Diversity & Inclusion

Our Commitment to Diversity

Our residency program is committed to informing, recruiting, and supporting prospective candidates who identify as underrepresented minorities based on factors such as race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, and gender identity.   

As members of communities traditionally underrepresented in medicine, our goal is to recruit and train a diverse group of innovative leaders committed to and passionate about decreasing health disparities among children.  As clinicians, researchers, advocates, and teachers, we hope to diversify the face of pediatrics.  

The institutional commitment at Stanford to this crucial mission at all levels of medical education can be fully explored at the Center of Excellence in Diversity in Medical Education.

Our Community

Nestled near California’s agricultural belt and within the Bay Area, LPCH and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (SCVMC) are located in one of the most diverse ethnic and cultural regions of the country. Furthermore, LPCH and SCVMC are safety-net providers within the region serving uninsured and underinsured families. The services and expertise at LPCH attract patients from across the country and around the world, expanding the multicultural experiences for residents.

Our patient population at LPCH is:

  • 56% Hispanic
  • 13% Pacific Islander
  • 11% African American
  • 8% Asian
  • 7% Caucasian 
  • 5% Unspecified
This diversity allows for learning a wide variety of disease processes including common general pediatric illnesses as well as complex congenital and acquired diseases.


LEAD (Leadership Education in Advancing Diversity) Program

Background: The pediatric patient population is rapidly becoming more diverse, yet the healthcare workforce has remained static in reflecting the patients we serve across diverse backgrounds. Pediatric leadership needs more representation of racial, ethnic, sexual and gender minorities. Building leadership and scholarship capacity for improving diversity and inclusion efforts should begin early during residency and fellowship training. This will strengthen the faculty pipeline in academic medicine and ensure that our core values of diversity and inclusion are reflected in our medical programs, leadership, and culture.

Program Outline: The LEAD Program, funded through a grant from the Stanford Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Diversity, is a voluntary, 9-month longitudinal program for pediatric residents and fellows to provide leadership training and mentorship in creating scholarly works around diversity and inclusion topics.

The program consists of 8, 2-hour evening sessions during the 2017-2018 academic year. The first hour consists of

interactive workshops on core diversity and inclusion topics and the second hour is dedicated to working amongst 3 assigned, and mentored, small groups on developing scholarly works. The scholarly works created by the LEAD groups will be shared with the greater community at the 1st annual Diversity & Inclusion Forum at Stanford on May 18, 2018, as well as submitted to regional and national conferences.

Pediatric Diversity Committee

In alignment with the goals of the American Academy of Pediatrics, we seek to “increase the awareness of the importance of diversity; and to encourage the incorporation of the principles of cultural competence into all aspects of pediatric education, training, and practice.” This is done through various activities, including:


  1. Recruitment of a diverse group of residents 
  2. Build community through fostering inclusion and collaboration across Stanford and among the greater pediatric community 
  3. Education, specifically around diversity and inclusion, social justice and health disparities
  4. Community Engagement 

Committee Members

Support Staff

Please feel free to contact us at any time with questions or if you would like to contact members of the committee directly.

Michelle Brooks (Residency Coordinator)

E-mail pedsres@stanfordchildrens.org
Mail 725 Welch Road, Palo Alto, CA  94304
Phone (650) 497-8979
Born San Jose, CA
Work Stanford since 2005
Interests Intersectionality in medicine, LGBT curriculum development


Myrna Mungal, MD 

Born: Born in Bay Area, hometown Cupertino
College: Santa Clara University
Medical School: UCSF
Interests: Professional: health disparities, underrepresented in medicine, critical care, eating every flavor pie, board games, podcasts, skiing

Ezinne Emeruwa, MD

Born: Riverside, CA
College: Princeton University
Medical School: Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
Interests: Cardiology, Critical Care, Global Health, Clinical Research, Diversity, Traveling, Dancing

