Residency Training Program In the Department of Pediatrics

Pediatric Resident Committee on

Diversity and Multicultural Affairs

Our Commitment to Diversity

At Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital (LPCH) and the greater Stanford University we are committed to increasing the diversity of pediatrics. The institutional commitment to this crucial mission can be fully explored by accessing the Diversity in Education website.

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, serving a richly diverse population of patients.  However, the number of pediatric providers from underrepresented minority groups here and across the country does not reflect these demographic changes.

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. 

Our Committee

The Pediatric Resident Committee on Diversity and Multicultural Affairs was formed to improve the diversity of our residency program so that we can best meet the needs of the patients we serve. 

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

In alignment with the goal 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.” We endeavor to nurture a diverse group of residents who will be leaders in advocating for the change necessary to overcome the disparities that impact our patients’ health.


Committee Members

Please contact the residency program office if you would like to contact members of the Committee directly. We welcome your questions and will be available remotely and during student visits.

Chinyelu Nwobu, MD (R1)

Born: Houston, TX      

College: Florida State University- Psychology Major

Graduate School: Tulane University School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine- Maternal & Child Health

Medical School:  University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Interests:  Childhood obesity prevention within minority populations, Advocacy, School-based health, Cardiology and Academic Medicine


Abi Situ, MD (R1)

Born: Washington State. Raised in Los Angeles, CA            

College: Stanford University 

Medical School:  UCSF School of Medicine

Interests:  Urban underserved, community health, family centered care, primary care, neonatology


Marissa Aillaud, MD (R2)

Born: Mexico City, Mexico             

College: San Diego State University/Cell and Molecular Biology        

Medical School:  Stanford University

Interests: Childhood obesity, insulin resistance (from the biochemical to the clinical features)


Deborah Holland, MD (R2)

Born: Wichita, KS

College: Notre Dame with Major in Biology and Spanish Literature

Medical School:  University of Kansas

Interests:  Cooking/Tennis/Running.  Maybe General Pediatrics (outpatient vs hospitalist)



Elizabeth Mannino Avila, MD (R2)

Born: San Diego, CA

College: Davidson College, Major - Cross-Cultural Healthcare

Medical School:  Duke University School of Medicine

Interests:  Pediatrics



Mauricio Palau, MD (R2)

Born: Palo Alto, CA

College: Duke University - Psychology

Medical School:  Case Western Reserve Medical School

Interests:  Hematology/Oncology, Neonatology



Catharyn Turner, MD (R2)

Born: Colorado Springs, CO/ Washington D.C.

College: Bryn Mawr College - English

Medical School:  University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine

Interests:  Academic interests- Adolescent Medicine,
underserved populations, academic career in Adolescent
Medicine and Psychiatry, other interests include teaching,
reading, cooking


Lahia Yemane, MD (R2)

Born: Dallas, TX

College: University of Texas at Austin, Biology major

Medical School:  University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Interests:  I have no idea what i want to do! I am interested in
global health, academic medicine, working with underserved populations and advocacy.


Elizabeth Barnert, MD (R3)

Born: Los Angeles, California. My Cuban mom and New Yorker dad taught me the value of diversity and cultural mixing right in my own home! And the city fascinated me with its cultural abundance.

College: UC Berkeley, study abroad at the Universidad de Chile

Medical School: UCSF. Through a joint program with the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, I also had the privilege of collaborating with Pro-Busqueda, a non-profit in El Salvador dedicated to reuniting families separated by the civil war

Interests: primary care, immigration, advocacy, human rights, interrelationships between poverty and health


Andrea Estrada, MD (R3)

Born: Guatemala City, Guatemala.  My family and I moved to Baltimore, MD when I was 3 years old and we have lived in Baltimore ever since.  We go back to visit as frequently as our busy lives permit!

College: Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, PA

Medical School:  Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD

Interests:  I am excited to be starting a fellowship in Pediatric Endocrinology at the National Institute of Health in Bethesda, MD in July of 2012! 


Sidharth Mahapatra, MD (R3)

Born: Bangkok, Thailand

College: Knox College - Biology

Medical School:  Rosalind Franklin Univeristy - MD/PhD

Interests:  Subspecialty medicine - Intensive Care with strong advocacy component



Lucy Lee, MD (Chief Resident 2011-12)

Born: Toronto, Canada

College: Cornell, Biology major

Medical School: Stanford

Interests: Medical informatics, patient safety/quality assurance, education in medicine, access to medical care, pediatric nutrition .


Kathryn Gopez, MD (Outpatient General Peds, Resident Alum '11)

Born: San Francisco, CA

College: UCLA Psychobiology

Medical School: UCSD

Interests: Outpatient gen peds; complementary and alternative medicine, going to the gym, baking, relaxing with family and friends

Jasmine Waipa, MD (General Peds, Resident Alum '11)

Born: Honolulu, HI

College: Harvard, Sociology major

Medical School: Stanford, where I have many opportunities for service, teaching, and mentoring.

Interests: Community pediatrics, advocacy, teaching, and sports medicine.



