Residents

Program Year 1


Dr. Laura Billstein

Laura Billstein, MD

University Health Track

Education: BS, University of Minnesota Twin Cities; MD Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science  

Hometown: Woodbury, MN 

Hey! I’m Laura and I hail from the cold, northern lands of Minnesota. I grew up outside of Saint Paul and stayed at UMN to study biology and public health, which is where I first saw the influence that high-quality primary care and public health can have on a community. 

After college, I dove deeper into medicine while working for Regions Hospital as a critical care research intern and for Gillette Children’s Specialty Hospital as a nursing assistant/health unit coordinator. I explored public health, too, working for UMN’s Institute on Community Integration, assisting with a CDC program monitoring children with autism spectrum disorders and developmental disabilities. 

For medical school, I moved to the exciting city of Chicago. There, I focused mainly on developing my leadership skills as the Vice President of our class. I was also lucky enough to spend the majority of my clinical training at Cook County Hospital, widely known for providing care to the most underserved communities of Chicago.  

All of this led me to family medicine and UCFMR, which has everything I am looking for in a residency. The people are authentic, the opportunities are vast, and Colorful Colorado puts it over the top. In particular, the focus on practice innovation, public health, medical education, leadership, and advocacy/health policy is of great interest to me. I know UCFMR will develop me into a physician that can achieve all my ambitious career goals.  I feel so lucky to train here and am thrilled for what the future holds!

Dr. Christopher

Christopher “Chris” Chipman, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS, University of Kansas; MD, University of Kansas School of Medicine 

Hometown: Lenexa, KS

Hi! My name is Chris Chipman and I am extremely excited to be here at UCFMR! I was born and raised in Kansas City and attended the University of Kansas where I majored in cellular and molecular biology. At KU I was able to help start a chapter of Camp Kesem, a summer camp for children effected by a guardian’s cancer and continue to hold this cause near and dear to my heart.  

After graduating, I spent a year scribing and working construction before attending medical school at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. Spending time at the Jaydoc free clinic and volunteering during the covid pandemic underscored how different healthcare is for those with limited means, and helped foster my passion for underserved medicine, specifically in an urban environment.  

I chose to attend The University of Colorado Family Medicine Residency because they not only emphasize treating the underserved, but actively work within the community to improve access to healthcare for their patients. Urban underserved medicine, along with a focus on LGBTQ medicine, addiction medicine, and behavioral health, meant UCFMR had everything I was looking for in a residency program, and I am proud I get to be part of such a passionate group of people! 

Outside of medicine I enjoy skateboarding, snowboarding, working on cars, and spending time with my wife, cats, and family.

Dr. Madeline

Madeline “Maddie” Gates, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS, University of Notre Dame; MD, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

Hometown: Fort Thomas, KY 

Hi everyone! My name is Maddie Gates (she/her). I grew up in Northern Kentucky and attended the University of Notre Dame (Go Irish!) where I majored in Science-Business and minored in Poverty Studies. This is where I started to learn the huge effect that social determinants of health such as poverty, educational access, and racism have on morbidity and mortality. This sparked an interest in primary care for underserved communities which grew after I worked as a Care Coordinator at an FQHC in Cincinnati, OH.  

While in medical school at the University of Cincinnati, I had the opportunity to work with patients experiencing homelessness and gained further understanding of the systemic barriers that prevent people from achieving health. I also gained a new interest in caring for older adults. This population has a high degree of medical complexity along with frequent social and economic barriers, especially when it comes to long-term and end-of-life care. I knew that Family Medicine was the place to be if I wanted to make the biggest difference for these patients. 

I chose UCMFR because even through a virtual interview I could see the passion the residents and faculty had for their patients and the supportive learning community they built for each other. I am looking forward to providing care for everyone including newborns and older adults, refugees, and the un-insured, at an FQHC dedicated to the health of the community.

Dr. Natalie Hamilton

Natalie Hamilton , MD

University Health Track

Education: BS, Western Michigan University; MD, Central Michigan University  

Hometown: Gaylord, MI 

Hi there! I am beyond thrilled to be starting my career in family medicine at UCFMR. This is my first time leaving my home state of Michigan, but it has been the best decision I’ve made. I instantly felt welcomed and supported by all the amazing faculty and residents. I was always interested in medicine, but my love for family medicine really started with my 6-month comprehensive community clerkship in medical school where I was immersed in a small rural town with an incredible family medicine doctor who showed me all the joys of this specialty.  

