I was born in Southern California and lived there for a few years before moving to New Haven, Connecticut, where I spent most of my childhood. I chose medicine because I have always believed that health care is a right, not a privilege, and for me, there was no better way to bring about positive change in individuals and communities. Early in my career I became interested in occupational medicine while practicing urgent care medicine in Michigan. Before coming to Oregon, I lived and practiced occupational medicine in the Indianapolis area for 15 years. Two experiences have informed me philosophically in my work to improve the health of communities: The first was two years I spent in the National Public Health Services Corps, providing medical care to an urban, medically underserved area in southwestern Michigan during the day and to migrant farm workers in rural southwestern Michigan some evenings. The second was short stints working as a medical missionary in Honduras and Ecuador.
I enjoy the challenge of the interaction — and striking a balance — among an injured employee, the employer, and the insurer or third-party administrator. In the end, I want each party to feel that their interests have been well served. I believe in teamwork and communication among health care team members — my motto is, "Better to over-communicate than under-communicate." I also believe that lifestyle choices may affect rates of injuries and healing in workers, and so, when appropriate, I promote healthy eating habits, weight control, and exercise in my communication with workers.
I try to start each day with a few minutes of meditation just after I wake, which sets me on a positive path. I also try to exercise for at least an hour a day — biking, spinning, walking, or lifting weights and stretching with a personal trainer. I am developing a passion for charitable giving and started a scholarship endowment for a professor who assisted me while I was an undergraduate. I'm a regular contributor both in time and money to other charitable endeavors that focus mainly on education. This is something I plan to get more involved with after my career in medicine is finished.