CHCF Health Care Leadership Program Announces New Class of Fellows

Program transforms today's clinicians into tomorrow's leaders

Thirty-two clinicians have been chosen to participate in the California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF) Health Care Leadership Program to expand their leadership skills and meet the challenges facing our state’s health care system, the foundation announced today.

The program is a part-time fellowship that offers clinically trained health care professionals hands-on opportunities to learn the decisionmaking, strategic planning, and execution skills they need to excel as leaders in today’s demanding and complex health care environment.

Now in its second decade, the program has trained more than 300 doctors, dentists, nurses, pharmacists, and other health care professionals. It is led by nationally recognized health care and leadership development experts from the UCSF Center for Health Professions and the UCLA Anderson School of Management. The program’s alumni network connects fellows across California, enabling them to continue to collaborate and develop their skills.

“The most pressing challenge to America’s health care system is to improve quality while lowering the cost of care,” said Mark D. Smith, MD, MBA, president and CEO of the California HealthCare Foundation. “Responding to this challenge requires skilled and dedicated leadership.”

“Change only happens through people and sometimes it can be a maddeningly slow process,” describes Kelly Pfeifer, MD, chief medical officer at San Francisco Health Plan and a program alumna. “The CHCF Health Care Leadership Program has accelerated the pace of change by creating a common language that has now infiltrated all of the major health care organizations across California.”

Applications for the fellowship are accepted each spring.

Watch a video about the program.

CHCF Health Care Leadership Program
Class of 2013-15

Karen Ayers, MS, ACNP
Nurse Practioner
Humboldt Del Norte IPA

Rupa Balachandran, PhD
Director of Audiology
Hearing & Speech Center of Northern California
San Francisco

Bryan Bohman, MD
Associate Chief Medical Officer for Quality, Safety & Improvement
Stanford Hospital & Clinics

Albert Chan, MD, MS, AAFP
Chief Medical Information Officer, Palo Alto Foundation; Medical Group Medical Director, My Health Online, Sutter; Health Medical Director, David Druker Center for Health Systems Innovation
Mountain View

Steven Chen, MD
Medical Director
Alameda Health System, Hayward Wellness Center

Timothy Corbin, MD, FACP
Medical Director, Hospice & Palliative Care
Scripps Health
San Diego

Condessa Curley, MD, MPH
Physician Specialist
Los Angeles County Department of Public Health

Ujjwala Dheeriya, MD
Chief Medical Officer, TMIP ACO
Torrance Memorial

Nancy Facher, LCSW, MPH
Manager of Integrated Behavioral Health
La Clinica de La Raza

Catherine Sonquist Forest, MD MPH
Interim Clinic Chief, Stanford Family Medicine
Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine, Stanford School of Medicine

Holly Garcia, RD, MPH
Medical Home Manager
Alameda Health System

Este Geraghty, MD, MS, MPH
Deputy Director, Center for Health Statistics & Informatics
California Department of Public Health

Eliza Gibson, LCSW
Executive Director
Clinic by the Bay
San Francisco

Justin Hata, MD
Residency Program Director & Interim Chair
UC Irvine Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

Ako Jacintho, MD
Medical Director
San Fracisco

Jerry Jew, MD, MBA
Associate Medical Director
North East Medical Services
San Francisco

Geoffrey Leung, MD, EdM
Chief of Family Medicine
Riverside County Health System

Leslie Lundt, MD
Medical Director
Santa Barbara County Psychiatric Health Facility
Santa Barbara

Tarek Mahdi, MD
Riverside Family Physicians

Rishi Manchanda, MD, MPH
Lead Physician, Homeless Patient Aligned Care Team
VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System
Los Angeles

Danielle Oryn, DO, MPH
Medical Director
Petaluma Health Center

Joseph Pace, MD
Director of Primary Care Homeless Services
San Francisco Department of Public Health
San Francisco

Ria Paul, MD
Chief Medical Officer
Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley
San Jose

Jorge Ramirez, MD
Chief of Service Family Medicine
Kaiser Permanente Downey Medical Center

Robert Riewerts, MD
Regional Chief of Pediatrics
Southern California Permanente Medical Group
Baldwin Park

Jennifer Sayles, MD, MPH
Medical Director
LA Care Health Plan
Los Angeles

Susan Scott, BSN, MPA
Chief Nurse Executive
Ventura County Medical Center & Santa Paula Hospital

David Sperling, MD
Medical Director
Monarch HealthCare

Ori Tzvieli, MD, MS
Medical Staff President
Contra Costa Regional Medical Center

Madonna Valencia, MSN, BSN
Chief Nursing Officer
Laguna Honda Hospital & Rehabilitation Center
San Francisco

Ronald Wyatt, MD
Orthopedic Surgeon, Technology & Product Support
The Permanente Medical Group
Walnut Creek

Albert Yu, MD, MPH, MBA
Chief Medical Informatics Officer & Medical Director
San Francisco Department of Public Health, Chinatown Public Health Center
San Francisco

About the Center for Health Professions at UCSF

Since 1992, the Center has been dedicated to transforming health care by delivering leadership programs to empower change agents at every level and within all sectors of the health care system; and internationally recognized, unbiased research to help health care decision makers understand today’s workforce issues and design actionable strategies to solve them. For more information, visit

Contact Information:
Lisa Aliferis
Senior Communications Officer, High-Value Care

About the California Health Care Foundation

The California Health Care Foundation is dedicated to advancing meaningful, measurable improvements in the way the health care delivery system provides care to the people of California, particularly those with low incomes and those whose needs are not well served by the status quo. We work to ensure that people have access to the care they need, when they need it, at a price they can afford.