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Jill Foster, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by WCCO-TV for the segment, “When Will COVID-19 Vaccines Be Ready for Kids?

Sarah Kinsella, MD, CAQ, FAAP, was recently elected to the AAP Council on Sports Medicine and Fitness Executive Committee for a three-year term. Dr. Kinsella currently practices at M Health Fairview Orthopedics in Blaine.

Nipunie Rajapakse, MD, FAAP, was interviewed in the WCCO-TV story, “Experts Warn COVID Cases in Kids are Rising.” Chapter President Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, was also featured in the story.

Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, was featured in the WCCO-TV story, “As School Year Approaches, COVID Developments Cause Concern For Parents” and was interviewed by KARE11 for the story, “As the delta variant spreads, a doctor answers your top questions.”

Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, authored the commentary, “To protect kids, Walz needs to mandate a statewide school mask mandate” published in the Minnesota Reformer. Dr. Lichtsinn was also interviewed by WCCO-TV for the story, “CDC Recommends Masks For All In K-12 Schools, Regardless Of Vaccination Status.”

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was featured in the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder’s COVID-19 Check-In.

Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, spoke with KSTP for the story, “Health expert: Get kids vaccinated against COVID-19 now to be protected in time for school.” Dr. Singh also spoke with WCCO Radio about the importance of getting kids 12 and older vaccinated before school begins.

MNAAP Treasurer Janna Gewirtz O’Brien, MD, FAAP, wrote the opinion letter, “An investment in housing is an investment in the health of Minnesotans” which was published recently in MinnPost.

MNAAP Board Member Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, was a featured guest on WCCO’s Mid-Morning for the segment, “Pediatrician Speaks to the Hidden Dangers of Summer.

Gabrielle Hester, MD, MS, FAAP, was quoted in the article, “Children’s Minnesota tackles racial health disparities.”

MNAAP Board Member Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was interviewed in the story, “Minnesota COVID-19 Case Rates Reach Low Levels as State Tries to Equitably Administer Vaccines.”

MNAAP Treasurer Janna Gewirtz O’Brien, MD, FAAP, represented AAP during a webinar through the Opportunity Starts at Home coalition, a multi-sector campaign focused on equitable housing policies. Watch the full presentation here.

MNAAP Board Member Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the Star Tribune articles, “Minnesota makes progress in closing gap on COVID-19 vaccine disparities” and “GOP candidate for governor Scott Jensen joins court case to halt COVID vaccines for kids” in which he spoke to the importance of vaccinating children and teens against COVID-19.

Nipunie Rajapakse, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by The Globe for the story, “Mayo sees high numbers of children getting vaccinated in SE Minnesota.”

MNAAP Board Member Rachel Téllez, MD, FAAP, spoke with the Star Tribune about children and teens wearing masks and urged vaccinated parents to model good masking practices for unvaccinated kids.

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KARE11 for the story, “What does COVID vaccine mean for other vaccines kids need?” Dr. Jacobson is a past president of MNAAP.

Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, was interviewed in the WCCO Mid-Morning Show segment, “Pediatrician Answers Parents’ Concerns Over COVID Vaccine.”

Andrew Barnes, MD, FAAP, Adam Langenfeld, MD, PhD, FAAP, and Marvin So were published in the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics for the piece, “Adolescent Sleep and Mental Health Across Race/Ethnicity.

Abe Jacob, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KSTP for the story, “Health experts say children should continue wearing masks as Minnesota lifts mandate.”

MNAAP Board Member Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was elected to the AAP Section on Minority health Equity and Inclusion’s Executive Committee. His term will begin this November. Dr. Chomilo’s piece, “Helping children exposed to toxic stress” was also published in the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder and he was interviewed in the Mother Jones’ article, “The Real Reason Behind the Misinformation Epidemic in Online Moms’ Groups.”

Lori DeFrance, MD, FAAP, and Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, were recently recognized with Special Achievement Awards from the AAP. Dr. DeFrance is a past president of the chapter and a current board member. She is a frequent contributor to media in Minnesota and a testifier at the State Capitol and local governments on issues of concern for children/teens. Dr. Singh also serves on the chapter board of directors. She is chair of pediatrics at Park Nicollet/HealthPartners and the co-chair of the Children’s Health Initiative for Health Partners. She is also the only physician on the Governor’s Children’s Cabinet.

MNAAP Board Member Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by the Star Tribune for the article, “Younger teens start receiving COVID-19 vaccine in Minnesota.

MNAAP Board Member Katie Smentek, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KTOE for the story, “Mankato Clinic physicians encourage vaccination for adolescents.” Dr. Smentek discussed the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents, as well as the importance of keeping on track with childhood and teen immunizations during the pandemic.

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KTTC for the story, “Mayo Clinic pediatrician addresses recent expansion of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine eligibility.” Dr. Jacobson also spoke to the Post Bulletin in the article “Younger teens begin receiving COVID vaccine in Southeast Minnesota.” Dr. Jacobson is a past president of MNAAP.

MNAAP Board Member Gretchen Karstens, MD, FAAP, authored the column, “Doctor’s View: ‘When fewer people smoke, we all save money’” for the Duluth News Tribune.

MNAAP Board Member Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, spoke to the Tri-Valley Opportunity Council Migrant Head Start policy council and staff about the COVID vaccine, safety, and hesitancy.

Nipunie Rajapakse, MD, FAAP, was interviewed in the story, “Mayo Clinic Pediatricians layout road ahead for child vaccination.”

Former MNAAP president and current Minnesota Medical Association President Marilyn Peitso, MD, FAAP, co-authored a Star Tribune commentary, “Systemic racism must be removed from medicine” discussing a recently launched a two-year initiative to combat clinician biases in order to promote health and racial equity.

MNAAP Board Member Michael Pitt, MD, FAAP, was recently profiled in the Star Tribune, “Like magic, M Health Fairview pediatrician eases his young patients’ worries with tricks.”

MNAAP Board Member Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, offered her expertise in the KARE11 story, “Johnson & Johnson vaccine connected to blood clots, doctors break down what you need to know.

Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, recently authored a Readers Write submission in the Star Tribune, encouraging the repeal of the three/seven rule for COVID-19 vaccine distribution in favor of prioritizing vaccine equity.

Garrett Jones, MD, FAAP, co-chair of the MNAAP Immunization Work Group, recently authored a Star Tribune Readers Write submission, writing about the importance of keeping on track with childhood immunizations in light of increase in-person learning and the potential for increased COVID-19 eligibility.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, and Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, testified before the Minnesota House Health Policy and Finance Committee, in support of HF 2113, which attempts to address COVID-19 vaccine equity for BIPOC communities. You can view their testimony in this video from the March 22 meeting.

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, and Katy Miller, MD, FAAP, presented “#ProtectTransKids and #LetThemPlay: The new wave of legislation targeting transgender youth” as part of Children’s Minnesota’s virtual grand rounds. The presentation will be posted to Children’s Clinician Education site.

Kathy Kulus, MD, FAAP, was a guest on MPR News with Angela Davis, discussing the effect of climate change on health.

Dawn Martin, MD, FAAP, was a guest on MPR News with Angela Davis on Wednesday, March 10 for the show “Americans put off health care during the pandemic, and it’s time to catch up.” Dr. Martin discussed the pandemic’s effect on childhood immunization rates.

Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the Star Tribune article, “Minnesota to address racial and ethnic inequities in COVID-19 vaccinations.”

Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, was a featured speaker at the Minnesota School-Based Health Alliance Summit 2021, delivering the presentation, “Building Resilient Students: Moving past the pandemic from Crisis Management to Fostering Growth.”

Crystal Knutson, MD, FAAP, was featured in the KARE11 story, “A trip to the doctor led to a life-saving diagnosis; now baby Ozzie’s wait for a heart begins.”

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, was interviewed for the WCCO-TV story, “When Will Children Be Able To Get Vaccinated? Mayo Clinic Pediatrician Weighs In.” Dr. Jacobson was also quoted in the Star Tribune article, “Minnesota health officials ask students and families to take COVID-19 tests every two weeks.”

Abe Jacob, MD, MHA, FAAP, presented during Gov. Tim Walz’s Thursday press conference about the timelines for COVID-19 vaccinations.

Jill Amsberry, DO, FAAP, presented during Gov. Tim Walz’s Thursday press conference, discussing outreach for vaccine distribution in greater Minnesota.

Krishnan Subrahmanian MD, FAAP, was interviewed by WCCO TV for the story, “How To Fight Cabin Fever During Minnesota’s Deep Freeze.

MNAAP President Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP; Past President Marilyn Peitso, MD, FAAP; Anne Griffiths, MD, FAAP; and Beth Thielen, MD, PhD, FAAP testified before the Minnesota House Health Policy and Finance Committee in support of HF 604, which would require face coverings in certain settings.

MNAAP President Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, testified before the Minnesota Senate Committee on Health and Human Services Finance and Policy about mask use during youth sports.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, authored a piece on his journey to getting a COVID shot published in the Sahan Journal and had a follow up conversation with Tom Crann on MPR about his experience. Dr. Chomilo was a guest on KMOJ on Jan. 25, talking with Chantel Sings and Marcus Owens from the African American Leadership Forum about the COVID-19 vaccine. The conversation will re-air on Saturday, Jan. 30, at 7:30 pm.

Misty Folkestad, MD, FAAP, was featured in the Brainerd Dispatch article, “Minnesota 16-year-old nearly died from rare condition linked to COVID-19.

The chapter was mentioned in the Crookston Times for its partnership as a sponsor of the Escape the Vape contest.

Abe Jacob, MD, FAAP, spoke with KARE11 for the story “You asked, a top doctor answered some of the most popular questions about COVID-19 vaccines.”

Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, and Calla Brown, MD, FAAP, co-authored the op-ed “Minnesota is obligated to provide adequate health care to people who are incarcerated; here’s some first steps” with Kathleen Moccio. The submission was published in the Minnesota Reformer.

Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, will be featured on the KMOJ-FM show The Power to the Parent on Sunday at 11 a.m. Dr. Singh will be speaking about Early Brain Development, Little Moments Count and also taking questions about COVID-19 vaccines and vaccine hesitancy.

Krishnan Subramanian, MD, FAAP, spoke with WCCO-TV for the story “What Do Families Need To Know About Kids, Masks And Sports?”

Tom Scott, MD, FAAP, authored the letter “Sen. Utke, show leadership during this public health crisis” which was published in the Park Rapids Enterprise.

Claire Neely, MD, FAAP; Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP; Steven Inman, MD, FAAP; Ruth Lynfield, MD, FAAP; Jeanne Mrozek, MD, FAAP; Tom Schrup, MD, FAAP; Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD, FAAP, were included as Minnesota Physician’s 100 influential Health Care Leaders.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was recently featured on KARE-11 News for his participation in vaccine trials to help educate and alleviate concerns on COVID-19 vaccines.

Amelia Burgess, MD, FAAP, had a letter published in the Star Tribune, suggesting the phrase “use tax” instead of “sin tax.”

Heather Decker, MD, FAAP, was featured in the NBC News story, “Primary care offices struggling to survive during Covid-19.”

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KARE11 for the story, “What Elliot Page’s coming out means.”

MNAAP Board Member Madeleine Gagnon, MD, FAAP, was joined by Senator Amy Klobuchar at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare on Sunday to highlight the importance of the flu vaccine this season.

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, explained why routine vaccinations for children are so important during the COVID-19 pandemic in this Concord Monitor article. Dr. Jacobson’s guidance on vaccinations was also featured in the article,”Flu vaccination rates falling short in SE Minnesota.

MNAAP Board Member Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KARE11 in the story, “Healthcare workers write letter urging Gov. Walz to dial back even more.”

MNAAP Board Member Kathy Kulus, MD, FAAP, delivered a TEDxSt.Cloud talk with cardiologist Dr. John Mahowald about how climate change is impacting our health.

Blanton Bessinger, MD, FAAP, and past MNAAP President Marilyn Peitso, MD, FAAP, were named as recipients of the University of Minnesota’s Department of Pediatrics Gold-Headed Cane Award for 2020.

Jonathan KenKnight, MD, FAAP, offered advice about trick or treating in this Brainerd Dispatch article.

MNAAP Board Member Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, presented at TEDxMinneapolis Talk on Sept. 20, 2020, focusing on “The revolutionary truth about kids and gender identity.”

MNAAP Board Member Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, and MNAAP Past President Andrew Kiragu, MD, FAAP, were included in the article “Metro Black doctors ‘give back’ by sharing their expertise” which highlighted physicians who provide expert information and guidance on the health issues of greatest concern to African Americans through the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder.

The work of MNAAP Board Member Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, as a pediatrician and medical director of Minnesota’s Medicaid program, will be profiled in the November issue of The Lancet Child and Adolescent Health. Read the full article here.

MNAAP Board Member Madeleine Gagnon, MD, FAAP, participated in a conversation with MPR News about managing kids’ screen time during the pandemic. Listen to the audio here.

MNAAP Board Member Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, spoke with KARE11 about rising child obesity rates during the pandemic.

Marilyn Peitso, MD, FAAP, now serves as president of the Minnesota Medical Association. Dr. Peitso is a past president of MNAAP and is a pediatric hospitalist at CentraCare in St. Cloud.

Amelia Burgess, MD, has agreed to serve as the Minnesota E-cigarette Chapter Champion and liaison to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

A letter written by Mark Nupen, MD, “Bad laws led to Breonna Taylor’s death” was published in the Pioneer Press recently.

Two MNAAP Board Members were recent guests on the AAP’s weekly podcast, “Pediatrics on Call.” Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, discussed how to encourage patients and caregivers to vote. Michael Pitt, MD, FAAP, spoke about incorporating magic and medicine. Dr. Chomilo was also a guest on the American Medical Association’s Prioritizing Equity YouTube series, talking about the ways in which COVID-19 may uniquely impact the traditional voting process, and the importance of voting for minoritized and marginalized communities. Dr. Pitt’s article, “Magical Thinking: How Learning to Act Like a Magician Can Make You a Better Physician,” was also published in the September 2020 issue of Pediatrics.

MNAAP Board Member Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by KTTC-TV in Rochester about new CDC guidelines categorizing Halloween activities by risk level.

Ruth Lynfield, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the KARE11 story “Minnesota health officials reflect on COVID-19 pandemic response” and the article, “25 cases of rare child disease possibly linked to COVID-19 in Minnesota” from Bring Me the News.

Tom Scott, MD, FAAP, received the 2020 MNAAP Child Advocacy Award, and Marjorie Hogan, MD, FAAP, received the 2020 MNAAP Distinguished Service Award, during the chapter’s annual meeting on Friday, Sept. 11.

Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, was interviewed by WCCO for the segment, “Ask a Pediatrician: Having a Baby During COVID-19 Pandemic.

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by WCCO in the story, “Routines Can Help Students Stay Focused During Uncertainty Of COVID-19 Schooling.”

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, co-authored the piece, “AAP campaign: Vote like children’s futures depend on it” for AAP News and was interviewed by KARE11 about the impact of COVID-19 on children 5 and under.

MNAAP President Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the Minnesota Reformer article, “Minnesota’s childhood vaccination rates falling during the pandemic, putting kids at risk.” Former MNAAP President and current Minnesota Medical Association President-elect Marilyn Peitso, MD, FAAP, was also interviewed and offered insight into low immunization rates.

Rachel Tellez, MD, MS, FAAP, has been appointed to the MNAAP/MAPF Executive Committee. She is a pediatrician at Park Nicollet Clinic – Brookdale and chair of the MNAAP’s Poverty and Disparities Work Group.

Marcie Billings, MD, FAAP, has been appointed to the MNAAP/MAPF Board. She is chair of Mayo Clinic’s Division of Community Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine.

Krishnan Subrahmanian, MD, FAAP, will join Nate Chomilo, MD, FAAP, as Co-Chair of the MNAAP Early Childhood Caucus. Dr. Subrahmanian is a pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis and Richfield and works closely with Representative Dave Pinto, Chair of the Minnesota Legislature’s Early Childhood Policy and Finance Division. He will be replacing Dr. Tom Scott, who is retiring from that leadership role but plans to remain an active member of the group. The chapter is thankful to Dr. Tom Scott for his past, present and continued work on these issues.

Jill Amsberry, DO, FAAP, wrote the article “Helping Your Kids Mask Up During COVID-19.” Dr. Amsberry is the medical director of CentraCare Pediatrics clinic.

Jonathan KenKnight, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the Duluth News Tribune article, “Northland schools prepare for 2020-21 school year decision” offering advice on preparing children to wear masks as part of the return to school.

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, was featured in the profile, “A Gentle Leader,” in Mpls.St.Paul Magazine.

Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, was interviewed by the Star Tribune about ways to help children understand the importance of wearing face masks.

Dawn Martin, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by FOX9 about her work starting up the Hennepin Healthcare mobile pediatric vaccine unit, a partnership with Hennepin EMS that helps bring immunizations to patients at their homes.

Krishnan Subrahmanian, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by WCCO in the news story, “With Walz’s Decision On School Looming, Local Pediatrician Weighs In On COVID-19 Child Impacts.

The Star Tribune article, “Non-COVID vaccines offer some COVID protection, Mayo Clinic reports,” cited a MNAAP member survey which estimated a 30 to 40 percent decline in childhood immunizations so far during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mark Schleiss, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the New York Times article, “What Is It That Keeps Most Little Kids From Getting Covid-19?

Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, was appointed by Gov. Walz to the Minnesota Board of Medical Practice as a physician member.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by MPR News for the story, “How the decision to resume school might affect Minnesota’s communities of color.”

Anne Griffiths, MD, FAAP, spoke with WCCO’s Mid-Morning show about the possible connection between COVID-19 and vaping.

MNAAP President Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, spoke with the MinnPost about the importance of vaccinations and well child visits, and was quoted in this article, “Minnesota doctors see worrisome reduction in childhood immunization rates during pandemic.”

Lori DeFrance, MD, FAAP, MNAAP past-president, was quoted in the article, “Minnesota’s physicians encourage Minnesotans to have routine vaccinations.”

Andrew Olson, MD, FAAP, was quoted in two Pioneer Press articles: “Q&A: Dr. Andrew Olson on the front lines at Bethesda Hospital’s COVID facility in St. Paul” and “It’s been four months since Minnesota recorded its first case of COVID-19. What have we learned?

Jessica Hane, MD, was published in the Star Tribune’s Readers Write urging for state support to end homelessness in Minnesota.

Gigi Chawla, MD, FAAP, spoke on the WCCO Mid-Morning Show about the importance of scheduling well child visits and immunizations.

A photo by Jeff Karp, DMD, titled “Power” was included in Artistic Antidote for a Pandemic from the Center for the Art of Medicine at the University of Minnesota.

Pamela Heggie, MD, FAAP, co-authored the article “In-Hospital Formula Feeding and Breastfeeding Duration” in the AAP’s Pediatrics.

MNAAP Past-President Lori DeFrance, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the Alexandria Echo Press about the decrease in well child visits and childhood immunization rates seen since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. DeFrance was also quoted in the West Central Tribune encouraging Minnesotans to keep up-to-date with immunizations and well child visits during the pandemic.

The research letter “Preventive Health Care Utilization Among Youths Who Have Run Away, Experienced Homelessness, or Been Stably Housed” co-authored by Janna Gewirtz O’Brien, MD, FAAP, was published in JAMA Pediatrics.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, will speak via Zoom on Tuesday, July 21 from 10 – 11 a.m. in the second part of a two-part series, ” Talking to Kids About Racism,” hosted by the St. Paul Jewish Community Center. Dr. Chomilo will focus on resources and language that can help guide conversations about racism with children. Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, led the first session in the series on Thursday, July 9.

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, spoke with Jana Shortal of KARE11 about the impact canceled in-person Pride Month activities may have on LGBTQ youth. Dr. Goepferd was also a recent guest on the Caring Greatly podcast, discussing the effect of the COVID-19 crisis on LGBTQ+ children and young adults.

Nusheen Ameenuddin, MD, MPH, FAAP, was quoted by CNN in a story about the AAP’s new policy on digital advertising and its effect on kids, which was released on Monday. Dr. Ameenuddin co-authored the policy and is the chair of the AAP Council on Communications and Media.

Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, was quoted in the Star Tribune article, “Parents seek strategies to help kids cope with pandemic, racial injustice.”

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, participated in a virtual panel with Common Sense Media called, “Helping Kids Process Violence, Trauma, and Race in a World of Nonstop News.” You can view a replay of the panel on YouTube. Dr. Chomilo also spoke with Minnesota Public Radio’s Angela Davis about racial health disparities and how to fix them.

Gigi Chawla, MD, FAAP, was featured in a Good Morning America story about health care workers joining clean up efforts and rallies to protest disparities following the death of George Floyd.

Hannah Lichtsinn, MD, FAAP, wrote a letter to the Star Tribune “Protesters should get tested, but their privacy is at risk” arguing that Governor Walz’s executive order 20-34 “poses a significant barrier to adequate and recommended medical care for Minnesotans and should be revoked.”

Gigi Chawla, MD, FAAP, spoke with the Star Tribune about the ways in which Children’s Minnesota is adapting patient visits at its clinic locations in order to provide care to children during the pandemic.

Abe Jacob, MD, FAAP, M Health Fairview chief quality officer, spoke with KARE11 about the importance of mask compliance.

Ruth Lynfield, MD, FAAP, participated in a webinar hosted by Children’s Health Network exploring epidemiological and policy considerations of COVID-19. MNAAP Executive Director Melissa DeBilzan and Lobbyist Eric Dick also participated.

Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, was a guest on WCCO Mid-Morning where she discussed an inflammatory condition being seen in children with COVID-19, as well as the profound impact reading has on children’s development.

