Medical-Dental Staff celebrates eight Rising Stars

Zohra Ali-Khan Catts, MS, CGC Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute
Zohra Ali-Khan Catts, MS, CGC

The 2015 Christiana Care Medical-Dental Staff Annual Meeting, Awards Celebration, Art Exhibit and Dinner was held Nov. 6 at Deerfield Golf & Tennis Club. This year’s event honored Anand P. Panwalker, M.D., with the Commendation for Excellence Award, and eight Rising Stars.

Zohra Ali-Khan Catts, MS, CGC, Director of Genetic Counseling and Gene Testing at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute, is the Rising Star Award winner from Christiana Care’s Cancer Program. She was recruited from her post as a genetic counselor at the Children’s Hospital of Central California, Madera, by Graham Cancer Center Bank of America Endowed Medical Director Nicholas J. Petrelli, M.D., just six months after Dr. Petrelli arrived in 2002.

“I can think of no other individual in the cancer program this year who is more qualified to receive the Rising Star Award, in view of her establishment of a program in the Graham Cancer Center that was nonexistent prior to her arrival and which has contributed to the early detection and prevention of cancer and helped achieve our decreasing cancer mortality rate,” Dr. Petrelli said.

Richard B. Bounds, M.D. Emergency Medicine
Richard B. Bounds, M.D.

Richard B. Bounds, M.D., joined Christiana Care in 2007 after residency training at the University of Pittsburgh. He was selected to become associate director of the Emergency Medicine Residency Program in 2010, which was  “one of the best decisions we have ever made,” according to Charles L. Reese IV, M.D., chairman of Emergency Medicine.

Dr. Bounds has earned a reputation for being bright, articulate and a strong patient advocate who stands out in a department full of strong educators as one of the strongest. He has earned the Teacher of the Year Award three times and achieved distinction as a Level III Master Educator.

“He leads quietly and teaches thoroughly, to high standards, with a leavening of dry humor for emphasis,” Dr. Reese said. “He instructs with humility, in a non-threatening way so residents can fully understand and internalize the lessons from each case. His high regard for both patients and colleagues is clear in everything he does. As associate program director of a large residency, Dr. Bounds is extremely accessible, as evidenced by residents often found waiting in line outside his office to get his guidance and mentoring on diverse professional and personal issues. Dr. Bounds deserves substantial credit for his actions to address new residency milestones, having reorganized the evaluation system to incorporate new structure into all the feedback mechanisms.”

Erin Grady M.D., CCD, FACNM

Erin C. Grady, M.D., CCD, FACNM joined Christiana Care’s Nuclear Medicine staff in 2011 after completing residency in nuclear medicine in 2011 at the Loyola University Medical Center. Prior to that she completed her preliminary internal medicine year in 2008 at the University of Oklahoma after graduating from the University of Washington School of Medicine in 2007.

“Dr. Grady has been an essential team member in the Department of Radiology on several fronts,” said Department Chair Kert F. Anzilloti,  M.D., MBA.

She participates at the national level in professional service activities related to her specialty. In 2011, she was the first Robert E. Henkin Government Relations Fellow and has been very active in advocating for patient access to nuclear medicine procedures.

Dr. Grady is the secretary/treasurer of the American Board of Nuclear Medicine as well as this year’s exam chair, and also serves as treasurer of the American College of Nuclear Medicine. Ahe is committed to resident education and gained a Certificate in Academic Medicine through the Ralph P. Leishner Jr., M.D., Institute for Medical Education while a resident. She has published web-based teaching modules on topics such as pulmonary imaging and radioiodine therapies. Residents and fellows at Christiana Care and at the University of Pennsylvania have said that her lectures are outstanding. She has delivered many invited lectures at national meetings both in and outside of her specialty. She is also an active manuscript reviewer for prominent journals, including Abdominal Imaging and the Journal of Nuclear Medicine

“We are extremely lucky to have such a highly qualified physician in our department,” Dr. Anzilloti said.

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Úrsula Guillén, M.D.

The 2015 Rising Star Award winner from Pediatrics, Úrsula Guillén, M.D., is board certified in neonatal-perinatal medicine and general pediatrics. She is a clinical professor of pediatrics at Sidney Kimmel Medical College.

“Since her arrival in 2010, she has been a valuable contributor and important leader in education and research efforts in the Department of Pediatrics at Christiana Care,” said department Chair David A. Paul, M.D.

Early in her career Dr. Guillén earned a national reputation for excellence based on her research on counseling families who are having a baby at the border of viability. She developed a decision aid for families struggling with the weight of the decision of whether to provide intensive care to an extremely premature infant and has received grant funding for her research, published in high-impact journals. She has been an invited speaker at well-attended national meetings.

Dr. Guillén’s passion for teaching and education is demonstrated through her leadership of a multidisciplinary integrated practice team at Christiana Care, which is standardizing the care of mothers and infants delivering extremely premature infants. She has developed standardized curricula to teach residents rotating through the NICU and to teach fellows research methodology. She has been an important contributor to a regional program on procedural simulation for fellows.

Dr. Guillén completed her residency training in pediatrics at Yale/New Haven Children’s Hospital and neonatal/perinatal medicine fellowship at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She graduated from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine in 2004.

