2023 DOM Star Achievement Awardees

Congratulations to the DOM staff recipients of the 2023 UCSF STAR Program Achievement Award! The award recognizes staff members' significant contributions and sustained exceptional performance over time. 

Andrea Bordallo
Program Manager, Division of Palliative Medicine, UCSF Health

Andrea BordalloAndrea is a truly dedicated team member—highly motivated, works well within groups or alone, and is fully invested in her projects. She worked closely with OCME to obtain accreditation for the DPM Education Hour. As someone with no prior experience in CME, she diligently met with the accreditation manager to learn the application process and gather all the necessary paperwork; ultimately the program was approved for accreditation. This fiscal year, two directors were appointed to be responsible for teaching Primary Palliative Care, a new program to develop curriculum and training modules for outpatient and inpatient collaborators. Andrea was been instrumental in getting the program off the ground. She offered options to streamline the process and made recommendations on how best to create a repository for all the materials. She also manages visiting scholars and policies around their paperwork. A faculty member who is leading underrepresented in medicine (UIM) efforts asked Andrea a question about the shadowing process (premed shadowing on clinical services) and Andrea partnered with the faculty to create the application process and interview questions without being asked, exceeding expectations as this is definitely not part of her role. Andrea embodies all of the UCSF pride values which shows up in the quality of the work she produces and the relationships she cultivates and maintains.

Michele Casadei
AMEND Program Lead, Center for Vulnerable Populations, ZSFG

Michele CasadeiAs part of the AMEND team at CVP, Michele partners with Program Managers to plan the training programs and organize all travel for AMEND, both domestic and international. In the last two years, the number and types of people traveling back and forth to U.S. and European prisons has increased tremendously (from fewer than 30 to well over 100). She organizes the educational goals and travel plans for prison staff, legislators, community leaders, and CVP staff for every trip. She is the only person on the team who can manage the complexity of international subcontracting that is involved, including flawlessly organizing a very complex international travel itinerary for Governor Inslee of Washington State and his security detail to visit a high security prison in Norway this past year.

Michael Chang
Operations Manager, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Michael ChangMichael is the operations manager for the Division of Hospital Medicine's St. Mary's Hospital Medicine Services. He has gone above and beyond his job description to actively involve himself in many process improvement projects at St. Mary's, all of which help the program better deliver care to patients. In SMMC's efforts to revamp multidisciplinary rounds (MDR), Michael spent hours shadowing MDR to collect and analyze data to create a more efficient and collaborative process, with essential stakeholder engagement, including physicians, nursing, interdisciplinary team members, informatics, and senior SMMC leadership. This work set the groundwork to standardize the approach to MDR and remains pivotal to supporting SMMC's key strategic priorities of improving throughput and length of stay.

Sina Dehghan
Research Finance Analyst, Research Administration

Sina DehghanSina is an exceptional research finance analyst, and his contributions have been invaluable. He consistently demonstrates a strong work ethic, attention to detail, and exceptional problem-solving skills. He is consistently recognized by his peers and PIs and is always friendly and respectful to everyone in the DOM research community. Recently, the department faced a sensitive issue with a retiring faculty researcher, and Sina played a crucial role in navigating the situation. He worked diligently to ensure that all financial matters were handled with care, sensitivity, and accuracy. Sina's expertise and dedication helped to resolve the matter in a timely and professional manner.

Debbie Gilman
Operations Manager, Division of Nephrology, UCSF Health

Debbie GilmanDebbie consistently exceeds expectations in her overall job performance. In her role as Operations Manager, she is tasked with the complex role of overseeing the operations of the division remotely and at the Millberry Union office location. Debbie is the "go-to" person in the division and has been complimented by faculty members for being the person they go to who can help them and provide solutions. Her professionalism regarding administrative operations has earned her the title as the “glue” that holds things together. She brings integrity and excellence with her duties and provides mentorship to new team members. Debbie goes out of her way to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for the people around her and always encourages the team to accomplish their goals. Debbie's knowledge, skills, and abilities are unparalleled, serving as subject matter expert in overall division administrative operations.

