• Discover how to expand, develop, and strengthen your new or established residency program with customized consultation services backed by the AAFP and delivered by a team of GME experts.

    RPS Express 90 and Express 180 consultations are now available!

    We're Dedicated to GME Excellence

    Since 1975, RPS has been a partner to family medicine residency programs as they grow and transform. RPS is committed to advancing residency programs and helping them achieve excellence in education. Our consultants are family physicians who have been carefully selected to ensure we can meet the array of needs program leaders have as they train doctors who do it all. 

    The AAFP is proud to offer RPS as part of its commitment to advancing family medicine. You're passionate about family medicine because you know it improves patients' lives and entire communities in a unique way. We share that passion.

    Personalized, confidential, affordable

    We know every residency is unique, so we offer customized services to fit your needs. Our range of services are designed by experts who have been in your position.

    While the benefits gained from a residency program can be vast, starting and maintaining a program can be costly. We keep our fees affordable to support the workforce growth and sustainability needed for the specialty.

    Our services include:

    • Personalized Consultation with family medicine residency leaders (up to 60 hours)
      In-depth, personalized assistance from a family medicine residency leader to help you enhance your program. Email rps@aafp.org for a free scoping call to learn more.

    • Mini Group Consult (1 hour)
      Live, one-hour, interactive online discussion with one RPS consultant and up to ten other family medicine residency program attendees about designated topic. These are quick and easy and require no contracting.
      Fee: $150 | Learn more.

    • RPS Express 90 and RPS Express 180 Consults 
      Choose from a total of 90 minutes or 180 minutes of consultant time, including live interactive online discussion with an RPS consultant and up to five program staff and faculty to address topics of your choice (identified at registration), and pre/post discussion work by consultant.
      Express 90 Fee: $750 | Express 180 Fee: $1,500 | Learn more.

    Below are examples of topics we can cover:

    • Strategy development
    • Accreditation 
    • Mock site visits
    • Culture and morale
    • Curriculum innovation
    • Faculty development and management
    • New program development
    • Osteopathic recognition and added qualifications
    • Overall program health and sustainability
    • Rural training
    • Program management
    • Finance and financial issues
    • Institutional and program application review
    • Recruitment and retention
    • Family medicine practice management
    • Site transitions
    • ACGME requirements

    Meet Our Family Medicine Consulting Team

    The Residency Program Solutions' team of experts are current and former program directors, chief medical officers, designated institutional officials, and department chairs—all of them family physicians who know what it takes to train the world's most in-demand, essential doctors.

    Focused on You

    There's nothing quite as complex as family medicine. Trust the experts who understand the impact of a personalized plan.


    Behind every great consultant is a full team of RPS experts, ready to flex skills and share knowledge to get you where you need to be.

    Continuity Support

    Count on us being a longitudinal partner who knows how to adapt and put into place interventions that last.

    Victor H Agbeibor, MD, MPH, FAAFP

    Victor H. Agbeibor, MD, MPH, FAAFP

    Dr. Agbeibor is the program director for the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU)-Bon Secours Family Medicine and Blackstone Rural Track Residency Program in Richmond, VA. He serves as a clinical professor in VCU School of Medicine’s Department of Family Medicine and Population Health. He is the vice president of Graduate Medical Education and is the Designated Institutional Official for the Bon Secours Mercy Health System in Richmond, VA. Dr. Agbeibor received his medical degree from the Tver State Medical School in Russia and completed his residency training at In His Image in Tulsa, OK. He completed his MPH at the University of Carolina Gillings school of Global Public Health. Dr. Agbeibor is married to a fellow family physician, Catrell, who he met during residency training, and they have three children. He is passionate about global health and medical education.

    Dr. Clements

    Deborah S. Clements, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Clements is the Chair of Family and Community Medicine, the Nancy and Warren Furey Professor of Community Medicine, Professor of Family Medicine and Medical Education, and Program Director for the McGaw Northwestern Family Medicine Residency at Lake Forest. Dr. Clements completed medical school and family medicine residency at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. She has completed fellowships in Medical Bioethics, Health Policy and Integrative Medicine. Dr. Clements is the Chair of the National Resident Matching Program, serves on the Association of Departments of Family Medicine Board of Directors and is a past president of the Association of Family Medicine Residency Directors. She also serves as a Co-Director of the Center for Primary Care Innovation (CPCI) within the Institute for Public Health and Medicine at the Feinberg School of Medicine. Dr. Clements provides specific leadership and expertise to address the social determinants of health. She is a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society and the Feinberg Academy of Medical Educators. 