Christopher R. Martin, M.D. Psychiatry
Christopher R. Martin, M.D.

Christopher R. Martin, M.D., joined the Department of Psychiatry in 2014 after completing a psychosomatic medicine fellowship at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. He graduated from Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University in 2009 and completed residency training in psychiatry at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, where he served as a chief resident.

“Dr. Martin quickly demonstrated exceptional qualities as a clinician and a leader,” said Linda Lang, M.D., chair of the Department of Psychiatry. “Since he was appointed medical director he has led the charge to develop and grow the Behavioral Health Consultation-Liaison Service at Christiana Care.” In this leadership role Dr. Martin has implemented the grand rounds program, as well as formal behavioral health didactic sessions with the Departments of Surgery and Obstetrics & Gynecology. He collaborates with other service lines on complex behavioral conditions and their acute management while showing a strong commitment to training across service lines on the diagnosis and treatment of delirium.


Erin M. Meyer, D.O., FAWM, FAAP, FACP, SFHM Medicine
Erin M. Meyer, D.O., FAWM, FAAP, FACP, SFHM

The Department of Medicine 2015 Rising Star Awardee is Erin M. Meyer, D.O., FAWM, FAAP, FACP, SFHM. Dr. Meyer is a member of Christiana Care Hospitalist Partners and Christiana Care Pediatric Hospitalists. She  graduated from Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2005 and completed a combined internal medicine–pediatrics residency at Geisinger Medical Center, Danville, Pa.

“We were delighted when Erin joined Christiana Care Health System after completing her residency training in 2009,” said Virginia U. Collier, M.D., MACP, Hugh R. Sharp Jr. Chair of Medicine, who nominated Dr. Meyer for the Rising Star Award. “She has proven to be the ultimate medical professional” — one who not only provides outstanding care for her patients, but is an active participant in an impressive number of interdisciplinary projects, all focused on improving patient safety and quality and providing the best possible patient experience.

Dr. Meyer has played key roles in integrating the work of hospitalists with other services within the hospital. She serves as the hospitalist leader for the Trauma Co-Management Project and the Division of Hospital Medicine representative to the hip fracture intervention team.

Bradley J. Sandella, D.O. Family & Community Medicine
Bradley J. Sandella, D.O.

The 2015 Rising Star Award winner from the Department of Family & Community Medicine is Bradley J. Sandella, D.O., director of Primary Care Sports Medicine and the Sports Medicine Fellowship.

“Dr. Sandella is a highly-valued musculoskeletal medicine resource for faculty, residents and students,” said department chair David M. Bercaw, M.D. “He has had significant impact at our institution and is increasingly recognized for his efforts. His contributions to the primary care/population health spectrum of musculoskeletal issues are only beginning as we start to implement service line integration and collaborative primary care training.”

Dr. Sandella was recruited as director by Christiana Care in 2012 to build and invigorate sports medicine efforts and the fellowship program. He quickly brought stability to the program during its transition, reconstructing the curriculum, establishing key contacts throughout our community, coordinating educational approaches across our system and recruiting an excellent assistant director. He was pivotal to forging a relationship with the University of Delaware Athletics program to collaborate in care for Division 1 athletes and in enhancing the teaching program. Through his many efforts, he has established Christiana Care’s Sports Medicine Fellowship as a top program in the region, which is now recruiting the highest quality applicants.

Maria Elena Soler, M.D., MPH, MBA Obstetrics & Gynecology
Maria Elena Soler, M.D., MPH, MBA

Maria Elena Soler, M.D., MPH, MBA, an attending physician and medical director of OB Triage Services, is the 2015 Rising Star Award winner from the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

“Dr. Soler has been a guiding force in enhancing patient access and value-based care to our community,” said Richard J. Derman, M.D., MPH, FACOG, The Marie E. Pinizzotto, M.D., Endowed Chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

She currently chairs the Triage Value Improvement Team, which focuses on collaborative and evidence-based principles in addressing acute and high-risk community needs. “She earned a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt at Christiana Care and employs these principles in helping to design our newly expanded triage unit,” said Dr. Derman. “She continues to assume added responsibilities within the service line and the department as we evolve in a population health model. She has been a major driver as Christiana Care embarks on new construction to help transform care.”

Dr. Soler joined Christiana Care in 2003, having served at The Johns Hopkins University Bayview Medical Center as an attending physician for five years, and as director of Outpatient Women’s Services for three years. She received her undergraduate degree in biochemistry from Barnard College at Columbia University. She began her general surgery residency at Columbia University St. Luke’s/Roosevelt Medical Center, and completed training as a surgical research fellow at the University of California at Davis East Bay Surgical Program.

Dr. Soler pursued residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at the State University of New York at Buffalo, finishing in 1998. As a resident she received The Robert J. Patterson Award for outstanding patient care and compassion and the L. William Blaisdell Award, first place, surgical research, at the University of California and the State University of New York, respectively. She earned master’s degrees in public health and business administration from The Johns Hopkins University, finishing in 2001. Dr. Soler graduated in 1983 from Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons where she received honors in surgical ICU, surgical pathology and urology.