Barbara Green-Ajufo
Research Partnerships Manager, Division of Prevention Science

Barbara Green-AjufoBarbara makes outstanding contributions to the Division of Prevention Science in multiple ways. As one example, in her role as the division’s research partnerships manager, she is responsible for organizing the Community Advisory Board (CAB) for the division, including the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies (CAPS) and the Prevention Research Center (PRC). The CAB historically had 10 to 12 members, but over the years, the CAB experienced a significant amount of turnover. Barbara conducted a CAB member recruitment campaign in the community to find new, dedicated members. Due to Barbara’s efforts, there are now 12 active members who all bring distinct and diverse viewpoints and experiences to the CAB. In fact, the CAB has become so well-regarded that the Health Disparities Core at UCSF’s Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) asked the division’s CAB to serve as their CAB as well. Therefore, Barbara now coordinates a CAB responsible for bringing community input to three separate entities within UCSF: CAPS, PRC, and CFAR.

Landon Haller
Research Programs Coordinator, Division of Geriatrics, UCSF Health

Landon HallerShortly after being hired, Landon's manager took maternity leave. Landon quickly stepped in, taking over some higher-level tasks to support the Pepper Center Program which made the temporary transition much easier for faculty and collaborators. Landon is a team player who is willing to learn new tasks, is highly successful in covering some of his manager's tasks, and supports the overall success of the program by being flexible. Recently, Landon had to step up to cover another vacated role. He seamlessly learned major components of the job and made what would have otherwise been a very difficult transition for the Pepper Center manageable. Landon appreciates and celebrates differences in others, creating an environment of equity and inclusion with opportunities for everyone to reach their potential. He shows up at every staff huddle and actively participates in all division-sponsored events whenever his schedule allows it. He's a key player in supporting the diverse team as well as ensuring division events are a success.

Erin Hartman
Director of Communications, UCSF Benioff Homelessness & Housing Initiative

Erin HartmanErin builds bridges across the organization and University – a clear demonstration of the Chancellor’s goal of building value-added partnerships. As the organization’s communications lead, Erin has developed deep relationships with other communicators across the University. She effortlessly balances the priorities of BHHI with those of colleagues outside of the organization. Internally, Erin also served as a partner to colleagues within BHHI. Erin worked closely with policy staff at BHHI to adjust and refine messaging to have the greatest impact, drawing upon her years of communications expertise. She has also been instrumental in shaping communications strategy for policy-relevant projects, including the California Statewide Study of People Experiencing Homelessness – one of the largest studies of homelessness in the past 25 years. Her ability to work across boundaries within BHHI and across the University speaks to her skill as a broker of collaboration and partnerships.

Nancy Huynh
Finance Manager, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Nanct HuynhThe Division of Hospital Medicine has 150 faculty with a budget of over $44 million to manage. Nancy has spent the last year building a finance team within the division and putting processes in place to help the team manage the large volume of payroll tickets that need to be completed. In order to do this, she spent many hours training two staff members, one who previously did minimal financial management and one who expressed an interest in finance, to become adept at handling all financial inquiries and updates. She set up shared tracking sheets so the three of them can keep track of all the UC Path tickets that need to be placed, making sure things don’t get missed. And she created a workflow so that the three of them can complete quarterly financial reconciliations together in real-time with support from each other through “Zoom rooms.” All of this helps to support the Chancellor’s goal of bolstering financial resiliency, not only by helping manage the payment of all faculty, but by building redundancy into the systems so that when she is out, we have a team who knows how to handle any financial issues that may arise.

Layan Kaileh
Operations Manager, UCSF Benioff Homelessness and Housing Initiative

Layan KailehLayan Kaileh is the operations manager for the California State Study of People Experiencing Homelessness (CSSPEH). CSSPEH is the most complex study of homelessness in the United States in two decades. Layan joined UCSF in the middle of the data collection of this enormous study. Layan joined a team that was fractured from lack of on-the-ground leadership and logistics expertise. She quickly immersed herself in the study methodology, learned about the various partners in each county, and understood the sampling strategies and the projected goals. She had to heal fractures in the staff, train new staff, and integrate local partners (who served both as interviewers and guides). Layan is incredibly passionate about preventing and ending homelessness (PEH). Her deep sense of integrity towards her work and the BHHI mission has been incredibly beneficial to the state study. Layan conducts her work in an ethnical manner, centering on the needs of PEH and staff. She works tirelessly to ensure the study is conducted in the most ethical manner, staying true to the research methods and aims.

