Current Residents

Department of Surgery 2013 - 2014 Resident Physicians 

 Chances are we've touched your life.

Fourth Year Residents  |  Third Year Residents |  Second Year Residents | First Year Residents

  PGY-5 Chief Residents

Elizabeth Jackson   Dr. Jackson

Elizabeth Jackson, MD - Chief Resident

I chose ETSU because this program excels in teaching broad-based general surgery training. Our residents are in the operating room early and often. For fun, I enjoy traveling, reading, running, and cycling.

Undergraduate School – Milligan College, Johnson City, TN; Medical School – ETSU Quillen College of Medicine, TN



Douglas McDonald
Dr. McDonald

Douglas McDonald, MD - Chief Resident

I was attracted to ETSU College of Medicine because of the strong emphasis on training broad-based general surgeons, early operating room experience, and because of the fact that there were no fellows to compete with for cases. I also chose the program because of the family friendly nature of both the program and the area. I plan on pursuing a surgical oncology fellowship when my training here is complete, and as such, I took off a year from clinical responsibilities to concentrate on basic science research here in our surgical labs. The labs are state-of-the-art, and they are performing cutting edge research in multiple areas of immunology. Regardless of my decision to pursue a fellowship or a broad-based general surgery practice, I feel that upon completion of this program, I will be extremely prepared.

In my free time, I enjoy hanging out with my wife and children, as well as, playing golf and taking advantage of all the outdoor recreations that this area has to offer.

Undergraduate School – Hampden-Sydney College, Hampden-Sydney, VA; Medical School – Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, VA



  Chad Moss     Dr. Moss

Chad Moss, MD - Chief Resident

I was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee. My interest and passion for surgery started at the University of Tennessee. I wanted a program focused on broad based general surgery. I found that at ETSU. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my wife, Lynne, and two children Ellie and Patrick. I also enjoy playing golf and basketball and watching most any sporting events. I am currently entertaining the possibility of a minimally invasive fellowship verses private practice.

Undergraduate School – Belmont University, Nashville, TN; Medical School – University of Tennessee Medical School, Memphis, TN



James Sheffey Dr. Sheffey

James Sheffey, MD - Chief Resident

I came to this area after high school to pursue my higher education. After I completed medical school, I was pleased to have the opportunity to continue my training here at ETSU College of Medicine. I had come to enjoy the area. I am an avid fisherman and find the area perfect for my hobby.

Undergraduate School – East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN; Medical School – ETSU Quillen College of Medicine, Johnson City, TN



 Jessica Vinsant Dr. Vinsant

Jessica Vinsant, MD - Chief Resident

I chose ETSU because of the broad-based surgical exposure it allowed. Since there are no fellows competing for surgeries, I have had opportunities that other residents elsewhere may miss out on. In addition, the East Tennessee area is beautiful. In my free time I enjoy horseback riding, spending times with my dogs, friends, family, and watching movies. My family resides in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Undergraduate School – Syracuse University, NY; Medical School – Wright State University, Dayton, OH



 Hannah Warren Dr. Warren

Hannah Warren, MD - Chief Resident

I attended Quillen Medical School and stayed to continue my surgical residency. My interests include global health and pediatric surgery. I spend my free time backpacking, reading and working on my 100 year old home.

Undergraduate School - Covenant College & Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA; Medical School - ETSU Quillen College of Medicine, Johnson City, TN



 West Dr. West

Michael West, MD - Chief Resident

Rotating at four different hospitals provides a diverse training experience essential to education. I enjoy playing basketball and fishing. I am married with a five year-old daughter and two year-old boy.

Undergraduate School – Hanover College, Hanover, Indiana; Medical School – University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY

 PGY-4 Residents


 Laith Albalbissi Dr. Al-Balbissi

Laith Al-Balbissi, MD - PGY-4 Resident

United States in 2008. My lovely wife Arwa and I have a wonderful son, Zaid. ETSU was a perfect combination of preparing residents for general practice or fellowship. I am hoping to proceed with a Cardiothoracic Fellowship. I enjoy outdoor activities and spending time with family. I especially appreciate my mom and dad for all they did to support me. I am very thankful for my wife, family, and friends.