In undergrad, I discovered my other big passion within medicine when I coached for Special Olympics. I witnessed the difficulties my athletes were facing within the healthcare system related to lack of knowledge about intellectual disabilities and stereotypes. In medical school I focused my research on healthcare disparities for patients with disabilities and developed educational training for medical students on how to better care for this population. My other interests within medicine include sports medicine, population health, and addiction medicine.  

In my spare time I love all things Colorado including hiking, biking, kayaking, and snowboarding. This year will be my first time hitting the slopes out west and I’ve heard that once that happens it will be hard to go back to the hills of Michigan. I also love Sunday farmers markets, a competitive game of Euchre (for all those Midwesterners out there) and reading a good book in my hammock. 
Dr. Logan Harper

Logan Harper , MD

University Health Track

Education: BA, Lewis and Clark College; MD, Oregon Health and Science University 

Hometown: Medford, OR 

Hello there! I’m Logan (he/him), and I left my beloved home state of Oregon to join this awesome program here in Colorado. As difficult as it can be to uproot your life and move halfway across the country, it did not take me long to feel confident that I am in the right place. As a new intern, I cannot overstate how good it feels to be welcomed by the collaborative, supportive community here at UCFMR. 

As a medical student at OHSU, I learned the importance of working toward structural change as a means of practicing preventive medicine. I wanted a residency where my colleagues and teachers do not stop at acknowledging the systemic marginalization leading to massive health inequities, but instead dedicate themselves to effecting real change. I have found this at UCFMR, and I am so excited to take advantage of the opportunities presented by this program, including political advocacy at the state level and a third-year elective dedicated to learning about health policy. 

Living a well-rounded lifestyle is particularly important to me - another fact that motivated me to choose this program. I have yet to experience the legendary Rocky Mountain snow, but I plan to take every opportunity this winter to ride the fresh pow. Denver has so much great food and nightlife. I doubt that I’ll be able to make much of a dent in the next three years, but that won’t stop me from trying!

Dr. Sylvia Hayes

Sylvia Hayes , MD

University Health Track

Education: BS, Oklahoma City University; MD, University of Oklahoma 

Hometown: Colorado Springs, CO 

Hello! My name is Sylvia (she/her) and I grew up in Colorado Springs before moving to Oklahoma for college and medical school. In college, I developed a passion for disparities in healthcare through volunteering at a local free health clinic each Saturday. My commitment to working with underserved communities grew in medical school as I coordinated volunteers for another clinic caring for uninsured patients in Oklahoma City. I also developed a passion for reproductive health care and got involved with LGBTQ+ and reproductive health education. During my last year in medical school, my colleagues and I founded the Reproductive Health Symposium, a student run conference intended to teach medical students about everything from breastfeeding disparities to creating safe spaces for trans patients to abortion care. Through founding the symposium, I quickly realized my passion for academic medicine. 

UCFMR was the perfect fit for me due to its strengths in academic medicine, caring for underserved populations, and reproductive health care. One of the things I love most about the program is its ability to meet the needs of residents with extremely different career goals due to the strong and varied faculty. Also, the people here are always friendly and passionate about their work.

Outside of medicine you can find me running, water skiing, swimming, or snow skiing. I also love reading books about psychology and cognition and exploring food from other cultures.

Dr. Amber Karamanis

Amber Karamanis, MD

University Health Track

Education: BA, Louisiana State University; MD, LSU-New Orleans 

Hometown: West Monroe, LA

Hi there! I was born among the swamps and sweltering humidity of the great state of Louisiana. My circuitous journey to medicine started at LSU where I majored in Journalism and English with the intent of becoming a humanitarian journalist. After working with anti-human trafficking organizations in China and Baton Rouge and seeing the impact healthcare can have personally and communally on breaking generational cycles of trauma, I decided to pursue medicine. Several post-baccalaureate victory laps later, I found myself at LSU-New Orleans for medical school. 

