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CME Leaders

“She masterfully combines the scientific evidence that underpins her subject matter with practical management, diagnostic, and therapeutic considerations. She consistently demonstrates enthusiasm, professionalism, and initiative. She leads from the lectern. She is also caring and compassionate. Her message simultaneously challenges and supports physicians, patients and the public. These traits allow her to consistently communicate a love of the subject to her audiences. The end result is that physicians are inspired and become enthusiastic about the content she teaches. I have listened to many individuals comment on her skill as a teacher and a leader, but I have been most impressed by how she inspires them to do their very best.”

-- The penultimate description of a teacher/leader

overall goal

The overall goal of this initiative is to develop and implement a CME Leaders Institute that will ensure a pipeline of family medicine leaders who will be teacher/leaders – teaching high quality clinical and population-based medicine and using their leadership skills to advance the specialty in areas of policy and public health. Each physician is a “teacher” and each teacher is a “leader” whether in the classroom, residency program, hospital rounds, CME session, or exam room with a patient, or in a state legislative hearing, board of directors meeting, television program, or organized medicine platform. Each teachable moment is an opportunity to provide the information that will ultimately improve leadership skills. Our Institute recognizes the expanded role of the “teacher/leader,” thus changing the traditional view of faculty.


our CME leader classes

The first CME Leaders class began its journey in April 2011, and graduated at the 2012 Annual Scientific Assembly. The class of 10 included family physicians with years of practice experience and residents about to begin practice. 2011-12 class members have gone on to become CAFP Board of Directors members, joined the Committee on Continuing professional Development, and regularly speak at CME activities. The 2014 class began its work at the 2014 Annual Scientific Assembly and the 13 leaders spent the year honing their presentation skills. Several of the 2014 leaders presented at the 2015 Family Medicine Clinical Forum. The 2016 class began its work during the 2016 Clinical Forum and will graduate in April 2017. Our CME leaders have a wide range of experience and wide range of interests – as varied as family medicine itself – from sports medicine and nutrition to spirituality and elder care, from TBI and LGBT issues to technology and addiction medicine.



Ashley Christiani, MD

Tipu Khan, MD

Lauren Simon, MD, MPH
Loma Linda

Julia Chuan, MD
San Diego

Pooja Mittal, MD
San Francisco

Catherine Sonquist-Forest, MD, MPH
Palo Alto

Diana Coffa, MD
San Francisco

Tiffani Pierce, MD

William Woo, MD

Parastou Farhadian, MD Riverside    


Raul Ayala, MD
Christine Navarro, MD
Los Angeles
Kenneth Thrasher, MD
Palm Springs
Shannon Connolly, MD
Kristen Pelligrino, MD
San Francisco

Shunling Tsang, MD

Kimberly Duir, MD
Jamie Sabean, MD
San Diego
Patrick Yassini, MD
San Diego
Jennifer Hastings, MD
Santa Cruz
Alan Shahtaji, DO
San Diego


Becca Bertin, MD
Los Angeles

Heidi Meyer, MD
San Diego

Gil Solomon, MD, MPH
West Hills
Angela Calton, MD
Laguna Niguel

Shani Muhammad, MD
San Ramon

Ron Labuguen, MD
San Francisco
Ellen Pichey, MD
Mill Valley


























The development of the CME Leaders Institute was supported by an unrestricted grant from The Physicians Foundation.