Current Residents
First-Year Residents

Hoeffer Mok: I chose El Rio because of its commitment to serving the underserved community. My interests in medicine include psychiatry, public health, and preventative medicine. In my free time I enjoy exploring different food spots, martial arts, video games, and comics/anime.

Chisom Okuagu: I chose El Rio because of the focus on community healthcare, specifically in the setting of under-resourced and under-priviledged backgrounds. El Rio has shown time and time again how important quality patient care is for all patients, and the anecdotes from patients in the community show just how much the organization works to ensure this. Being a part of that mission and working with this patient population is a privilege I don’t take for granted and further fuels my desire toward equity and accessibility in healthcare. Within family medicine, my interests include women’s health and obstetrics, sports medicine, OMT, rural, and global medicine. Outside of medicine, I enjoy reading, traveling, spending time with family and friends, gardening, and hiking.

Alexander Silva: I chose El Rio because my passion lies in healthcare, and I have a deep love for sports medicine, video games, and basketball. Furthermore, I specifically decided to be a part of the El Rio program because it aligns with my goal of making positive changes in healthcare and prioritizing exceptional patient care. Trust in myself and my colleagues is of utmost importance, and I am genuinely happy to be a part of this team, working together to ensure that everyone receives the care they need to lead a healthy life. My special interest in sports medicine drives me to excel in optimizing athletic performance, preventing injuries, and promoting overall wellness for people of all ages. During my free time, I find joy and relaxation in playing video games and basketball. During my time as a resident physician at El Rio, I am determined to make a lasting impact on the lives of my patients, merging my passion for healthcare with my diverse interests to create a healthier future for all.

William Smith: I grew up in California and completed my medical school training at Midwestern University in Glendale, AZ. My professional interests include Sports Medicine and Emergency Medicine. On my off time I enjoy exercising, playing video games, and exploring new places. I am also a huge Star Wars nerd and proud of it! My wife and I have loved the move to Tucson and all the food, culture, and art that comes with it!

Second-Year Residents

Vaishnavi Gadicharla: I chose El Rio due to its commitment to the underserved population and the commitment faculty have towards teaching. Within family medicine, I have a special interest towards mental health and women’s health. When I’m not practicing medicine, you can find me spending time with friends & family, reading novels, or traveling the world.

Justin Kim: I chose El Rio because of the diverse patient population. El Rio’s mission statement stood out to me and I wanted to play a part in providing healthcare to underserved communities. Outside of medicine, I like to play basketball, explore Tucson and hang out with my dog.

Sarah Lawson: Growing up in Tucson means I am completely biased, but there is such warmth in the community here. El Rio allows us to meet lovely people – patients and staff alike – who value wellness at a fundamental level. I was fortunate to rotate here as a student and knew this would be my top choice immediately. El Rio works tirelessly to help people navigate the healthcare system and connect them with resources that actually work, which has been an invaluable learning experience as a resident. I also love having the time to enjoy hiking with my dog, rock climbing, gardening, and cooking for myself every day.

Tzu-En “Betty” Lin: I am a foodie, traveler, dog mom, explorer, and movie goer. Love this program, very nurturing and focused on education with good life-work balance. People are friendly at the program especially attendings and residents. And there is more to life than just medicine alone. Live. Love. Learn.