2021 nurse practitioner residents
Jessica Fernandez, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC
Jessica Fernandez is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science in Nursing from California State University, Los Angeles. For the past four years, Fernandez worked as a pediatric nurse at UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital treating patients with a wide variety of neurological, cardiological, pulmonary, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, musculoskeletal and transplant related conditions. In addition to her desire to provide high quality care to vulnerable populations, Fernandez’ s specific clinical interests include women’s health, adolescent mental health, diabetes and cardiovascular disease management. Her research interests include how access to care affects maternal and infant health, the impact of chronic disease management on mental health and how to provide effective health education among language diverse and low health literacy patient populations. Her primary care clinical assignment is at the Sacramento County Health Center.
Carrie Garland, M.S., APRN, FNP-BC
Carrie Garland is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science from the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis. As a nurse, Garland worked for two years on an ambulance doing critical care transports and then spent 10 years on the progressive care unit working with post cardiac surgery, left ventricular assist device and other cardiac patients. Garland’s clinical interests include family practice with an emphasis on preventive care and long-term health promotion to improve quality of life. Her research interests consist of finding effective means of patient education and integrating technology into patients’ homes. She is particularly interested in how technology can be utilized to manage care from patients’ homes so those who live in rural areas or have difficulty traveling can still effectively access health care providers. Her primary care clinical assignment is at Health & Life Organization, Inc. in the Sacramento area.
Dianne Lisa Geraga, MSN, R.N., AMB-BC, FNP-C
Dianne Geraga is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science in Nursing from California State University, Stanislaus in Turlock, California. As a nurse, Geraga completed her clinical training at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, where she worked with a diverse patient population with complex medical conditions. Geraga completed a registered nurse residency at Stanford Health Care, where she worked in acute care with neurology and neurosurgery patients and as an advice nurse for primary care and a wide range of specialties (oncology, cardiology, gynecology, orthopedics, general surgery, and more). Geraga’s clinical interests include chronic disease management, lifestyle medicine, patient education, pediatrics, women’s health as well as procedures and skills. Her research interests include holistic health, innovative models of health care delivery, health disparities and social determinants of health, as well as improving health outcomes for patients with limited English proficiency. Her primary care clinical assignment is at WellSpace Health in Citrus Heights, California.
Miriam Lakes, M.S., FNP-BC
Miriam Lakes is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science from the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis. As a nurse, Lakes worked in the public hospital in San Joaquin County on a medical surgical floor for incarcerated patients. Prior to nursing, Lakes worked for eight years as a museum exhibit designer for art, history and science museums around the country. Her passion for distilling complex information in the museum environment transfers over to the value she places on patient education. Lakes’ clinical interests include working with those with a history of trauma, addiction and mental illness within the primary care setting. Her research interests include patient education and self-care of chronic illness in the underserved population. Her primary care clinical assignment is at Community Medical Centers in Stockton, California.
Joseph (Joey) Langowski, M.S., APRN, FNP-BC
Joseph Langowski is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science from the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis. As a nurse, Langowski worked for a major regional teaching hospital and served in the cardiac intensive care unit and the children’s emergency department. Over several years, Langowski worked on various cross-sectional published research studies with his mentor to examine reasons contributing to decrease compliance in HPV vaccination among Hispanic and Chinese young adults. Langowski’s clinical interests are in the fields of dermatology, cardiology, mental health and pediatrics within the primary care setting. He is also interested in working with the under-resourced communities of California utilizing both integrative and holistic patient-focused medicine. His research interests include vaccination compliance, adolescents and mental health, as well as herbal medicine. His primary care clinical assignment during residency is at Western Sierra Medical Clinic in Grass Valley, California.
Taña A. Leon-Toscano, MSN, FNP, NP-C, CPN
Taña Leon-Toscano is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science in Nursing from Fresno Pacific University. As a nurse for 23 years, Leon-Toscano worked in the areas of clinical education, perioperative care, maternal, child and adolescent health, and acute pediatric respiratory and infectious disease. Leon-Toscano’s clinical interests include adolescent health, diabetes management and preventive medicine. She also has interests in interventional care that address health disparities and barriers in patient education. She looks forward to developing a core foundation in primary care and serving the Central Valley in her new role as a nurse practitioner. Her primary care clinical assignment is at the United Health Centers in Fresno, California.
Mallory Matthews, M.S., APRN, FNP-BC
Mallory Matthews is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science from the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis. As a nurse, Matthews spent six years working in postpartum, labor and delivery, high-risk perinatal and newborn nursery. She also spent a couple years volunteering her time in a free, primary care community clinic in San Francisco. Just before starting her master’s-degree program, Matthews became a lactation consultant, an area of great passion for her. Matthews’ clinical interests include providing equitable care to underserved populations, women’s health and preventive medicine. She looks forward to empowering her patients with quality care and patient education. Her primary care clinical assignments are at the El Dorado Community Health Centers (adult) and Sacramento County Health Center (pediatrics).
Frank Molina, MSN, APRN, AGPCNP-BC
Frank Molina is an adult gerontological primary care nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science in Nursing from the UCSF School of Nursing. His experience includes working as a nurse providing gender care and hormone replacement therapy, HIV and sexually transmitted infections testing and treatment, and pre-exposure prophylaxis enrollment. Prior to his work as a nurse, Molina worked as a tobacco intervention counselor for a tobacco harm reduction research study. His patients included those with mental health and substance use diagnoses. Molina’s background also includes work as a public health associate providing climate change adaptation and health equity guidance to the California Department of Public Health. Molina’s clinical interests include providing care to those seeking substance use treatment, treating patients living with HIV and Hepatitis C, as well as providing affirming care for transgender and gender nonbinary communities. He is also interested in providing comprehensive primary care to both the Latinx and the LBGTQ communities. His research interests are in harm reduction practices, street medicine and methods of improving patient retention in care. His primary care clinical assignment during the residency is with One Community Health in midtown Sacramento.
Alyssa Relos, MSN, AGPCNP-BC, R.N.
Alyssa Relos is an adult gerontological nurse practitioner who graduated with a Master of Science in Nursing from UCSF. As a nurse, Relos worked for seven years in the emergency department, where she cared for patients of varying social and economic populations with a wide array of disease progression. Relos’ clinical interests include healthy aging, cognitive impairment and health care barriers in local communities. She pursued a nurse practitioner degree with the intention to make primary care more accessible to underserved, non-English-speaking communities. She hopes to provide accessible, comprehensive primary care to the growing aging population, eliminate health care barriers in local communities and create initiatives addressing the aging population’s concerns regarding cognitive impairment. Her primary care clinical assignment is with the Internal Medicine Department at UC Davis Health in Sacramento.
Mondana Zargarnian, MSN, FNP-BC
Mondana Zargarnian is a family nurse practitioner who graduated with a master’s degree from the University of Arizona University in Tucson, Arizona, and subsequently earned a family nurse practitioner post-master’s certificate from Columbia University. As a nurse, Zargarnian worked at Vanderbilt University as a cardiac stepdown nurse, caring for chronically ill cardiac patients with multiple comorbidities and undergoing complex cardiac procedures. Recently, she worked with COVID-19 patients in telemetry units in community-based hospitals. She feels fortunate to be able to give back to the nursing profession through her graduate teaching and mentoring of students at Columbia University. Her clinical interests include cardiology, dermatology and women’s health. Zargarnian loves education and is looking forward to empowering her patients with knowledge and shared decision-making. Her primary care clinical assignment is at Peach Tree Health in Marysville, California.