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Resident Alumni

Class of 2019

Dallas Beaird, MD

Hometown: Long Beach, CA

Medical School: Drexel University College of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I loved the friendly attitude of the residents and attendings. I couldn't wait to move back to California.

Why did you choose your specialty? I love the mix of variety and excitement the Emergency Dept provides. An EM doc is well rounded and can take on any challenge.

What are your hobbies? Disc golf, cycling, bird watching and camping.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My girlfriend

David Fujihara, DO

Hometown: Clovis, CA

Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? Kaweah Health is a fantastic residency program with great autonomy, a large census, diverse pathology, and an underserved population that has excellent teaching and didactics. I was really impressed by the faculty and pathology and am very excited to be a part of the program.

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose emergency medicine because I enjoy the emergent management of disease processes, the mixture of procedures and critical care, giving patients reassurance, and helping patients and their families work through new diagnoses.

What are your hobbies? Basketball, golf, mountain biking, skiing, reading, working out.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife, Rachel, my 16-month-old daughter, Olivet, and another baby girl on the way!

Christopher Goodwill, MD

Hometown: Orange County, CA

Medical School: University of Nevada School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I wanted to train in a high acuity, high volume ED where I had the opportunity to get proficient with procedures, get great trauma experience, and work with awesome faculty and residents.

Why did you choose your specialty? I enjoy the fast-paced, intense, team-driven environment that the emergency room provides. I enjoy thinking on my feet to solve complex problems and providing at times lifesaving care to patients. I feel honored to have this responsibility.

What are your hobbies? Triathlons, hiking, mountain biking, camping, surfing, snowboarding, fishing and all sports-related activities

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife and two young kids.

Michael Johnson, DO

Hometown: Pleasanton, CA

Medical School: Touro University - California College of Osteopathic Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I did an audition rotation during my 4th year and absolutely loved the experience. The staff and residents were all amazing and I knew that I would get top tier training here at Kaweah Health.

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose emergency medicine because I couldn't see myself doing anything else while enjoying every second of it.

What are your hobbies? Playing basketball, hiking, running, weight training, and traveling to new places to eat amazing food.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife, Marisa, and our corgi, Kina.

Norlan Maltez, MD

Hometown: Fontana, CA

Medical School: University of Nevada School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I had heard great things about Kaweah Health and decided to complete a sub-internship here during medical school. During that time, I discovered Kaweah Health's commitment to providing compassionate care, serving the community, and pursuing excellence in medicine. Everyone I interacted with during that time - whether medical or support staff - demonstrated enthusiasm and pride in the organization and its mission. I knew then that the heart of this program was aligned with my own and that I would fit in well here.

Why did you choose your specialty? An Emergency Room visit represents at best a bad day, at worst a day of tragedy. I simply want to help make that day a little easier on my patients and their families if I can. As an Emergency Physician, I can help decrease suffering, place my patient on the path which maximizes the opportunity for recovery, and support the emotional well-being of my patients and their loved ones. I also feel that the abilities and skills I have developed over the years as a paramedic will be put to good use in my chosen specialty.

What are your hobbies? Aviation, technology and finance.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife and children.

Elizabeth Nguyen, MD

Hometown: San Francisco, CA

Medical School: Saint Louis University School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? Patient population, location and faculty. I wanted to be able to provide for the medically underserved while being close to family. It was an additional bonus that Kaweah Health is a 3-year program in an area with a low cost of living. On the interview trail, I was won over by the enthusiasm and passion of the faculty - they shared similar beliefs on our roles as physicians and understood the things that I felt to be the most important in life.

Why did you choose your specialty? Every day brings something new and exciting. I enjoy seeing a variety of patients, diagnosing the undifferentiated patient, and being able to handle almost any situation.

What are your hobbies? Hanging out with friends, exploring new restaurants, geocaching

Christopher Schaefer, DO

Hometown: Palmdale, CA

Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? California's Central Valley is a fantastic place to learn the practice of Emergency Medicine. Visalia is an urban island in the middle of acres and acres of agriculture. As the only hospital in town, Kaweah Health has a huge catchment area and is a great mix of community hospital resources with a county-sized census and array of pathology.

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose Emergency Medicine because I wanted to be a sort of jack-of-all trades. Emergency Physicians are often the first point of contact for patients, and the idea of being able to figure out what is going on with anyone who walks in through the door was very appealing to me. It's a great mix of the medical and surgical aspects to medicine, and I love getting my hands dirty!

What are your hobbies? To sort of break the mold of the outdoorsy, adventurist archetype of an ER doc, I am more of a homebody. I have an extensive collection of musical instruments from all over the world, and I attempt to play all of them, some better than others. Having just bought our first home together, my wife and I will soon be developing new hobbies of home renovation!

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife, Kristen.