Kelly Kiser
Administrative Officer, Division of General Internal Medicine, ZSFG

Kelly KiserKelly exhibited exceptional, sustained performance during this past year while also stepping up to cover the role of division manager due to the manager being out on an unplanned, extended leave. Kelly impressively filled the gap, leading all administrative operations for the division including space, human resources, academic affairs, and some clinical ops. She demonstrated her expertise in all things related to the division and proactively worked to resolve issues. Kelly also took the lead in the effort to create hybrid telework plans for the entire division. She developed a masterful space-sharing plan for staff to share desks on different days, keeping Investigator teams together on days they want to work together onsite, and ensure that everyone who needs space can be accommodated. Kelly is also driving the administrative efforts related to the move into the UCSF Research and Academic Building at ZSFG (ZRAB). She has been assisting the division with large-scale campus wide initiatives, providing guidance and acting as the primary contact within the division for answers to questions during the move preparation and move processes, and she acts as a conduit for communications and dialogue between division and the ZSFG Vice Dean's Office Project Team. 

Gayle Kojimoto-Hume
Program Manager, Division of Palliative Medicine

Gayle Kojimoto-HumeGayle serves as program manager for the MERI Center in Palliative Care Education at UCSF, Practice-PC: Interprofessional Continuing Education in Palliative Care for Practicing Clinicians, and the Palliative Care Leadership Center. She is also the co-lead of the DPM Anti-Racism Taskforce. She led the development of MERI from a focused education resource for the UCSF/Mount Zion campus to an international education center serving thousands of patients, family caregivers, health care providers, and staff annually. Gayle co-manages MERI’s Poetic Medicine program with professionalism and respect; she supports participants from all around the world (online), and is able to mediate conflicts in a respectful and thoughtful way. Gayle manages the MERI budget (more than $1.3 million) with the utmost integrity. She is careful to recognize donors, precise in monitoring and projecting budgets, and is eminently trustworthy. She is working diligently to raise additional funding and apply for grants to carry on the important work of MERI. Within MERI, Gayle led efforts to increase inclusiveness via a major revision of the MERI website and course descriptions, a revision of course content to be more equitable, and promoted collaborations with GLIDE church and the Chinese American Coalition for Compassionate Care. Gayle’s expertise in DEI is being built into new programs and research studies being developed by MERI.

Grace Krueger
Project Manager, Center for Clinical Informatics and Improvement Research (CLIIR)

Grace KruegerGrace manages multiple large-scale federally- and state-funded research projects while also contributing to many of CLIIR’s research administration priorities. Over the past year, Grace took the lead role in working with the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS). CLIIR was asked to rapidly produce state landscape assessment work to evaluate progress in health IT adoption and use in California 10 years after the HITECH incentive programs. The state was required to submit this assessment to CMS and realized that they did not have the capacity to produce it. This highly complex project involved the use of multiple existing datasets, interviews with frontline care providers to capture their experiences under HITECH, and interviews with state-level stakeholders to identify future health IT priorities. Grace deftly coordinated across all of these stakeholders (including DHCS leadership and the California HealthCare Foundation that provided matched support for the project) and gained buy-in from the groups involved. She synthesized vast amounts of information and developed the final report that was submitted to CMS as well as shared with many state-level stakeholders. The project was so successful that DHCS immediately awarded us funds for a second, even more complex project to meet another urgent state-level need.

Christine Lam
Scheduler, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Rosemary YauWhen Christine started the job with the division, there were only three to four services and fewer than 50 faculty. Today, there are 16 services and over 150 faculty and fellows to schedule. This past year, Christine’s biggest achievement has been leading the transition to a new scheduling software. Clinical scheduling is so important to physicians, so giving them the tools to make schedule swaps through the system helps provide a more flexible schedule, that they value, and empowers them to handle this without involvement from Christine. Preparing for the new scheduling software was a special project that Christine managed in addition to her already demanding job of managing the clinical schedule. Christine consistently assists with acute staffing needs that occur during nights and weekends. These often need to be handled within a few hours, and she is incredibly responsive, available, and helpful in filling these gaps in the schedule. She responds to emails and text messages at all hours. She helps to mobilize resources when a physician hasn’t shown up for clinical duty and troubleshoots when a physician reports an unanticipated absence due to a personal or family emergency.

