Chief Residents

Antonetti, Jonathan, M.D.

Hometown: Chelsea, AL
Undergrad: University of Alabama
Med School: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Career interest or chosen specialty: Plastic Surgery
Hobbies in residency: Live Music, Naps, Boiled Peanuts, The Tide
Thoughts about our program: Baptist exposes you to the OR early and often, allowing you to become a competent and efficient surgeon without a fellowship. At the same time, many residents have gone on to complete fellowships, most recently with colorectal, vascular, trauma, plastics, and cardiothoracic programs. This, along with the growth and excitement surrounding Birmingham, provides the perfect combination for a surgical residency experience that is unmatched.

Frey, Andrew, D.O.

Hometown: Birmingham, AL
Undergrad: University of Mississippi
Med School: William Carey University
Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Outdoor activities, dogs, guitar, multiple great music venues in the area.  Also spending time with my wife, Victoria, our baby, Caroline, and our 2 dogs: Ella (devil sheltie) and Sasha (diabetic eskie).
Thoughts about our program: Our training produces well-rounded surgeons ready to care for any patient after five years. We have a very robust robotic experience as demonstrated by the volume of cases, variety of cases, and early time on console.

Henderson, Chase, M.D.

Hometown: Huntsville, Alabama
Undergrad: Auburn University
Med School: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Playing golf, taking my dog to the park/river/lake, breweries, live music, hunting, Auburn football and grilling.
Thoughts about our program: What attracted me to our program was the amount of attending interaction, operative experience, and resident comradery.  We have an excellent mix of personalities that make the long hours worth it.  We are the “line” service for the hospital 24/7, meaning you will be proficient at tubes and vascular access. We get a broad array of surgical experience including high-volume hepatobiliary service, as well as bariatrics and the “bread-and-butter” general surgery cases.  Attendings are always available and involved in care decisions that require oversight, while allowing residents to really take responsibility for the patients.

Scarsella, Jenny, M.D.

Hometown: Sugarland, TX
Undergrad: University of Texas
Med School: Texas Tech
Career interest or chosen specialty: Vascular Surgery 
Hobbies in residency: Biking, traveling, shopping, Netflix.  Also spending time with my husband, Aldo, and 4-year-old black lab mix, Duke.
Thoughts about our program: I was drawn to our program for the vast and early operating experiences. Our program is very close, and it really feels like family. There’s plenty of one-on-one time with attendings all five years, inside and out of the OR. Lastly, unique to a community program is the opportunity to learn about private practice and the business side of surgery if there’s an interest.

West, Lee, M.D.

Hometown: Mobile, AL
Undergrad: University of Mississippi
Med School: University of South Alabama
Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Fishing, Anything outdoors, sleep
Thoughts about our program: We have very early operative experience. There’s a great mixture of minimally invasive cases, and we have a large volume of open hepatobiliary cases. Also, the city of Birmingham has been a wonderful place to live.

2021 - 2022 PGY-4
 

Meherg, Bailey Callahan, D.O

Hometown: Xenia, OH
Undergrad: University of Alabama
Med School: William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine
Career interest or chosen specialty: General Surgery
Hobbies in residency: Sort of a foodie (cooking/restaurants), time with my husband and dog, pool/lake/ocean time, dog park, traveling whenever I get the chance
Thoughts about our program: When I say you get to operate, that is not a joke. You are thrown in from day one. By the end of residency here you will be prepared to go out on your own without a doubt. On a more personal level, these people are my family. You live and breathe surgery as a resident, but one fact remains that life still goes on. Life happens and having a great support group is absolutely necessary. Enduring residency without these people would be unfathomable.

Day, Josh, M.D.

Hometown: Birmingham, AL
Undergrad: Auburn University
Med School: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Career interest or chosen specialty:Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Hiking, basketball, golf
Thoughts about our program: I got to do an umbilical hernia repair my first day of residency. We have a great robotic experience with excellent broad exposure to general surgery cases. There is also great camaraderie and a non-malignant culture.

 
  Mazur, Olga, M.D.

Hometown: Kabardino-Balkaria, Russia
Undergrad: University of Virginia
Med School: University of Mississippi
Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Violin, theatre, museums, ballet, documentary films, hiking, the Capitals
Thoughts about our program: Good camaraderie among residents and faculty. Strong robotic surgery exposure.

Taylor, Garrett, M.D.

Hometown: Odenville, AL
Undergrad: University of Alabama
Med School: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Career interest or chosen specialty: Community based General Surgery
Hobbies in residency: Wrassle with my kids, swim in the pool, obsess over Alabama football
Thoughts about our program: Strengths of the program are great relationships with attendings and co-residents and the comfortable learning environment that comes with that and a high case load and diverse mix throughout. Steadily increasing vascular numbers, very strong pancreas and hepatobiliary exposure, extensive endoscopy experience, and second to none robot console time. There is a solid mix of all other general surgical procedures. Chiefs are expected to graduate prepared and confident to head straight into practice or hit the ground running in fellowship. Outside the OR, academics are, as always, what you make of them, and enthusiastic residents will find enthusiastic support from attendings regarding pursuing interests or developing research.

 
  Wheelis, Christopher, M.D.

Hometown: Pineville, LA
Undergrad: Southern Methodist University; Dallas, TX
Med School: Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center- Shreveport
Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Hiking with dogs, gardening, fishing/hunting
Thoughts about our program: This program feels like family. There is a genuine interest in the residents’ well-being expressed by the attendings. Despite being a community-based surgery residency, there is still an emphasis on teaching as well as evidence-based medicine. There is a wide range of operative exposure and a strong base in minimally invasive/robotic surgery. This program prepares you to be a competent and confident surgeon -- one who can either head out into practice after 5 years or obtain the fellowship of his/her choosing and excel in that specialty.

2021 - 2022 PGY-3

Boxberger, John, M.D.

Hometown: Austin, TX (with roots in Kansas)
Undergrad: Trinity University, San Antonio, TX
Med School: University of Texas School of Medicine - San Antonio
Career interest or chosen specialty: Open to anything
Hobbies in residency: Basketball, movies, skiing, kayaking, anything that gets me outside.  
Thoughts about our program: The two primary factors I looked for when evaluating programs were collegiality among the residents and strong foundations in General Surgery. I did not know much about the program prior to applying, but a peer of mine suggested I look into it. Just in my brief interactions with the residents during my interview, it was clear that the relationships built at this program were different from what I would find elsewhere. The residents were more than just colleagues. Once I saw the early surgical experience residents received combined with the overall numbers they achieved over 5 years, I was sold. From the moment I got here, expectations were clear, and I received every opportunity to participate in all levels of patient care. This is simply not something you will find at every program.

Harper, Claren, M.D.

Hometown: Jacksonville, FL
Undergrad: Florida State University
Med School: Florida State University College of Medicine
Career interest or chosen specialty: General Surgery/Endocrine Surgery/Undecided
Hobbies in residency: Gardening, Crafting/Painting, Bargain Shopping, Sleeping, Harry Potter on repeat
Thoughts about our program: Overall I've been very happy with the training I've received at Baptist. As an intern, I performed cases in the OR start-to-finish, I placed 100+ CVLs and arterial lines, and I spent a month (on surg onc) where I scrubbed in the OR every single day of the rotation. The surgical experience has only increased ad I've progressed through the program. During my PGY-2 year, I spent two months functioning as a chief resident on one of our many general surgery services, with no senior residents to compete for those cases. Now as a PGY-3, I'm in the OR every day and have been able to more consistently develop skills at the robot console. Our attendings are generally down-to-earth, I enjoy spending time with my co-residents in and out of work, and my husband and I love Birmingham. Also, we have great snacks.

Minton, Heather, M.D.

Hometown: Oxford, AL
Undergrad: University of Alabama, Finance;University of Alabama at Birmingham, Biology
Med School: University of Alabama School of Medicine
Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided but interested in General Surgery and Colorectal
Hobbies in residency: Jogging, weight-lifting, decorating my new home, being outdoors especially hiking or spending time with my family at the lake
Thoughts about our program: BBH is an excellent training program because it offers the “best of both worlds.” We have the volume that a larger city offers, private specialty surgeons who are willing to teach, and ample opportunity to operate early in our careers.

Watlington, James, M.D.

Hometown: Shelbyville, TN
Undergrad: Middle Tennessee State University
Med School: University of Tennessee Health Science Center
Career interest or chosen specialty: General Surgery/Trauma
Hobbies in residency: Take the dog for a walk/run, watch Marvel movies, build plastic models (current one in progress is a 2.5ft WWII submarine), piano, video games
Thoughts about our program: We have a great training environment and plenty of operating cases/experience. It’s an awesome group of residents/attendings who are willing to help you succeed.

Watts, Steve, III., M.D.

Hometown: Valdosta, Ga
Undergrad: Valdosta State University
Med School: Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University
Career interest or chosen specialty: General Surgery/MIS/CTS
Hobbies in residency: Hiking and anything outdoors, golfing, exercising, taking my dog to park, eating great food, visiting all the great Birmingham breweries, spending time with friends/family.
Thoughts about our program: While my time in this program has been short thus far, I can say with confidence that you will not find a program that provides a better operative experience. In my first month as an intern, I scrubbed and assisted on over 30 cases, 6 of which were Whipples. This is a non-malignant learning atmosphere in which there is incredible intraoperative and bedside teaching with a great mix of didactic and hands-on learning. There is a level of camaraderie among residents and attendings that makes you feel like you are part of a big family. Birmingham is an incredible place to live with so many fun and exciting things to do. You will not regret choosing this program.