Caroline Schrodt, DO

Hometown: Bakersfield, CA

Medical School: Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I chose KD because it's a new program with lots of energy and excitement from the hospital, community, program director and faculty. Still largely unopposed. Also, LOCATION!

Why did you choose your specialty? Love the diversity of patient problems and patient ages. In the emergency department, I have the opportunity to practice a little in every specialty.

What are your hobbies? Yoga, running, cycling, swimming, hiking, gardening, wine, food

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My husband, Robert, and Australian Kelpie, Hazel.

Brian Tanner, MD

Hometown: Los Alamitos, CA

Medical School: University of California, Davis, School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I was really impressed by the confidence the residents have in their training. All the residents and faculty seemed like very knowledgeable and fun people to be around. The surrounding area is full of great outdoor activities, and the cost of living is low!

Why did you choose your specialty? I love the variety and acuity that is Emergency Medicine. I believe that EM is the best way for a physician to maximize their utility to the community, and it's just really, really fun.

What are your hobbies? Hiking, backpacking, gardening, traveling, guitar

Dries Van Dyk, DO

Hometown: Visalia, CA

Medical School: Touro University - Nevada College of Osteopathic Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health's residency program? I was born and raised in Visalia. This is my home. I was thrilled to learn that Kaweah Health had opened an Emergency Medicine residency and dreamed that I would be able to return to continue my training as a physician. It is an amazing opportunity to give back to the community that helped shape me into the person that I am today. Not to mention the excellent faculty and the available learning opportunities provided at this growing location in the central valley.

Why did you choose your specialty? Emergency medicine is one of the most exciting fields of medicine. There is always something interesting to do. The variety of patients isn't seen in any other field of medicine. There are parts of critical care, orthopedics, pediatrics, OB/GYN and many more. We are also a safety net for the community. When you need us, we are there for you every day of the year.

What are your hobbies? Dodger baseball, USC football, ultimate frisbee, trying to cook the world's most perfect brisket

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My beautiful wife, soon to be son, and our two dogs.

Class of 2016

James Tse, DO

Where you will be going after residency at Kaweah Health? Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center in Torrance, CA.

Matt Poliakoff, DO

Where you will be going after residency at Kaweah Health? Kaiser Permanente in San Diego.

Ty Philipson, MD

Where you will be going after residency at Kaweah Health? Mercy Hospital ADA in Ada, Oklahoma.

Sean Oldroyd, DO

Where you will be going after residency at Kaweah Health? Kaweah Health

Trung Le, MD

Where you will be going after residency at Kaweah Health? San Joaquin General Hospital in French Camp, CA.

Daniel Fong, MD

Where you will be going after residency at Kaweah Health? Employed at Good Samaritan Medical Center in Lafayette, CO.

Class of 2017

Sean Andrews, DO - Resident Physician

2017 Graduation Class

Hometown: Thousand Oaks, California

Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? Kaweah Health’s residency program was my first choice for a number of reasons. It’s a 3-year program at a community hospital with very few residents and a large number of ED visits per year. This results in plenty of procedural experience and the attendings are motivated to teach. Kaweah is exceptionally professional and supportive of their residents. If you rotate or join our program you will definitely notice the difference. In addition, the town of Visalia is amazing with friendly people, small town feel, nice cafés, and beautiful mountains nearby. I’m from Los Angeles County so the lack of traffic was a huge plus!

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose emergency medicine because you are never bored! It’s a huge challenge where you get to meet lots of interesting people and I can save someone’s life with critical life-saving decisions and/or procedures.

What are your hobbies? I’ve been surfing most of my life. I like to keep up with world events, backpack and go hunting, as well.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? I will be the only one moving to Visalia.

David Denson, MD - Resident Physician

2017 Graduation Class

Hometown: Ogden, Utah

Medical School: Medical College of Wisconsin

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? I felt I would get optimal patient exposure, with plenty of opportunities for procedures. I also wanted to be a part of a new, growing program, both to see how a residency works from the grown-up and to help shape the program. Current residents seemed happy and well-trained. Living in beautiful Visalia, California.

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose the field of Emergency Medicine because of the fast pace and variety of patients. I enjoy the challenge of discovering and diagnosing new problems. There is never a dull moment in the emergency department.

What are your hobbies? I enjoy just about any activity outdoors. I am an avid snowboarder, wakeboarder, and camper. I also enjoy cycling and hiking. I like most movies and books, especially sci/fi and fantasy. I like cooking and baking when time permits.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? I will be moving to Visalia by myself.

Tam Le, MD - Resident Physician

2017 Graduation Class

Hometown: Cypress, California

Medical School: Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & Science

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? So many factors drew me to this program. Geography? Check. Receptive and encouraging faculty? Check. Being a part of building something special? Check. Training in what I love in the state I love? Check. It doesn’t get any better than this.