    Steven Crane, MD, MA, FAAFP

    Dr. Crane is a professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He serves as an advisor for HRSA grantees in rural residency program development. He joined the RPS Panel of Consultants in 2012. Dr. Crane trained as a health economist at Stanford University and worked at the Institute of Medicine and the Congressional Budget Office in Washington, DC, as a health policy analyst. He completed his medical education at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland and completed his family medicine residency at the University of Missouri-Columbia where he served as chief resident. 

    Alan B. Douglass, MD, FAAFP

    Alan B. Douglass, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Douglass is a Clinical Professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Prior to moving west, he spent 31 years at Middlesex Health in Middletown, Connecticut where he was the long-time Family Medicine Residency Director and ACGME Designated Institutional Official. He received his medical degree from the University of Connecticut. Dr. Douglass completed his residency in Family Medicine at Middlesex Hospital and Faculty Development Fellowship at Duke University. He is board certified in Family Medicine and holds a Certificate of Added Qualification in Hospice and Palliative Medicine. In addition to his role as an RPS Consultant, he trains new Residency Directors through service on the Academic Council of the National Institute for Program Director Development (NIPDD) and advises HRSA Teaching Health Center and Rural Residency Program Development grant recipients.

    Roger Garvin, MD, FAAFP

    For 12 years, Dr. Garvin served as the Family Medicine Residency Director at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland. He joined the RPS Panel of Consultants in 2015. Dr. Garvin received his medical degree from Oregon Health & Science University. He completed his residency at Family Medicine Spokane and practiced eight years of full spectrum care in a small town in Eastern Washington. He then spent 11 years on the faculty of the Spokane Family Medicine residency and completed a faculty development fellowship at the University of Washington.

    John Gazewood, MD

    Dr. Gazewood has been the residency program director for the University of Virginia Family Medicine Residency Program since 2006. Previously he served as the school of medicine's course director, predoctoral program director for the family medicine department, and medical director for the Family Medicine Center. Dr. Gazewood received his medical degree from Vanderbilt University, and finished residency training at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He practiced full-scope Family Medicine in Madisonville, TN for 5 years before returning to the University of Missouri where he completed a faculty development and geriatrics fellowship. 

    Dr. Gitu

    Alfred Chege Gitu, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Gitu is the Residency Program Director and Clinical Professor of Family Medicine at the Florida State University College of Medicine program at Lee Health in Fort Myers, FL. He also serves as an advisor for HRSA grantees in Teaching Health Center Program Development (THCPD) initiative. He joined the RPS panel of consultants in 2023. He is passionate about medical education, lifestyle medicine, primary care, inpatient medicine and global health. Dr. Gitu received his medical education at the University of Nairobi, Kenya, and completed his residency training in Greenwood, SC. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Family Medicine and the American Board of Lifestyle Medicine. Dr. Gitu is married to Rebecca, and they have two adult daughters. He also enjoys running, reading and recreational travel.

    Diana Heiman, MD, CAQSM

    Dr. Heiman is the Vice Chair for Academic and Faculty Affairs in the University of Kentucky Department of Family and Community Medicine. Prior to that she was the Assistant Dean for GME for the Quillen College of Medicine at East Tennessee State University and the Department of Family Medicine GME Liaison. Dr. Heiman initially joined the faculty at the University of Connecticut/St. Francis Hospital Family Medicine Residency as the Associate Residency Director and Associate Sports Medicine Fellowship Director from 2003-2011. She then became the program director at the Johnson City Family Medicine Residency Program in January 2012 until June 2019. Dr. Heiman received her medical degree from Case Western Reserve University, and then completed residency in Family Medicine at the University of Virginia. She then completed her Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship at the University of Michigan, where she stayed as junior faculty. She joined RPS in 2019.