Malini DeSilva, MD, FAAP, spoke with the Star TribuneSt. Paul Pioneer Press, and MinnPost about the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) that indicated a drop in childhood vaccinations during the COVID-19 pandemic, which Dr. DeSilva co-authored.

Madeleine Gagnon, MD, FAAP, spoke with Fox9 about the rare inflammatory condition being seen in children with COVID-19.

Dawn Martin, MD, FAAP, spoke to the Star Tribune about the importance of childhood vaccinations and well child visits during the pandemic.

Andrew Olson, MD, FAAP, FACP, was quoted in a Star Tribune in an article about COVID-19 preparations and hospital discharges.

Mark Schleiss, MD, FAAP, spoke with KCBS Radio about a rare inflammatory condition being seen in children who test positive for COVID-19.

Krishnan Subrahmanian, MD, FAAP, spoke with KARE11 about the importance of rituals and resilience to help kids’ mental health during COVID-19.

MNAAP President-elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, co-authored the piece “Transitioning Patients With Complex Health Care Needs to Adult Practices: Theory Versus Reality” which has been published online and will appear in the June issue of Pediatrics. Dr. Berkowitz was also published in Minnesota Physician with his article calling for prior authorization reform.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, and Malini DeSilva, MD, FAAP, co-authored an article on racial equity in COVID-19 policy that was published on the Health Affairs blog. Dr. Chomilo also spoke with KARE11 about the importance of well child visits and immunizations during the pandemic, and the New York Times about the possible effects of the pandemic on vulnerable populations.

Hannah Lichstinn, MD, FAAP, created a YouTube series called “COVID Corner with Dr. Hannah” to answer questions about coronavirus from students at her daughter’s elementary school.

Claudia Fox, MD, MPH, FAAP, DABOM was elected to the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Obesity Executive Committee. Her term will start on November 1, 2020.  Please reach out to her via email at if you have issues related to childhood obesity that you would like to be addressed.

Julia Joseph-DiCaprio, MD, MPH, FAAP, was featured a recent Star Tribune article for her work at the Elim Church shelter to screen residents for the COVID-19 virus. You can read the article here.

Jessica Hane, MD, was named the recipient of the 2020 Walter Tunnessen Award from Medicine-Pediatrics Program Directors Association (MPPDA).

Holly Belgum, MD, wrote a children’s book to kids better understand quarantine and social distancing.

Abraham Jacob, MD, FAAP, M Health Fairview’s chief quality officer, was recently interviewed in the Star Tribune about hospital use of ultraviolet decontamination with N95 masks. Read the article here.

Pamela Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP, has been named the new medical director of Reach Out and Read Minnesota. Dr. Chawla is currently the chief of general pediatrics at Children’s Minnesota and is a MNAAP board member. You can read more about her role with Reach Out and Read here.

MNAAP members offered their expertise and insight to the Star Tribune Magazine for the publication’s quarterly “Afraid to Ask” article. The spring article focused specifically on common questions parents and caregivers have about newborns and babies. You can see their answers here.

Several MNAAP members named 2020 Rising Stars by Mpls St.Paul magazine. According to the magazine, physicians who make the list are emerging leaders who have been recognized by peers for significant achievements in the first decade of their profession.

Janna R. Gewirtz O’Brien, MD, FAAP, and Andrew J. Barnes, MD, FAAP and collaborators published “Mental Health Outcomes Among Homeless, Runaway, and Stably Housed Youth,” in the April 2020 issue of Pediatrics.

Andrew Kiragu, MD, FAAP, past president of MNAAP, has been recognized as a fellow in the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) American College of Critical Care Medicine (ACCM). Fellowship recognizes individuals who have demonstrated significant contributions and have made an impact in the critical care profession at a regional, state, or national level.

The work of Emily Borman-Shoap, MD, FAAP, at the University of Minnesota to help train pediatric residents to better handle mental health issues was profiled in the American Board of Pediatrics’ annual report.

Rachel Tellez, MD, FAAP, was named March 2020 Advocacy Champion by the Minnesota Medical Association. Dr. Tellez was also recently interviewed by KARE11 to answer questions about the Coronavirus. You can see the interview here

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, and Mark Schleiss, MD, FAAP, were recently quoted in a Minnesota Reformer article that shines a spotlight on the connection anti-vaccination advocates have with Minnesota legislators.

Marc Gorelick, MD, MSCE, FAAP, president and CEO of Children’s Minnesota, participated in a panel discussion hosted by Minneapolis/St.Paul Business Journal  to discuss what the future may bring to the health care industry in 2020.

Diana Cutts, MD, FAAP, has been appointed Chair of Pediatrics at Hennepin Healthcare. Dr. Cutts served as interim chair since 2018.

Janna Gewirtz O’Brien, MD, FAAP, was published with collaborators on the new AAP report “Runaway Youth: Caring for the Nation’s Largest Segment of Missing Children” in the January 2020 issue of Pediatrics.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, has been named as the state of Minnesota’s new Medicaid medical director. 

Andrea Singh, MD, FAAP, has been selected to serve on the Governor’s Children’s Cabinet Advisory Council.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, authored an opinion piece in the MinnPost: “Educational disparities: The gap we need to address is the opportunity gap.”

Angela Mattke, MD, FAAP, and Valeria Cristiani, MD, FAAP, answered questions about the importance of well-child appointments through a Facebook Live video Q&A hosted by the Mayo Clinic.

Brian Lynch, MD, FAAP, discussed the science of toxic stress and Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) on children on the podcast “Terrible, Thanks for Asking.” The podcast episode titled “What Happened to You” is available in three parts: Part 1Part 2, and Part 3 The episode was produced with Call to Mind, American Public Media’s initiative to foster new conversations about mental health.

Angela Goepferd, MD, FAAP, and Valeria Cristiani, MD, FAAP, have each received a Special Achievement Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Goepferd was recognized for her leadership in professional training and support for LGBTQ and questioning youth in Minnesota. Dr. Cristiani was honored for her drive to start a school-based health clinic at the Rochester Alternative Learning Center.

Kelly Bergmann, MD, FAAP, collaborated with colleagues on an article recently published in the AAP’s Hospital Pediatrics journal. The article was titled, “Identifying Patients With Kawasaki Disease Safe for Early Discharge: Development of a Risk Prediction Model at a US Children’s Hospital.”

Two MNAAP members were honored recently by the American Academy of Pediatrics with awards marking their dedication to the health of children:

Cynthia R. Howard, MD, MPH, FAAP, received the Hillman-Olness Award for Lifetime Service and Lasting Contributions to Global Child Health. Dr. Howard is an associate professor in pediatrics at the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Dana E. Johnson, MD, PhD, FAAP, received the Thomas F. Tonniges, MD, FAAP, Lifetime Achievement Award for Advocacy on Behalf of Vulnerable Children. Dr. Johnson is a professor of pediatrics in the Division of Neonatology at the University of Minnesota Medical Center – Fairview.

Thomas Schrup, MD, FAAP, was named as a 2019 Community Caregiver by Minnesota Physician medical business journal. Dr. Schrup received the recognition for his volunteer work providing critical wellness visits and consults to homeless youth in St. Cloud.

Anne Griffiths, MD, FAAP, a pediatric pulmonologist with Children’s Minnesota, participated in the webinar Update on Severe Lung Injury Associated with Vaping, Clinical Issues and Epidemiology in Minnesota. The webinar was co-hosted by the Minnesota Department of Health and the Minnesota Hospital Association. The webinar recording is available here.

