Residents

Program Year 3

 

Dr. Sydney Dittman

Sydney Dittman, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BA, Wesleyan University, MS, Georgetown University, MD, Baylor College of Medicine

Hometown: Houston, TX

Hello!  I was born in Houston, TX and after spending a some time away from the heat for college and grad school, I ultimately returned to study at Baylor College of Medicine. I studied Neuroscience and Religion at Wesleyan University in Connecticut with a particular interest in Tibetan Buddhism. Through a windy path that involved traveling in India and Nepal, learning about Tibetan Medicine and working on a farm, I ultimately decided to go to graduate school in Washington, DC to study Complementary and Alternative Medicine. My education there informed my interest in primary care and choosing a specialty where I could work with the whole person and over the course of an entire lifetime.

During medical school, I spent some time in a free clinic for the homeless and developed an interest in working with the underserved and in better addressing the social determinants of health that have such a major impact on people’s well-being. I continued to be interested in integrative medicine and the ways in which we in health care can support both physical and psychological health. I also developed a special passion for working with older adults. I knew when I entered medical school that I wanted to go into primary care, but as third year came to a close and it came time to solidify my choice of specialty, I felt confident that Family Medicine was the absolute right choice for me as it is a profession that lends itself to addressing social health and mental well-being in addition to physical. When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with my partner, Geoff, and our pup, Costume. I guess you could say I am an amateur fermentation experimenter / weird food enthusiast and Geoff and I have experimented with brewing several batches of mead. As I imagine most in Colorado do – I am also a mountain/nature-lover and have tried my very best to spend all of my recent vacations hiking and backpacking in the mountains.

Dr. Leslie Guerrero

Leslie Guerrero, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS, Loyola University of Chicago; MD, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine

Hometown: Kalmazoo, MI

I am originally from Kalamazoo, Michigan, home of Bells Brewery, Gibson Guitars, and Stryker Medical Instruments. I grew up with a physician father, nurse mother, and two older sisters who now practice nursing and physical therapy. So family certainly played a strong role in my decision to pursue medicine as a career. My interests in healthcare, and in particular in family medicine, grew during my undergraduate education at Loyola University Chicago. Volunteering both at home in the city hospitals of Chicago, and abroad in a small clinic in Cuzco, Peru, I got to see the direct impact primary care has on disadvantaged communities. The same can be said for my experience at Michigan State College of Human Medicine, where I spent much of my time training in Flint, MI, infamously known for the recent lead crisis. Having the opportunity to train at University of Colorado, not only do I get to join an already incredible group of healthcare professionals, but I get to explore my passion for full spectrum family medicine. For years, my husband and I have taken trips to Denver to go backpacking, hiking, climbing, snowboarding, skiing, and you name it. He'll be joining me to train in Radiology at the University of Colorado, and we will certainly be taking advantage of all that Denver has to offer.

Dr. Kenny Herring

Kenny Herring, MD

University Health Track

Education: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine

Hometown: Greenville, SC

I grew up in beautiful Greenville, South Carolina at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains before heading off to undergrad at Clemson University (where my blood turned orange). After graduation, I moved to Charlotte, North Carolina for an opportunity with Teach For America and ended up teaching high school chemistry for three years. I then moved across the state to attend medical school at the University of North Carolina, where I found my home in family medicine. During my time in medical school, I helped lead a nutrition program for area elementary students, worked with a pipeline program to expose underserved high school students to opportunities within health care, and established a FMIG in Charlotte with a classmate. When I interviewed at the University of Colorado Family Medicine program, I truly felt at home— the residents and faculty were incredible, and I knew the training would foster my passions within family medicine.

Outside of medicine, I enjoy great food, good breweries, movie nights, and backpacking. I am excited to explore all that Denver and Colorado have to offer with my wife and our dog, and I hope to knock out a handful of fourteeners and pick up snowshoeing during residency.

Dr. Morgan Hungenberg

Morgan Hungenberg, DO

Rural Training Track

Education: A.T. Still University of Health Sciences School of Osteopathic Medicine Arizona

Hometown: Greeley, CO

I am a native of Colorado, raised in Greeley for most of my life. I completed my undergraduate degree in Biochemistry at the University of Denver. For medical school, I attended A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine Arizona. I loved living in Arizona and working in rural areas in the northern part of the state with several diverse groups of Native American populations. Though Arizona is an amazing state, I am very excited to return to Colorado! I first became interested in rural medicine when doing research exploring how to retain physicians in rural Colorado between my first and second years of medical school. One of the communities involved in the study just happened to be Fort Morgan. I feel like I already know the community and how great the people are. I can’t wait to practice and live in Fort Morgan as a family medicine resident and physician. As a Colorado girl, I love everything about the state from the mountains to the plains. When I am not working, I enjoy horseback riding, reading about historical events, and, of course, watching the Denver Broncos!