    Bryan Hodge, DO

    Bryan Hodge, DO

    Dr. Hodge is the director of the Rural Health Initiatives for MAHEC in western North Carolina. He is the former program director of Hendersonville Rural Family Medicine Residency Program and the founding program director of the Boone Family Medicine Residency Program. As an Assistant Clinical Professor with the University of North Carolina Department of Family Medicine, he has dedicated his career to using innovative models to improve, expand, and build residency training opportunities leading to better health outcomes in areas of high need. Dr. Hodge received his degree from the AT Still University Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine in Missouri.

    Hobart Lee, MD, FAAFP

    Hobart Lee, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Lee attended medical school at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He completed his family medicine residency, chief resident year, and academic faculty development fellowship at the University of Michigan. He is an associate professor at Loma Linda University School of Medicine. He joined the RPS Panel of Consultants in 2021.

    Debbie Lupeika, MD, DABFM

    Debbie Lupeika, MD, DABFM

    Dr. Lupeika is the Associate Dean of Rural and Community Health for the University of California Davis School of Medicine, and Faculty at the Shasta Regional Medical Center Internal Medicine Program in Redding, CA. She is the former and founding Program Director of the Shasta Community Health Center Family Medicine Residency Program, which is one of the first Teaching Health Centers in California. She is currently completing an Integrative Medicine Fellowship through the University of Arizona Andrew Weil Center and has completed both a National Institute of Program Director Fellowship in 2013 and a Primary Care Psychiatry Fellowship through UC Irvine in 2020. She is a Clinical Professor for UC Davis School of Medicine Volunteer Clinical Faculty since 2003, Clinical Assistant Professor for Chicago Medical School since 2011, Adjunct Associate Professor of Family Medicine for Touro University California College of Osteopathic Medicine since 2014 and has been teaching residents and students since 2003. Her advocacy interests include serving as the Vice Chair of the California Medical Association District 11, and as an Alternate Delegate to the American Medical Association for District 11 in CA. She has worked at the Redding Rancheria and continues to practice inpatient hospital medicine at Mercy Medical Center in Redding, CA. Her special interests include women’s health, pediatrics, rural care and Integrative medicine.

    Walt Mills, MD, MMM, FACPE, FAAFP

    Dr. Mills is clinical professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and has been on the clinical faculty since 1986. He is the designated institution official and director of medical education and medical student program and associate director for the UCSF Natividad Family Medicine Residency Program in Monterey County, California. Dr. Mills is president-elect for the California Academy of Family Physicians. He joined the RPS Panel of Consultants in 2012.

    Mary K. Nordling, MD, FAAFP

    Mary K. Nordling, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Nordling is a family physician and associate professor at the Oregon Health & Science University. She is founding program director for OHSU’s newest family medicine residency in Hillsboro, which opened in 2021. Dr. Nordling previously served as Program Director and DIO for the new Hawaii Island Family Medicine Residency, helping to graduate their first two classes. Prior to that, she was an Associate Program Director at the Lawrence Family Medicine Residency, where she also fulfilled her four-year National Health Service Corps Scholarship obligation. Dr. Nordling received her medical degree at The George Washington University in Washington, DC, and completed her family medicine residency at UPMC-St Margaret in Pittsburgh, where she also served as chief resident. She joined the RPS Panel of Consultants in 2021.

    Elissa Palmer, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Palmer is Professor and Chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine and Assistant Dean for Continuing Medical Education (interim) at the Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She received her doctoral degree at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, followed by residency training at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Dr. Palmer worked in private practice at Central Maine Clinical Associates and Stowe (Vermont) Family Practice. She served as program director of the Altoona Family Physicians Residency in Pennsylvania (now UPMC). Dr. Palmer joined the Panel of Consultants in 2015.

    Judith Pauwels, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Pauwels is a family physician and Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington in Seattle. She served as program director for 16 years at Tacoma Family Medicine and then the UW Family Medicine residency programs. Since then, her primary role is Associate Director for Program Development and Accreditation for the WWAMI Family Medicine Residency Network. She has worked with HRSA as a consultant on the Teaching Health Center grant program, and currently serves on the Technical Assistance Center for the HRSA Rural Residency Program Development grant. Dr. Pauwels has been an RPS Consultant since 2002.