Jayme Congdon, MD, MS

Born: Phoenix, AZ
College: Arizona State University
Medical School: UC Berkeley – UCSF Joint Medical Program
Interests: Social determinants of health, multigenerational approach to eliminating health disparities, legislative advocacy, parenting during medical training, non-traditional path to medicine, First Generation College graduates

Luisa Fernanda Valenzuela Riveros, MD 

Born: Bogotá, Colombia
College: Merced College, UC Davis
Medical School: UC Davis
Interests: Social determinants of health, effects of migrant farm working labor on children, adolescent medicine, health disparities, dancing, reading

Chisom Agbim, MD

Born: Denver, CO
College: University of Denver
Medical School: University of Colorado School of Medicine
Interests: Emergency Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, Quality Improvement, Yoga, running, hiking, watching football

Antonio Jose Escobar, MD 

Born: Boyle Heights, CA 
College: University of Southern California 
Medical School: Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California
Interests: I have always been interested in global medicine and helping the underserved. I love to mentor people of all ages. I am currently interested in possibly subspecializing in pediatric cardiology. Outside of work I enjoy spending time with the family, dancing, learning about animals/visiting zoos/watching the animal channel, swimming, USC football, cooking and trying out different foods.

July Lee, MD

Born: Mexicali, Baja California (Mexico)
College: Stanford University
Medical School: UCSD
Interests: underserved medicine, general pediatrics, infants, global medicine, faith, photography, and tennis

Helen Pu, MD 

Born: Flushing, NY
College: Bowdoin College
Medical School: Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell
Interests: Global health, cooking, eating, comics, yoga


Lahia Yemane, MD

Clinical Assistant Professor, General Pediatrics, Associate Program Director for Advising and Career Development
Born: Dallas, TX
College: University of Texas at Austin
Medical School:  University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center 
Training: Stanford
Interests: primary care, medical education, working with underserved populations and advocacy

Fernando Mendoza, MD/MPH

Professor, General Pediatrics and Associate Dean of Minority Advising and Programs at Stanford Medical School
Born: San Jose, California
College: San Jose State University
Med School: Stanford School of Medicine
Training: Stanford (Residency), Robert Wood Johnson/Stanford (Fellowship), Harvard (MPH)
Interests: Research in areas of health disparities, particularly involving Hispanic and immigrant children, diversity in the pediatric workforce, increasing URM faculty in medical schools.

Baraka Floyd, MD, Msc

Clinical Assistant Professor, General Pediatrics
Born: Indianapolis, Indiana
College: Pepperdine University
Med School: Morehouse School of Medicine
Training: Stanford 
Interest: Social determinants of health, parenting, behavior, and mental health

Carmin Powell, MD 

Clinical Instructor, Neonatal & Developmental Medicine. Hospitalist, Watsonville Community Hospital
Born Monterey, CA
College Stanford University, Biomechanical Engineering
Medical School Ohio State University
Training: Stanford
Interests: pediatric hospitalist medicine, innovation in medical education and actively involved with leading diversity programs. 


Laura Bachrach, MD

Professor, Pediatric Endocrinology
Born: Boston, MA
College: Harvard
Med School: Tufts Medical School
: UCSF/Stanford (residency), Hospital for Sick Children and University of Toronto (fellowship)
Interests: Pediatric endocrinology, mentoring, resident wellness, and improving continuity of pediatric care in chronic disease. Facilitator of SCORE (URM visiting medical student program).

Becky Blankenburg, MD, MPH

Clinical Associate Professor, Hospital Medicine. Associate Chair, Education. Program Director, Pediatrics and Combined Pediatrics-Anesthesiology Residency Programs
Born: Sacramento, CA
College: Caltech
Medical School: University of Chicago
Training: University of California, San Francisco (Residency and Chief Residency), University of California, Berkeley (MPH)
Interests: Pediatric Hospital Medicine, Innovation in Medical Education, How learners learn in the clinical environment, Communication with patients and families

Recent Alumni

Alejandro Borquez, MD

Born: Tijuana, Baja California
College: Dartmouth
Medical School: UC Davis
Specialty: Cardiology

