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Residency Faculty Bios

Faculty Bios

Janice Benson, MD

Dr. Benson has been a Family Medicine doc for several decades now, and she continues to find the work that family physicians do to be important, meaningful, and intellectually stimulating. She is originally from Baltimore, MD and 'grew up' in the middle of the civil rights struggles. Dr. Benson went to MIT for undergraduate to plan a career in basic science research but quickly found that the life of a researcher was not the right fit for her, a people person with a commitment to social justice. At that time, community medicine principles were new but became the guide for scientifically-minded, idealistic pre-meds, such as her. Community Medicine has always meant Family Medicine to her - she saw she could take care of all ages, as the personal physician for families who need us the most. Dr. Benson received her MD from St. Louis University School of Medicine and chose Cook County Hospital for residency. There, she stayed and spent several years in practice and teaching in various roles. After completing a Faculty Development Fellowship at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, she co-founded a Faculty Development training program that continues to train 5-15 family docs each year.

As Vice Chair of Education, Dr. Benson continues to love teaching residents in the hospital and family care center and interacting with students, fellows and faculty, too.

Her special interests are the dynamics of the health care for the poor, family issues, patients with severe chronic illness and mental illness, and faculty development. Her leisure time activities are hanging out with family, kayaking, x-country skiing, and reading.

Victoria Braund, MD

Dr. Victoria Braund is the Director of the Division of Geriatric Medicine at NorthShore University HealthSystem. She is also a Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.

Originally from North Dakota, Dr. Braund attended the University of North Dakota for her undergraduate and medical school. She completed her residency in Internal Medicine at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine Affiliated Hospitals in Fargo. She then moved to Chicago where she completed a fellowship in Geriatric Medicine at the University of Chicago.

She maintains an active clinical practice at Glenbrook Hospital and is involved as a teacher of Geriatrics in both the Internal Medicine and Family Medicine residencies at NorthShore. She is also medical director at two skilled facilities and is a Certified Medical Director.

Her clinical interests include aging well, memory loss, end of life care, and transitioning seniors and their families through various levels of care in the community.

She and her husband are delighted to have both of their daughters attending the University of North Dakota.

Gene Combs, MD

Even though he trained in Psychiatry, Gene has always had a warm place in his heart for Family Medicine. As a psychiatrist, he had focused on family therapy, pursuing post-graduate training with many of the most respected theorists in the field.

Gene and his partner in life, Jill Freedman, have co-authored three books and many articles on aspects of Narrative Therapy, including the widely respected Narrative Therapy: the social construction of preferred realities. Gene has served on the Committee on Accreditation in Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) and on the board of the American Family Therapy Academy (AFTA). He was awarded for outstanding contributions and leadership to the association by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. In 2009 (with Jill Freedman) he received the Award for Innovative Contribution to Family Therapy from the American Family Therapy Academy.

For re-creation, Gene likes to travel, eat and try to improve his mediocre skills at playing and singing the music of (among others) Bob Dylan, The Band, Gillian Welch, and Mississippi John Hurt.

Gene has sought out work in a Family Medicine residency program because he has a lifelong commitment to social justice and he finds that doctors who choose Family Medicine share that interest. He enjoys the opportunities he has to help doctors-in-training respond to the psychosocial needs of people in the context of their families and their communities. He is especially interested in helping doctors learn to efficiently and effectively participate in the stories of peoples' struggles with serious illness. He strives to help them preserve a human, interpersonal, and reflective focus in the face of corporate pressures toward ills, procedures, and "productivity."

Mark Drexler, MD

Dr. Drexler was born and raised in the northern suburbs of Chicago. He attended Washington University in St. Louis for college where he received a B.S. in biology with a minor in mathematics. He played college football at Wash U for the first two years and served as a high school youth advisor in the St. Louis community. Dr. Drexler attended the University of Illinois at Chicago for medical school. He completed his residency in Family Medicine at Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Illinois. He has worked in a variety of clinical settings including group, solo, and academic settings.

Dr. Drexler joined the medical staff at Glenbrook Hospital in 2004 and started working with the Glenbrook Family Medicine Residency in 2005. He joined the NorthShore Medical Group in July, 2009. He became full time residency faculty in November, 2011 and became the Medical Director/Lead Physician at the Family Care Center in July, 2013. Dr. Drexler enjoys the clinical encounters with patients and their families and continues to see his patients in the clinic, the hospital, and local nursing homes. He works directly with the Family Medicine residents and medical students at NorthShore overseeing their training in the outpatient clinic, inpatient service and obstetrics. As Medical Director, he works closely with the physicians and clinical staff to improve the care provided at the Family Care Center. He is a proponent of the Patient Centered Medical Home and is working with a dedicated team to implement this medical model of care in our clinic.

Dr. Drexler is married with three wonderful children - Aaron age 22, Colby age 19 and Rikki age 16. His wife of 26 years, Sara, is an actuary.

Joseph P. Gibes, MD

Dr. Gibes grew up in the Chicago area and, after majoring in English at Calvin College, went to the University of Illinois in Chicago for medical school, planning to become a surgeon. However, he discovered and fell in love with Family Medicine instead. During that time, he also fell in love with and married Amy. After completing residency in Waukesha, WI, Dr. Gibes spent 11 years as a country doc in southwest Wisconsin, where his three children were born. He returned to the Chicago area and joined the residency faculty in 2006. Dr. Gibes has an MA in Bioethics. Interesting facts: he plays clarinet with Lake County Symphony Orchestra, and he once did a circumcision with an eight-inch steak knife.

Katherine Lott, DO

Dr. Lott was born and raised in Indianapolis, IN. She obtained her BA at Oberlin College, majoring in Neuroscience with minors in Chemistry and Psychology, and her medical degree from Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Dr. Lott completed her family medicine residency at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Mishawaka, IN followed by her geriatric fellowship at Rush University in Chicago, IL.

She has recently joined the Northshore faculty in 2017, as Geriatric and Family Medicine faculty, and enjoys teaching in a variety of settings: FCC, SNF, and inpatient.

Her passion for geriatric medicine dates back to her formative high school years, in which she took part in community service at a local nursing home, and was strengthened by her neuroscience studies and medical training. Dr. Lott's clinical interests include dementia, end of life care, healthy aging, fall prevention and sharing her passion for geriatric medicine.

Dr. Lott and her husband Steve live in Morton Grove, IL, and enjoy playing tennis, listening to good music, traveling, and spending time with family.

Alfred Martin, MD

Dr. Martin was born and raised on the Southside of Chicago. He was a Chicago firefighter for 12 years before and during medical school, working on busy rescue squads on the Westside. He received his MD from the University of Illinois College of Medicine and went on to complete 2 years of Emergency Medicine residency at Cook County Hospital. He then discovered his true passion and transferred to Mount Sinai Hospital on the Westside where he completed his Family Medicine residency. He returned to Cook County and was a faculty attending with the residency program there for 14 years. He has been on faculty with NorthShore since October 2013.

Dr. Martin's interest include disaster response (Haiti earthquake 2010; Hurricane Rita, Texas 2005), inpatient care, underserved care, global medicine, and quality improvement and patient safety.

He lives on the Northside of Chicago with his wife, Sara, and their 3 children. He enjoys playing the harmonica, the guitar, reading, coaching basketball, and beating his sons at chess because they think they're so smart (and they are, but not that smart...yet).

Deborah E. Miller, MD

Dr. Miller grew up in the rural town of Brimfield outside of Akron, Ohio. She completed her bachelor's degree at the Ohio State University in Microbiology. She went on to Medical School at Wright State/Boonshoft School of Medicine and stayed on in Dayton, Ohio to complete her residency training. She entered private practice for 4 years and then joined her alma mater as faculty. Early in her career the hospital and residency program were suddenly closed. It was a pivotal event in her life. It sparked an interest in medical economics and management. She went on to become a Certified Physician Executive with the American College of Physician Executives and completed a Master's degree in Academic Medicine with the University of Southern California in 2009. She became the Residency Program Director for the University of Chicago (NorthShore) in 2011.

Dr. Miller enjoys the enthusiasm and passion of resident physicians and medical students. She finds it is a honor to work with such gifted people. At the University of Chicago (NorthShore) Family Medicine Residency she has been privileged to lead a group of diverse and inclusive residents and faculty that care deeply for their patients, their community, and for each other. She and her wife Karen live in Glenview. They have two grand-children Rose and Dean. They enjoy gardening, beaches and tending their new puppy Becca.

Lauren Oshman, MD

In her current role, Dr. Oshman serves as core residency faculty, Director of Quality for the Department of Family Medicine, and Director of the NorthShore Quality Fellowship. Dr. Oshman directs the Community Medicine rotation and provide mentorship and teaching women's health and procedures. As a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT), she teaches motivational interviewing to residents and 3rd year Pritzker School of Medicine students. Her current research interests include depression screening, diabetes, person-centered care, and behavior change. She chairs the NorthShore Opioid Task Force and is actively involved in implementation and quality improvement across the organization. She is passionate about taking care of patients of all ages, providing inpatient and outpatient care, and has been providing maternity care for ten years. She is a dedicated advocate for family medicine, serving on the Illinois Academy of Family Physicians Board of Trustees and Government Relationships Committee. Before joining NorthShore in 2012, she completed medical school at Baylor College of Medicine, earned a M.P.H. at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and served as the National President of the American Medical Student Association prior to completing residency training at the Institute for Urban Family Health in New York City. She practiced full-scope family medicine at Concord Family Medicine in Concord, New Hampshire, for five years, before transitioning into academic medicine. Outside of work, she is married to percussionist Douglas Perkins, enjoys camping with her 11-year-old son in Boy Scours, and enjoys music, cooking and running.

Pooja Saigal, MD

Dr. Saigal is a family physician at NorthShore University HealthSystem and core faculty physician with the University of Chicago (NorthShore) Family Medicine Residency Program. A longtime Chicagoan, Dr. Saigal completed her undergraduate degree in psychology and her medical doctorate at Northwestern University. She subsequently completed her residency in family medicine at the University of Chicago, where she now serves as a member of the residency faculty. She has completed University of Arizona's Fellowship in Integrative Medicine, Cook County's Faculty Development Fellowship, and The University of Chicago MERITS Fellowship in Medical Education. Dr. Saigal practices comprehensive family medicine and also offers integrative medicine consultations to optimize disease management and overall wellbeing. She seeks to provide care in an individualized and evidence-based manner, emphasizing nutrition and positive mental state as vital components of overall wellbeing. She is passionate about sharing this holistic philosophy of care with the resident physicians and medical students who train with her.

Miriam K. Whiteley, MD

Dr. Whiteley grew up in Evanston, Illinois and majored in Biology and Fine Arts at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. During medical school at the University of Illinois at Chicago she was immediately drawn to Family Medicine and the care of underserved populations. She did her residency training from 1991-94 at the John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County (formerly Cook County Hospital) and a Fellowship in Faculty Development from 1994-96 at Cook County Hospital along with a Masters in Health Professions Education at the University of Illinois.

For 16 1/2 years, she was on faculty member at Cook County Hospital as the Director of Maternity Care Services for Family Medicine. Dr. Whiteley brought her passion and skills in Maternity care to the University of Chicago (NorthShore) Family Medicine Residency Program in 2007, and currently serves as the Associate Program Director. She loves to deliver babies, and to teach residents to care for pregnant women and their babies.

Dr. Whiteley still lives in Evanston, with her partner Evan, and Golden Retriever Eddie.

Anne Marie Zeller, DO, MSc

Dr. Zeller is board certified in family medicine and sports medicine and is also core faculty for University of Chicago Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship. Her special interests are in pediatric and adult sports injuries/fractures and injury prevention, concussion management, ultrasound guided injections, percutaneous tenotomies and osteopathic manipulative medicine. She also has a passion for medical education and works in curriculum development for University of Chicago family medicine residents in orthopedics, sports medicine, osteopathic medicine, and physical medicine and rehabilitation.

Her medical degree was completed in osteopathic medicine from Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Des Moines, IA. She achieved a pre-doctoral fellowship in osteopathic medicine, residency in family medicine at University Hospitals and a two-year fellowship in primary care sports medicine at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center and Rainbow Babies & Children's Hopsital.

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