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Pediatrics Residency Program

Faculty & Research Interests


Our faculty comprises a wide range of backgrounds and interests with many holding dual certifications or other advanced degrees.  In addition to providing hands-on, 24-hour department supervision and teaching, all faculty members share a commitment to creating an atmosphere that is conducive to the advancement of our specialty.

Faculty members also participate in regional and national professional organizations and research endeavors.  Many also serve on national committees and organizations dedicated to the growth and development.  Meet some of our faculty.

Nikki Allmendinger, MD
Undergraduate School: Trinity College
Medical School: University of Connecticut
Pediatrics Residency: University of Connecticut (Connecticut Children's Medical Center)
Subspecialty Fellowship: Dupont Hospital for Children
Professional Interests: IBD
Personal Interests: Skiing, water sports, traveling

Lilliana Barillas-Arias , MD
Undergraduate School: Universidad de Costa Rica
Medical School: Universidad de Costa Rica
Pediatrics Residency:  New York Methodist Hospital
Fellowship: Hospital for Special Surgery, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Weill Cornell Medical College
Chief Resident:  Yes
Professional Interests: SLE, arthritis, vasculitic syndromes in children
Personal Interests: travel, sports and family

Dennis Basila, MD
Undergraduate School: University of Notre Dame
Medical School: St. Georges University
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Department of Pediatrics, Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Nutrition, asthma
Personal Interests: Family, dogs, travel

James Betzhold, MD
Undergraduate School: Wisconsin State University
Medical School: University of Wisconsin
Pediatrics Residency: University of Wisconsin
Fellowship: Gastroenterology, University of Wisconsin
Personal Interests: Gardening

Rebecca Butterfield, MD
Undergraduate School: Union College
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: University of Rochester/Strong Memorial
Professional Interests: Asthma, obesity
Personal Interests: Reading, biking, politics

David Clark, MD
Undergraduate School: SUNY Binghamton
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse
Pediatrics Residency: University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Neonatology Fellowship: Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, Cleveland; SUNY Upstate Medical Center
Professional Interests: Gastroenterology/Nutrition, Advocacy
Personal Interests: Photography, softball, volleyball, fishing

Melinda Clark, MD
Undergraduate School: Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Pediatric dentistry, teen pregnancy prevention, child abuse

Paul Comber, MD
Undergraduate School: Notre Dame
Medical School: University of Pennsylvania
Pediatrics Residency: Medical College of Virginia
Pediatric Pulmonary Fellowship: Cincinnati Children’s Hospital
Professional Interests: Asthma, Cystic Fibrosis
Personal Interests: Books/Literature, family

James Cummings, MD
Undergraduate School: Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science, 1974-1978
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical University (formerly, SUNY Upstate Medical Center, 1978-1982
Pediatrics Residency: SUNY Upstate Medical University 1982-1985
Fellowship: SUNY Upstate Medical University 1985-1987
Chief Resident: Assistant Chief Resident, 1985
Professional Interests: Neonatal acute and chronic lung disease; evidence-based medicine; medical practice variability
Personal Interests: Hiking, biking, canoeing, camping - almost anything outdoors

Stephen de Waal Malefyt, MD
Undergraduate School: State University of New York at Albany
Medical School: Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY
Pediatrics Residency: Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY
Chief Resident:  Department of Pediatrics, Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY
Professional Interests:   General Pediatrics, term newborn, medical education

Katherine Dougherty, MD
Undergraduate School: Siena College
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Department of Pediatrics, Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: General Pediatrics; International Adoption
Personal Interests: Spending time with my family, reading, theater

Elizabeth Dufort, MD
Undergraduate School: SUNY Geneseo
Medical School: SUNY Buffalo
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: NYU/Bellevue Hospital, NY
One year spent as a faculty/attending in Pediatrics at the AMPATH Program in Eldoret, Kenya. AMPATH=The Academic Model Providing Access To Healthcare, affiliated with Indiana University and Brown University-Kenya Program.
Pediatric Infectious Disease Fellowship: Alpert Medical School of Brown University/Hasbro Children's Hospital, Providence, RI
Professional Interests:  Pediatric HIV, Pediatric Global Health, Pediatric Global Health Medical Education, Refugee and Immigrant Health, and Pediatric Infectious Diseases

Walter Edge, MD
Undergraduate School: SUNY Albany
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Yes
Pediatric Intensive Care Fellowship: Toronto Hospital for Sick Children
Professional Interests: Ethics, end of life care
Personal Interests: Music, wilderness, good food