Jennifer Lee
Health Professions Education Specialist, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Jennifer LeeJen’s work with the Clinical Informatics Fellowship (CIF) Program has tremendous impact on learners in the field of Information Technology, and thereby on innovation in the entire health system where fellows are active. Jen is responsible for programming support, professional development, and learning opportunities for the fellows. CIF is a two-year program under the Accreditation of Council for Graduate Medical Education for physicians who wish to develop and advance a professional and primary interest in informatics. Jen helped expand and diversify the fellowship, from two fellows/year (all male non-URM for the first two to three cohorts) to four to five fellows per year (~50% female, ~20% URM). Jen guided us through incredibly tough interview seasons, with an increase in applications and some very difficult scheduling. She runs very efficient meetings, making sure the agenda is in place, and keeps the leadership team on track with the mountains of paperwork. She also expressed an interest in learning about the division’s financial management. She spent many months being trained and is now an integral part of the division’s finance team. In this role, Jen partners with another finance assistant to handle the division’s quarterly financial reconciliation process, track all financial tickets and journal entries, and provide the division manager with financial information that is key to making budgetary decisions. In her finance work, she handles a large volume of work that requires incredible attention to detail. The accuracy of the work she submits is impressive – she rarely, if ever, has mistakes.

Tiffany Lee
Project Manager, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Tiffany LeeTiffany directs several large and complex projects, including a multicenter study of diagnostic errors involving 30 sites and more than 100 collaborators, a related COVID-19 quality improvement and education collaborative involving more than 50 hospitals and 500 collaborators (The Hospital Medicine Reengineering Network – HOMERuN), and our local startup ADviCE Health, which – although smaller – includes oversight of informatics fellows, students, technical contributors, as well as relationships with external collaborators at institutions such as Brigham and Women’s Hospital, as well as regulatory agencies such as FDA and NEST. Tiffany guides and oversees all these projects with calmness, collegiality, humor, intelligence, and poise.

Connie Li
Clinical Assistant, Division of Hospital Medicine, ZSFG

Connie LiConnie provides administrative support to physicians and patients on the Goldman Medicine Service. Previously, physicians were doing much of this administrative work themselves – everything from having patients sign forms, to reaching out to the primary care attending to alert them to the admission, to scheduling post-discharge follow-up appointments. One of the things that Connie did early in her role was to help with developing workflows for how she would support physicians on the service. An area that was identified was standardization of Goldman attendings being connected via email on the day of admission with outpatient UCSF PCPs. Connie was unique in her ability to help with crafting this workflow and then expanding it to additional subspecialists at UCSF including oncology, pulmonary and nephrology. Doing this well required significant skill on Connie’s part as it is not always straightforward knowing who the correct providers are to notify. Not all staff would be able to do this so skillfully and Connie has been exceptional in this regard. The impact of this has subsequently been felt across the UCSF enterprise with outpatient UCSF providers frequently sharing unsolicited feedback about how helpful this intervention has been to assure they remain involved in the care of their patients during hospitalizations. 

Benjamin Loo
Finance Manager, Division of Palliative Medicine

Ben LooBen has been a patient and expert partner for faculty in developing intra- and extramural grant proposals and guiding faculty through their finances. He helps to ensure that faculty use their funding appropriately to promote their work and projects. He  has become expert in analyzing, projecting, and presenting financial information to help guide decision making. In addition to performing all of his research administration duties, Ben plays a larger role in the financial planning, budgeting, and monitoring of the division’s finances outside of sponsored projects. This includes participating in the annual divisional budgeting process, ensuring all faculty renewals are accurate, managing the tracking of divisional clinical revenue and spending, income sources, and preparing faculty year-end statements. He has also taken on responsibility of refining internal processes and procedures as they relate to a broad range of finance-related activities. He also is very committed about being fair and honest, letting faculty know what are allowable expenses and doesn’t play favorites, following the same policies for everyone.

Natalya Maisel
Associate Director, Center for Clinical Informatics and Improvement Research (CLIIR)

Natalya MaiselOver the past year, Natalya has worked in partnership with SOM Tech to advance the CMS Data Reuse Program. This is a highly significant enterprise initiative that enables researchers to use a shared set of Medicare and Medicaid claims data files, which if purchased on an individual researcher basis are both extremely expensive and put the institution at risk for compliance breaches that carry high penalties. This program was recently approved for funding by the Office of Research and would not have matured from its pilot phase to a full-scale, ongoing program without Natalya’s efforts. Natalya proactively established a close working relationship with SOM Tech to develop the reuse program that will benefit many researchers beyond CLIIR. In doing so, she navigated a complex set of internal and external policies, include security and compliance regulations.

Tiana Moore
Manager, Policy Program, UCSF Benioff Homelessness & Housing Initiative

Tiana MooreTiana has quickly become a key leader at BHHI. She is someone who goes above and beyond in everything she does. With her background in applied statistics, housing research, psychology, and policy, she wears many hats. For example, during the complicated California Statewide Study of People Experiencing Homelessness — a massive state-wide mixed methods study of adults experiencing homelessness throughout CA, Tiana recognized that some team members were starting to feel burnout and overwhelm. While this was not her job, she volunteered to go out to the field to provide additional senior leadership on the ground. While there, she would work throughout the day doing whatever needed to be done (making connections with venues, supervising research in encampments, training staff members) and then would regularly do her “day job” in the evenings. As data began to come in, she used her strong statistics skills to run analyses for presentations when the statistics team was too busy to do so. She never makes a big deal about this — she is the person who sees the work that needs to be done. Tiana also works closely with the UCSF Office of Government Relations to forge productive relationships with members of the CA legislature and their staff. They see her as a wise and trusted source of recommendations.

Martha Ockenfels-Martinez
Health Equity and DEI Project Manager, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Martha Ockenfels-MartinezMartha is the first staff hired in this position and independently made herself a presence, becoming involved with different health equity and DEI projects at UCSF. She has taken the lead in the Hospital Medicine Anti-Racism Taskforce (ARTF). She fostered innovation and empowered others by bringing together a unique coalition of faculty and staff to create a common mission, vision, and goals for the ARTF. Martha helped spur the development of a novel Health Equity hub for the Division of Hospital Medicine. She pulled together stakeholders from across the health system for information-sharing and joint initiatives that specifically seek to reduce health outcomes disparities for hospitalized patients at UCSF. Martha also stepped up to lead efforts to submit a grant to Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. She skillfully navigated competing stakeholder’s perspectives and achieved group consensus on the proposed grant activities. Martha worked with pre-award staff from the Office of Sponsored Research to create a budget for this grant and ensure the grant has adhered to the sponsors and UCSF policies. This grant would not have been written and submitted without Martha's professionalism and excellence.

Pamela Olsen
Project Director, Center for Vulnerable Populations, ZSFG

Pamela OlsenPam’s role as a senior project manager overseeing several research studies and mentoring project managers has been critical to the sustainable growth at BHHI. She is seen as the go-to expert on all things related to Research Operations, from setting up IRBs, developing data sharing agreements, creating contracts, drafting budgets, developing interview guides and survey materials, creating staffing plans, and developing work plans that teams can follow to ensure they are on track. Pam is a true leader at BHHI, providing mentorship and troubleshooting on all studies. As mentor, Pam has advocated for promotion opportunities for staff members from historically marginalized backgrounds. She recognizes staff’s unique expertise and alternative pathways to leadership. In her role of mentor, she has been personally responsible for the promotion and career development of several staff members from historically marginalized backgrounds in whom she recognized leadership potential, advocated for their promotions, and supported and mentored them through new leadership challenges.

Camille Perez
Program Manager, Chair’s Office

Camille PerezCamille was hired in the Department of Medicine (DOM) to operationalize two innovative programs, the DOM Program for Clinician Educator Success (DOM PRO-cess) and a Physician-Scientist Career Development Program (PSCDP), between three departments: DOM, Neurology, and Pediatrics. Camille was responsible for launching both programs at the same time and this included identifying the target population via surveys, working with high-profile faculty (department chairs, managers, and program directors) to announce the programs, and enlist all who would benefit from them but may not necessarily sign up. Camille also created websites, logos, list serves, email resource accounts, mailing lists, and organized in-person catered launch events for both programs. She did this under the direction of the leadership of the programs that comprises eight faculty members. It was a challenging endeavor since they were both launched simultaneously and were large in scope, with high aspirations and expectations on delivering quickly, but 15 months later both programs are fully functioning, serving a combined four hundred participants. They have fully developed websites, monthly and quarterly newsletters, scholarly, mentorship, career development, and grant writing workshops, as well as networking and community building in-person events. Camille, as the administrator, manages all these components.

Cherie Ros
Division Manager, Division of Prevention Science

Cherie RosCherie’s exceptional mix of professionalism and kindness sets a tone for the division that has made a remarkable difference. It is hard to overstate the uplifting effect on the division’s morale, sense of community, and sense of purpose that has resulted from Cherie’s many initiatives. Cherie has been instrumental in initiating or implementing programs ranging from regular division socials, to diversity/anti-racism programs, to leadership coaching (for staff and faculty alike), to (EDG) Employee Development Grants to numerous WeCARE (Wellness, Community-building, Appreciation, Recognition, Engagement) initiatives. Whenever Cherie sees an unmet need, such as staff needing support for professional development, she comes up with creative solutions without hesitation. Thanks to Cherie and the WeCARE team she assembled, the division has announced its first ever professional development awards (EDG), providing financial assistance in support of courses, programs, and other educational activities that aid in developing skills and knowledge to further staff career growth within DPS and the University. By establishing programs like EDG, Cherie created myriad sustained efforts significantly improving work lives and professional development. The mission to promote diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging is at the heart of Cherie’s approach to all aspects of her job. She was instrumental in helping to establish the first DEI Lead for the division, a funded position that has been critical over the past few months. She is also active in the division’s Anti-Racism Working Group, to which she brings a wealth of personal and professional experience and perspective that has enriched both the process and the outcomes of that group. She has quickly gained the reputation as a champion of DEIB within and outside of the division. Cherie strives for excellence in all aspects of her position, and she works hard to bring out excellence in others.

Lee Anne Rosenstein
Director of Communications, Chair's Office

Rosemary YauLee Anne brings a high degree of professionalism that is very positively impacting the entire department. She introduced a number of tools, processes, and approaches that foster a higher degree of professional-level work product concepts to the Chair’s Office team with generosity, enthusiasm, and robustness. As one example, Lee Anne’s service and team-based approach to producing the many newsletters distributed by the Chair’s Office have helped establish highly organized content, composition, coding, and distribution schedules that have leveled up their overall professionalism. While she could have continued with the established model for these newsletters, she listened to the many pain points being experienced with these work products and stepped up to provide a far better way. This has had an incredible impact on freeing many  from hours of intensive labor and stress each month.

Samantha Santiago
Clinical Project Manager and Executive Assistant, Chair’s Office

Sam SantiagoSam is one of the most visible, front-facing members in the Chair’s Office. She is involved in almost every project, communication, planning effort, and strategic initiative. In all her interactions, Sam exhibits unflinching professionalism. She displays a high degree of presence and emotional intelligence in all situations, including conversations that may be occurring under pressure, such as when meeting critical deadlines or working with situations of potential conflict. She always seems to be grounded and centered; approachable and open. Sam is an ideal departmental ambassador because of her kindness, focus, competence, warmth, and communications skills. Sam is able to move quickly and with resilience in the face of impromptu changes to workflow or priorities in circumstances that would make many others feel frustrated or stressed. Sam, however, seems to always take an attitude of positivity and affirmation. 

Joseph Scarpelli
Program Director, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Joseph ScarpelliJoseph has been the main lead on HEAL’s contracts with Navajo Nation. Logistically this can be laborious and time-consuming, but it is a crucial part of fiscal strength and HEAL’s ability to serve health workers around the world. He pushed forward the Navajo contract largely independently through deep knowledge and stakeholder engagement on the U.S. government side. Joseph self-organized two trips to Navajo Nation this past year, beyond the job responsibilities, so he could sit in-person with HEAL fellows, HEAL alum, and HEAL partner sites and be sure he listens to all updates and concerns. He took extra time to meet stakeholders in early mornings, evenings and weekends, and wrote copious notes to follow up on each individual point addressed. He took extra time and attention with Navajo colleagues, who sometimes face even more structural barriers to get the support they need. Additionally, Joseph went out of his way to make two more trips — one to a new partner site Pasqua Yaqi — to meet the stakeholders in person and prepare for the first fellows who will be working there next July. He was able to bring this partnership to fruition through a long assessment of what makes for a solid partner with UCSF. This partnership means that HEAL is working with several native tribes around the country. It should be a great source of pride that we are impacting the daily lives of marginalized, indigenous communities. Joseph is greatly responsible for this partnership and maintaining the partnership in Navajo Nation.

Varsha Subramanyam
Curriculum Officer, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Varsha SubramanyamLess than a year into her role, Varsha had the opportunity to attend and facilitate three back-to-back intensive trainings — one in Malawi in May, the second in Sante Fe, New Mexico, in June, and the third in Santa Cruz in July. Almost no one else was asked to do all three training programs back-to-back due to the intensity of the schedule, the volume of work, and the extra commitment required. Without a second thought, Varsha offered to not just join all three, but to play a leadership role in all three — together supporting over 70 fellows and alumni, more than half of them site fellows who had experienced significant hardship during COVID times. Varsha would always offer to facilitate sessions, to be the notetaker, to follow up with individual fellows who were having a hard time, to pack and carry supplies in her suitcases, and to do anything to support HEAL’s mission. She delivered existing and new curriculum in critical and challenging facilitation environments and thrived in her capacity to help diverse fellows learn and synthesize their own experiences. The work she did in Malawi, Sante Fe, and Santa Cruz exemplifies UCSF’s values of integrity, professionalism, and excellence. 

Madison Sui
Quality Improvement Specialist, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Madison SuiMaddi has been committed to excellence in supporting the Unit Based Leadership Team (UBLT) improvement efforts. Maddi has gone above and beyond her duties to support Hospital Medicine patient experience efforts. She engaged with a group of post-baccalaureate students, thoughtfully obtained provider communication feedback from unit nurses, and crafted provider-patient experience data to advance critical improvement work. In all of her efforts, Maddi is highly accountable, communicative, collaborative, and seeks to incorporate diverse viewpoints. Maddi is continually willing to take on new challenges and push herself out of her comfort zone to grow. For instance, she expressed an interest in developing project management skills and volunteered to take on the project management role for the summer QI internship. In the recruitment for a summer QI intern, Maddi advocated for approaches to candidate recruitment and selection to ensure an equitable process and attempt to reach diverse candidate groups. She is well-versed and wants to focus on creating an environment of equity and inclusion.

Aaron Tabacco
Director of Staff Experience, Chair’s Office

Rosemary YauAaron carries out his responsibility to develop and execute initiatives for improving staff experience and morale in ways that far exceed what is expected of him. He demonstrates integrity, innovation, and excellence that always inspire others to do the same. Instead of simply finding an existing resource, Aaron made a passionate commitment to address burnout and did the necessary work to achieve this goal. As such, our divisions and teams are able to have customized trainings, with greater accessibility and utility, not waiting for University solutions or resources to open up. As a certified career coach, Aaron provides one-on-one coaching and advising for staff members, junior and senior alike. His prior career as a faculty member and educator means that he has a keen understanding of different learning styles and teaching modalities. Each person who has done a session with him has said they've gained new insights about themselves. Aaron is a trusted advisor with a wealth of knowledge and willingly offers his help to others beyond the scope of his day-to-day responsibilities.

Morgan Tanaka
Admin Coordinator and Executive Assistant, Division of Palliative Medicine

Morgan TanakaAs an admin officer, Morgan wears many different hats and roles within the division. She sets up monthly division meetings with the entire staff and faculty, and she is the point person for all MyExpense reimbursements, the BearBuy champion, and whatever the division needs. Her professionalism and character really stand out. She carries herself to the highest standard and is a perfectionist when it comes to her work. There isn’t a small or big request or project she isn’t willing to do. She has the right attitude and puts her best foot forward. Shortly after she started, she was assigned to a project to move all server folders/files to OneDrive. After years and years of saving items to the server, this would be an important and mundane project. Having only one place where the team can access files would cause less confusion going forward. Morgan took on this project without any complaints. She continues to work on this project today but has already made an impact on how we navigate our files.

Danielle Taylor
Director of Operations, Dementia Care Aware, Division of Geriatrics

Danielle TaylorDanielle built the Dementia Care Aware program from scratch and implemented a clear organizational structure, including hiring a crucial program manager and other staff. She leads the management and organization of seven staff, over a dozen faculty just at UCSF, and dozens more (>30) via subcontracts. She established clear, respectful, open lines of communication with eight large subcontractors, which include five other UC campuses and their esteemed and accomplished faculty and staff, two large companies, and a large community-based organization. She also expertly represented Dementia Care Aware to outside stakeholders, such as state agencies and committees in the CA legislature and has been a key spokesperson to elevate the program’s profile across the state. This includes highly visible presentations to the health plans of California; to CalPACE, the professional association of Programs for All-Inclusive Care of the Elderly; and to the Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Advisory Committee at the California Health and Human Services Agency. These presentations are leading to more partnerships. The program serves all of California to improve screening and detection of Alzheimer's disease and other dementia-causing diseases, and she is leading the way in terms of values. She shows the importance of respect for diversity by being inclusive and going out of her way to value the contributions of community organizations and advocates that we work with and represent minority populations. She also points out where and how we can be more inclusive of these groups when we are working on strategy.

Alyssa Tecklenburg
Associate Director of Strategic Initiatives, Chair’s Office

Alyssa TecklenburgAlyssa manages a wide range of projects for DOM in areas such as space, research, and general operations. She is the point person for any change management and process improvement projects and is an expert when it comes to providing meaningful results and building team morale. The team often turns to her for guidance and she provides the standards for how the office operates and conducts business. Alyssa has been developing a program called DOM CAST (Central Administrative Services Team) within the department where administrative staff can grow professionally, learn new skills, network, and get one-on-one support. This program also has a component where managers can request the temporary assignment of a project manager because of a vacancy or leave on their team. The results so far are notable: As an example, one manager has reported that his employee who participated in a tailored training program has made huge leaps in terms of her confidence and skills. Alyssa uses her strength of individualization and creative thinking to personalize each offering and make sure it meets the participants’ needs. Alyssa is more than a colleague; she is an advisor who leads by example. 

Lea Troeh
Project and Development Associate, Division of General Internal Medicine, ZSFG

Lea TroehLea continues to consistently demonstrate exceptional performance that has led to the overall growth and success of the Vouchers 4 Veggies – EatSF program (V4V). V4V is a healthy food program that provides households with low-income vouchers to purchase fruits and vegetables from their local store. Launched in 2015, V4V is designed to improve food security, increase healthy food access, and improve the overall health of those participating in the six-month program. Over the years, V4V experienced rapid growth, with many local city agencies, community-based organizations, and health care institutions interested in adopting and replicating the program model as a successful, evidence-based intervention to address food security and health. Lea, as V4V’s project and development associate, shepherded the rapid scale and expansion of the Vouchers 4 Veggies program ultimately leading to thousands of additional households being able to provide healthy food for their families. Over the past nine months, Lea has overseen the successful submission of several grants and has executed multiple complex contracts with government agencies, totaling in excess of $2 million dollars, signaling significant growth for our program. This increase in funding has allowed the V4V program to enroll additional households into the program and provide them with vouchers for both fruits and vegetables and healthy groceries.

Rosemary Yau
Assistant Division Manager, Division of Hospital Medicine, UCSF Health

Rosemary Yau

This past year, Rosemary served as the administrative leader for multiple projects. She partnered with the team to lead the division and transformed herself from an administrative support staff member to a true division leader. She worked closely with all the staff in the division to map out a plan to return to the office, something that required strong communication and interpersonal skills. She also worked with other staff leads to evaluate the workloads of all staff across the division and redistribute work to help support staff, which helped nurture a culture of caring for the individual people within the division. Rosemary is proactive, resourceful, excels in anticipating issues/problems, and takes pride in “going the extra mile.” Rosemary offers to cover for a colleague or vacancy — and she does it well without complaint. Rosemary has been instrumental in planning staff retreats and other events. She exemplifies flexibility and versatility in pivoting to a hybrid retreat that was in compliance with the ever-changing policies around in-person gatherings. Rosemary has continually offered to take on responsibilities that shouldn’t fall to her because she knows they need to get done and she wants to make sure they get done right.

Thomas Yu
Senior Finance Specialist, Division of Geriatrics

Thomas YuThomas is the ultimate professional who consistently exceeds standards. Thomas is extremely independent in his role and continues to do his best work every day. Since being hired in 2018, Thomas has been promoted twice as his grant portfolio continued to grow in size and complexity. Just this past year, the division received a large state-funded grant with over $10M in direct costs. He assumed the grant administrator role for this program, taking over heavily complex and high-volume purchases for this fast-paced program with specific and demanding deliverables. Thomas stays calm and professional through each roadblock when it comes to contract or budgetary issues. He always uses utmost discretion when it comes to grants and finances. Thomas is a seasoned finance professional who is always competent, accountable, reliable, and responsible in every single thing he does at work. He works with close to 50 faculty members in the division, acting as grant manager for many of them. He always interacts positively and collaboratively with all colleagues, at all levels.

Amy Yun
Project Manager, Chair’s Office

Amy developed and implemented the Department of Medicine Informal Networking Opportunities (DOMINOs) program in March 2021 from the ground up. DOMINOs was created to strengthen community building in the post-pandemic hybrid work environment by providing small gatherings such as dinners, baseball games, and pottery making to Department of Medicine (DOM) employees. Amy has recruited faculty, staff, and trainees to host events, liaised with vendors across the Bay Area, worked with DOM Finance to understand UC regulations and budgeting considerations, and organized RSVP requests for events. As an example of her precision and care, when she reviewed the RSVP lists, she recognized that trainees had not been as well represented in DOM, so she began creating separate events to increase their turnout, including a Warriors basketball game. After a year of operation, close to 10% of DOM employees have participated in an event. DOMINOs has been rated highly by employees with events consistently waitlisted up to 60 employees.