Curriculum and Residency Management Administrators (CARMA) Team
Shashank Kraleti, M.D., F.A.A.F.P., became the Residency Program Director in May 2016. He holds the Jack W. Kennedy Chair in Family and Preventive Medicine, is a graduate of the AFMRD National Institute for Program Director Development, and is also a CME Medical Director. In 2016, he received a New Faculty Scholar Award from the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. In addition to his published research articles, Dr. Kraleti has had papers accepted for presentations in national arenas such as the North American Primary Care Research Group, STFM, and the International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development in Canada. He has appeared on Little Rock television several times to discuss topics such as heat-related illnesses and adult immunizations and is the author of a newspaper column on health issues. Dr. Kraleti leads a procedural half-day clinic and frequently teaches procedures to residents and medical students. His clinical interests include hypertension, diabetes, preventive care, behavioral medicine, research, and procedures. Prior to joining the faculty in 2012 at the rank of assistant professor, Dr. Kraleti was chief resident in our program and was fundamental in implementing the night float system in the department. He was also the recipient of the STAR Professionalism Award and the AAFP Scholarship Award. When he is away from work, he serves as the President of the Global Illumine Corporation, a non-profit charitable organization that transforms lives and communities by supporting education of the young and needful. Dr. Kraleti enjoys listening to music, watching movies, traveling, and swimming.
Diane Jarrett, Ed.D., is the DFPM Director of Education and the Assistant Director of the residency program. Her duties include curriculum design, program evaluation, coordination of the noon conference series, and teaching residents on subjects such as becoming culturally competent and improving presentation skills. Dr. Jarrett also directs the educational activities for the divisions of Continuing Medical Education and Medical Student Education and is a CME Medical Director. She serves as the department webmaster, coordinates faculty development activities, and edits the alumni newsletter. In recent years, she has made more than a dozen presentations at conferences around the U.S. and Canada. She holds the rank of Assistant Professor, is the DFPM faculty liaison with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and is a member of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. Dr. Jarrett’s master’s degree is in journalism and her doctorate is in higher education administration. When she isn’t working, she enjoys writing about classic films. She has had three publications (so far!) in the international journal Films of the Golden Age — a cover story on the silent film career of actor William Boyd, a featured story on stage, film, and TV actor George Macready, and a featured story about Micky Moore, the actor/director who worked in Hollywood from 1916 until 2000.
Chris Rule, M.S.W., L.C.S.W., serves as the Behavioral Scientist for the department and has worked for the residency program in this role since 2008. He joined the UAMS faculty as an Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry in 2008 and earned a secondary appointment in the DFPM in 2011. He has worked in a variety of clinical, teaching and research positions, and currently divides his time between working with the Family Medicine residents and with students at a local independent school as a school-based counselor. He earned his Master’s of Social Work from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock where he has also served as an Adjunct Instructor since 2005. He earned his undergraduate degree in Psychology from Yale University, which was where his long-held interests in working with adolescent mental health, schools and communities first began.
Shannon Heard, B.A., M.B.A., is the Residency Coordinator who provides administrative support for the residency program. She was originally hired in 2010 in the residency program as an Administrative Analyst for the HRSA grant project on service to underserved populations. When the grant funding ended in 2012, she was hired by our Research division, where she ultimately became a Project Specialist. In September 2013, she returned to the residency program as the Residency Coordinator. Her B.A. is in economics (with distinction) from the University of the South, and her M.B.A. is from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
Michael Cassat, M.D. joined the faculty in March 2015 and brings extensive clinical experience in sports and musculoskeletal medicine. Dr. Cassat graduated from the UAMS medical school in 2002 and completed his residency at the Area Health Education Center in Fayetteville in 2005. After practicing primary care and sports medicine in Springdale, Dr. Cassat moved to Vail, Colorado. He received additional training in sports and musculoskeletal medicine at The Steadman Clinic and practiced there until his return to Arkansas, where he was most recently affiliated with Arkansas Specialty Orthopedics. Dr. Cassat sees patients of all ages for sports related injuries, as well as other musculoskeletal problems. He also maintains a primary care patient panel and supervises residents in both the Family Medical Center and the hospital. He focuses on the rapid recovery of non-surgical injuries through both imaging guided injections as well as physical therapy.
Julea Garner, M.D., joined the faculty in 2014. She is a graduate of the UAMS medical school and completed her residency at Harrisburg Hospital (Pennsylvania) and a Primary Care Health Policy Fellowship with the U.S. Public Health Services. Since 2000, she has been in private practice in Hardy, Arkansas (population 578). Dr. Garner travels from Hardy once per month to train the residents on aspects of rural medicine, in addition to leading field trips and retreats to a variety of rural hospitals and clinics around the state.
Jamie Howard, M.D., is the Medical Director of the Family Medical Center which is the clinical teaching facility for the residency program. She directs the Preventive Occupational and Environmental Medicine Division and UAMS Student and Employee Health Services. She also oversees the clinical laboratory and is director of the Department’s Quality Improvement (QI) program. Women’s health, Continuous Quality Improvement, Practice Management and Medical Informatics are areas of personal interest and expertise. She is certified by the American Board of Family Practice.
Mark Jansen, M.D. joined the faculty in 2013. In 2016, he was invested as the inaugural recipient of the Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield, George K. Mitchell M.D. Endowed Chair in Primary Care. He comes from private practice in the college town of Arkadelphia, Arkansas. He is a 1981 graduate of UAMS and finished his family practice residency at the University of Oklahoma, Tulsa Medical College in 1984. Dr. Jansen has a special interest in dermatology and dermatological procedures and was fortunate enough to train with his father, who was chair of the Dermatology Department at UAMS for 25 years. Additionally, he has extensive experience in colonoscopy and provides this service to our patients and teaches interested residents in acquiring this skill. His wife Cynthia is a family practice nurse practitioner and pediatric APN. His son Neal is an industrial recruiter for the state of Arkansas in Asia and his daughter Suzanne will receive her Doctor of Pharmacology from UAMS in 2014.
Arlo Kahn, M.D., is professor of Family Medicine and associate professor in the Health Policy and Management Department of the UAMS College of Public Health. Dr. Kahn holds the Harold Silberbush, M.D. Endowed Chair in Family and Community Medicine. His special interests include nutrition, prevention and health advocacy. Dr. Kahn, who is certified by the American Board of Family Practice, has extensive teaching experience in undergraduate, graduate and continuing medical education.
Daniel Knight, M.D., F.A.A.F.P., Department Chair and former Residency Program Director, joined the faculty in 1999. He is board certified by the ABFM. He was in private family practice for 6 years and was a full time Emergency Physician for 5 years prior to returning to UAMS. Dr. Knight is a board member of the AAFP and a member of the UAMS Minority Recruitment and Retention Committee and the UAMS Council of Department Chairs. He has completed the National Institute for Program Director Development Fellowship for residency directors. He is a member of the Association of Departments of Family Medicine, the AAFP, and the STFM. Dr. Knight serves the community as a board member of the Downtown Little Rock Community Development Corporation, providing safe, affordable housing to lower-income members of the community. From 1999 to 2009, he served as the residency Program Director.
Anil Kopparapu, M.D., joined our faculty in 2016. He is a graduate of the Family Medicine residency program at the State University of New York at Buffalo and has a master of public health degree from the University of Southern Mississippi. His professional experience includes working as a hospitalist at Geisinger Medical Center in Pennsylvania and at Holston Valley Medical Center in Tennessee. Dr. Kopparapu’s outside interests include watching movies and traveling, and he enjoys tennis and cricket.
Martha Lauster, M.D. joined the department as a part-time preceptor in 2016. She was a full-time faculty member in the DFPM from 2005 to 2010, and she left to complete a fellowship in hospice and palliative medicine at UAMS. Since then, she has worked as a State Agency Medical Consultant for Disability Determination for Social Security Administration, and prior to that she worked as a hospice physician. Currently, she works as a Staff Physician at Grand Rounds, an online company that coordinates provision of high-quality care to people all over the United States. Dr. Lauster attended medical school and completed a family medicine residency at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her clinical interests include people, first and foremost! Medical conditions of particular interest include pediatrics, breastfeeding medicine, women’s health, and lupus and other autoimmune conditions. She enjoys teaching residents, knitting, reading, and spending time with her family and dogs.
Tahir Maya, M.D. joined our faculty in 2017 as an assistant professor. Dr. Maya received his medical degree at Ross University of Medicine in Dominica in 2011. He completed his residency training at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in 2014. Before joining our department, Dr. Maya worked as a hospitalist and an urgent care physician in Texas.
David A. Nelsen, Jr., M.D., M.S., practiced medicine in rural Arkansas for five years and served on the faculty at the University of Minnesota before joining the Department. He completed a faculty development fellowship and a Master of Science in Family and Community Medicine at the University of Minnesota. He is an active clinician and is certified by the American Board of Family Practice. Dr. Nelsen is the Assistant Medical Director for Clinical Informatics for the UAMS campus. In this role he is the primary physician representative for informatics issues relative to inpatient and outpatient information systems.
Priya Priyambada, M.D. joined our faculty at the rank of assistant professor in 2016. She is originally from Nepal, where she graduated from Kathmandu University of Medical Sciences, and is board certified in Family Medicine. Dr. Priyambada graduated from the Little Rock Family Medicine residency program in 2015 and received the Goss Patient/Physician Relationship Award. She went on to complete a clinical fellowship in Geriatrics at UAMS, where her training included nursing home rotations, inpatient geriatrics consults, and outpatient geriatrics care. Her publications and presentations include grand rounds and a poster presentation at the American Geriatrics Society. Dr. Priyambada’s clinical interests include primary care with a comprehensive, holistic approach especially for geriatric patients. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering in free clinics, in addition to hiking, watching movies, reading, and playing volleyball.
Charles W. Smith, M.D., a nationally known family physician, serves as Executive Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs for the UAMS College of Medicine and Director of the Faculty Group Practice. Dr. Smith serves as a preceptor in the clinic, attends on the inpatient service, and provides clinical care to his patients in the department. See more about Dr. Smith here.
Stephen Sorsby, M.D., M.H.A. joined our faculty in early 2017. He received his medical degree from UAMS and went on to complete a residency in Family Medicine at the Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Washington, where he served as Chief Resident. He holds a master’s degree in healthcare administration from the University of Washington, Seattle. From 2011 through 2016, Dr. Sorsby served as Medical Director, Vice President of Medical Affairs, and the Chief Medical Officer for QualChoice. Prior to working at QualChoice, Dr. Sorsby served as the Regional Medical Director at US HealthWorks in both Washington and Utah. He ran his own family practice clinic (Delta Family Practice) in Helena, Arkansas, from 1992-1995. Dr. Sorsby is board certified in Occupational Medicine and is a member of the American Association for Physician Leadership, the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, and the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Jack D. Sublett II, M.D., joined the faculty as an assistant professor in 2016. He received his medical degree from UAMS in 2001 and completed a general surgery internship at the University of Mississippi in Jackson, followed by a residency in anatomic pathology/clinical pathology and a fellowship in surgical pathology, both at the Washington University School of Medicine/Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis. Dr. Sublett continued his training with a fellowship in hemopathology at UAMS and then worked as a pathologist in Chesterfield, MO, from 2008 to 2009. After training in Family Medicine at the UAMS Regional Center in Pine Bluff, Dr. Sublett worked in private practice in Little Rock through 2015.
Appathurai Balamurugan, M.D., Dr.P.H., M.P.H. (or Dr. Bala as he prefers to be called) is a board-certified family physician and an epidemiologist. He joined the department as an adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor in September 2013 and precepts residents and medical students at UAMS Family Medical Center clinic. He obtained his medical degree from India, and completed his family medicine residency at our program. During his residency, Dr. Bala served as a chief resident. He obtained his Master of Public Health with emphasis in Epidemiology from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. He further obtained his Doctorate in Public Health with emphasis in Health Policy and Epidemiology from University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health. Dr. Bala serves as the State Chronic Disease Director, and the Medical Director for the Chronic Disease Branch at the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH). In this capacity, he oversees and provides medical guidance to chronic disease programs such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, nutrition and physical activity across the state through the ADH’s local health units. Additionally, he also serves as an adjunct Assistant Professor at the Department of Epidemiology in UAMS College of Public Health. He is widely published both in national and internationally reputed journals, and has obtained numerous awards for his work, including the Director’s “Science Award” for his contribution to Arkansas Department of Health; was honored as “Chronic Disease Champion” by the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD); and “Physician Volunteer of the Year” award for his voluntary work at the Harmony Health Clinic which serves the uninsured and underinsured residents of Central Arkansas. He also serves in the editorial board of the Journal of the Arkansas Medical Society.
Lindy Bollen Jr., D.D.S. is the Director of the Office of Oral Health at the Arkansas Department of Health. He joined our faculty at the rank of Adjunct Clinical Instructor in April 2015 and will lead our curriculum in oral health. A graduate of the University of Central Arkansas, Dr. Bollen completed his dental education at the Louisiana State University School of Dentistry in 1983. He was in private practice for twenty-plus years when he moved into the academia world by joining the faculty at UAMS in 2006. As a member of the Department of Dental Hygiene, Dr. Bollen was responsible for lectures in oral anatomy, oral medicine/pathology and pharmacology along with his duties as a clinical supervising dentist. In May 2014, Dr. Bollen joined the Department of Health and looks forward to contributing to the improvement of oral health in his native state of Arkansas.
RED (Research and Evaluation Division) Community Research Group Faculty
Click here for information about the faculty in our Community Research Group.