Dr. Naomi Malam

Naomi Malam, MD, MSPH

University Health Track

Education: University of Massachusetts Medical School

Hometown: Harvard, MA

Hello! I am a Colorado transplant and thrilled to be out in the wild, wild West for residency. I grew up in Massachusetts, but ventured south for college at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana where I studied public health, international development, and French. I stuck around to complete a Master of Science of Public Health in Tropical Medicine & Parasitology before returning home for medical school at the University of Massachusetts in Worcester! I was elated to match in Denver with my boyfriend, RJ Luraschi, who is starting in the pediatrics program here. I fell in love with family medicine after working with homeless, immigrant, and otherwise marginalized populations and seeing how powerful robust primary care can be for those populations. I’m also very interested in addiction medicine and palliative care. In my free time, I love to hike, practice yoga, cook, travel (especially road trips!), and spend time with family, friends, and my cat, Chip!

Dr. Alisa Malki

Alisa Malki, MD

University Health Track

Education: George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences

Hometown: Redlands, CA

I was born and raised in Redlands, California, and I am so excited to be in sunny Denver in this incredible program for residency! I received my undergraduate degree in International Development Studies from UCLA and did a post-baccalaureate, premedical program at Johns Hopkins University. Before starting medical school, I did HIV research at UCSF in San Francisco and in Uganda. I graduated from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. in the Global Health track and have now officially moved across the country 3.5 times. Within health care, I have a strong interest in global health, preventive medicine, and health advocacy. When I am not in the hospital or clinic, I enjoy learning how to ride my new tandem bike with my husband and attempting to hike in altitude. I also love all things food-related like cooking and exploring Denver’s food (read: ice cream) scene. I am thrilled to be a part of University of Colorado’s program because of the passionate, kind, and interesting people and the program’s focus on making primary care better for everyone.

Dr. Anita Matthews

Anita Mathews, MD, MPH

Denver Health Track

Education: Tufts University School of Medicine

Hometown: Nashville, TN

A native of Nashville, Tennessee, I am proud to come from a family of compassionate physicians who taught me early on that there is no greater privilege than to be fully invested in giving back to my community. I attended college at Brown University, where those family values merged with a passion for social justice and health equity. Before starting medical school, I worked as a health policy fellow in Washington, D.C. on issues of food insecurity and women’s health. I then received my medical and public health degrees from Tufts University, which fueled my drive to become a family physician caring for the underserved. My first visit to Colorado was for my interview at UCFMR, where I was delighted to find a group of residents, faculty, and staff who were devoted to championing comprehensive primary care. As part of the Denver Health track, I am eager to develop the skills not only to address my patients’ complex medical needs, but to attend to the social determinants of their health. I knew that this program would also prepare me to grow as a clinical educator and push for progress in our health care system. I strive to promote wellness not only for patients, but for providers as well, and fully believe that balance and gratitude are essential in the practice of medicine. In my free time you can find me cooking and baking with friends, painting, exploring coffee shops and restaurants, and taking in the Denver sunshine.

Dr. Christina Rabaza

Cristina Rabaza, MD

University Health Track

Education: University of Florida College of Medicine

Hometown: Miami, FL

I’m Cristi Rabaza, and I am so excited to be training in Family Medicine at CU Denver! I was born and raised in Miami with a huge Cuban family and then headed five hours north for college at the University of Florida in Gainesville, where I majored in Journalism. I loved it so much that I stayed there for medical school, where I spent a lot of time learning about health equity and patient literacy, especially among Spanish-speaking patients, both locally in the college’s mobile bus clinic system, as well as globally, by participating in and leading our short-term medical outreach trip to the Dominican Republic during my first three years. It was my interest in patient-centered care and practice innovation that attracted me to UCDenver’s Family Medicine Residency program in the first place, and working alongside a diverse group of individuals who are passionate about primary care tells me I made the right choice! In my free time I enjoy weightlifting and riding my road bike. I’m excited to explore Colorado’s great outdoors as well as its many indoor breweries!

Dr. Morgan Schiller

Morgan Schiller, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: Saint Louis University School of Medicine

Hometown: Portland, OR

A Pacific Northwest native and recent Midwestern transplant, I am thrilled to have landed at CU Denver! I grew up in the beautiful and eclectic (if wet) city of Portland and went to college at Western Washington University, where I studied biochemistry and Spanish and performed materials science research on biocompatible electrodes. Just after graduation, I married my high school sweetheart and we headed east for me to start medical school at Saint Louis University. During med school, I followed my passion for providing primary care to the underserved and improving community health: as a clinic volunteer and patient navigator, teaching preconception health, and establishing a free vaccine program at St. Louis’ low-cost Spanish-language clinic. I’m confident that the Denver Health track will give me the opportunity to provide high quality care to a diverse group of underserved patients both in the hospital and in clinic. This experience, combined with the teaching and resources here, will prepare me for a career practicing primary care medicine at a safety net clinic and doing public health advocacy. In my free time, I enjoy low-key outdoor adventures like hiking, canoeing, and camping. I can also be found singing around my house or with friends and hanging out with my husband, my friends, and my adorable dog and cat.

Dr. Ashley Schinske

Ashley Schinske, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: BS, University of Detroit, MD, University of Michigan Medical School

Hometown: Paw Paw, MI

Hello hello! My name is Ashley and I am originally from Paw Paw, Michigan- a town so nice they named it twice! I completed my undergraduate degree in nursing, while running track and field, at the University of Detroit Mercy. After undergrad, I began work as a med-surg nurse in Detroit, before heading off to medical school at the University of Michigan. For the first time in my life, I was missing the “athlete” part of my student-athlete identity. To remedy this, I started playing women’s tackle football for the Detroit Dark Angels. This turned out to be a wonderful decision, as I ended up meeting my wonderful wife, Lindsay. During medical school, I took a brief hiatus to become a NSCA-Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and complete an Olympic sports strength and conditioning internship in the athletic department at the University of Michigan. Additionally, I managed to continue working as a med-surg nurse, followed by a stint in school nursing and then rounding out my career in geriatrics. Family medicine always appealed to me because of the breadth of medicine involved at the ability to emphasize preventive care across all ages. My specific interests within the field include geriatrics, LGBTQ health and preventive medicine. Outside of the clinical setting, I enjoy working out and sports of all kind, trying to cook and spending time with my wife and adopted malti-poos: Lily and Dexter.

Dr. Stephen Spadafore

Stephen Spadafore, MD

University Health Track

Education: Michigan State University College of Human Medicine

Hometown: Frankenmuth, MI

I was born in Michigan and have lived there my whole life. I am incredibly excited to move out to Denver and experience the mountains and sunshine! I got my undergrad degree from the University of Michigan and my medical degree from Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. I’m thrilled to have matched with the University of Colorado Family Medicine Residency and look forward to training in an academic, innovative, collaborative environment. My clinical interests include full spectrum family medicine, sports medicine, and promoting healthy and active lifestyles. Outside of medicine, I enjoy almost any kind of sport, hiking, camping, hunting, craft beer, and spending time with my friends and family. Most importantly, I am blessed to share my life with my wonderful wife, Chelsea.

Dr. Jeff Utter

Jeff Utter, MD

University Health Track

Education: University of Arizona College of Medicine

Hometown: Salina, KS

Hi! I come from the state of Kansas, having lived in Kansas or Missouri most of my life. I obtained a bachelor’s in Microbiology, a bachelor’s in Latin American Studies and a master’s of Public Health from the University of Kansas. More recently, I finished medical school at the University of Arizona – Tucson in the lovely Sonoran Desert. I have experience in a variety of research settings, from virology to public health. I was also deployed as an Army medic attached to a combat support hospital outside of Tikrit, Iraq in 2007. My medical interests include providing health care for Native American, migrant and refugee populations, addiction medicine, and small office procedures. In my free time, I like to play guitar, go to comedy shows, and make attempts at exotic cooking, among a number of other outdoor- and event-related activities. I am very excited and grateful to be a part of such an excellent family medicine residency program and look forward to providing my best care for our patients, and developing into the best physician possible, throughout the course of my training.

Dr. John Weeks

John Weeks, MD

Denver Health Track

Education: Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine

Hometown: Paeonian Springs, VA

I’ve been a Virginia boy for most of my life but am thrilled to be able to come out and do my residency in Colorado! I studied at the College of William & Mary in Virginia, getting a degree in Neuroscience. I worked for four years as an interpreter and health promotor for migrant farm workers on the rural Eastern Shore of Virginia before coming back to study at Virginia Commonwealth University, where I received my medical training. Stemming from my prior work with farm workers, I take great pleasure in working with underserved and Spanish-speaking patients. I also enjoy sports medicine and procedures. I was very excited to come out to Colorado to enjoy the great hiking, mountain biking, and snow sports that the Rockies have to offer. I also enjoy playing soccer and basketball with friends. I’m excited to join the team and look forward to taking care of patients!

Dr. Alicia Wong

Alicia Wong, MD, MPH

Denver Health Track

Education: Boston University School of Medicine

Hometown: Westport, CT

I grew up in the beautiful coastal town of Westport, Connecticut, and am so excited to be out here for residency. I completed undergrad at Bowdoin College in Maine (GoUBears!), where I studied sociology and chemistry. After graduation, I moved to Boston to do health services research at Massachusetts General Hospital in The John D. Stoeckle Center for Primary Care Innovation. My projects included being on the CAHPS Quality Improvement Team for the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality; helping to open MGH’s Ambulatory Practice of the Future (APF); and studying how safety net practices improve their patient experience of care. During those formative years, I had amazing colleagues who were inspiring clinician-researchers, and I ultimately decided to pursue an MPH and MD at Boston University. While in grad school, I helped the APF apply for PCMH Level 3 accreditation, worked with BU’s Family Medicine Department to create a QI curriculum for medical students, and interned at the Center for Child & Adolescent Health Research and Policy to study health-related quality of life amongst adolescent and young adult tumor survivors.

I chose the University of Colorado because of its dedication to teaching, the diversity of its clinical sites, and the ability to have continuity clinic at an FQHC. More importantly, the residents I met on my interview day seemed genuinely happy and told me that they felt well supported. My interests in medicine include care for people with disabilities/complex conditions, transitions of care, QI, patient safety, health informatics, and medical education. In my free time, I love to play the piano, hike/run, do yoga, cheer for Boston sports teams, visit the botanical gardens, and spend as much time as I can with family and friends.