Why did you choose your specialty? I fell in love with the idea of emergency medicine before medical school, as an EMT. Aside from projectile vomiting and spurting blood, the idea of commanding the front lines of health care captivated me. As a third and fourth year medical student, actually experiencing the procedures, environment, and people of the ER, sealed my fate. This is the perfect profession for me. Plus, George Clooney was kind of awesome on ER.

What are your hobbies? Enjoying any activity in the fresh, crisp air of mother nature. Daydreaming about it while indoors. This includes, but is not limited to, camping, hiking, beach-ing, snowboarding, zip lining, cave spelunking, and rock climbing. Getting lost in a book/movie/TV show. Getting lost, in general. Eating. Anything and everything. I will try anything once. Breweries and wineries. Exercising vigorously to supplement the previous 3 hobbies. Concerts of any kind. Spending the following days recovering from hearing loss. Basically, living life to its fullest, without regret. Okay, maybe some regret.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? The love and kindred spirits of all my friends and family.

Erik Miguel, DO - Chief Resident Physician

2017 Graduation Class

Hometown: St. George, Utah

Medical School: A.T. Still University - School of Osteopathic Medicine Arizona

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? Kaweah Health had everything I wanted in a residency program: a high volume/high acuity ER, lots of procedures, great trauma experience, happy residents, and a program director that is super excited about her program! Not to mention it's a 3-year program in sunny California!

Why did you choose your specialty? I love the excitement of being in the ER and the variety of patients you get to help! I like the fast pace and the procedures and, come on, everyone's seen the ER shows on TV... working in the ER is awesome!

What are your hobbies? Running, snowboarding, wakeboarding, surfing, rock climbing, hiking, fishing, and playing with my two kids!

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My beautiful wife and my kids.

Annie Slife, DO - Resident Physician

2017 Graduation Class

Hometown: Phoenix, Arizona

Medical School: Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine of Midwestern University

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? As the second class, we have an amazing opportunity to lay a strong foundation for what I know will become an incredible residency program in one of the most beautiful areas of the country!

Why did you choose your specialty? I have been drawn to Emergency Medicine since before medical school. It allows me to be in the front lines of America's health and gives me the skills I need to make a real and measurable difference when someone is in need.

What are your hobbies? I enjoy long-distance cycling, crossfit, cooking, camping, and hiking!

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My amazing husband, Derek, and our incredible 11-year-old daughter, Eislynn.

Kunal Sukhija, MD - Chief Resident Physician

2017 Graduation Class

Hometown: Los Angeles, California

Medical School: UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? The decision was an easy one. Kaweah Health's Emergency Department offers unopposed training, incredibly varied pathology, and the opportunity to help patients from all walks of life. During my interview, I was extremely impressed by the first intern class -- the knowledge and experience they accrued in less than a year's worth of training put them ahead of many senior level residents that I met elsewhere.

Why did you choose your specialty? Emergency Medicine, simply put, is the best specialty. We are on the front lines fighting all types of illness in a time, resource, and information-limited environment. It's fast, intense, and incredibly rewarding to be able to help patients at such a critical time in their lives. I also believe that EM is perfectly poised to usher in a new era of heatlhcare as the nation continues to evolve under the new Affordable Care Act.

What are your hobbies? Road tripping, watching Cohen brothers' movies, social justice, Lakers' basketball, dabbling in all forms of exercise, drinking large volumes of coffee, healthcare legislation, eating breakfast for every meal, minor and major home repair, developing healthcare-related technologies, traveling and learning about different cultures, and my newest hobby: exploring Visalia and its nearby natural wonders.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife and our extremely talented but ultimately lazy cat Popsicle.

Class of 2018

Juan Arhancet, DO - Resident Physician

2018 Graduation Class

Hometown: Montevideo, Uruguay

Medical School: Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? I chose KD because it is a 3-year program in California, where I hope to work going forward. Another huge draw for me was that the EM residents are the only residents in the room for traumas. The residents also log a very high number of procedures and see a large volume of complex patients.

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose EM because it allows me to impact a large number of needy patients with often critical interventions. The specialty requires me to constantly learn and adapt to each new encounter. EM was by far the most fulfilling specialty for my personality.

What are your hobbies? Soccer, fly-fishing, surfing, backpacking, skiing and traveling.

Xi Damrell, MD, MS - Chief Resident Physician

2018 Graduation Class

Hometown: Shanghai, P.R.C.

Medical School: Ohio State University College of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? The quality of the program and the people.

Why did you choose your specialty? To help people when they need it the most.

What are your hobbies? Travel, popular culture, cuisine, hiking.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My husband.