In New Orleans I was fortunate to work as an HIV/HepC screener at our community clinic as well as a health partner at our women and children’s shelter. Working with these communities and the underserved populations in New Orleans taught me the importance of addressing social determinants and barriers to health. 

I chose family medicine because I believe in the power of longitudinal relationships and family medicine’s power to address the social and health inequalities rampant in our nation and healthcare system. I chose UCFMR not only because of its innovation in our field but because of the passion of the faculty and residents to provide high quality care to all. 

In my free time I’m an amateur, amateur potter. You can catch me singing showtunes to my dog Gumbo and trying to convince my husband that what I’m baking is actually healthy because it’s made of almond flour. I enjoy reading, writing, board games, puns, and experiencing the world through travel and food.

Dr. Nicholas

Nicholas “Nik” Kaufman, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS/MD, University of Florida 

Hometown: Fort Lauderdale, FL 

Hello! My name is Nik Kaufman (he/him), and I was born and raised in South Florida. I studied at the University of Florida, where I completed a 7-year combined B.S./M.D. program. 

I decided in my second year of medical school that I wanted to pursue family medicine when I realized I could do the most amount of good for the most amount of people in primary care. Due to my firm belief that health care is a human right, I was very involved with UF’s Equal Access Clinic (a student-run, free clinic), serving as the clinic director for one of our primary care sites, where we also hosted a monthly LGBTQ+ night. I grew to love underserved medicine, gender affirming care, and medical education. Rotating with hematology/oncology during my medicine clerkship, I saw how rewarding it could be to ease suffering and work with patients and their families to develop a treatment plan that best aligns with the patient’s goals. After residency, I plan to complete fellowships in palliative care and faculty development. 

UCFMR emphasizes everything I care most about: underserved medicine through Denver Health and the DAWN clinic, LGBTQ+ health with gender affirming care in continuity clinic, and palliative care through a nationally renowned program. 

In my free time, I love biking, hiking, beach volleyball, playing piano, and reading on the balcony with my lovely cat, Butters. Denver is an incredible place to live, and I can’t imagine being happier.

Dr. Jennifer

Jennifer “Jenny” Kordell, MD

University Health Track

Education: BS, High Point University; MD, West Virginia University

Hometowns: Ijamsville, MD

Hi everyone! My name is Jenny Kordell (she/her/hers) and I was born and raised in Ijamsville, Maryland (not a typo, it is an actual place I promise) with my 3 sisters. I went to undergrad at High Point University in North Carolina where I played division 1 soccer and majored in chemistry. This is where I realized that medicine, and especially sports medicine, was what I wanted to do with my life.  I then went on to West Virginia University for medical school where I discovered my passion for caring for the underserved while working at the local free clinic. After residency, I plan on pursuing a fellowship in sports medicine.  

I chose UCFMR because this program provides me with all the opportunities necessary to become the best well-rounded family medicine and sports medicine physician. Furthermore, the culture at UCFMR is something special, and I feel very fortuntate that I am training with such wonderful and compassionate physicians and people.  

Outside of medicine, much like most of the people who come here, I love the outdoors.  I like to run, hike, and play all kinds of sports with my husband Jon. But that doesn’t mean you won’t also find me binging Netflix and overeating at many of the delicious local restaurants.

Dr. Paula Rincon

Paula Rincon, MD

Rural Training Track

Education: BS, University of California Davis; MD, West Virginia University School of Medicine- Martinsburg 

Hometown: Honoka’a, HI 

Hey Everyone! I was born and raised on the Big Island of Hawaii. I spent most of my time between the small towns of Waimea and Honoka’a. I grew up alongside my 6 siblings on a strawberry farm.  

I studied Biology at the University of California Davis. While at UC Davis, my work as a caregiver lead me towards a career in medicine. I took a gap year after finishing my BS and spent my time scribing for the Community Health Center of the Central Coast in California. I traveled to West Virginia to attend medical school at WVU. I choose to complete my clinical education at the WVU SOM’s rural campus in Martinsburg, WV. While in Martinsburg, I had the opportunity to volunteer at Good Samaritan Free Clinic and develop my passion for rural medicine.  

I am very excited to be in Colorado and to be a part of the UCFMR RTT! I chose this program because this program offers the opportunity to train in a large, university hospital as well as a diverse rural community.  I am passionate about rural healthcare, women’s health, advocacy and health policy.

