Clinical Scholars program

TwitterYou TubeLinked In
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Current Scholars
Alumni Spotlight
Clinical Scholars Directory
Where are they Now?
Recent Graduate Placements
Alumni Map
Job Postings
Examples of Off-Site Health Policy Electives

Where Are They Now? Recent Graduate Placements
(Class of 2008)

[ Class of '14 | Class of '13 | Class of '12 | Class of '11 | Class of '10 | Class of '09 | Class of '08 ]

Dr. Arshiya Baig

Dr. Arshiya Baig (UCLA) joined the faculty at the University of Chicago in the Department of General Internal Medicine as a clinical investigator with the main responsibility of expanding their program on community-based research.  Her long term goals involve refining skills in community based participatory research to improve the health and healthcare of marginalized communities.  Future project interests include evaluating, improving and designing community-based interventions in urban populations.

Dr. Loren Berman

Dr. Loren Berman (Yale) returned to her general surgery residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital to complete the remaining three years of the program. After residency, she plans to pursue fellowship training and a career in academic surgery.

Dr. Brendan Carr

Dr. Brendan Carr (Penn) accepted a position as an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine and Epidemiology at the University of Pennsylvania.  He serves as the associate director of the Division of Emergency Care Policy & Research in the Department of Emergency Medicine, and as a core member of the Firearm & Injury Center at Penn.  His research focuses on the organization of the trauma and emergency care delivery system in the US, and on the causes, distribution, and control of injury.

Dr. Christi Cavaliere

Dr. Christi Cavaliere (Michigan) Christi Cavaliere now lives in Northern California where her husband is stationed at Travis Airforce Base. Dr Cavaliere is working as a plastic surgeon at the VA hospital in Martinez, CA and also as a volunteer surgeon for the Airforce.

Dr. Kristina Cordasco

Dr. Kristina Cordasco (UCLA) is an Assistant Professor-In-Residence with The Veterans' Administration (VA) Greater Los Angeles Health System and The University of California, Los Angeles, with an adjunct appointment at RAND Health.  In this position she will have 80% of her time protected for conducting health services research with vulnerable populations. In the remainder 20% time, she will perform clinical work as a general internal medicine physician with the VA.   Her long-term goals are to develop expertise in, and funding for, community-partnered research focused on system-level interventions to support access to and quality of care for patients with low literacy, limited English proficiency, and limited healthcare resources.  

Dr. Nabila Dahodwala

Dr. Nabila Dahodwala (Penn) is currently anAssistant Professor in Neurology at the University of Pennsylvania.  She will continue her research investigating mechanisms of health disparities in neurodegenerative diseases and interventions to reduce disparities.  For the next few years, the majority of her time will be spent on research with the remainder consisting of a mix of patient care and teaching.

Dr. Lisa Diamond

Dr. Lisa Diamond (Yale) is working for the Palo Alto Medical Foundation Research Institute (PAMFRI) with a fellowship appointment at the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies (IHPS) at UCSF. There, she is continuing her research in language barriers and outcomes.

Dr. Nabila Feemster

Dr. Kristen Feemster (Penn) has decided to combine her health policy research training with clinical training in pediatric infectious diseases and is currently an infectious diseases fellow at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.  In addition to her clinical training, she will continue working on two of her research projects initiated while a Clinical Scholar.  The first project investigates clinician administration of the Human Papillomavirus vaccine among two pediatric practice networks, Philadelphia VFC and Philadelphia family planning providers.  The second project investigates the potential for using a pediatric primary care network to perform community infectious diseases surveillance.

Dr. Jason Fish

Dr. Jason Fish (UCLA) joined the UCLA faculty as a clinical instructor.  This position allows for 50% protected research time where he plans to work on a clinical quality improvement project, complete his CSP main research project on obesity under the guidance of Dr. Arleen Brown, and follow-through on his other CSP project on physician web-based education program under the guidance of Dr. Douglas Bell. The remaining 50% of his position will be devoted to resident education and patient care. He is most interested in academic general medicine focused on patient care, student and resident education, and quality assurance.

Dr. Ying-Ying Goh

Dr. Ying-Ying Goh (UCLA) serves as the Director for Los Angeles Healthcare Options 2009, a Task Force of the California Endowment where she is working to develop recommendations for an integrated healthcare model in South LA.  Along with her mentors Drs. Arleen Brown and Lenore Arab, she submitted a proposal to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for a project called “Understanding the Role of a Changing Food Resource Environment and the Impact of Increasing Access to Healthy Foods through Supermarkets.”  She is also working with Dr. Brown and a group led by Sylvia Drew Ivie in South LA to develop a Community Kitchen program, in partnership with Tesco, an international corporation opening neighborhood markets across the U.S. This group is currently funded by the California Endowment. This collaboration will enable the study of the impact of increasing access to fresh, affordable groceries on community well-being.

Dr. Corita Gruden

Dr. Corita Gruden (UCLA) is an Assistant Professor position at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in the Department of Emergency Medicine, in New York City.    In her position as a clinician-investigator, she will spend the majority of her time doing health policy-oriented research, while continuing to practice emergency medicine and teach medical students and residents.  Her long-term goals involve helping to transform health policy directly, both at home and abroad.

r. Crista Johnson

Dr. Crista Johnson (Michigan)has joined the faculty in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Maricopa Integrated Health System in Phoenix, AZ where she is Director of the Refugee Women's Health Clinic. She is also a Clinical Research Affiliate of the Southwest Interdisciplinary Research Center (SIRC), which is a NIH-funded National Center of Excellence in minority health and health disparities at Arizona State University. She is continuing her community-based research collaborations with immigrant/refugee communities, examining barriers to health care access and utilization including stigmatization towards Female Genital Cutting (FGC), as well as the cultural implications of FGC on psychosexual sequela. Her long-term career goals include developing and evaluating strategies to improve health outcomes for immigrant women who have undergone FGC, as well as enhance the knowledge base and cultural competency among health care providers who care for these women.

Dr. Tara Lagu

Dr. Tara Lagu (Penn) is at Baystate Medical Center, the Western Campus of the Tufts University School of Medicine. She is a clinical investigator in the Center for Quality and Safety Research (CQSR) and an assistant professor at Tufts. Her research focuses on evaluation of current and suggested strategies for improving the quality of health care in the United States.

Giridar Mallya

Giridhar Mallya (Penn) has been the Director of Policy and Planning for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health since October 2008. In this position, he guides a strategic planning process to ensure the Department can effectively address entrenched and emerging public health issues in the years to come. He is working with the Department's team of epidemiologists and analysts to create neighborhood health profiles, collaborating with the Board of Health to develop regulatory approaches to prevention and promotion, and helping to consolidate 3 divisions providing services to families with young children. In addition, he plans to see primary care patients in one of the city's community health centers and is establishing an adjunct appointment at the University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Veronica Meneses

Dr. Veronica Meneses (UCLA) is doing another year of research fellowship in Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics at Children's Hospital Los Angeles.   She will also continue partnering with the Los Angeles Unified School District Division of Special Education on her projects.  In addition, the fellowship will include significant experiences in community advocacy, medical education and patient care and provide her with the needed protected time to complete her RWJF funded projects.  Upon completing this fellowship, Dr. Meneses will be seeking a general academic faculty position.

Dr. AnaClaire Meyer

Dr. AnaClaire Meyer (UCLA) joined the faculty at San Francisco General Hospital at the University of California, San Francisco as a Clinical Instructor in the Department of Neurology as of July 2008.  She will focus on her work in HIV neurology and will be spending most of the next two years working in Kisumu, Kenya with an organization called Family AIDS Care and Education Services (FACES) to develop a tool for use by non-physician health care workers to diagnose HIV dementia.  FACES serves about 14,000 people with HIV in Western Kenya, about half of whom are on antiretroviral therapy.  This is an important opportunity as Western Kenya has one of the highest HIV prevalence rates in the world (around 30-40%).  Dr. Meyer’s support for this work includes a Fulbright scholarship, and fellowships from the Fogarty Center at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the American Academy of Neurology.

Dr. Joshua Newman

Dr. Joshua Newman (UCLA) is Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine.  There he will continue to work on the OpenMRS in LA project, an information technology network to unite health and social service providers to the homeless of LA's skid row.  He is also working on new health information technology projects in partnership with the leadership at UCLA as a part of the Clinical Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) and in telemedicine/telehealth projects.   His long-term goals are to enable better care using clinical information systems, to help UCLA extend its clinical and research capacities into the community, and to help deliver information technology solutions directly to patients to help them take better care of themselves.

Dr. Edmondo Robinson

Dr. Edmondo Robinson (Penn) has accepted a position as Assistant Medical Director at Christiana Care Health System in Newark, Delaware. His primary function is to start an employed practice hospitalist program as part of the Medical Group at Christiana Care. He will also be finding innovative ways to improve patient satisfaction as well as hospital efficiency while maintaining high quality when creating the new hospitalist group. He will also be teaching residents and medical students. He will continue to be involved (as he was during his time as a Clinical Scholar) in a statewide initiative to find innovative ways to improve diabetes care and decrease childhood and adolescent obesity called the Delaware Collaborative for Diabetes Management and Childhood/Adolescent Obesity. In addition, he will also continue to be involved with a Pennsylvania statewide initiative to improve the health of people disparately affected by tobacco related chronic disease called Be-A-Bridge (Bringing Evidence-Based Research Initiatives to Disparate Groups with Evaluation).

Dr. Calie Santana

Dr. Calie Santana (Yale) has accepted a position as the Associate Director of Quality for the Department of Medicine at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. She is also performing clinical and teaching duties with the Primary Care/Social Medicine Internal Medicine Residency Program at Montefiore.

Dr. Peter Schilling

Dr. Peter Schilling (Michigan) will return to complete is clinical training in orthopedic surgery at the University of Michigan. Peter is interested in how hospital organization and structure impacts quality, and as a fellow conducted research on how periods of high hospital occupancy affects patient outcomes. Dr. Schilling’s long-term goal is to pursue quantitative research examining how changes in the the organization and structure of care delivery can improve efficiency and quality.

Dr. Benjamin Springgate

Dr. Benjamin Springgate (UCLA) was hired to fill the first joint position between Tulane and RAND under their new joint hiring agreement. At RAND, Dr.  Springgate serves as Health Liaison for RAND Gulf States and as an Affiliated Adjunct Researcher with RAND Health. In this role, Dr. Springgate leads research and implementation projects related to behavioral health, quality improvement, and community engagement in health services. In addition, he serves as the lead in developing RAND Health's relationships with collaborators, clients, and community members in the Gulf States region.  In addition, Dr. Springgate serves as Clinical Assistant Professor and Executive Director of Community Health,Tulane General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics, and Executive Director of Community Health Innovation and Research, Office of Community Affairs and Health Policy, Tulane University School of Medicine. In this role, Dr. Springgate assists the Vice Dean and Section Chief with strategy and implementation of community health projects, and development of infrastructure for community-based research. Dr. Springgate serves as President and Co-Chair of REACH NOLA, a community academic health partnership developed during his fellowship ( He also continues to serve as medical director of St. Anna Medical Mission.

Dr. Joanna Starrels

Dr. Joanna Starrels (Penn) has joined the faculty at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx (Montefiore Medical Center campus), as an Assistant Professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine where she is working to improve the primary care management of chronic disease in relation to substance use and addiction. She is also continuing her collaborative work with the Treatment Research Institute.will be joining the faculty at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx (Montefiore Medical Center campus), as an Assistant Professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine where she will work to improve the primary care management of chronic disease in relation to substance use and addiction. She will also continue her collaborative work with the Treatment Research Institute.

Dr. Brett Stauffer

Dr. Brett Stauffer (Yale) has accepted a hybrid position at the Baylor University Medical Hospital System in Dallas. He is spending half his time working as a hospitalist and the other half as a researcher in quality. Dr. Stauffer is continuing his work on finding ways to improve the coordination of care between inpatient and outpatient services to reduce readmissions.

Dr. Cheerag Upadhyaya

Dr. Cheerag Upadhyaya (Michigan) plans to pursue a career in academic neurosurgery and but will spend the next year completing a fellowship in surgical oncology at UC San Francisco. His long-term goals includes research on techniques to minimize brain injury and examining the long term effects of cognition and quality of life of brain injury, including peri-operative events.

Dr. Michael Volk

Dr. Michael Volk (Michigan) has joined the faculty at the University of Michigan in the Division of Gastroenterology as a Lecturer in the tenure track.  He will continue his research in medical decision-making and the ethics of resource allocation, especially as they relate to liver transplantation.  He is the recipient of grant awards from the American Gastroenterological Association and the Greenwall Foundation.

Dr. Heather Yeo

Dr. Heather Yeo (Yale) returned to her general surgery residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital where she will complete three additional clinical years. After residency, she plans to do a subspecialty fellowship in either endocrine or GI surgery. When done with her surgery training, Dr. Yeo plans to continue in an academic surgical career and continue her work on issues of resident education and training.



About the Program Program Sites The Scholars Clinical Scholars Directory Contact Us

Copyright 2014 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholars Program

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation