Meet the FMIG Network Student Leaders

Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG) Network Regional Coordinators play a crucial role in connecting students with local FMIGs and helping FMIGs around the nation connect with and learn from each other.

Learn more about the Regional Coordinators and their unique experiences with FMIGs and family medicine.

Regional Coordinators | SNMA and LMSA Student Liaisons

RegionRegional Coordinator
Region: #1 (Western)
Regional Coordinator: Victoria Boggiano
Region: #2 (Midwest)
Regional Coordinator: Margaret Smith
Region: #3 (Mid-Atlantic)
Regional Coordinator: Joe Brodine
Region: #4 (Northeast)
Regional Coordinator: Ranjani Natarajan
Region: #5 (Southeast)
Regional Coordinator: Chandler Stisher

Victoria Boggiano

Region 1 -- Victoria Boggiano

Medical school: Stanford University School of Medicine
Year: MS4

About Victoria

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

My favorite thing about family medicine is that it is so diverse. When I was going through my clinical rotations during my third year of medical school, I enjoyed everything, from OB/GYN to psychiatry to pediatrics and everything in between. Within the field of family medicine, we have the chance to see a wide range of patients with a range of health care needs. It is incredibly exciting!

What do you hope to accomplish in your position this year?

When I was chair of the Stanford FMIG during my second year of medical school, I remember what a wonderful resource our FMIG Network regional coordinator was. I hope to be able to be a similarly helpful resource for the chapters I work with this year. I want to help them stay up to date on the resources that the AAFP can provide, and to be able to help them plan events and campaigns that promote family medicine at their institutions.

Margaret Smith

Region 2 -- Margaret Smith

Medical school: ETSU Quillen College of Medicine
Year: MS3

About Margaret

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

I love family medicine because of the emphasis it places on not only the health of individuals, but also population health through advocacy and social justice in medicine. Family medicine doctors are truly integral parts of our communities and have the ability to be a part of a variety of teams that are working to make our country have better health outcomes. I love hearing the passion family medicine doctors have for progress and change.

Why is family medicine so important to health care in the United States (and the world)?

As healthcare evolves, family medicine doctors are well suited to be important figures in coordinating care and building interprofessional teams to help our patients get the help they need to get better!

Joe Brodine

Region 3 -- Joe Brodine, MSN/MPH

Medical School: Georgetown University School of Medicine
Year: MS4

About Joe

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

Family medicine offers a path that is uniquely your own. Family docs are well trained to manage the primary care of any patient, but you get to determine your own expertise, your own patient population, your own practice setting. In the exciting and rapidly changing world of medicine, you will always have the opportunity to be on the edge of innovation while staying connected to the values that led you to become a doctor and maintaining the most crucial element at the center of your practice: the relationship with patients and their families in the communities you serve.

Why is family medicine so important to health care in the United States (and the world)?

Family medicine doctors are not only outstanding healers to their patients; they are a force in the U.S. health care system who advocate for their patients beyond the four walls of the exam room. Family medicine doctors can serve their patients in so many ways. Whether they are the sole doctor for a small rural town, the leader of a PCMH in an underserved urban neighborhood, a change agent in a health care system, or an activist speaking to Congress, a family physician enjoys the broadest scope of service in all of medicine. Our individual patients and our many communities collectively need a strong voice to champion their health needs and few are better positioned to provide the credible and expert leadership than those in family medicine.

Ranjani Natarajan

Region 4 -- Ranjani Natarajan, MEd

Medical School: Albany Medical College
Year: MS3

About Ranjani

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

Family medicine providers hold the unique position as serving as patient advocates within their communities. Even before starting medical school, I knew I had to pursue a career in primary care due to my previous experiences as a teacher. I saw how both limited access to health care and the primary care physician shortage impacted the lives of my students and their families. Parallel to the teacher-student relationship, family medicine physicians are entrusted with the unique responsibility of integrating each patient’s socioeconomic status, education, language abilities, and family support in order to help a patient meet his/her health goal, whether it be academic or health-related. In underserved areas, primary care physicians must take these factors into consideration just as teachers in similar communities do in order to provide preventive health measures.

What do you hope to accomplish in your position this year?

As regional coordinator, I am especially excited to support FMIGs in my region by helping to implement new programs and supporting FMIGs to overcome challenges they may face. I also hope to promote collaboration across our FMIG network to help strengthen collaboration and involvement across the network while promoting the opportunities available to family medicine physicians.

Chandler Stisher

Region 5 -- Chandler Stisher

Medical school: University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine
Year: MS3

About Chandler

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

One of my favorite things about family medicine is the opportunity to build lasting relationships with patients that allow you to treat the whole person, throughout any stage of life. This gives family physicians a unique breadth of practice that I consider to be most rewarding. As medicine continues to advance, I am excited to see what the future holds for family medicine! 

What do you hope to accomplish in your position this year?

Through my position as a regional coordinator, I want to help bring together FMIGs from across the country to share stories of how they are spreading excitement for family medicine throughout their medical schools. In addition, by working with the other coordinators and FMIGs, I would like to see student choice of family medicine increase nationwide! As our health care system evolves, I think family physicians will be needed more than ever before, and I want to help students realize the potential difference they can make by choosing a career in family medicine!

James Lee

SNMA Student Liaison -- James Lee

Medical school: University of Central Florida College of Medicine
Year: MS3

About James

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

Family medicine is great for someone like me who gets great pleasure from developing relationships over time. I like the idea of being able to treat entire families and having the opportunity to ingratiate myself with them and build a bond over the years. I love interacting with people of all ages and family medicine allows me to have exposure to pediatrics, geriatrics and everything in between. Also, I believe that family medicine puts physicians in the best position to impact the health of communities directly. I look forward to the opportunity to serve patients who are disadvantaged and are in the most need of health care.

Why is family medicine so important to health care in the United States (and the world)?

One way to lower the expense of health care is to reduce the need for life-saving interventions provided in emergency rooms. Preventative care is the best way for patients to maintain good health and reduce the need for expensive tests and procedures. Primary care can help promote healthy lifestyles that are sustainable throughout a patient's life. In this way, family medicine doctors are able to have a more permanent and lasting impact on the quality of life of their patients.

Vicki Otaño

LMSA Student Liaison -- Victoria Otaño

Medical school: University of Kansas School of Medicine
Year: MS4

About Vicki

What is your favorite thing about family medicine?

My favorite thing about becoming a family physician is the connection with our community. During my years in medical school, I‘ve learned the needs of the community define the health of our patients. Providing access to care and being involved in communities has had a huge impact not only on who I am today, but most importantly, on who I want to become. The most exciting aspects of family medicine are being able to follow families at different stages of their lives and watch them grow and overcome difficulties, and empowering them to make healthy decisions. I cannot wait to care for families and celebrate the small things in life together.

Why is family medicine so important to health care in the United States (and the world)?

I believe family medicine makes an incredible impact in the lives of patients and in communities. Being able to call somebody “my doctor” should not be a privilege of a few. Having somebody to turn to for information, comfort, and support is an important aspect of the health of an individual. I consider prevention of health problems a key to a healthier future, and family physicians are in an excellent position to make a difference. Family doctors not only care for the patient’s health status, but also consider the person as a whole. We strive to care for our patient’s mental health, understand the social-economical context they live in, and provide support in every aspect of a person’s life.