Marilyn Fisher, MD
Undergraduate School: Northwestern University, Evanston, IL
Medical School: Universidad del Noreste, Tampico, Mexico and SUNY Downstate
Pediatrics Residency: Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, Cleveland
Neonatology/Perinatology Fellowship: Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary pathology, ventilatory management, toxicology/teratology, ethics, informed consent
Personal Interests: Children, kickboxing, downhill skiing, swimming, bicycling

Alexander Gozman, MD
Undergraduate School: Brown University
Medical School: Brown Medical School
Pediatrics Residency: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Fellowship: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center/NY-Cornell Presbyterian Hospital
Professional Interests: Long-term effects of cancer treatment; leukemia
Personal Interests: Spending time with my family, Sports (hockey), movies

Elizabeth Higgins, MD
Undergraduate School: Siena College
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical Center
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Medical Education
Personal Interests: Gardening, running, arts and crafts

Patricia Hopkins, MD
Undergraduate School: Siena College
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency:  Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Hospital medicine, children with special health care needs, medical education
Personal Interests: Spending time with my family, reading, cooking

Michael Horgan, MD
Undergraduate School: Union College
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Neonatology/Perinatology Fellowship: Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Neonatal sepsis, neonatal respiratory disorders and neonatal neurology

James Hortsmann, MD
Undergraduate School: State University of New York at Binghamton
Medical School: University of Vermont Medical School
Pediatrics Residency: Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong Memorial Hospital
Fellowship: Pediatric Critical Care at Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong Memorial Hospital
Professional Interests: Resident education, resident and medical student admissions.
Personal Interests: Family time with wife, children and two dogs, travel and exercise.

Sara Hortsmann, MD
Undergraduate School: Bates College
Medical School: University of Vermont Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: University of Rochester
Chief Resident:University of Rochester
Professional Interests: Child Advocacy, Resident education, quality improvement
Personal Interests: outdoor activities; hiking, tennis, spending time with friends and family.

Vikramjit S. Kanwar, MD, MBA
Medical School: All India Institute of Medical Sciences (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery) Royal College of Physicians (UK)
Pediatrics Residency: All India Institute of Medical Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Scotland and PL3 UCI Medical Center, Irvine, California.
Fellowship:  Hematology-Oncology, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Hamish Kerr, MD
Undergraduate School: University of Glasgow
Medical School: University of Glasgow
Pediatrics Residency: Combined Med/Peds, Albany Medical Center
Fellowship: Children's Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Primary Care Sports Medicine
Chief Resident: Pediatrics, Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests: Team Physician: Siena College, Scottish Footbal Association, Empire State Games; Research: Rugby injury surveillance, Biomechanics, Heading in soccer; Clinical Practice: Concussion, exercise physiology, musculoskeletal medicine; Teaching: Assoc Med Schools New York, SOSA Academy
Personal Interests: Triathlon, soccer (coaching and playing)

Jane Kiff, MD
Undergraduate School: UMass Amherst
Medical School: University of Missouri Columbia
Pediatrics Residency: Stanford Hospitals and Clinics
Fellowship: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Professional Interests: Sepsis, Quality
Personal Interests: dogs, Red Sox, swimming, tennis, reading

Rubia Khalak, MD
Undergraduate School: University of Buffalo
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse
Pediatrics Residency: University of Rochester/Strong Memorial
Neonatology Fellowship: University of Rochester/Strong Memorial
Professional Interests: Working on studies involving diagnosis of gastroesophageal reflux in pre-term infants using a new modality, identifying predictors for early surgical necrotizing enterocolitis, and neurodevelopmental follow-up in ex-pre-term infants treated with steroids for bronchopulmonary dysplasia
Personal Interests: Avid reader of fiction and non-fiction

Emily Knuth, MD, PhD
Undergraduate School: Xavier University of Louisiana
Graduate School: Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Medical School: Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
 
Martha Lepow, MD
Undergraduate School: Oberlin College, Ohio
Medical School: Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio
Pediatrics Residency: Cleveland Metropolitan General Hospital 
Chief Resident: Yes
Professional Interests: Infectious Diseases, vaccine development
Personal Interests: Swimming, gardening, music

Jennifer Lindstrom, MD
Undergraduate School: University of Rochester
Medical School: University of Rochester
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Yes
Faculty Development Fellowship: Michigan State University
Professional Interests: Pediatric obesity, clinic research, medical missions, bariatrics, teaching
Personal Interests: Pets, volunteering