Renee DeNolf, MD - Chief Resident Physician

2018 Graduation Class

Hometown: Yucaipa, CA

Medical School: Western University of Health Sciences

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? I had two very good rotation experiences at Kaweah Health. Almost every attending physician, resident, and staff member I worked with was not only happy to teach, but excited to teach. I think this is the best type of environment to learn and foster growth in medicine.

Why did you choose your specialty? Emergency medicine is one of the few fields that allows you to dabble in almost every specialty. Every day, you can perform eye exams, orthopedic reductions, run codes, etc. I have never enjoyed going to work more than in EM.

What are your hobbies? Skiing, cycling, running, baking, gardening, and archery.

Who influenced you to become a physician and why? I have always known I wanted to become a doctor. Each day I am able to help at least one person, that dream is fulfilled.

What do you like about living in Tulare County? Visailia has the small-town vibe with access to mountain country, beach cruising, and big city fun.

What's the most important advice you have for patients? Be patient. We realize that there are times in which you must wait for what seems like hours on end before seeing a doctor. We are doing everything we can to resolve this discrepancy. However, there is a lot of work going on behind the curtain (paperwork, orders, critically ill patients, acute traumas) that take time to complete. Please, give us the benefit of the doubt, and this will allow us to care for you to the best of our abilities.

What's something about you most people don't know? Although I absolutely hate the gym, I love staying active. I enjoy bicycling (and just started mountain biking), running, hiking, gardening, and DIV house projects.

What advice do you have for a student who would like to become a physician one day? It is a demanding job. Although it has been said, "don't let work become your life," in medicine, there is no distinction. However, if all you dream of is to walk through those hospital doors day in and day out, helping others in ways that others cannot even begin to comprehend, this is the job for you. It is fulfilling in ways other jobs cannot compare. Perhaps, it's because this more than just a job; it's a lifestyle.

Brian Koch, MD - Resident Physician

2018 Graduation Class

Hometown: Martinez, CA

Medical School: Hofstra North Shore LIJ School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? I chose Kaweah Health because of the tremendous opportunity to train as an emergency physician. I look forward to learning from everyone at this new innovative program and I am eager to serve the surrounding community.

Why did you choose your specialty? I chose Emergency Medicine because of the unique opportunity it presents to treat people from all walks of life in their time of need.

What are your hobbies? I enjoy skiing, hiking, kayaking, collecting records, trying new foods, frisbee golf and traveling.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My lovely girlfriend, Victoria. She is an amazing woman from New York who is excited to come to California and explore its numerous wonders that I had the opportunity to experience in my youth.

David Kwon, MD - Resident Physician

2018 Graduation Class

Hometown: Wonju, South Korea

Medical School: Loma Linda University School of Medicine

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? Great case load and case mix, strong resident training opportunities and autonomy, open-minded leadership that values residents' input.

Why did you choose your specialty? Providing foremost medical treatment for critical patients. Many opportunities to use my dexterity on a variety of procedures. Adrenaline rush.

What are your hobbies? Futball, weight training, snowboarding.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife, Julie.

Stephen Wolfe, DO - Resident Physician

2018 Graduation Class

Hometown: Anchorage, AK

Medical School: Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine of Midwestern University

Why did you select Kaweah Health’s residency program? Kaweah Health has a rare combination of attributes. This starts with a superb training environment due to great patient volume, a wide variety of pathology, good acuity, and a relative lack of competition from competing residency programs. Although a newer program, Kaweah Health is rapidly gathering depth and acdemic strength in its well-regarded faculty and its association with UC Irvine. In addition, the cost of living, weather and nearby access to some lesser-advertised but remarkable wilderness/mountains, make the Visalia area stand out. We have an exceptional opportunity here to grow in EM knowledge and experience. I have also discovered a pleasant/affordable place to explore the outdoors and raise a family.

Why did you choose your specialty? I am most energized in medicine when I can use both my hands and technology to minimize pain, to treat an acutely ill patient, and see immediate outcomes. I enjoy the challenge of being the first to think through a differential, and to devise a diagnosis and management strategy. I like seeing and interpreting lab results immediately, then making treatment decisions in dynamic team environments. Emergency Medicine has a wide-ranging scope of practice and requires that its physicians are able to function knowledgeably with all aspects of medicine. I have found that EM consistently has the ability to, sometimes dramatically, affect outcomes. It is a privilege to treat patients in their hour of significant need.

What are your hobbies? Before medical school, I enjoyed many more outdoor opportunities than I have time for now, but I still dream of a great powder run on my tele-skis. I try to exercise reguarly with swimming, hiking and a crossfit-type regimen. Occasionally, I have been known to hunt and fish, but not necessarily bag or catch.

Who will be moving to Visalia with you? My wife and four aspiring princesses (ages 1-6 yrs) will accompany me, but we are molding the young ladies into rugged outdoors enthusiasts that will outdo and embarrass any future suitors.