Resident and Fellow Bios
Lo Tamburro, MD
Western Michigan University
Lo grew up in the Metro Detroit area. They did undergrad at the University of Michigan, studying microbiology and medical anthropology. Then they went straight into med school at Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine (a mouthful, I know), where they were involved in too many things to list but still managed to graduate. Now they're just making their way through residency and hoping to do a forensics fellowship because they have a mild fascination with death and love all things public health. Hopefully, they'll manage to do some research on the intersections of queer health and pathology at some point as well. In their free time, they enjoy exploring local cemeteries, spending all their money on concerts and theatre, rewatching Fleabag for the millionth time, and chilling with their cats — Arya and Felix.
Andreah De La Hoz, MD
University of Louisville School of Medicine
Andy was born and raised in Maryland and is thrilled to come back home for residency training. As a part of a military family, they have lived all over the country, including Kentucky, Tennessee, Florida, Louisiana, and briefly California. Andy discovered pathology at the age of 10, when their mother was studying for a nursing career and took them along to a general pathology class - Andy was instantly hooked and began a lifelong passion for pathology. Andy began studying pathology material in their free time, and worked in toxicology and forensics labs. Andy is interested in forensic pathology but is keeping an open mind. Outside of medicine, Andy's passions include the real football (Liverpool fan), music (loves David Bowie), anime and manga, and of course the Lord of the Rings Trilogy.
Rhaya Murray, DO
Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine
Rhaya grew up in Redlands, California; home of good citrus and breakfast burritos. She went to college at Texas Lutheran University in Seguin, TX, where they erroneously believe that breakfast tacos reign supreme. After completing her degrees in Biology and Chemistry, she went back to California and worked as a Lab manager for a respiratory physiology and neurobiology research lab at Loma Linda University, CA. She stayed in sunny SoCal and went to Western University of Health Sciences for medical school. Now she's in Baltimore, desperately trying to find decent tacos. When Rhaya grows up, she thinks she wants to be a GI pathologist, but might change her mind to anything else anatomic pathology related. When she's not at the microscope, Rhaya can be found swing dancing, knitting, or collecting and wearing vintage clothes.
Catherine Lee, MD
Northeast Ohio Medical University
Cat was raised in Dublin, Ohio, home of the Memorial Golf Tournament. In high school she enjoyed golfing and dancing. She graduated from the University of Akron with a major in Natural Sciences, and her favorite class was anatomy. She attended medical school at Northeast Ohio Medical University, and discovered the amazing field of pathology during a surgical pathology rotation. She likes exploring new restaurants and coffee spots, drinking boba, traveling the world, attending conferences, and spending time with family and friends. She has a pet Sheba Enu named Russet.
Leah Benton, MD
University of Tennessee College of Medicine
Leah was born and raised in Georgia. She received a BS in biology from Emory University, followed by an MS in biochemistry and molecular and cellular biology at Georgetown University. She attended medical school at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC). In her free time, she enjoys hiking, cycling, listening to music, crabbing, playing basketball, and attempting to learn how to rollerblade. She is interested in surgical pathology and hematopathology.
Sarah Helman, MD
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Sarah is what some have termed a "Maryland for life-er." She grew up in Elkridge, MD and received an undergraduate degree in Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics from the University of Maryland, College Park. After graduating, she continued her tour of Maryland with a 2-year post-bac at the NIH in Bethesda, MD, studying T-cell immunotherapies for HPV-associated cancers. Next stop was attending medical school at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, where Sarah fell in love with pathology and decided to stay for residency. Despite late nights crying over a clogged flow cytometer in her pre-med school days, Sarah is interested in pursuing fellowship training in hematopathology. In their free time, Sarah and her fiancé, Connor, enjoy walking around a nearby lake (despite what Pete says), hiking, sharing their enthusiastic love of Maryland, and spending time with their cat, Samwell (of House Tarly), who has an insatiable need for snuggles.
Autumn LaRocque, MD
Quillen College of Medicine - East Tennessee State University
Autumn was raised in western North Carolina but has since lived all over the country (Monterey, CA was her favorite location to date). She attended Wellesley College for undergrad, where she was a neuroscience major, followed by a short detour where she worked at Starbucks for 7 years and joined the U.S. Army Reserve. She attended medical school at East Tennessee State University. Her favorite part of Baltimore is obviously Camden Yards - home of the Baltimore Orioles. She and her husband hope to one day run a coffee shop somewhere near a beach. Ask her about the secret coffee shop menu and the best way to make coffee. She has a 14 year old cat named CJ who has heart failure and was projected to pass away years ago, but is miraculously still with us - if not at work, Autumn is probably at one of his many vet appointments.
Pauline Shih, MD
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Pauline grew up in Clarksville, Maryland. She graduated from Miami University of Ohio where she received degrees in Biology and Medical Laboratory Science, before attending medical school at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She is interested in general surgical pathology and enjoys seeing a wide variety of cases. In her spare time, she enjoys running around the harbor with her fiancé, playing field hockey, hiking, and annoying her cat by forcing him to cuddle. Her favorite parts about Baltimore include the food and proximity to family.
Kavi Patel, MD
Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California
Kavi grew up in London and then hopped across the pond to Southern California at the age of 8. He graduated from UCLA summa cum laude before moving across town to USC for medical school. He was the captain of the quidditch and bocce ball teams. Following a brief stint as an internal medicine resident, he decided to pursue a career in pathology. His professional interests include cytology and surgical pathology. In his free time he enjoys visiting museums (the Museum of Bad Art in Somerville Massachusetts is his favorite), live music (jazz/soul/world/anything young people aren't into), cultural attractions, and hiking.
Kathryn Rice, MD - Chief Resident
University of Cincinnati School of Medicine
Kathryn grew up in 7 midwestern states - no she is not army, her mother worked for a large and constantly restructuring company. She was a math major at Transylvania University and spent her college summers working as a tech in a molecular genetics lab, with a side of beta fish husbandry. She enrolled in med school at the University of Cincinnati and was involved in pediatrics research at Cincinnati Children's. Her hobbies include music (played handbells with a professional choir, sang in an international choral competition and earned a silver medal in the sacred music section), home improvement (tile renovation, waging war against mold), and a variety of other activities (playing the Sims, gardening, baking, cooking, sewing, painting, temporarily borrowing the adorable children of her co-residents). Her professional interests are in forensics and pediatrics, as well as medical education. Additional life-goals include moving to a small farm with a fixer-upper house, giant vegetable garden, woodworking shop, and a few animals (dogs, goats, chickens, maybe a llama).
Erika Wheeler, MD - Chief Resident
Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine - Florida Atlantic University
Erika grew up in the small town of Hopkinton, Massachusetts, where the Boston Marathon starts. Though she never has run in the marathon (yet, #lifegoals), she did pursue track and field through high school and into college, where she was a heptathlete for the Johns Hopkins Blue Jays (#foreverabluejay). After majoring in neuroscience, and having no idea what she wanted to do with her life, she took a job as a lab technologist in a JHU biophysics lab doing science she only superficially understood but could make happen on the bench. Finding this comfortable but unfulfilling, she was mentored to go to medical school, and traveled farther down the east coast to Florida Atlantic University Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine. Here she struggled to decide between pathology and surgery, ultimately deciding on surgery, again through mentorship. This brought her back up to Baltimore, for a general surgery residency at Sinai Hospital. She surgerized for 3 years and during her third year, panicked because she didn't want to do this for her life. She then was strongly reminded of her interest in forensics and pathology and, through - you guessed it - mentorship by none other than Dr. Molavi, found her way to University of Maryland pathology residency on track for forensic pathology fellowship. In her free time, she enjoys walking in the woods, rolling D20s, and spending time with her cat, Chessie (short for Chesapeake).
Leyla Canbeldek, MD
Uludağ Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi
Leyla was born in Turkey and graduated from Uludag University Medical School in 2017. She came to the United States to pursue pathology residency and fellowship training, and to be involved in research. Her interests include reading about psychology, spirituality, religion, and philosophy, volunteering and mentoring (helping international medical graduates with USMLE studying, organizing study groups, book clubs, and teaching), watching movies and documentaries that open a window to universe through art, science, and history, painting mostly minimalist art, and walking. Her academic interests are centered around neuroscience, particularly neurodegenerative diseases, neuropsychiatry, and the relationship between mind, body, and soul. Leyla will be pursuing neuropathology fellowship training after completing her residency.