James Listman, MD
Undergraduate School: Alfred University
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical Center
Pediatrics Residency: SUNY Upstate Medical Center
Fellowship: Pediatric Nephrology at Boston Children’s Hospital
Personal Interests: Running, Computer programming (SQL, C#), Wood working, Guitar

Judith Lucas, MD
Undergraduate School: Siena College
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical Center
Pediatrics Residency: Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh
Chief Resident: Yes
Professional Interests: General Pediatrics
Personal Interests: Cooking, family, running

Meredith Monaco-Brown, MD
Undergraduate School: Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
Medical School: SUNY Downstate College of Medicine, Brooklyn, NY
Pediatrics Residency: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Philadelphia, PA
Fellowship: Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Philadelphia, PA           
Professional Interests: Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy, Children with Special Healthcare Needs, Family-Centered Care, Palliative Care
Personal Interests: Cooking, Biking, Gardening

Upender Munshi, MD
Undergraduate School: Sri Partap Science College, Srinager, India
Medical School: Government Medical College, Srinager, India
Postgraduate Degree: MD in Pediatrics at Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India
Pediatrics Residency: SUNY at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NY
Neonatal Perinatal Medicine Fellowship: 1st year LSU Medical Center at New Orleans, LA 2nd and 3rd years at SUNY Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NY
Professional Interests: RDS and chronic lung disease in pre-term infants, Patent ductus arteriosus, Necrotozing enterocolitis
Personal Interests: American and India history, listening to music, gardening

Anne Nepo, MD
Undergraduate School: University of Louisville
Medical School: Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Pediatrics Residency: University of Illinois Hospital
Chief Resident:  Yes, Administrative Chief Resident
Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship: University of Illinois Hospital
Professional Interests: Pediatric hematology and oncology, Particular interests: leukemias, hemaglobinopathies including sickle disease.
Personal Interests: Music (classical, opera, musicals, G&S), reading, and gardening

Philip Pan, MD
Undergraduate School: Brown University
Medical School: Brown University
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Neonatology Fellowship: Tufts-New England Medical Center
Professional Interests: Perinatal and neonatal genetics, Schenectady County Medical Society
Personal Interests: Basset Hound Rescue

Jennifer Pearce, MD
Undergraduate School: The Johns Hopkins University
Medical School: University of Michigan
Pediatrics Residency: The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship: The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Professional Interests: Pediatric hematology and oncology, Pediatric Palliative and Hospice care
Personal Interests: Medical mission work in South Africa with kids, my own kids and their education/sports activity, needlework and textile arts, reading-mostly mysteries and Science Fiction

Joaquim Pinheiro, MD , MPH
Undergraduate School: Rutgers University
Medical School: NYU School of Medicine
Pediatrics Residency: Johns Hopkins Hospital
Neonatology & Developmental Physiology Fellowship: Yale
Professional Interests: Neonatal Epidemiology, quality improvement, pulmonary hypertension, neonatal lung injury, neonatal hearing screening, family-centered care.
Personal Interests: Carpentry and soccer

Joanne Porter, MD
Undergraduate School: University of Massachusetts
Medical School: Tufts University School of Medicine
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency:  Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Yes, Pediatrics
Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Professional Interests:  Brain tumors, childhood cancer late effects
Personal Interests:  Ballroom dancing, family, music

Cary Qualia, MD
Undergraduate School: SUNY Binghamton
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse
Pediatrics Residency: SUNY Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse
Gastroenterology Fellowship: University of Rochester/Strong Memorial
Professional Interests: IBD
Personal Interests: Running, mountain biking

Linda Riddick, MD
Undergraduate School: Oberlin College
Medical School: Pennsylvania University College of Medicine
Pediatrics Residency: Cornell University
Pediatric Endocrinology Fellowship: Cornell University
Professional Interests: Adrenal disorders, growth disorders
Personal Interests: Family, gardening

Angel Rios, MD
Undergraduate School: Fordham University
Medical School: Mt. Sinai and Universidad del Noreste Mexico
Pediatrics Residency: Brookdale Hospital Medical Center
Neonatology Fellowship: Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Professional Interests: Medicine Education
Personal Interests: Baseball, basketball, bicycling

Javier Sanchez, MD
Undergraduate School: Manhattan College
Medical School: CETEC University of Santo Domingo
Pediatrics Residency: Westchester County Medical Center
Chief Resident: Yes
Pediatric Critical Care Fellowship: Children’s Hospital of Buffalo
Professional Interests: Medical Missions

