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9 Sonoma County health care professionals honored by local medical association

Nine Sonoma County physicians and medical professionals are being recognized for their exemplary service and contributions to the practice of medicine and support for the community in 2020 by the Sonoma County Medical Association through its 36th annual awards program.

Each recipient was nominated by one or more of the 750 physician members of the association, a nonprofit organization founded in 1858 to support local physicians and their efforts to enhance the health of the community. Final selections were made by the group’s board of directors.

“Every year since 1985 the SCMA has honored outstanding individuals who are making a difference and 2020 was no exception,” said Wendy Young, executive director. “Our goal is to celebrate service as we extend our deep appreciation and gratitude to those dedicated to the practice of medicine and improving public health in Sonoma County.”

Award categories include those nominated for making outstanding contributions to the community, to local medicine and to the organization itself.

Other distinction categories turn the recognition spotlight on exemplary achievements, and by singling out a practice manager of the year and the author of the medical article of the year. Two Operation Access awards were also acknowledged for an Above and Beyond contribution and to an Unsung Hero.

Outstanding Contribution Awards

Don Carlos Steele
Don Carlos Steele

Don Carlos Steele, M.D., with the Sonoma County Indian Health Project, is being honored for decades of service as a staff physician and former chief medical officer of the project, as well as for overseeing that organization’s transformational growth and plans for a new medical facility, the association stated.

Patrick Caskey
Patrick Caskey

Patrick Caskey, M.D., with North Bay Vitreoretinal Consultants, is recognized for his many years of work establishing partnerships with ambulatory surgery centers to expand retinal care in North Coast communities and for his instrumental role in creating North Bay Vitreoretinal Consultants along with his service as a board member for the Earle Baum Center for the Blind.

Sundari Mase (Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat)
Sundari Mase (Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat)

Sundari R. Mase, M.D., M.P.H., was selected for her unwavering commitment to local medicine and community health and perseverance coordinating Sonoma County guidelines with the Centers for Disease Control, county and state health departments, multiple hospital systems and the general public during the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic.

Regina Sullivan
Regina Sullivan

Regina Sullivan, M.D., MBA, CPE, with the Kaiser Permanente Medical Group was honored with appreciation for her many years of service and support to the medical profession and her physician colleagues – serving Sonoma County Medical Association continuously as a California Medical Association House of Delegates representative since 2013 and as president in 2016–2017.

Recognition of Achievement

Carley Sullivan
Carley Sullivan

Carly Sullivan, with Coastal Valleys Emergency Medical Services Agency, received a Recognition of Achievement Award for her efforts during the 2020 pandemic and wildfires helping the medical community navigate these disasters by facilitating virtual gatherings for hospitals, health systems, federally qualified health centers, and healthcare leaders, thus enhancing collaboration and improving patient care.

Practice Manager of the Year

Isabelle von Tobel
Isabelle von Tobel

Isabelle von Tobel, with Sutter Medical Group of the Redwoods, was honored in recognition of what’s said to be a stellar career that took her from administrative support for the Santa Rosa Family Medicine Residency to that Sutter organization, serving for nearly three decades as program manager, historian and the “heart of the medical group.”

Article of the Year

Kriegh P. Moulton
Kriegh P. Moulton

Kriegh P. Moulton, M.D., FACC, FACP, FCCP, with Northern California Medical Associates, was recognized in appreciation for authoring an article entitled “Catheter Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation Outcomes and Expectations,” which appeared in the summer 2020 issue of Sonoma Medicine magazine.

Operation Access Awards

Nina Ni
Nina Ni

Nina Ni, M.D., with the Eye Care Institute, received an Above and Beyond Award in appreciation of her generous financial contributions and also for donating ophthalmic surgery services to underserved residents.

Robert Haimson
Robert Haimson

Robert Haimson, M.D., with Sutter Medical Group of the Redwoods, was the recipient of the Unsung Hero Award in recognition of his longstanding commitment to providing orthopedic surgery services for the underserved.

“SCMA is a leader, supporter and voice for many county initiatives and policies that address public health concerns — such as helping to determine ways to distribute approved COVID-19 vaccines to small medical practices in the county, as well as supporting fundraising for the Health Careers Scholarship program and providing first-aid volunteers at community events and other local activities,” said Young.

Expanding the scope of the association

The medical association’s goal in 2021 is to expand physician wellness programs across the board, including vaccinations for physicians and medical staff not affiliated with a hospital, facilitating the group’s Physician Wellness Committee, providing peer group support and collegial gatherings such as Women in Medicine, Young Physicians, and other special interest medical groups as circumstances permit.

This nonprofit also plans to continue the many initiatives and activities it offered in 2020, such as gathering and publishing resources for COVID-19 and wildfire responses, as well as helping expand the statewide California Care4Caregivers program.

The organization distributes personal protective equipment and supplies to medical practices in Sonoma, Mendocino and Lake counties and supports the Bay Area CME diversity and inclusion webinar series. The association collaborates with physician leadership series training and participates in the annual Sonoma County Health Care Conference and at regional training on the use of telemedicine for shelter-at-home visits.

Ongoing involvement also encompasses support of county initiatives, such as vaccination education, smoking cessation, youth vaping, heart health, adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and other programs.

“In 2021 we will organize virtual meetings — and eventually resume gatherings — for other special interest groups such as Practice Managers Forum, White Coat Investors and Discover Sonoma County,” said Communications Director Susan Gumucio. “SCMA will also continue a full measure of outbound communications, outreach, and presence across social media outlets and the SCMA website.”

Award program sponsors include NORCAL Group, Sonoma County Indian Health Project, North Bay Vitreoretinal Consultants, Sutter Medical Group of the Redwoods, St. Joseph Health, Operation Access, Shriners Hospitals for Children of Northern California and Kaiser Permanente.

Media partners include the North Bay Business Journal, The Press Democrat and Sonoma Magazine.

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