 Amanda G. Sandoval Karamian, MD

Born: South Pasadena, CA 
College: Yale University 
Medical School: Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California 
Specialty: Neurology

Alejandra Barrero-Castillero, MD, MPH

Born: Mexico City, Mexico
Medical School: Anahuac University School of Medicine, Mexico
Graduate School: Boston University School of Public Health, MPH in International Health and Biostatistics
Specialty: Neonatology

Alexis Toney, MD 

Born Walnut Creek, CA
College UC San Diego
Medical School UC San Francisco
Specialty: Hospitalist

Autumn Ivy, MD, PhD

Born: Los Angeles, CA
College: California State University, Los Angeles
Medical School: University of California, Irvine School of Medicine (MD/PhD)
Specialty: Neurology

Chinyelu Nwobu, MD/MPH 

Born: Houston, TX      
College: Florida State University
Graduate School: Tulane University School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine- Maternal & Child Health 
Medical School:  University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center 
Specialty: Hospitalist

Jessica Marie Valdez, MD

Born: Washington, DC
College: University of New Mexico
Medical School: University of New Mexico
Specialty: Hematology & Oncology

Deborah Holland, MD

Born: Wichita, KS 
 Notre Dame
Medical School:
University of Kansas 
Specialty: Hospitalist

Catharyn Turner, MD

Born:  Colorado Springs, CO/ Washington D.C. 
 Bryn Mawr College
Medical School:  University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine 
Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Claudia Algaze, MD 

Born: Santiago, Chile. Grew up in Puerto Rico.
Medical School:
 Universidad Central del Caribe School of Medicine in Puerto Rico 

Monica Eneriz-Wiemer, MD

Born: San Fernando Valley, Southern California
College: Stanford University
Medical School: Stanford, active member of Latino and Native American student organization
Specialty: Academic General Pediatrics

Maria Castellanos, MD 

Born: Ocotal, Nicaragua
College: University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Medical School: Howard University
Specialty: Hematology-Oncology

Dennis Spencer, MD, PhD

Born: Baltimore, MD
College: Morehouse College
Medical School: Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University (MD/PhD)
Specialty: Gastroenterology

Melissa Martin, MD 

Born: Los Angeles, CA
College: Stanford
Medical School: UC San Francisco
Specialty: Gastroenterology

Anjali Deshmukh, MD, JD

Born: Ann Arbor, Michigan
College: Dartmouth
Medical School: Vanderbilt
Interests: human trafficking, human rights and health, Advocacy, and pediatric emergency medicine

Kaitlyn Le, MD 

Born Vietnam
College University of Utah
Medical School UCLA
Specialty: Hospitalist

Rachel Goldstein, MD 

Born New York, NY (grew up in Brooklyn)
College Muhlenberg college (yay small liberal arts): major in Neuroscience and minor in Spanish
Medical School University of California San Francisco
Specialty: Adolescent Medicine

Jenna Nolan, MD

Born: San Diego, CA
College: University of California, San Diego
Medical School: Harvard Medical School
Specialty: General Outpatient Pediatrics

Abi Pitts, MD

Born: Washington State. Raised in Los Angeles, CA            
College: Stanford University 
Medical School:  UCSF School of Medicine
General Outpatient Pediatrics

Marissa Aillaud, MD

Born: Mexico City, Mexico 
 San Diego State University
Medical School:
  Stanford University 
Specialty: General Outpatient Pediatrics

Elizabeth Mannino Avila, MD

Born: San Diego, CA 
 Davidson College
Medical School:
  Duke University School of Medicine 
Speciality: Hospitalist

Mauricio Palau, MD 

Born: Palo Alto, CA 
 Duke University
Medical School: Case Western Reserve Medical School 
Specialty: Neonatology

Sidharth Mahapatra, MD, PhD

Born: Bangkok, Thailand 
College: Knox College
Medical School:
  Rosalind Franklin Univeristy - MD/PhD
Specialty: Critical Care

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