2021 - 2022 PGY-2

Daughtry, Brock DO

Hometown: Perry, Georgia

Undergrad:  Auburn University

Med School: Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine

Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided

Hobbies in residency: Baron's games, breweries with co-residents, hunting

What drew you to the program? I actually had the privilege of rotating through as a student so I had a pretty good idea of what I thought the program was like coming into intern year. Now that intern year is over, I can say the program is everything I hoped it would be and more. We have excellent operative experience and get to work closely with our attendings early. We see a large variety of general surgery including minimally invasive operations as well as several subspecialties including vascular, surgical oncology, cardiothoracic and plastic surgery. Overall it is an excellent program that will prepare you to be an excellent surgeon.

Fain, Trevor MD

Hometown: Wildwood, MO

Undergrad:  University of Alabama

Med School: University of Louisville School of Medicine

Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided

Hobbies in residency: Movies, golfing, hiking, and trying new restaurants

What drew you to the program? The people. I got along great with everyone I interacted with at my interview, and the strength of the relationships among residents was evident at the pre-interview dinner. I wanted to go to a place where I would get along with my co-workers, and I am excited that is the case.

Harris, Kathleen MD

Hometown: Birmingham, AL

Undergrad: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Med School: University of Alabama School of Medicine

Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided

Hobbies in residency: Running, gymnastics, hiking, just being outside and active, reading, traveling, watching college basketball

What drew you to the program? The hospital system and program have an excellent reputation for strength of training and for being a supportive and welcoming environment. Additionally, I am excited about the amount of surgical experience available early in training. I am glad to be able to train at a great program and have the opportunity to stay close to my friends and family in Birmingham!

Holt, Kenneth MD

Hometown: McCalla, AL

Undergrad:  University of Alabama at Birmingham

Med School: University of Alabama School of Medicine

Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided

Hobbies in residency: Reading, exercising, hiking, fishing, going to concerts, eating at any of the great restaurants in Birmingham

What drew you to the program? I really enjoyed working with the residents while I did a rotation during my 4th year. I was looking for a program where the residents were a tight-knit group and where I could also get a well-rounded general surgery experience, and this was the perfect place for both. I was also very impressed with the amount of OR experience the interns got while I was rotating here. I couldn’t have asked for a better program to match into, and I’m looking forward to the years to come!

Nelson, Sara DO

Hometown: Dothan, AL

Undergrad:  Troy University

Med School: Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine at Auburn

Career interest or chosen specialty: General Surgery/Undecided

Hobbies in residency: Running, soccer, playing with the dogs, hiking, trying new restaurants, traveling, Alabama football - Roll Tide!

What drew you to the program? The comradery in the program is undeniable. Great support from attendings and co-residents. Opportunities at two different hospitals allows for a wide variety and a large volume of cases. Looking forward to the years to come!

PGY-1 Categorical

Coleman, Madi MD

Hometown: Acworth, GA

Undergrad:  University of Georgia

Med School: Medical College of Georgia

Career interest or chosen specialty: Still figuring it out!

Hobbies in residency: Music, art, the outdoors, decorating my house, exploring Birmingham, visiting family, Georgia football (Go Dawgs!)

What drew you to the program? My mentor in medical school encouraged me to apply to more community-based surgery programs for residency and I am so glad he did. Since day one I have felt incredibly supported, and I could not imagine a better place to carry out my surgical training. The truth of every surgery residency is that the work is hard, the hours are long, and there is more to learn than you could possibly imagine. Luckily, I spend my time at the hospital working in a team that has my back, teaches me constantly, and makes me belly laugh every single day. On top of that, I've gotten great experience in the OR and have been given a lot of autonomy in patient care. This is an environment that fosters learning, autonomy, growth in surgical skills and clinical reasoning, and friendship. I am so thankful to be a part of it and I can't wait to see what the next 4 years brings.

Garriga, Galen MD

Med School: University of South Alabama

McNair, Chris DO

Hometown: Chattanooga, TN

Undergrad:  University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Med School: Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine

Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided, maybe bariatric surgery

Hobbies in residency: Playing guitar, collecting fountain pens, spending time with my wife and our two children

What drew you to the program? I got to rotate here during my fourth year of medical school and really felt like a great fit for what I was looking for in a residency program. We get to operate early on and get exposure to a vase amount of surgical pathology and our attendings are excellent teachers. All of the residents here are cohesive and look after one another.

Switzer, Jacob MD

Hometown: Fairhope, AL

Undergrad: University of Alabama at Birmingham

Med School: University of Alabama School of Medicine

Career interest or chosen specialty: Undecided

Hobbies in residency: I enjoy fishing, hiking, and spending time outdoors. I play guitar and appreciate a wide range of musical genres.

What drew you to the program? The reputation of the hospital system and the training opportunities it offers are fantastic! I’ve fallen in love with the city of Birmingham over the past eight years, so it is a great blessing that I have the opportunity to continue to train at a premier institution in such a great place to live.

Thomas, Evan DO

Med School: Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine

PGY-1 Preliminary

Lewis, Preston DO

Med School: New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine

Osikoya, Femi MD

Med School: University of Tennessee

Touros, Kiara, DO

Med School: Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine