CA-2 Bios

Cesar Barron, MD

Barron
First 14er with the anesthesia crew

Hometown: El Paso, TX

Hobbies: Love the outdoors including hiking on my free time. Gathering up the courage to hike a 14er is amazing although horrible at times; the summit is well worth it. Snowboarding during the winter. Started to pick up rock climbing and now currently training for a triathlon. Other weird quirks include playing speed chess.

What is the biggest strength of our program? I have to say the quality of the staff and residents. While at any program you may have people you may not necessarily get along with here on a whole every resident seems to want to help and will help out especially if you ask not only that but the attendings are calm and patient and mostly eager to teach.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Working at Children's is a great mix up it's fairly rare for specialties to cover both adults and pediatrics. This mostly pertains to the bread and butter cases where the children are healthy because it can be sad at times working with truly sick children but overall their innocence and playfulness make the long days worth it. I think that is what makes anesthesia so unique that even as a general anesthesiologist you will be required to take care of pediatric patients up to a certain age which is fairly rare for other specialties.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Honestly any activity where we get to hangout with our class in person! It's great catching up since our lives our pretty busy and we don't get to see much of each other during certain rotations.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I was a part time teacher for ACT Prep and before that I was working in a neuroscience lab. The main goal was always to go to medical school but the detour in other fields of work was refreshing as well.

What is your dream vacation? I would have to say traveling to somewhere in Europe where I get to spend some days hiking the amazing views but also enjoying local culture and great restaurants!!

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I would have to say the two that surprises people is that I use to grapple and that I play speed chess although I'm not very good when it's not timed because I get inpatient.

 

Jackie Carrico, MD

Carrico

Hometown: Saint Louis, MO

Hobbies: Snowboarding, hiking, camping, yoga, cooking, and hanging with my husband and pup

What is the biggest strength of our program? Definitely the camaraderie between residents

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Liver transplant anesthesia was an awesome experience, both because of the complexity of the cases and the opportunity to develop new skills and confidence in the OR, but also because the attendings are all so great!

What were you doing before you went into medicine? Working in an academic research lab developing targeted molecular therapies for cancer.

What is your dream vacation? Costa Rica, half of the time relaxing on the beach and the other half exploring the forests, wildlife, waterfalls, and volcanoes.

 

Peter Coleman, MD

Coleman
Family camping trip to Twin Lakes near Mt. Elbert

Hometown: Muncie, IN

Hobbies: Spending time with my family, Tinkering, Fishing, Hiking, Camping, Cycling, finding sweet deals on Facebook Marketplace

What is the biggest strength of our program? Comprehensive clinical exposure in several different hospital environments (Academic, Children's, VA, County, Outpatient) and access to a growing Anesthesiology department flush with energetic attending physicians.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? It is so early in CA2 year I don't have a well-formed answer to this question yet. However, many mornings, with the exception of the critical care rotation (which is not my cup of tea) I have found myself excited to go to work.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Dr. Oliva's oral board prep sessions with all the residents because we get a taste for the style of the exam as well as the opportunity to hear our colleagues field questions.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I was born, raised and educated in Indiana and completed a Transitional Year internship there. Thanks to the Match I was fortunate enough to come West for residency and we'll see what the future holds!

What is your dream vacation? Either a backcountry adventure (Canadian Rockies? Quetico Provincial Park? Patagonia? Peru?) or a self guided SCUBA trip to Bonaire.

 

Jack Dong, MD

Dong
Topping out on Time Wave Zero in Mexico.

Hometown: Fuzhou, China

Hobbies: Rock climbing, gardening, and cooking

What is the biggest strength of our program? Variety of cases and practice settings, and ample sub-specialty training opportunities.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Responding to obstetric emergency and learning the flow of cardiopulmonary bypass procedures has been the highlight of my CA-2 year so far.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Mock oral board sessions - They are good opportunities to practice and put together various knowledge you have learned. In addition, you get to see different approaches to clinical scenarios, which are helpful for the actual exam and in practical settings.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I did a few years of bench-top work before starting med school.

What is your dream vacation? Sending climbing projects followed by soaking in a hot spring with wife and friends.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I can always help others in finishing their food :)

 

Dan Ford, MD

Ford
My wife and two boys at the Lair O' The Bear

Hometown: Rescue, CA

Hobbies: Snowboarding, road biking, playing with my kids and dog

What is the biggest strength of our program? The program leadership care about their residents and is willing to change based on resident feedback.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? I haven't had all my subspecialties yet, but I really like liver transplants. The set up can be intimidating, but the physiology is fascinating and there's always a lot to manage. Plus it's always nice to see someone in liver failure get better afterwards.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I got my BS in Nutrition, then spent some time as a whitewater raft guide in California, then working at a guest ranch near Steamboat Springs, CO.

What is your dream vacation? I would love to island hop off the coast of Greece or Italy. Good food, warm ocean, and sunshine sound like a great combination!

 

Patrick Henthorn, MD

Henthorn
Enjoying a beautiful Colorado 4th of July with my family. 

Hometown: Denver, CO

Hobbies: Growing up in Colorado, I've naturally gravitated towards many of the wonderful hobbies this state has to offer.  In particular, I really enjoy mountain biking in the summer, skiing in the winter and the craft brewing scene year round.  I also love traveling, cooking, gaming and spending time with my family and friends.

What is the biggest strength of our program? I think the biggest strength of our Anesthesia program is our faculty.  The faculty here are passionate about what they do with everything from teaching to patient care and it shows in their actions.  Faculty at CU have also created an educational environment that is safe and conducive towards actual learning where residents don't need to fear retaliation or humiliation for perceived "stupid" questions or mistakes.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Our acute pain service has been one of my favorite clinical experiences so far.  As residents, we get the opportunity to perform regional anesthetic procedures on a very busy service in our CA-1 year.  The great thing about such a busy service is that residents can hone in on a particular type of nerve block to practice all day, such as upper or lower extremity blocks.  That kind of repetition really helps solidify concepts with anatomy, ultrasound imaging and procedural muscle memory.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Personally, I enjoy the freedom our program offers in educational activities.  The program doesn't lean too heavily into any one area such as classroom didactics, online modules or a do-it-yourself approach.  We really do have a lot of different tools at our disposal ranging from classroom learning to journal clubs to free TrueLearn accounts to Learnly.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? Medicine is definitely a second career for me.  Prior to medicine, I had an extraordinarily short career in finance in the realm of subprime mortgage-backed securities.  As one can imagine, I was quickly laid off and left to fend for myself.  Through a series of events that would take too long to explain here, I ended up pursuing medicine and have had no regrets since.  I always tell people that my best day back in the office was still worse than my hardest days as a doctor.

What is your dream vacation? Too hard to pick just one!  For me, any kind of tour through a foreign country/continent that takes advantage of all means of transportation; car, boat, train, bike, motorcycle, etc.  I love getting to see the small towns when traveling that you don't normally get to experience when jumping from airport to airport.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I can build computers.

 

Carly Jacobs, MD

Carly Jacobs Bio Photo

Hometown: St Louis, MO

Hobbies: Long walks while listening to Brene Brown podcasts, homebrewing, gardening, and watching movies

What is the biggest strength of our program? The culture. Our attendings and co-residents foster a culture of hard work, curiosity, and respect.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? As a CA1 on call at the university, we had an emergent liver transplant take back. The transplant surgery fellow literally rolled the patient into the OR herself as she was worried the patient was circling too fast. The senior resident overnight and I and the call attending all worked on getting the patient to sleep, intubating, placing new lines, starting massive transfusion and administering code drugs. As we stabilized the patient and the surgeons got control of the bleeding, the transplant anesthesia team had arrived as well. After things calmed down, blood bags were counted and code drugs charted, I looked around at the other team members with amazement and pride.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? I like our new academic days where the whole class does a day of lectures, simulation, oral board prep, and wellness activities. Especially in the times of COVID-19, these days allow us to come together as a class, learn, and socialize with our co-residents.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? Before medical school, I was a ski instructor for kids ages 3-14 at Winter Park Resort. It was so fun to watch the kids as they got better every week and eventually were able to ski with their families and enjoy a new activity together.

What is your dream vacation? When we can travel freely, I want to go hiking in the Dolomites and have ridiculously large, but delicious post hike meals in a small town pub and banter with the locals.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I am a percussionist. Snare drum, marimba, drum set, cowbell, guiro, just about any percussion instrument you can think of, I’ve played it. But my favorite instrument to pick up at a party or jam session is always the tambourine!

 

Anna Kotlarz, MD

anna kotlarz

Hometown: Syracuse, NY & Pensacola, FL

Hobbies: Anything outdoors - Snowboarding, windsurfing, enjoying the many parks and playgrounds Denver has to offer with my kids. Dance, Horseback riding, Baking...

What is the biggest strength of our program? Rotating between several different facilities

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Some of my favorite experiences have involved helping patients to feel comfortable preoperatively (like making those kids and parents laugh!), creating plans for chronic pain patients, and following up on laboring mothers after placing epidurals. It's very satisfying when you can make such an immediate impact on another's life.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? My favorite educational activities are the hands on learning we receive from the Attendings, who are always available and enthusiastic to teach.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? Peace Corps

What is your dream vacation? Mixture of history, culture, and some goal oriented outdoor activity...

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I'm an excellent seamstress and can be quite resourceful in the kitchen

 

Lauren MacDonald, MD, MBA

MacDonald
My family (Josh, Oliver and Ruby)
in front of our home in Denver.

Hometown: Highlands Ranch, CO

Hobbies: I have two black lab mixes and love taking them hiking, fly fishing and snowshoeing. I am an OrangeTheory addict and my husband and I are also working on expanding our home gym!

What is the biggest strength of our program? CU and the program leadership really value resident well being and are genuinely there for you in tough times. The program also attracts a group of diverse though like-minded people who are admirable colleagues and great friends.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? My rotation at Children’s Hospital was one of my favorites. The patient population is so diverse and the attendings were wonderful to work with.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? We were lucky to be able to attend a wellness retreat at the beginning of our CA-1 year where we learned techniques to maintain wellness throughout residency. It also was a great bonding event and mountain getaway!

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I worked for a year as a CNA at Craig Hospital in Denver and then went on the attend medical school at CU.

What is your dream vacation? My dream vacation is Greece, a mix of historic icons and amazing beaches!

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I am a pretty good weight lifter and was a cheerleader in college. Go Buffs!

David Mack, MD, MS

Mack
My wife Emily, my two daughters, and me in Fall 2019.

Hometown: Berrien Springs, MI

Hobbies: I love aviation. I learned to fly light single engine aircraft in college and did some flight instruction in grad school. I'm building an airplane in my garage that I plan to fly one day. I like to read fiction and non-fiction. I enjoy watching really good television (e.g. The Leftovers, Watchmen, Fargo, etc...). I enjoy single player video games and some couch co-op with my kids. Hiking and camping are always fun.

What is the biggest strength of our program? I think our people are great. I love my co-residents--they are smart and so supportive. I enjoy the amazing diversity of faculty that we work with across our various sites.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? I loved my cardiac anesthesia rotation. I think the heart is a fascinating organ and big heart cases are really fun. You do a bunch of lines at the beginning of the case, then examine the heart in detail with the TEE, and finally cook up the right mixture of vasopressors and inotropes. The transitions onto and off of bypass are fascinating examples of physiology and the necessary coordination between surgery, anesthesiology, and perfusion is exciting.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? As obvious as it may seem, I like hands-on learning in the OR. Residency is great, because you constantly work with new attendings that have different ways of doing things and various areas of expertise. They set out a buffet of techniques and knowledge for you to select from as you build your own practice style. You have room to try all kinds of things, all within that safe bubble of supervision.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I graduated college and grad school with degrees in Computer Science and spent the better part of a decade writing software, mainly for the U.S. Geological Survey. I eventually decided to go to med school and worked as an EMT while I completed premed coursework. My wife and I also started a family during this time and now have two awesome school age daughters.

What is your dream vacation? Somewhere remote and beautiful, far from civilization, with lots of relaxation and no schedule. Bonus points if I could fly myself there.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I'm an instrument certificated commercial pilot and I'm building a Van's Aircraft RV-7 two seater aircraft. I can drive stick shift and do most of my own car maintenance/repair. I play piano and clarinet. I'm SCUBA certified. I build my own computers.

 

David Maurer, MD

Maurer
My little family hanging out in one of the
small neighborhood parks in Cap Hill!

Hometown: Greenville, OH

Hobbies: I'm a big fan of the great outdoors! I love to hike, bike, run and do basically any other type of exercise. I love traveling and can't wait to get back to it. I spend a lot of quality time with my pup, as well.

What is the biggest strength of our program? The diversity of residents and faculty. People come from all walks of life and it’s really neat to see how those different experiences influence their practice. Those differences in practice style give us so many tools to choose from as we develop our own styles.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? I really like any time spent at Denver Health. You get to interact with a unique patient population and the faculty are so great at teaching. The trauma exposure is great and really helps prepare you for stressful situations in the OR.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I thought I was going to be an engineer before I moved into medicine. After my freshman year calculus classes smoked me, I realized I didn't like it as much as I thought! I also spent some time in graduate school studying exercise physiology (surprise, surprise!) before venturing to medical school.

What is your dream vacation? Back country hiking in northern Italy with my fiancée, exploring small towns, drinking tasty wine and eating my bodyweight in pasta!!

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I'm a singer and sang through college and med school.

 

Stephanie Nill, MD

Nill
Latest adventure: Croatia!
(circa 3 days before the world shut down)

Hometown: St. Louis, MO

Hobbies: I love to travel - that's the hobby I spend the vast majority of my vacations and money on.  My sister and I usually take at least one international trip per year in residency; so far we've made it to Russia, Israel, Croatia, and plan for Norway next spring pending COVID restrictions.  I also love all the options Denver offers -  hiking and snow sports of course, but also with all the amenities of a big city like seeing P!nk and other major entertainers when they come to town, dropping by to watch a game of hockey for only $20, or going to major art and food festivals around town.  And of course, anytime I have some downtime at home, I love to cuddle with my cats and read a good book!

What is the biggest strength of our program? Far and away my favorite part of our program is my class and the other residents I've gotten to meet.  They're the ones who've helped me on the hard days - either with a glass of wine after we get off or even offering to stay late for me if I need to go.  I think another major advantage of this program is our chair and program director, both of whom are actively working to change things they see are deficient but also are actively trying to ascertain from us other things that could be improved.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? This one is hard to pinpoint, I have just really enjoyed the different and unique facets of each new rotation along with the set of skills you learn on each one.  Maybe Acute Pain introduces you to epidurals and how fun they are to place, but OB really hones your skills and makes them second nature.  Or you learn A lines on Denver Health and get good at placing them blind, but then CT steps it up and teaches you how to work with ultrasound to place them awake.  Each one seems to bring a new skill to the table or a new way to do an old skill, and I love getting to expand my capabilities in different ways with each rotation.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? I actually really enjoyed the teaching at the VA, their attendings take the time to do *almost* daily lectures, and as a CA1, it was nice to see fellow residents and take a beat to learn something before starting the day.  You also get to know the department during your rotation there since it's smaller and they get to know you well since there's only a few of you there at a time, so often the lectures can be more tailored to things you are learning as a group and they aren't restricted to following a set curriculum.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I actually did Computer Science before medical school.  I had never really worked with computers much before college and wanted to get better at it, since it permeates all fields now.  I worked in it for a little while and decided I wanted to be moving and not doing a desk job, so ended up here in anesthesia.

What is your dream vacation? My dream vacation would be a month long trip in Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic, with all my cousins, and ending in London on the way home in order to be able to catch the latest musicals on the West End before going home.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? Well, after reading this you should be able to infer that I can code and create programs on the computer.  But these are what I really enjoy doing when I get the chance (and depending on the mood): throwing knives, shooting guns, and playing the piano.

 

Gisella Pere, MD

Pere
My husband and I in the Caribbean!

Hometown: Guayaquil, Ecuador

Hobbies: Taking my puppy on walks/hikes, running, trying new recipes with my husband

What is the biggest strength of our program? We get to participate in high acuity cases and rotate in four different hospitals with unique patient populations. Attendings are always motivated to teach. Making long lasting friendships and living in Denver!

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? I have enjoyed all my subspecialty rotations so far but my favorite rotation has been OB. We get to do tons of procedures and we get patients from all over Colorado with unique medical conditions requiring careful anesthetic considerations.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Weekly lectures because we cover a wide variety of high yield topics and I get to spend time with my co-residents!

What were you doing before you went into medicine? College and traveling!

What is your dream vacation? Going somewhere where I can see unique wildlife and try lots of new food!

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I played tennis in a Big Ten college (Purdue)

 

Kevin Quackenbush, MD

kevin quackenbush

Hometown: Arvada, CO

Hobbies: Acoustic guitar, camping, coffee, local breweries

What is the biggest strength of our program? I would call it a tie between 1) the quality of our faculty and 2) the breadth of cases available at our training sites (trauma, cardiac, thoracic, pediatric, complex oncology, liver/lung/heart/kidney/pancreas transplant, neuro, vascular, etc.)

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? My favorite clinical experience thus far has been the Liver Transplant rotation. Even though most of us in anesthesia won't go on to do liver transplants in the long run, these are complex and fast-paced cases that serve as amazing learning experiences. In addition, the other complex abdominal cases that we get to participate in during the rotation are very enjoyable.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? I really appreciate that our program allows us the opportunity and time off to travel to one conference each year, and offers educational funds that can be used to help offset the cost of these conferences. During my CA-1 year I had the opportunity to attend the ASRA Pain Conference in New Orleans, and it was an amazing experience.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I worked for about four years doing research in different places on the Anschutz campus. Two years were spent in a translational research lab in the Division of Medical Oncology, and two years were spent assisting with the Breast Cancer Clinical Trials program as a research coordinator.

What is your dream vacation? Someday (probably during retirement), I dream of driving cross-country with my wife and camping in all 50 states.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I don't know if I would really call it a skill, but over the years I've turned into a bit of a coffee nerd. I'm fortunate to have a brother-in-law that manages a great craft coffee shop in Arvada (Sweet Bloom Coffee Roasters), and they are arguably one of the best specialty coffee roasters in the US (yes, I am biased). Through him I've learned a ton about the world of specialty coffee and am on the never-ending quest to perfect a cup of pour-over.

 

Blake Titterington, MD

Titterington
Hiking in Boulder!

Hometown: Sacramento, CA

Hobbies: Hiking, Golfing, Working out, Craft Breweries

What is the biggest strength of our program? The people, Without a doubt!

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Acute Pain Service - a wonderful team environment where you get to hang with your friends and colleagues all day while performing epidurals and nerve blocks... does it get better?

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Family Feud... WELCOME TO THE THUNDERDOME

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I was a boring medical student!

What is your dream vacation? A beach with amazing waterfall hikes, some stiff cocktails, and all my family and friends

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I know how to horseback ride

 

Megan Wingfield, MD

Wingfield
Love spending as much time as possible outside! 

Hometown: Broomfield, CO

Hobbies: Lifting, hiking, spending time with family and friends, traveling

What is the biggest strength of our program? Tons of awesome attendings to work with. Huge variety of cases.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? I loved the OB rotation. It was way different than any other aspect of anesthesia and it’s fun to work with a variety of attendings overnight and see how different people do different things.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I played college tennis and ran a couple marathons the year before medical school. I also spent 8 months total in Guatemala doing medical work over the course of undergrad and my year off.

What is your dream vacation? Lots of hiking and exploring!

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I am a competitive powerlifter and hold the record for squat, bench and deadlift for my weight class in Nebraska (where I went to medical school)

 

Andrew Young, MD

Young
This is my family shortly after my daughter, Eliza, was
born this June. Also pictured are my wife, Kate, and
my other daughter, Cora.

Hometown: Panhandle, TX

Hobbies: I enjoy spending time with my family, including my daughters, Cora and Eliza. I also enjoy snow skiing, traveling, trying new restaurants, wine tasting, reading fiction, and hanging out with friends.

What is the biggest strength of our program? Our program has an amazing set of attending physicians who work in four different locations. I would have a difficult time picking my favorite location because each offers different approaches to anesthesia and unique educational experiences.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? My most interesting clinical experience was during my time in the preoperative anesthesia clinic when a man had a massive pulmonary embolism and coded outside in the parking lot. A senior resident, a group of great staff, and I coded the patient for 10 minutes before help arrived. We were able to get the patient safely to the ED. It is nice to know that the skills we learn in anesthesia have application outside the OR.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? As a CA1, the intensive lecture series that occurred twice a day during the first six weeks of training made me feel more confident navigating the steep learning curve that I encountered during my first several weeks in the OR.

What were you doing before you went into medicine? I went straight from college to medical school. Prior to starting my anesthesia training, I completed a pediatrics residency in Austin, Texas.

What is your dream vacation? My dream vacations are divided into three categories: someplace new, someplace I have been before, and someplace great for the whole family. Positano or Lake Como, Italy, are on my short list of places I have never been. I would also love to return to the champagne region of France. As for the whole family, I would like to pack up a sprinter van and drive to Yellowstone with my wife and daughters.

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? I like to try my hand at mixology and ambitious cooking and have dabbled in writing an epic fantasy novel.

 

Eric Yu, MD

Yu

Hometown: Grand Rapids, MI

Hobbies: Rock Climbing, Partner dancing

What is the biggest strength of our program? I definitely feel super supported by all my attendings. I've had life occurrences happen during my training such as a significant car accident and surgery. My chiefs and staff have never hesitated to help accommodate me and I feel so blessed to be part of this program.

What is your favorite clinical experience as a resident? Got to do some senior time back in the UCH general OR's. It was kinda crazy how much autonomy I was given after only 1 year in the OR's.

What is your favorite educational activity as a resident? Haha, kinda a nerd, but I really do enjoy studying physiology and new literature on phys/pharm discoveries

What were you doing before you went into medicine? Dance instructor

What is your dream vacation? Probably a week-long climbing trip somewhere exotic

What skills/talents do most people not know about you? Probably the dancing