the privilege of returning to Rwanda for my 8th fistula mission with the International Organization for Women and Development (IOWD). This year UWSOM classmate and dear friend, Christine Price joined our anesthesia team.”


*Zachary Weber, M.D. ’06, writes, “Entering my 8th year of pathology practice at Glacier Regional Pathology in Kalispell, MT, I recently assumed the role of laboratory medical director for Kalispell Regional Healthcare. My wife (Mindy) and sons (Clayton and Wesley) love the outdoor adventures that Northwest Montana has to offer. Mindy and I have also joined other parents in starting proactivelivingfacility.org, a 501(c)(3) non-profit to build a home for adults with severe autism in Ronan, MT. Our 15-year-old son, Clayton, suffers from severe autism and has limited ability to communicate. We are excited to help provide a home for Montana adults with autism who are unable to live in their own.”



Louis Poppler, M.D. in a field holding up a bike.*Louis Poppler, M.D. ’10, graduated hand surgery fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN in 2019 and plastic surgery residency at Washington University in St. Louis, MO in 2018. He will be returning to his hometown, Boise, ID, where he is establishing the only reconstructive microsurgery and hand surgery program at St. Luke’s Hospital in the Boise area. He is excited to bring his experience with reconstructive microsurgery home and expand treatment options available to residents of southern Idaho. This will spare patients with complex trauma, wounds, or cancer the need to travel to out of state for treatment.

*Hana Smith, M.D. ’10, is now the Medical Director of the Young Mother’s Clinic at the Children’s Hospital of Colorado.


*Lane Squires, M.D. ’11, assistant professor of clinical otolaryngology at UC Davis Medical Center and staff surgeon at VA Northern California Healthcare System, has published his first textbook. Rapid Audiogram Interpretation is a clinician’s manual that provides a methodical, step-by-step approach to interpreting audiograms for training and experienced clinicians, as well as non-audiologists in related fields.

Preetkamal N. Singh Cheema, MD ’11, PhD, writes “Keeping it local at University of Washington Valley Medical Center, recently appointed as Medical Director of Valley Women’s Healthcare OB GYN!”


Andrew Herstein, MD ’12, writes, “Completed an anesthesiology residency at UW Medicine in June 2020 and will join Pacific Anesthesia at the Swedish Edmonds campus in August.”

Beth Thielen, MD ’12, PhD ’09, writes, “Just started a new position as assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Infectious Diseases and Immunology at University of Minnesota. I will be starting a new lab focusing on pathogenesis of respiratory virus, specifically influenza and RSV [respiratory syncytial virus].”


*Elizabeth Embick, M.D. ’14, just took a job as a general surgeon at Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage and is excited to start in September!

*Philip K. Louie, M.D. ’14 and Derek A. Khorsand, M.D. ’14, write, “we developed and implemented a text-messaging bot and digital health assistant to coach patients through their entire surgical episode. The messages offer pre- and post-operative content that are specifically tailored to their physician’s preferences. We are part of a team that started a company to deliver this service to patients (STREAMD), and have found the experience incredibly rewarding!”

Derek Weyhrauch, MD ’14, writes, “Completed pediatric cardiology fellowship at the University of Utah and am staying on in an adjunct instructor year with clinical work in pediatric cardiology and research in genomics.”


Dr. Gersten on a bike in front of fall leaves.*Oren Gersten, M.D. ’15, writes, “After graduating from Maine Medical Center Family Medicine Residency I started Portland Direct Primary Care. I’m a solo PCP, I ride my bike to work a lot, and my main interest is providing great primary care outside the insurance based system.”


Dr. Sonia Gill Family PhotoSonia Gill, MD ’16, writes, “I married my medical school sweetheart, Christopher Scodeller (also E-2012, MD ‘16), and we will celebrate our second anniversary on July 21, 2020. We’ve completed our residencies (mine in anesthesiology, Chris’s in emergency medicine) and are moving back home to Seattle! This is our baby, Quinn. She’s four months old. She has her father’s twinkly grey eyes and the sweetest voice I’ve ever heard.”



Natasha Steele, MD ’20, writes, “I’m enjoying my first year as an alumna of UWSOM as a medicine intern at Stanford. Keeping extra busy with the addition of our daughter this past May, Zohara Maia (“Zoe”, E-2045)!”

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