Undergraduate School - University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan; Medical School -



 Mauricio Bassante Dr. Bassante

Mauricio Bassante, MD - PGY-4 Resident

I was born in Ecuador. I am mainly interested in minimally invasive surgery but enjoy broad-based general surgery cases. I spend my free time with my wife and son. I also enjoy playing guitar and working out.

Undergraduate School – Universidad Catolica Ecuador, Quito-Ecuador; Medical School – Pontifica Universidad Catolica del Ecuador, Quito-Ecuador



 Daniel Boyett Dr. Boyett

Daniel Boyett, MD - PGY-4 Resident

I am a native of Huntsville, Alabama. I am married to Evan Boyett and we are expecting our first child. I like this program here at ETSU because of the broad-based general surgery experience it provides and the family centered nature of the program.

Undergraduate School – Auburn University, Auburn, AL; Medical School – University of Alabama School of Medicine, Birmingham, AL



 Scott Denham Dr. Denham

Scott Denham, MD - PGY-4 Resident

I am married with three children. I enjoy outdoor activities, college football, and golf. I chose ETSU because of its great location and being family-friendly. I work with an excellent group of residents and faculty.

Undergraduate School – Sanford University, Birmingham, Birmingham, AL; Medical School – University of Alabama Birmingham School of Medicine, Birmingham, AL



 Melissa Martrisch Dr. Matrisch

Melissa Martrisch, MD - PGY-4 Resident

I am a native of central Illinois. I moved to the south to attend medical school and decided to stay. The ETSU program was appealing because of the breadth of general surgery training that the program provides. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my husband and friends, gardening and traveling.

Undergraduate School – Millikin University, Decatur, IL; Medical School – Wake Forest University School of Medicine



 Robert Weir Dr. Weir

Robert Weir, MD - PGY-4 Resident

I grew up near Daytona Beach, Florida. Go Gators! I applied to ETSU knowing I liked the area and decided to rank them at the top of my list because of the high case load and perceived high overall resident satisfaction. I met my wife here and we are currently expecting our first son.

Undergraduate School – University of Florida; Medical School – University of Florida

  PGY-3 Residents

 James Bardoner Dr. Bardoner

James Bardoner, MD - PGY-3 Resident

I am interested in all areas of surgery and having broad utility for medical missions abroad, was one my reason for ranking ETSU highly, along with the faculty and residents. My wife, Meredith and I enjoy living in the Tri-cities area. We like the many outdoor activities here and being close enough to the larger cities to enjoy their benefits during time off.

Undergraduate School – Clemson University, Clemson, SC; Medical School – University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Columbia, SC



 Joy Juskowich Dr. Juskowich

Joy Juskowich, MD - PGY-3 Resident

I found the surgical residency program at ETSU attractive for its strong general surgery foundation and its close proximity to my home state of West Virginia. I attended college at Wake Forest where I played college golf. When time permits I still enjoy golfing. Holidays and occasional weekends off are spent visiting my family in West Virginia or vacationing at our family condo in Naples, Florida. Other activities of interest include watching and attending athletic events, especially WVU college football games, working out, spending time outdoors, helping others, and cooking.

Undergraduate School – Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC; Medical School – West Virginia University School of Medicine, Morgantown, WV



Hao Pham Dr. Pham

Hao Pham, MD - PGY-3 Resident

I went to medical school at ETSU and decided to stay because the resident program had wonderful faculty, personable residents, and is set in the lush mountains of East Tennessee.

Undergraduate School – UT Knoxville, Knoxville, TN; Medical School – ETSU Quillen College of Medicine, Johnson City, TN



 Matthew Ramseyer Dr. Ramseyer

Matthew Ramseyer, MD - PGY-3 Resident

I wanted to stay in the Southeast and was attracted to the approach to training at ETSU. There is an emphasis on clinical and surgical proficiencies early on. I am very happy with my choice, my program mates, and the region.

Undergraduate School – University of Florida, Gainesville, FL; Medical School – Florida State University Medical School, Sarasota, FL



 Afshin Skibba Dr. Skibba

Afshin Skibba, MD - PGY-3 Resident

I chose ETSU because it is a well-rounded surgery residency with attendings that are eager to teach. I am interested in vascular surgery, and I am actively involved in research. I am married and enjoy outdoor activities including hiking, camping, tennis, and skiing.

Undergraduate School – Syracuse University, New York; Medical School – University of Colorado Health Sciences Center School of Medicine



Takeyla Dr. Williams

Takeyla Williams, MD - PGY-3 Resident

I am a native of Augusta, Georgia. I am a mother and wife to Sydney Noelle and Steven Sutton, respectively. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my family. One of the main reasons I have enjoyed ETSU is because our program is very family-oriented and family-friendly.

Undergraduate School – College of Charleston, Charleston, SC; Medical School – Moorehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA

 PGY-2 Residents


    Alexander       Dr. Alexander

Colleen Alexander, MD - PGY-2 Resident

I moved to Tennessee from Georgia where I met my husband Todd Alexander. We were married in October 2012. I chose ETSU College of Medicine for residency because of the personality of the program, the early operative experience, and the variety of hospitals. I like to horseback ride in my free time.

Undergraduate School – Ohio State University, Columbus, OH; Medical School – Emory University, Atlanta, GA




Amy Duncan Dr. Duncan

 Amy Duncan, MD - PGY-2 Resident

I am originally from Vonore, Tennessee; the mountains of East Tennessee are home for me and, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful places on earth. When not at the hospital, I am most frequently jogging long distances, baking unhealthy deliciousness, or playing outdoors (hiking, camping, etc.). Haiti has a special place in my heart and given any opportunity I will be on a plane to go see my little brother and sister, Sony and Chedeline. My eventual career goal is medical missions, living long-term in another country, most likely Haiti.

Undergraduate School – Lipscomb University, Nashville, TN; Medical School – ETSU Quillen College of Medicine, Johnson City, TN



Stepahnie Hart Dr. Hart

Stephanie Hart, MD - PGY-2 Resident

After being raised primarily in the rural farming community of Goodland, KS, I came to East Tennessee to attend Milligan College. After graduating Milligan I decided to stay in this area. I worked for Johnson City Medical Center for several years. Later, I moved to Washington, DC, where I earned an MPH in International Health Promotion. I then came back to East Tennessee where I chose to attend medical school and residency training for the great staff and faculty, family atmosphere and excellent training with a diverse patient population. In my free time I enjoy reading, writing, and the great outdoors. I also enjoy traveling to out-of-the-way locations and remain active in my local church.

Undergraduate School – Milligan College, Johnson City, TN; Graduate School – The George Washington University, Washington, D.C.; Medical School – ETSU College of Medicine



Joseph Hurston Dr. Hurston

 Joseph Hurston, MD - PGY-2 Resident

I am from Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and grew up visiting the Smoky Mountains with my family. I have always loved the outdoors and when it came time to choose where I would do my residency I chose Johnson City because it provided the outdoor setting that I have grown to love. I was also looking for a positive environment residency program that would turn me into a well-trained competent general surgeon, ready to begin a successful career or make me competitive for a fellowship program. Ten years from now I hope to impact people's lives in a positive way through the avenue of surgery, be it in this country or a foreign land. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my wonderful wife, Lauren, playing sports, and following the Ole Miss Rebels Football team.

Undergraduate School – University of Mississippi, University, MS; Medical School – University of Mississippi, University, MS



James ONeal Dr. O'Neal

James O'Neal, MD - PGY-2 Resident

I am a native of Louisiana. I went to MUSC in Charleston, SC, for preliminary year. I chose ETSU because of the comradery of the residents, early operative experience, and wide variety of "bread & butter" general surgery cases. I am married to Jenni O'Neal, an occupational therapist at NHC Rehab. We currently do not have children; however, we are expecting twins in the near future. I enjoy traveling, cooking, water sports, leisure reading, and any outdoor activity.

Undergraduate School – Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA; Medical School – Louisiana State University School of Medicine, New Orleans, LA



 Dr. Williams 

Kristin Williams, MD - PGY 2 Resident

I moved to Johnson City, Tennessee, from Columbia, South Carolina, via Baton Rouge, Louisiana. I chose ETSU due to the vast surgical experiences at multiple hospitals as well as early operative experience. I have a fun-loving personality and enjoy dancing, baking, and playing piano in my free time.

Undergraduate School – Spelman College, Atlanta, GA; Medical School – Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC

PGY-1 Residents  


    Gerald       Dr. Gerald 

Grace Gerald, MD - PGY-1 Resident

I grew up in Charleston, SC, and Pelham, NY. My father was a pathologist and my mother is a nurse. I chose ETSU because I knew that I would be well trained as a general surgeon and still have the opportunity to pursue a fellowship if I decide to specialize. I also knew I would enjoy living in the area because of all of the outdoor activities available in East Tennessee.

Undergraduate School – Furman University, Greeneville, SC; Medical School - Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC



  Hamilton    Dr. Hamilton

Neil Hamilton, MD - PGY-1 Preliminary Resident

After serving in the US Navy, I completed my undergraduate degrees at the University of Texas, and a Master's Degree from the University of Nebraska. I chose to attend medical school at Quillen College of Medicine and since then my wonderful wife, two daughters and I have absolutely fallen in love with East Tennessee. ETSU General Surgery has been a great choice for me because of the friendly staff and early surgical exposure.

Undergraduate School – University of Texas; Austin, TX; Master's Degree – University of Nebraska; Medical School – ETSU, Quillen College of Medicine



  Myer     Dr. Meyer

Jeremy Meyer, MD - PGY-1 Resident

I grew up in Johnson City, and never thought I would be returning here for residency. But after my interview here I realized that ETSU was unique in many ways that really appealed to me. They have a great focus on rural, broad-based general surgery and I have a particular passion for third-world missions. I believe ETSU will be a great place to prepare for my future, whatever is in store. Outside the hospital I enjoy spending time with my family. My wife and I are active people and love spending time outdoors from hiking and mountain climbing to water- skiing and snowboarding.

Undergraduate School - Southern Adventist University, Collegedale, TN; Medical School - Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA



   Prior     Dr. Prior

Daniel Prior, DO - PGY-1 Resident

I returned to my hometown of Johnson City to attend ETSU College of Medicine. My favorite thing about coming to ETSU is the close-knit community and friendly atmosphere. In my spare time, I love spending time with my family and friends, playing tennis and computer games.

Undergraduate School – East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN; Medical School – Edward via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Blacksburg, VA



   Pryor       Dr. Pryor

William Pryor, MD - PGY-1 Resident

I'm originally from Tennessee but I went off to school in South Carolina. Growing up near Chattanooga I am very fond of East Tennessee, and so I am very excited to be back. Of course this means I am a huge fan of the Tennessee Vols. Go Big Orange! I placed ETSU at the top of my list because of their emphasis on training the broad-based general surgeon and exposure to trauma. Two important things that will one day serve me well as an Air Force surgeon. When not in the hospital, I love to find adventure in the great outdoors or stay active by going for a long run.

Undergraduate School: Furman University, Greenville, SC; Medical School: University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Columbia, SC



  Ramos    Dr. Ramos

Trevy Ramos, DO - PGY-1 Resident

I originate from Merrillville, IN. From the crossroads of America I ventured to almost heaven, West Virginia, for Medical School. I chose ETSU and ETSU chose me. It is an institution that takes pride in providing well-rounded and well-educated surgeons. ETSU puts its students first and strives to produce technically competent surgeons through early experience in the operating room.

Undergraduate School – Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN; Graduate School - Purdue University, Indianapolis, IN; Medical School – West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine



  Vance     Dr. Vance


John Vance, DO - PGY-1 Resident

I am a native of Western North Carolina, and happy to be such a short drive from family and friends. I am interested in rural general surgery and medical/surgical missions. I enjoy spending time with my wife and daughters when I am not taking care of patients at the hospital.

Undergraduate School – North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC; Medical School – Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine, Blacksburg, VA


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