Emily Chapman, MD, FAAP, was a guest on the Sept. 18th Dr. Oz Show, discussing recent lung injuries related to vaping. Dr. Chapman is the chief medical officer at Children’s Minnesota, where several teens have been treated for vaping-related lung injury.

Dick Wicklund, MD, FAAP; Beatrice Murray, MD, FAAP; Paula Mackey, MD, FAAP; Linda Thompson, MD, FAAP; Ted Jewett, MD, FAAP; Mike Severson, MD, FAAP; Carolyn Levitt, MD. FAAP; and Kristin Benson, MD, FAAP joined Dan Broughton, MD, FAAP for the September Senior Pediatrician Lunch.

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, joined MPR News host Angela Davis to discuss talking with children about gender and how to create an inclusive environment for all students at school. You can hear their conversation here.

Emily Borman-Shoap, MD, FAAP; Jessica Hane, MD; Erin McHugh, MD; and Heidi Moline, MD, authored a Readers Write article in the Star Tribune that detailed the risks of vaping for adolescents and called for legislation to regulate vaping and e-cigarettes.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by MPR News about the importance of unstructured play in child development.

Nusheen Ameenuddin, MD, FAAP; Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP; and Angela Mattke, MD, FAAP, met with Surgeon General of the United State Jerome Adams during his visit to the Mayo Clinic on Aug. 27. The MNAAP members discussed immunization efforts with the surgeon general in a meeting organized and hosted by the Zumbro Valley Medical Society.

Katy Miller, MD, FAAP,  and Calla Brown, MD, FAAP, along with their team members Maura Shramko PhD and Maria Veronica Svetaz, MD (principal investigator), were recently awarded the Joanna Simer Research Fellowship Grant for their project “Latinx Youth Perspectives of Immigrant Policy Context, Deportation, and Family Resilience Processes: A Qualitative Exploration of Healthy Youth Development in Anti-Immigrant Contexts.” The team recently published a review of trauma-informed care for refugee and immigrant youth.

Nathan Chomilo, MD. FAAP, offered KARE 11 insight into childhood imaginary friends after a UK report noted a decrease in the prevalence of imaginary friends among children, citing screens as a possible reason.

Marjorie Hogan, MD, FAAP, co-wrote the book Terrific Toddlers! Simple Solutions, Practical Parenting. The book is a resource for parents navigating the toddler years.

Emily Chapman, MD, FAAP, chief medical officer at Children’s Minnesota, and Ruth Lynfield, MD, FAAP, state epidemiologist, were recently quoted in a Star Tribune article, “Teen lung diseases linked to vaping, Minnesota Health Department reports.” The article takes a closer look at four recent cases of lung injury in teens associated with vaping, and calls on physicians to be on the lookout for symptoms related to youth vaping.

Jeff Schiff, MD, FAAP, penned an open letter to Governor Tim Walz and state lawmakers calling for the creation of an independent board to oversee the Medicaid program and its policies. Dr. Schiff previously served as the medical director of Minnesota’s Medicaid program. You can read coverage of the letter in the Pioneer Press.

Janna Gewirtz-O’Brien, MD, FAAP, was quoted in a Star Tribune article that identified short-sighted decisions about Minnesota’s Medicaid program that are harming patients in the process. Dr. Gewirtz-O’Brien spoke to the barriers for patients to access long-acting reversible contraceptives or LARCs.

Krishnan Subrahmanian, MD, FAAP, spoke with WCCO-TV about the importance of sports physicals as part of the station’s “Good Question” segment. You can see the video here.

Nusheen Ameenuddin, MD, FAAP, was promoted to chair of the Council on Communications and Media at American Academy of Pediatrics

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was a recent guest on the “What is Black?” podcast, discussing early literacy, racial and health equity. You can hear the podcast here.

Brian Lynch, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by Minnesota Public Radio as part of the “Call to Mind” mental health exhibit. Dr. Lynch spoke about adverse childhood experiences and how early trauma can affect kids, adults, and public health.

Angela Mattke, MD, FAAP, was interviewed by WGN – Chicago about her new book “Mayo Clinic Guide to Raising a Healthy Child.” You can see the interview here.

MNAAP President-Elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, represented the chapter at the recent signing of the Rare Disease Advisory Council bill, at the request of Erica Barnes, who advocated for the council’s creation after the death of her young daughter from a rare degenerative neural disorder.

Kathleen Miller, MD, FAAP, authored a counterpoint opinion article that was published in the Star Tribune, providing insight into the value of gender affirming care after the Children’s Minnesota’s gender health program was called risky and unnecessary by a previous letter to the editor.

After reading a Pioneer Press article about an 8-year-old girl who found her mom’s gun in her backpack,  MNAAP President-elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, wrote a letter to the editor to make sure everyone knows the “4 simple steps to keep guns out of kids’ hands.”

Tom Scott, MD, FAAP, has been invited by the Children’s Defense Fund to serve on the 2019 Minnesota KIDS COUNT advisory group.

MNAAP President-Elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, authored an article in The American Jewish World advocating for rabbis and Jewish community leaders to take a stand for immunizations to protect children from measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases. Read the full article here.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was joined by Cuong Pham, MD, at the Capitol on Wednesday, May 15, to advocate for the repeal of the sunset of the Provider Tax. You can see coverage from KARE11 of their efforts here.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, testified on May 10 before a legislative conference committee on behalf of Reach Out and Read MN’s inclusion in the education funding budget. You can see his testimony here (beginning at the 35:00 mark).

Sue Berry, MD, FAAP, co-chair of the MNAAP policy workgroup, authored a commentary about the provider tax in the Star Tribune.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, authored a letter to the editor in the Sun Post advocating for the repeal of the sunset of Minnesota’s provider tax.

Ann Sneiders, MD, FAAP, offered an evidence-based rebuttal to a previously published anti-vaccination letter to the editor in the Owatonna People’s Press. In her letter, Dr. Sneiders pointed to the importance of immunizations in preventing illness, writing “immune systems are like muscles — they need exercise to get strong.”

MNAAP President Lori DeFrance, MD, FAAP and three other MNAAP members will attend the American Academy of Pediatrics 2019 Legislative Conference in Washington, DC, April 7-9. During the conference, participants will learn how to become effective child health advocates through interactive workshops and in-depth training sessions, while networking with pediatricians, residents and medical students from across the country.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, a pediatrician and internist at Park Nicollet, attended the April 3 State of the State address as a guest of Governor Tim Walz. Walz mentioned Dr. Chomilo’s work in his speech to emphasize the importance of repealing the sunset of the Provider Tax.

Angela Kade Goepferd, MD, FAAP, recently spoke to the Star Tribune about the opening of Children’s Minnesota’s clinic for transgender youth. Dr. Goepferd serves as medical director of the clinic. Read the article here: 

Emily Chapman, MD, FAAP, chief medical officer at Children’s Minnesota, spoke at a press conference in support of the Breakfast After the Bell legislation, which would make it easier for children to get breakfast at school.

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, an expert in childhood vaccines at Mayo Clinic, was interviewed by the Louisville Courier Journal after the governor of Kentucky said he favors exposure to chickenpox over vaccination. Read the article here

Emily Borman-Shoap, MD, testified before the Senate Higher Education Finance & Policy Committee on March 5 in support of SF 1702 (Clausen), which would provide funding to support mental health training for pediatric residents at the University of Minnesota.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, testified on behalf of HF 909, which would provide funding to address racial disparities in prenatal care.

Past MNAAP President Andrew Kiragu, MD, FAAP, recently testified in support of HF 8, which would require criminal background checks for private firearm sales and transfers and HF 9, also known as the “red flag” bill, which would allow law enforcement and family members to petition a court to prohibit people from possessing firearms if they pose a significant danger to themselves or others.

An op-ed written by Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, arguing the case for paid family medical leave, was printed in the Star Tribune on Feb. 25.

Past MNAAP President Mike Severson, MD, FAAP, and Children’s Defense Fund Minnesota Executive Director Bharti Wahi penned a great opinion piece encouraging lawmakers to repeal the sunset of the provider tax.

Past MNAAP President Marilyn Peitso, MD, FAAP, testified on Feb. 13 before the House Health and Human Services Policy Committee in support of House File 12, a bill that would ban “conversion therapy” for children or vulnerable adults in Minnesota. You can view her testimony here.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was selected by the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights to receive the 2019 History Makers at Home Award. The award honors African American leaders throughout the state who are making a difference in their communities in the areas of the business, health, education, government, and more. Dr. Chomilo was highlighted on the department’s Facebook page as part of a series introducing the award winners.

Angela Goepferd, MD, FAAP, spoke to KARE 11 about the impact online hate speech can have on children.

Lindsey Yock, MD, JD, FAAP, co-chair of MNAAP’s policy committee, testified about childhood hunger and health on Feb.5, 2019 before the House Education Finance Committee as part of an informational hearing on school nutrition. Her testimony is available at (beginning at 44:40).

Lucien Gonzalez, MD, MS, FAAP, was named chairperson of the American Academy of Pediatric’s national committee on Substance Use and Prevention. The committee is tasked with producing guidance for pediatricians, state and federal government, and other stakeholders to reduce harm from substance use.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, medical director of Reach Out and Read Minnesota, congratulated Minneapolis on becoming the country’s largest “Bookend City” in the country, meaning all 32 clinics in the city have chosen to participate in Reach Out and Read. Additionally, clinics had to meet eight quality measures, which included at least 75% of providers being trained in the model and every clinic creating a literacy-rich environment for their patients. All together in Minnesota, there are 262 clinics now participating in Reach Out and Read, representing 40% of all children ages 6 months through 5 years statewide.

Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, FAAP chief of general pediatrics at Children’s Minnesota, participated in a panel discussion following the Minnesota premiere of No Small Matter. The documentary focuses on the importance of high-quality early childhood education in child development. The screening was hosted by Children’s Minnesota, Minnesota Public Radio, and HealthPartners.

The Senate Health and Human Services Committee hosted MNAAP President-elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, for a discussion of the health impact of screen time on children and adolescents on January 24. Dr. Berkowitz shared with the committee the most recent research about screen time and its impact on child health and brain development. Dr. Berkowitz’s testimony can be viewed at the link available here.

Nathan Chomilo, MD, FAAP, co-authored a commentary in Minnesota Medicine focusing on the small but significant steps all physicians can take to make a difference in addressing health equity in Minnesota. Read the article here.

MNAAP President-elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, offered the Star Tribune insight into Minnesota’s drop in national health rankings, particularly where low childhood vaccination rates are concerned. Read the article here.

Robert Jacobson, MD, FAAP, past MNAAP president, pediatrician, and professor of pediatrics at Mayo Clinic, has been selected as Minnesota’s 2018 HPV Vaccine is Cancer Prevention Champion for his continual efforts to promote HPV vaccination and its power to prevent cancer. For his 13 to 15-year-old patients seen in the last two years, 71.2 percent have completed the HPV vaccine series as compared to only about 19.5 percent of 13 to 15-year-olds statewide completing the recommended HPV series.

Read more about the work Dr. Jacobson has done to improve HPV vaccination rates.

A recent study published in Pediatrics involving the four children’s hospitals in Minnesota looked at the cause of delayed discharge in children with medical complexity. Of 1,582 delayed discharges, 92 percent were directly attributed to lack of availability in home care nursing. The study suggests that increasing the availability of home care nurses or post-acute care facilities could reduce the length of hospital stay and associated costs. Roy Maynard, MD, FAAP with Pediatric Home Service oversaw the study.

Ruth Lynfield, MD, FAAP, Minnesota Department of Health State Epidemiologist and Medical Director, was named co-chair on CDC‘s Acute Flaccid Myelitis Task Force.

Claire Neely, MD, FAAP was named President and CEO of ICSI.

Rachel Tellez, MD, FAAP wrote a letter published in the Washington Post about the role physicians play in reducing gun violence.

Nadia Maccabee-Ryaboy, MD testified in support of T21 at the Eden Prairie City Council. It successfully moved forward to a final vote the following month.

Nate Chomilo, MD, FAAP partnered with Twin Cities Medical Society to write a letter published in the Sun Post regarding Brooklyn Center’s T21 and E-cig sale restriction legislation. Both restrictions were voted in to place the same week.

Following a national search, UCare has hired Julia Joseph DiCaprio, MD, MPH, FAAP to lead the Medical Director team, as well as the Clinical Services, Pharmacy and Quality Management departments.

Lucien Gonzalez, MD, MS, FAAP, Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota and a Pediatric Addiction Medicine expert, was recognized by the AAP Section on Adolescent Health as the recipient of the Richard B. Heyman Award at the recent AAP National Conference & Exhibition.

Marc H. Gorelick, MD, MSCE, FAAP, President and Chief Executive Officer of Children’s Minnesota was presented with the Jim Seidel Distinguished Service Award from the AAP’s Section on Emergency Medicine at the recent AAP National Conference & Exhibition.

Angela Mattke, MD, FAAP, with Mayo Clinic wrote an article for AAP News recently that provided tips for pediatricians on connecting with the public via Facebook Live Stream. Check it out»

Rachel Tellez, MD, FAAP, wrote an article about how to teach children about differences that was featured in the April issue of Minnesota Parent. Check it out»

Nate Chomilo, MD, FAAP, was awarded the Gretchen Hunsberger Medical Champion Achievement Award from Reach out and Read. Additionally, he and Judith Eckerle, MD, FAAP, were profiled in Mpls.St.Paul Magazine for the Top Docs: Rising Stars edition. Check it out»

Mary Murati, MD, FAAP was recognized with the Bill Richards Young Physician Leadership Award by Park Nicollet Foundation. Since 2009, Dr. Murati has been a Park Nicollet Pediatric Hospitalist, with a keen eye for quality improvement.

Elsa Keeler, MD, MPH, FAAP, was recently named Clinic Medical Director at the HealthPartners White Bear Lake clinic.

Updated 4/17/19

March 4, 2020

Dr. Lisa Cinar serves on the  Board of Directors, acting as MNAAP’s chapter climate advocate. She has been an AAP member since 2006 and joined MNAAP in 2016.

Dr. Cinar answered these questions from Minnesota Pediatrician as part of our quarterly member spotlight.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

As a general pediatrician, I see children for all types of medical and behavioral concerns. This includes preventive care such as well child checks and vaccinations, as well as sick care for asthma, influenza, broken bones and chronic diseases. I have a special interest in mental health, particularly because so many children and adolescents struggle with depression, anxiety, ADHD and trauma-related disorders. Lifelong developmental issues such as autism are typically diagnosed in childhood, allowing me the opportunity to help families through the often difficult process of diagnosing, treating and accommodating children with special health care needs.

