Leadership

Gabriel Thelus, Haiti Community of St. Rose Leader, is a native of Jacsonville, Haiti.  His father’s dream was to create educational and job opportunities in their poor village.  As a result, Gabriel  worked very hard to complete high school and learn English.  His determination was recognized by Brother Cosmas Rubencamp, a Catholic Xaverian brother long involved in Haiti.  Gabriel was given a scholarship to attend Virginia Tech,  and he graduated in 1994 with an Associate’s Degree in Plant Agriculture.He worked very hard in his classes and even made the Dean’s List during all semesters. After graduating, Gabriel returned to Haiti to live out his father’s dream of creating opportunity for his fellow countrymen.  He opened the first elementary school in the area, St. Rose de Lima School.  He also started a carpentry and welding apprenticeship program to teach skills to local men.  He began a market and a sugar cane mill.  Gabriel also works tirelessly to provide jobs and houses to the people of Jacsonville and surrounding villages.  He receives many visitors from the United States in the Mission House built in the community in 2009.  Gabriel is married to his wife, Maricile, and they have three children: Ti-Gaby, Garel, and Dominica.

 

Ketheline Rock Dantil, St. Rose School Nurse, is originally from the town of Pignon in the Central Plateau of Haiti.  She received her nursing degree from Centre Haitian Etudes Supérieures en Sciences de la Santé in Port au Prince in 2008.  She received additional training in pediatric diseases, vaccination, nutrition, and de-worming at the Grace Ministries in Port au Prince.  She is currently working as a nurse for the Catholic diocese of Pignon in a small clinic helping local people to receive desperately needed primary care.  She lives with her husband, Moussanto, a local veterinarian, and their son in the village of Jacsonville.  She noted the need for medical care and instruction in basic sanitation habits amongst the local children.  Thus, Ketheline currently volunteers one day during the week at St. Rose de Lima School to work with children who are ill.  She is interested in continuing to expand her involvement with the children of St. Rose and is committed to increasing the amount of public health education in the school curriculum.

 

Barbara Weis, MD, MPH &TM, Executive Director, has a long-standing interest in Global Health.  She received a BA in French and German Comparative Literature from Yale University, then served in the US Peace Corps in Togo, West Africa, as the regional coordinator for a project designed to impact the transmission of water-borne diseases by drilling wells and  creating health committees in the chosen villages.  After her two years in the Peace Corps, she completed her MD and her Masters in Public Health and Tropical Medicine at Tulane, then her  residency at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx, in Social Pediatrics.  She has been an attending in the outpatient department of Sinai Hospital of Baltimore since 1990, where she is the Medical Director of the Pediatric HIV program, coordinator of the Advocacy Rotation, and the School Health rotation, as well as co-director of the new Global Health Elective.  She has been involved with Sante Total since July, 2010, recently completing her fifth trip to Jacsonville, and is particularly excited to be returning to International Health, and the opportunity to  train medical students and residents in Global Health issues.

 

Alison A. Smith, MD, PhD, Board Member, daughter of Dr. James and Paula Smith, recently completed her MD/PhD at Tulane University School of Medicine. She is currently a general surgery resident at Tulane University School of Medicine. Smith has been involved in clinical work in Haiti since 2007 and has led 12 medical relief teams to the Central Plateau patients since 2009.  She was also involved in the first wave of medical relief efforts at the General Hospital in Port au Prince following the 7.0 magnitude earthquake in January 2010.  Her relief work was recognized with daily blog postings on MTV News and a published article in The New Physician.  Smith graduated with highest honors from Oakland Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 2003.  Smith graduated summa cum laude from Virginia Tech in 2007 with dual Bachelor of Science degrees in Biological Sciences and Chemistry.  She received many top awards at Virginia Tech and received local and national recognition for her leadership efforts at Virginia Tech following the shootings in April 2007.  Smith has numerous international experiences, including volunteer work in Australia, Honduras, and Mexico.  Smith also completed two USDA-funded research projects in Mali and Ecuador.  She has organized three medical trips to the Dominican Republic to treat over 2,000 Haitian refugees.

 

E. Alton Sartor, MD, MBA, Board Member, Director of Finances, recently completed his MD and MBA at Tulane University and is currently an intern in the neurology program.  Dr. Sartor has been involved with Sante Total since December 2010 and currently manages the 501(c)3 non-profit status of Sante Total.  He has experience as a Senior Reactor Operator of Reed College’s nuclear reactor, builds computers, and is currently working to change the approach to medical education.  He has worked in both Kenya and Haiti on a variety of projects and is planning on continuing his work overseas during his residency.

 

Carl “Carlos” Mickman, MD, Board Member, is an emergency medicine resident at Mount Sinai in New York, Class of 2018. He attended medical school at LSU and is originally from Minneapolis, MN. After two years of teaching high school science in New Orleans and volunteering abroad, Carl began medical school at LSU-New Orleans. He became involved with Sante Total shortly thereafter and spent six weeks in Jacsonville in May and June 2011 creating a community needs assessment. Using medical records, interviews and questionnaires, this assessment served as the basis for several other endeavors in the community. Ongoing projects include research into helminth prevalence in the pediatric population and the construction of latrines for 100 families in the community.

 

ClinicKidsDevi Yalamanchili, MD, Board Member, Research/Grant Development Chair, is currently an Internal Medicine and Pediatrics hospitalist attending with the USF physicians group at Tampa General hospital in Tampa, FL. She received her B.A. from Mount Holyoke College in a self-designed major: Biological and Cultural Approaches to Medicine. She went to medical school at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center – New Orleans. Most recently, Dr. Yalamanchili completed a combined Internal medicine and Pediatrics residency at University of South Florida College of Medicine. She has been involved in international medical service projects since 2004 including work in India, Rwanda, South Africa, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic. She spent almost 2 years working as a project coordinator for the American Red Cross both domestically and abroad, as well as with Volunteers of America working with sexually and physically abused children before deciding to pursue a medical career. Dr. Yalamanchili has been a medical volunteer with Sante Total since 2010 and is excited to be a part of the future endeavors to optimize the medical services for this community.

 

violet_yeager Violet Yeager, MSPH, Board Member, has graduated from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine with an MSPH in Tropical Medicine and is currently a DO candidate enrolled in the William Carey College of Osteopathic Medicine. She is passionate about disaster response and international medical service and has worked in Thailand, Vietnam, West Africa, and Mexico. Her prior work experience in logistical operations and with the American Red Cross allows her to contribute significantly to the Sante Total team. Violet is enthusiastic in forwarding the mission of Sante Total and has been a volunteer with the organization since 2013.

 

Serena MurphySerena Murphy, MD, Board Member, graduated with the Class of 2016 from LSUHSC New Orleans, and is from Birmingham, AL. Two years after receiving her BS in Biochemistry from Birmingham-Southern College in Alabama, Serena joined the United States Air Force as a second lieutenant and began at LSU Medical School. She became involved with Sante Total in her first year of medical school and has since spent over five weeks in Jacsonville, from May to June 2013, to continue ongoing research on the helminth prevalence in the pediatric population and the effect of additional latrines within the community. Serena is excited to continue her involvement in Sante Total and to be a part of the strengthening and growth of Jacsonville’s community.

 

Temrah Okonski, Board Member, is the senior physical therapist for PACT: Helping Children with Special Needs, childcare center in Baltimore, MD. She is also on staff at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore treating adults with orthopedic and neurological impairments. Temrah received her Bachelors of Science degree from Simmons College in 1988 and held post graduate fellowship positions at Hermann Hospital, TX and Georgetown University, DC. She was the pediatric physical therapist for the US Airforce Base, Misawa, Japan from 1994 to 1997. While in Japan she also worked at the local Japanese hospital treating adults. Published material includes: Clinical Management in Physical Therapy, 1990: “Clinical Fellowships”; Today’s Student in PT, 1990: “Clinical Fellowships”; Simmons Review, 1990: “In Our Opinion: Two Witnesses at Tiananmen Square”; Today’s Student in P.T. 1991: “Rehabilitation of the Elderly Patient”; Navy Medicine, 1999: “Supporting Our Children: A Review of Popular Positioning Devices”; Pediatric Physical Therapy, 1995: Book reviews; Kids Count, Yakima,WA 2000, Those Tumbly Bumbly Toddlers”. Temrah became involved with Sante Total in 2012 and has visited Jacsonville five times to date. She became a Sante Total board member in 2015. 

 

Julia Clemens, Board Member, Webmaster, graduated from Wesleyan University in 2016, where she majored in French Studies and Biology. She is from Baltimore, MD, and she currently works at Johns Hopkins Hospital as the Research Program Coordinator for the Integrated Research Center for Fetal Medicine. She is very interested in international medicine and public health. She started volunteering with Sante Total in 2013, and has been on four trips so far as a non-medical volunteer, and now helps to run the website. She is currently applying to medical school, and is excited to be able to eventually volunteer with Sante Total as a medical student and as an attending physician. 

 

Margarite Matossian, Board Member, Student Leader, is an MD/PhD Candidate at Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans. She is originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her BA in Biochemistry at Kalamazoo College where she was recognized for building Women in Science programs at local schools. Margarite is working on a dual MD and PhD program, is currently in the third year of her PhD program, and will complete the program by 2020. Margarite’s research focus is cancer biology, specifically breast cancer. Margarite has been involved in Sante Total since 2015 as a second-year medical student, and has participated in three trips. She has a role in coordinating trips to Jacsonville, and recruiting students from the medical, public health and other fields to participate in trips.

 

Christina Stiles, Board Member, Social Media, graduated from Bates College in 2015, where she majored in Biological Chemistry and Mathematics. After graduation she worked for a year and a half as the Clinical Research Coordinator in the Burn Unit at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. She started volunteering with Sante Total in 2010, and has been on eleven trips in total. She is passionate about international medicine and public health. and is thus currently applying to medical school to continue her work abroad. Until then, she is living and working in Uganda with OmniMed.