Roberto Santos, MD
Undergraduate School: BS Biology with Honors, University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines
Medical School: Doctor of Medicine, University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines
Pediatrics Residency: State University of New York - Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY
Fellowship: Pediatric Infectious Diseases, University of Texas Southwestern Medical University & Children's Medical Center Dallas, TX
Professional Interests: MRSA infection and molecular epidemiology, antimicrobial pharmacokinetics & pharmacodynamics, pharmacogenetics
Personal Interests: tennis, table tennis, volleyball, hiking

Carrin Schottler-Thal, MD
Undergraduate School: Siena College
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Yes
Professional Interests: Currently completing MPH at SUNY Albany, Continuity Practice Residency Liaison
Personal Interests: Cross country skiing, traveling

Natasha Shur, MD

Undergraduate School: University of Virginia

Medical School: Albert Einstein

Pediatrics Residency: Montefiore Medical Center

Fellowship:  Montefiore Medical Center

Professional Interests:  Dysmorphology, Connective Tissue Disorders, Craniofacial Disorders, Genetics and Genomics, Utilizing Genetic Testing Effectively for Clinical Practice

Personel Interests:  My two kids, Silkalier puppy, husband, and family; jogging, cooking, reading, traveling.

Daniela Sima, MD
Medical School: University of Medicine and Pharmacy "Carol Davila" Bucharest, Romania
Pediatrics Residency: St Barnabas Hospital, Bronx, NY
Pediatric Pulmonology Fellowship: St Barnabas Hospital, Bronx, NY
Professional Interests:  growth/pituitary disorders, puberty, thyroid, adrenal, calcium abnormalities, as well as diabetes

Elisabeth Simon, MD
Medical School: University of Aachen, Germany
Pediatrics Residency: Rusj Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center
Pediatric Nephrology Fellowship: Children’s Hospital, Boston
Professional Interests: Glomerulonephritis, chronic renal failure
Personal Interests: Foreign movies, foods and languages, skiing, classical music, museums.

Paul Sorum, MD
Undergraduate School: Stanford University
Medical School: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: North Carolina Memorial Hospital and Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests:  Health-related judgment and decision making, the French health care system
Personal Interest: Tennis, health care reform

Kate Tauber, MD
Undergraduate School:  Wellesley College
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency:  University of Michigan
Fellowship: Neonatology at Albany Medical Center
Professional Interests:  Cardiovascular adaptations in the neonate: currently conducting a clinical trial looking at whether the level of B-type natriuretic  peptide can predict the size of a patent ductus arteriosus. Neonatal nutrition. Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy.
Personal Interests: cooking, watching movies, traveling, spending time with my two sons, ages 3 months and almost 3 years.

Debra Tristram, MD
Undergraduate School: University at Albany
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: Upstate Medical Center
Pediatric Infectious Disease Fellowship: Upstate Medical Center
Chief Resident: assistant chief resident, Upstate Medical Center
Professional Interests: respiratory viruses, HIV, STDs
Personal Interests: gardening, skiing, Zumba, cooking, travel

Ivelisse (Lisann) Verrico, MD
Undergraduate School: Cornell University
Medical School: Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: Brown University
Chief Resident:  Yes
Professional Interests: Medical Student & Resident education

Raymond Walsh, MD
Undergraduate School: Siena College
Medical School: University of Bologna Italy
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical College
Pediatric Critical Care Fellowship: Children’s Hospital of Buffalo
Professional Interests: Brain injury, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, medical education
Personal Interests: Fishing, fly tying, photography, skiing

Joseph T. Wayne, MD, MPH

Undergraduate School:   Manhattan College

Medical School:   SUNY Buffalo

Medicine/Pediatrics Residency:   St. Louis University Health Sciences Center

Pediatric Residency:  Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital

Professional Interests:  Asthma, pain management, preventative medicine, first time parents, medical education
Personal Interests:  Cooking, photography, my lawn

Abigail Watson, MD
Undergraduate School: Cornell University
Medical School: SUNY Upstate Medical College
Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical Center
Chief Resident: Yes
Professional Interests: Obesity management in children, sports medicine
Personal Interests: Cross country skiing, running triathalons

Kathleen Zabinski-Kramer, MD 
Medical School: Albany Medical College
Medicine/Pediatrics Residency: Albany Medical center
Professional Interests: Preventative health maintenance, mood disorders
Personal Interests: Baseball, family time, reading