Claudia Algaze, MD (Cardiology Fellow, Resident Alum '10)

Born: Santiago, Chile. After only a few years in Chile, I moved to Puerto Rico along with my family.

College:  UCLA

Medical School: Universidad Central del Caribe School of Medicine in Puerto Rico

Interests:  In addition to my own diverse background, I have had the opportunity to live and work amongst people from many different cultures and backgrounds. These experiences have taught me the importance not only of eliminating disparities for underserved populations, but also of the critical need to increase the number of professionals emerging from these populations. While I am enjoying all aspects of pediatric training at Stanford, I am particularly interested in pediatric cardiology, and hope to pursue fellowship training after completing my residency at Stanford with the ultimate goal of becoming an academic cardiologist.


Monica Eneriz-Wiemer, MD (Clinical Instructor, Resident Alum '09)

Born: San Fernando Valley, Southern California

College: Stanford University

Medical School: Stanford, active member of Latino and Native American student organization

Interests: I hope to pursue a career focused on advocacy, research, and policy development to improve health and eliminate disparities for underserved populations, especially immigrants and children abroad. I am considering a fellowship in academic general pediatrics or critical care. Currently, I work as a clinical instructor and neonatal hospitalist at LPCH and as a community pediatrician at SCVMC.


Laura Bachrach, MD (Professor, Pediatric Endocrinology, Associate Program Director)

Born: Boston, MA

College: Harvard

Med School: Tufts Medical School

Training: UCSF/Stanford (residency), Hospital for Sick Children and University of Toronto (fellowship)

Interests: pediatric endocrinology, diabetes, bone health, obesity, advising and mentoring, resident wellness

Not Pictured:

Jessie Barnum, MD (R3)
Alexandra Abrams, MD (Hematology fellow, Resident Alum '10)
Karen Effinger, MD (Hematology fellow, Resident Alum '10)
Dan Shaked, MD (PICU fellow, Resident Alum '10)

Minority Faculty at Stanford University Hospital and LPCH

Community Outreach

Our Community

The patient population at LPCH and affiliated hospitals includes patients from all ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds, including immigrants from throughout the world.  A significant proportion of LPCH patients comes from underserved communities and are insured by state and regional health insurance programs that deem LPCH a safety-net provider for the region, allowing counties to strive toward a goal of no child left without access to medical care. Furthermore, SCVMC is the primary safety-net provider within Santa Clara County serving uninsured and underinsured families.

Our patient population at LPCH is:

This diversity allows for learning a wide variety of disease processes including common general pediatric illnesses as well as complex congenital and acquired diseases.  The services and expertise at LPCH attract patients from across the country and around the world, expanding the multicultural experiences for residents.


Community Outreach

Residents at LPCH are surrounded by distinguished faculty with a wide range of interests, including child advocacy, public policy, preventative health, and international health.  Residents also acquire skills to become leaders in child health and advocacy.  To facilitate the acquisition of these skills, LPCH has community partnerships with many organizations and health care centers that residents can become involved with, including:

Visiting Student Rotations

We encourage medical students to enroll in rotations in general pediatrics or one of the many pediatric subspecialties here at LPCH.  Rotations provide opportunities for exposure to our diverse patient population and allow students to interface with our residents and faculty.  Members of the Committee on Diversity are always accessible to anyone interested in the residency program, and they are happy to share their experiences and perspectives with prospective applicants to the program either remotely or in person during a student’s visiting rotation.  Goals of the visiting student program include:

As part of the rotation, students will be connected to a resident, fellow, or attending as a mentor.  This mentor will be available to discuss career goals, current experiences on the rotation, and ways to facilitate networking within LPCH and its affiliated institutions (SCVMC, Kaiser, and Packard’s El Camino unit).  Students will attend daily resident morning reports and noon teaching conferences to gain insight into the didactic curriculum experience in the program while also making contact with current residents. 

We encourage all visiting students to seek a meeting with the program director, Dr. Kahana, or one of the Associate Program Directors.  These meetings provide the visiting student an opportunity to ask more questions about the program.  Invitations to interview for residency will be offered to some visiting students after a review of an applicant’s entire file.

Visiting rotations are open to fourth year medical students interested in pursuing a career in pediatrics and in good standing at an accredited US medical school.  Applications are available at   Financial assistance is available.  Rotations are available from May through January.

Available Rotations

LPCH Inpatient Ward Services

LPCH Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

LPCH Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

Kaiser Permanente General Pediatrics

LPCH Selective Clinics and Consult Services

Please see the Clerkship Catalog for descriptions of the above rotations.

Stanford University Campus Organizations

Stanford University is home to numerous student organizations focused on the educational and professional development of underrepresented minority students.  These organizations also create a valuable network of support for students and residents.  As a residency program, we connect with these organizations for cultural events, mentorship activities that promote diversity in higher education and medicine, and endeavors that improve the health of our local communities, such as the annual Stanford University Minority Medical Alliance (SUMMA) pre-med students conference and informal networking activities with minority students interested in pediatrics. 




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Contact Us

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Mail:       725 Welch Road, Palo Alto, CA  94304

Phone:    (650) 497-8979

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