Outside of medicine, I enjoy hiking, cooking, and riding horses.

Dr. Jason Rivera

Jason Rivera, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS, University of South Florida; MD, Florida State University 

Hometown: Bronx, NY 

Hey there! I was born and raised in the Bronx, New York and moved to Florida at 9 years old. I went to USF for undergrad (Go Bulls!) and attended FSU for medical school (Go Noles!). 

Being from a disadvantaged background has given me a unique perspective on caring for underserved populations. As someone who has always been underinsured and even uninsured, I can empathize with patients who delay or forego care due to the cost burden. I absolutely believe healthcare is a human right and I have spent the past few years advocating for comprehensive healthcare reform that prioritizes patient health over profits.  

I knew that Family Medicine was for me because it blends public health, population health, and social determinants of health along with the individual needs of the patient in front of you. There is no other specialty that remains so closely knit with the community and serves people from all walks of life.  

I chose to attend the University of Colorado Family Medicine Residency because they saw how passionate I am and embraced it. As a huge advocate for health equity, anti-racism, and inclusivity, I was met with encouragement and action steps they are taking to address these. I immediately felt at home with a group of supportive faculty, staff, and co-residents who share similar views. This program goes above and beyond to make me feel welcome.  

Outside of medicine, I love to play/watch sports, hike, and spend time with my dogs, wife, and brothers.

Dr. Johanna Thompson-Westra

Johanna Thompson-Westra, MD

Rural Training Track

Education: BS, Brown University; MD, University of Maryland 

Hometowns: Brunswick, ME 

Hello! I’m Johanna (she/her/hers), and I'm a wicked proud native Mainah! After studying Neuroscience in undergrad I moved to Maryland, where I worked as an emergency department medical scribe and a postbac clinical research fellow at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke studying movement disorders such as Essential Tremor and Parkinson Disease.  

I came to medical school already favoring family medicine due to my interests in primary care, public health, and health disparities that began in college, and I’ve never looked back since. Through a longitudinal Medical Spanish elective, I volunteered in a clinic for undocumented immigrants, where I found my love for working with diverse and underserved populations. I also rotated at a family medicine practice in western Maryland as part of the AHEC Rural Scholars program, where I got to witness the critical role of family physicians in small, under-resourced communities. 

I was drawn to UCFMR Rural Training Track because of the amazing opportunity to learn rural medicine in a diverse, unique community. I appreciated the balance of university and community-based training as well as opportunities for residents to stay involved in activities like journal clubs back in Denver. The warmth and care I felt from every interaction during interviews made me confident that I would be supported and welcomed here, and I was definitely right! I value work-life balance and knew Colorado would make it easy for me to enjoy hiking, backpacking, and going to live music shows (Red Rocks, anyone?).

Dr. Corey Walsh

Corey Walsh, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS, University of Michigan; MD, University of Colorado 

Hometown: St. Louis, MO 

Hey folks! My name is Corey (he/him & they/them), and I grew up in the cornfields of rural Illinois before my family relocated to St. Louis. I went to the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where I majored in Neuroscience and Environmental Studies.  

With interests at the intersection of science, environmentalism, education, and indigenous rights, I accepted a teaching position at Chuuk High School in the Federated States of Micronesia after college. On this island in the Pacific, I taught 12th grade Physics and led after school programming for our Earth Council and Boys’ Club. Upon returning to the U.S., I joined an AmeriCorps program in Washington D.C., where I was paired with a local non-profit called HIPS. During my time there, I managed the city’s largest volume syringe access program for injection drug users and a unique overnight outreach program for street-based sex workers, largely providing support for transgender women of color. 

Infatuated with the mountains, I moved to Denver for medical school. In town, I’ve continued my work with our local syringe access program, and I’m penpals with incarcerated LGBTQ Coloradans and detainees at the ICE Detention Center near the University Hospital. I decided to stay at UCFMR in large part due to my 3rd year FM rotation at the Lowry Clinic, where DH residents spend most of their time. At Lowry, I hope to provide gender-affirming therapy, integrate substance use treatment into primary care, and care for Denver’s immigrant Chuukese population.