Rosanna Drake, DO
Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine
Rosanna grew up in Ellicott City, MD. She received a scholarship to play college volleyball at Wheeling Jesuit University. Before going to medical school, she worked for three and a half years in finance, worked as an emergency department scribe, and played a lot of beach volleyball. Her professional interest is in forensics, and she will be pursuing fellowship training at the OCME in Baltimore. She enjoys breweries, wineries, live music, and anything where a beach and ocean are involved. She is a diehard Ravens and Orioles fan. Additionally, she is addicted to her Peloton. She has a 16 lb Corgi/Chihuahua/Terrier mix named Mushroom who is originally from Kuwait.
Jonathan Jacobs, MD
New York Medical College
Jon was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio and after high school went to George Washington University for biomedical engineering where he decided to pursue medicine as a career. To that end, he spent several years after obtaining his undergraduate degree as an EMT, obtaining a Master's degree in Biomedical Science from Tufts University, and working in a neuroscience lab there. He graduated from New York Medical College in 2018 and found pathology after a year in internal medicine. He is interested in cytology and data science. In Jon's spare time, he runs, bicycles about Baltimore, and enjoys hiking and camping, from the Adirondacks to the Appalachians to the Rockies.
Janina Markidan, MD
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Janina grew up in San Francisco CA and earned her B.S. in Public Health at the University of California Berkeley. After college, she graduated with a B.S.N. from the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, where she stayed as a nurse before attending medical school at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. In 2023, she will be heading north to Hershey, PA (the self-proclaimed "sweetest place on earth") for a fellowship in dermatopathology at the Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. In her free time, she enjoys hiking (craziest hike was a midnight excursion to the Half Dome in Yosemite), reading all sorts of fictional things, and chasing her son around the playground. She has a pet cat named Zoe that she brought home from the Baltimore animal rescue the day she took the MCAT.
Peter DeRosa, MD
Penn State Medical College
Pete earned a degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, followed by a medical degree from Penn State University in Hershey, PA. Prior to pathology, Pete spent time as a hospital administrator, where he successfully led his service lines through two Joint Commission Center of Excellence certifications and one JCAHO review. During undergraduate and medical training he received grants or scholarships from NASA, the American Heart Association, the American Federation for Aging Research, and the ASCP. He completed a Hematopathology fellowship at the University of Maryland between his 3rd and 4th year of AP/CP training. Pete is passionate about technological and diagnostic advancements in the field of Pathology. He currently serves on several national committees for the ASCP, as a Hill Day Representative for the CAP, and as a delegate member of the AMA House of Delegates (Residents and Fellows Section). In his miniscule free time, he enjoys Jiu-Jitsu, and walking around the lake with his wife Sun (and searching for his co-resident Sarah who claims to also like walking by the lake but is conspicuously never there).
Isaac McCool, MD
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
Major Isaac E. McCool, MD was born in Irwin Army Community Hospital in Fort Riley, Kansas, and raised in several duty stations while his mother served in the United States Army. Dr. McCool ultimately joined the Army ROTC in August 2001 while obtaining his B.S. degree at Northwestern State University of Louisiana in Natchitoches, LA (graduated May 2004 after changing from Liberal Arts to Pre-Medicine in 2002). Dr. McCool's most important accomplishments are being married to his wife of 12 years, Yrene McCool and raising his 6-year-old son, Gabriel.
Dr. McCool ultimately aspires to become a Hematopathologist and teach Pathology at an academic institution. Dr. McCool's hobbies include swimming, scuba diving (certified Rescue Diver through PADI), roller skating (former Roller Derby blocker, jammer & pivot), cooking, drawing, and supporting rescue dogs (including caring for his rescue dog Red of 11 years, a half-chihuahua half-no clue from El Paso, TX).
Jamie Hittman, MD
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Jamie is a Marylander for life. She was born in Rockville, raised in Columbia, and attended the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore for college. After getting her MFA in Creative Writing at Queens College, NY, she returned to the University of Maryland Baltimore for medical school and pathology residency. Outside of medicine, she enjoys cooking, birdwatching, reading, and writing fiction. In the fall, she and her husband Nathaniel can often be found in costume at the Maryland Renaissance Festival.