You recently became the chapter’s climate advocate. What interested you about this role?

I believe that climate change is the most important public health issue of our time.  Rising temperatures and carbon dioxide in our atmosphere have already caused significant annual losses in crops and livestock, resulting in millions more people going hungry every year around the world. We are also seeing our food supply become less nutritious and more polluted by the toxins we release into the environment. I am honored and excited to be the Climate Advocate for the Minnesota AAP Chapter because we need to take immediate action to decrease our carbon emissions and reverse the trend of climate change. By collaborating with other physicians and climate enthusiasts in the AAP, I believe that we can make a significant impact on the future of our planet and the human race. Not only can we advocate for more climate-healthy lifestyles in our patients and families, but we can also advise state and federal agencies to implement policies that will decrease our carbon footprint and improve public health on a much greater scale.

Why did you choose pediatrics?

I chose pediatrics because it’s the field of medicine that allows me to take a very well-rounded approach to improving the health and lives of children. In addition to providing routine health care and treating illnesses, I also help children and families to address social issues such as food insecurity, disability accommodations, education, bullying, family dynamics, child abuse, transportation, health care access and much more. Remembering that “it takes a village to raise a child,” I enjoy working with my entire team of professionals to help families and children live their best possible lives.

Outside of work life, how do you enjoy spending your time?

I have a passion for gardening, not only as a hobby but also as a way to feed my family fresh, healthy, locally grown produce. The positive environmental and health impacts of home gardening are amazing, and it’s a relaxing way to enjoy our Minnesota summers outdoors. Our vegetable, fruit and flower gardens have been a huge attraction for bees, butterflies and other important pollinators that are crucial to our global food supply. I also have a lifelong love of music, and I enjoy playing the piano and the French horn.

MNAAP has more than 1,000 members with careers that span differing lengths, specialties and interests. The Member Spotlight offers a chance to meet a fellow MNAAP member and learn a little bit more about them.    

If you are interested in being the subject of a Member Spotlight or have a suggestion of someone Minnesota Pediatrician should interview, email Communications Manager Bethany Venable at

January 5, 2020

MNAAP has more than 1,000 members with careers that span differing lengths, specialties and interests. The Member Spotlight offers you a chance to meet a fellow MNAAP member and learn a little bit more about them. Dr. Tom Scott is a familiar face to many MNAAP members, and graciously agreed to answer Minnesota Pediatrician’s questions for this issue’s Member Spotlight.

You have been a long-standing member of MNAAP. What have been the most rewarding aspects of your participation in our chapter?

I worked clinically for 26 years as a general pediatrician and developmental-behavioral pediatric (DBP) consultant at HealthPartners, and then for eight years at the Alexander Center of ParkNicollet as a DBP specialist on interdisciplinary teams. While in practice, I enjoyed the great opportunity of connecting with other pediatricians with advocacy interests through the MNAAP policy work group.

Learning from mentors such as Drs. Mike Severson and Chuck Oberg helped me grow in this very significant aspect of pediatric care. When bullying became more notable as a health issue, I was very appreciative of the chapter’s support while on Governor Dayton’s Task Force on the Prevention of School Bullying. I had been concerned about the vulnerability of children with autism and LGBTQ youth in my practice who were being bullied.   

Can you tell me about your shift from pediatric practice settings in the community to teaching at the University of Minnesota later in your career?

For the last 10 years, I have been at the University of Minnesota (UMN) doing curriculum development and teaching part-time in the pediatric department. I directed the residency rotation in developmental-behavioral pediatrics for five years and continue co-teaching a monthly seminar for residents on historical trauma and racism. Being part of the UMN pediatric department has been a wonderfully rich experience.

While working at UMN, I was able to bring highly skilled pediatricians in the community to be part of our teaching program. We also developed pediatrician/psychologist teaching teams that reflected our understanding of clinical challenges and the need for collaborative approaches to pediatric services. Similarly, our recognition of disparities and social determinants of health led us to connect with programs such as Simpson Housing Services and the Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (MOFAS), as settings for resident learning.

I understand that you retired from the UMN about a year ago.  How are you staying connected with the pediatric community?

In addition to my monthly seminar teaching with residents at UMN, I enjoy staying involved in MNAAP. For the past two years, Dr. Nate Chomilo and I have been MNAAP “Early Childhood Champions” in Minnesota and representatives to the AAP. Nate and I work with a very active early childhood caucus of committed pediatrician advocates. My particular focus is on prenatal to age three, a time when 80 percent of brain growth happens. Last year, the AAP State Advocacy Office helped us write an EC P3 policy development guide that is based on Minnesota data and AAP Policy Statements. You can find these under the “Resources” section of the Poverty and Disparities page on

I have recently joined Dr. Rachel Tellez as co-chair of the MNAAP Poverty and Disparities Work Group. We are developing a series of exciting and challenging initiatives including the Impact of Racism on Child Health, Food Insecurity, Oral Health, and Immigrant Health.

What kinds of hobbies or activities do you enjoy?

I especially like being up at our family cabin in northern Minnesota with my grandkids and getting out on the water. At home, biking, being outside, and walking around the city lakes are my favorites. I like to travel whenever I can, often to the east coast or to warmer climes to spend time with friends. I love taking in classical music, and dance wherever I am and like to read along the way.

Editor’s Note: Dr. Scott authored an informative look at developmental-behavioral pediatrics as a contributor in a past issue of Minnesota Pediatrician.To access the article, visit

June 13, 2019

Lindsey Yock serves on the chapter’s Board of Directors, acting as co-chair of MNAAP’s policy committee. She has been an AAP member since 2011 and works at Children’s Minnesota. Dr. Yock answered these questions from Minnesota Pediatrician as part of our quarterly member spotlight.

You’re an attorney and a physician. How do these two roles intersect for you in your work?

I attended the Joint Degree program in Law, Health and the Life Sciences at the University of Minnesota, receiving my law degree in 2008 and my medical degree in 2011. After finishing residency at Mayo, I stayed in Rochester for a year as chief resident. Since 2015, I have been at Children’s Minnesota as both a pediatric hospitalist and an adjunct attorney.

My position consists of clinical work (80%) and assignments through the office of the General Counsel (20%). In my legal role, I am a member of the Institutional Review Board (IRB), where my familiarity with federal regulations can be helpful, and I consult on various initiatives and projects, such as our onsite healthcare-legal partnership and the legal implications of clinical practice guidelines that Children’s develops. This year, on behalf of the Children’s advocacy team, I testified at a hearing at the state capitol in support of a program to reduce childhood hunger.

More informally, these two roles intersect daily on the wards when I’m working with social workers and staff attorneys to address problems that affect vulnerable families, including guardianship and family law matters, immigration status, and landlord-tenant issues.

What does a typical day at Children’s Minnesota look like for you (or just a typical work day)?

When I’m on clinical service, I’m either seeing patients on my own or working with our teaching services, which I love because of the energy, curiosity, and competence of the residents and students who rotate at Children’s.

When I’m not on service, my days are more varied. In addition to preparing for and attending bi-weekly IRB meetings, my days typically involve collaborating with various members of the health system, working independently on projects that I’m responsible for, and occasionally testifying or otherwise speaking about child health issues.

What interests you about your work on the MNAAP policy committee?

University Dean Kathy Watson introduced me to a wonderful quote from physician Rudolf Virchow: “If medicine is to fulfill her great task, then she must enter the political and social life. . . . The physicians are the natural attorneys of the poor.”

The MNAAP policy committee provides a meaningful way to engage in political and social issues that relate to the health and wellbeing of our patients. Through the Chapter, the policy committee, and all the wonderful people who support its advocacy work, we are able to deal directly with legislators and others in state and local government to champion Minnesota’s children. As one example, at the invitation of Representative Frank Hornstein and Senator Scott Dibble, whom I met during MNAAP Peds Day at the Capitol, I provided information and perspective at a MN Congressional District 61 Town Hall in 2017, when Minnesota children were at risk because of possible cuts to Medicaid.

In short, working with the MNAAP policy committee, and as a member of the MNAAP board, I get to consider issues that involve both law and medicine, and I get to contribute to discussions that affect society beyond individual patients.

What is something people might be surprised to learn about you?

Although I’m a lawyer and enjoy debate, I am not temperamentally litigious!

What would a perfect day be like for you?

After the winter we’ve just had, it would start out with low humidity, uninterrupted sunshine and a temperature in the 70s. I would open the newspaper to headlines proclaiming that vaccination rates in the United States are at an all-time high; confidence in science and physician experts is robust; childhood homelessness, food insecurity and socioeconomic disparity have fallen to unmeasurable levels; and every child feels loved and supported and excited about their future. The day would include meaningful work with my excellent colleagues (my current reality). Then it would end with an episode of “Wait Wait . . . Don’t Tell Me!” and wonderful food with loved ones.

November 5, 2018

You have a degree in philosophy and a minor in athletic training. When did you know you wanted to be a pediatrician? How has your background in these areas shaped the way you practice medicine?

I’ve been telling my family that I was going to be a pediatrician since I was about three. I went to college intending to major in philosophy and minor in chemistry with the plan of going to medical school. I’ve always enjoyed thinking and asking questions as an end in and of themselves, and I believed philosophy was a great stepping stone to any discipline if I changed my mind about medicine, as well as a great way to learn about logic and humanity at the same time. I ended up getting hurt while a member of the college swimming and diving team, hitting the water just wrong on a foreword jump (not even a dive!) in practice my freshman year, sending my back into spasm. I ended up having to drop chemistry and take incompletes in all of my classes because I was unable to sit for more than a few minutes, and had a great deal of trouble even walking. I spent a lot of time in the training room and developed an interest there. Two weeks before the start of my senior year I decided I really did want to go to medical school. Because of my AT minor, I already had biology and physics, so I changed my class schedule for my senior year around and took general chemistry my senior year. For college graduation, my dad paid my tuition for me to take organic chemistry the summer after graduation. I took the August MCAT and started applying to medical schools. I started in Duluth the following fall.

As I started medical school, I thought I wanted to be a family physician, and I was even the Assistant Student Director for the MAFP, largely because I wanted to do OB. Eventually, I figured out that what I liked about OB was the babies, not the moms necessarily. When I told my mentor, I thought he would be shocked to hear that I was choosing peds. His response was, “Oh, thank goodness… I was starting to think I was going to have to tell you that you’re a pediatrician, not a family physician.”

What drew you to Willmar?
I am passionate about rural primary care, and I really wanted to be in a small town where I could be a true “community pediatrician” – well child care, newborn care (especially sick newborns), hospital medicine, complex care, etc. I grew up in Rochester, but was a camper and later I was on staff at a summer camp near Longville, MN. I got sick one year when I was at camp and I had to go to the doctor. I was shocked that we had to drive 45 minutes just to be told that I had an ear infection. I couldn’t believe that it was possible for people in my own state to have such difficulty accessing health care, and ever since then, I wanted to work in a rural setting.

What does a day in your life as a rural practitioner look like?
We do a broad variety of everything out here – normal newborns, sick newborns, feeder/growers transferred back from the NICU, healthy children, mental health, complex care, etc. If my patient is having a problem with their g-tube, I am the only person who can trouble shoot, and for a long time I was the only person comfortable changing g-tubes, because the home care nurses weren’t comfortable with it and the parents weren’t taught how. We also often have to be the eyes and ears of the specialists who see our patients. I have a 6-month-old patient with congenital diaphragmatic hernia. There have been several times when her specialists have commented, “If they didn’t live two hours away, I’d have the family bring her in just to take a look at her.” That’s not possible, so they come in to see me, and I communicate with her specialists what I’m seeing and we make up a plan together.

Describe the biggest benefits to working with your current patient population.
I love my Somali families. They are so generous of spirit, and so very appreciative that someone will take the time to listen to their concerns about their children. I also love the interconnectedness of all of my patients and families. Everyone knows everyone, and my patient’s families become my family.

What’s the funniest thing a child ever said to you?
“If you’re not supposed to eat your boogers, how come they taste so good?” I find there are two types of adults in this world: those who hear that, get a look of disgust on their face and say, “That is so gross!” and those who say, “You know, the kid had a point.”

You’ve been a strong advocate for drowning prevention, oral health and immunizations. Can you describe your involvement in these initiatives? Why are you passionate about these issues? Are there any other issues you have or are currently involved in?
The short answer is that I am not very good at saying “no,” but that’s only part of the reason I’ve gotten involved in all of these things. Several years ago, we had two Somali boys drown here in Willmar. The year prior, one of my Somali patients was involved in a near drowning. The children in our community are not just my patients, they are my friends’ kids, and for many of them, I think of them as my own children. I grew up with a love of the water, and I wanted to make sure children in our community could grow up learning to love it, too. I have served on the Advisory Board for a HRSA Healthy Tomorrows grant with Rice Regional Dental Clinic. Our goal was to increase access to a dental home for children, and to increase awareness of the importance of early oral care. Through my work on the Southern Prairie Community Care Somali Health Task Force, I was invited to speak at the mosque about the MMR vaccine during the 2017 measles outbreak, and have spoken at the mosque a couple of times since then about immunizations. I’m passionate about these things because these are my kids too.

For many years, I have been very interested in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health (IECMH). I do a lot of mental health as a part of my practice, and it has always been clear to me that many of the problems I’m treating have their roots in early childhood. Through my upbringing, I saw how much difference it makes to have loving, supportive parents. I am where I am today because largely because my dad was determined that my life would be different than his was, and different from some of my cousins. He is a remarkable man who always taught me that children have a lot to tell us and teach us, if we just take the time to listen.

This fall I started a Master’s program in Applied Child and Adolescent Development through the Institute of Child Development (ICD) at the U of MN in the IECMH track. It is terrifying being back in school after so many years, but I am learning a lot, and it has changed the way I understand my patients.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Not much spare time since school started! I like to read, crochet, and spend time with friends and family. I also love to sail, and I hope to get a Sunfish one of these years so I can spend my weekends, when I am not on call, out on the water.

June 6, 2018

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You’re the physician-in-chief at the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital. You’re also involved in childhood cancer research. What does a typical day or week look like for you?

The days and weeks all vary a lot. Last week was spent doing work at our Children’s Oncology Group meeting in St. Louis. The focus for those 3 days was on pediatric oncology, our clinical trials operations, and planning for further research.

This week will be many more administrative meetings that will cover a wide variety of topics from clinic operations to academic recruitments. I continue to do my weekly clinic and to attend on the heme/onc service here at the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital as well, so interspersed in all of this is clinical work.


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