    Randy Pearson, MD, FAAFP, FACSM

    Dr. Pearson is an associate director and core faculty at the Sparrow/Michigan State University Family Medicine Residency and professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the MSU College of Human Medicine. He is also the current Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education and DIO for MSU-CHM. Previously, he served as program director for the MSU/St. Lawrence Family Practice Residency, during which time, the hospital and residency underwent a merger. He also served for many years as the fellowship director for the MSU Sports Medicine Fellowship. After residency, Dr. Pearson worked in private practice before joining the faculty at MSU-CHM. He completed his medical education at Wayne State University School of Medicine and completed residency training at the MSU/St. Lawrence Family Practice Residency, where he served as chief resident in his third year. He completed a faculty development fellowship through the MSU Office of Medical Education, Research,and Development while he was chief resident. Dr. Pearson has served as an RPS consultant since 2019.

    Louis Sanner, MD, MSPH, FAAFP

    Dr. Sanner is an emeritus professor at the University of Wisconsin Department of Family Medicine and Community Health in Madison, where he served as program director from 1996-2002 and was cofounder of the Baraboo Rural Training Track. Dr. Sanner has expertise in GME financing, overall new residency program development and residency clinic design. He has provided advanced obstetrical training to local health care providers in various parts of the developing world. Dr. Sanner has served on the Panel of Consultants since 2001. He also serves as a lead advisor for many of the grantees of the HRSA funded Rural Residency Program Development and THC Program Development. Dr. Sanner attended Stanford Medical School. He completed his Family Medicine residency, chief residency, and two-year research fellowship at the University of Missouri-Columbia.  

    Gregory Sawin, MD, MPH

    Gregory Sawin, MD, MPH

    Dr. Sawin is a practicing family physician and serves as Vice Chair for Education and Faculty Development for the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at Duke University School of Medicine. Dr. Sawin’s work is a reflection of a core value in social justice and a passion to increase health equity. Most of his academic career has been as an educator, serving as a family medicine residency director in Massachusetts for 10 years prior to joining Duke. To meet vulnerable patients’ needs, he also has experience with expanding the scope of primary care to include medication for opioid use disorder (MOUD) and gender affirming hormone therapy for transgender people. His long work in safety net health systems, along with his MPH that had a focus in Healthcare policy Law & Ethics fuels his drive for health system transformation and leaning in to address systemic racism, which is the primary driver of inequities that manifest as social determinants of health. Dr. Sawin believes Just Culture and psychological safety are fundamental pillars to building a better health system and is a leader in using Restorative Justice and practices in academic medical centers to support of those efforts.

    John B. Waits, MD, CPE, FAAFP

    John B. Waits, MD, CPE, FAAFP

    Dr. Waits is the co-founder and CEO of Cahaba Medical Care, a Community Health Center (Federally Qualified Health Center) that started in 2004 in rural Bibb County, Alabama, and has since grown to serve nearly 43,000 patients with 28 offices throughout Bibb, Perry, Chilton, Jefferson, Wilcox, and Shelby counties. Together in 2013, he and Dr. Lacy Smith co-founded Cahaba-UAB Family Medicine Residency, where he still serves as program director and DIO. Prior to this, Dr. Waits was Program Director of the Tuscaloosa Family Medicine Residency. He is a practicing, board-certified Family Medicine and Obstetrics physician and has a particular interest in healthcare policy and how it touches women and children in terms of maternity and infant care; the rural poor; healthcare access; and the care of the uninsured and underinsured. Dr. Waits earned his medical degree from the University of Alabama School of Medicine and completed an obstetrics fellowship at the University of Alabama, as well as residency training at In His Image Family Medicine Residency in Tulsa, Oklahoma. 

    Emeritus Status

    Bill Gillanders, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Gillanders directed the Providence Oregon Family Medicine Residency Program in Milwaukie, Oregon, until 2013. He directed successful residency programs in Ohio, California, and Oregon. He has served on the RPS Panel of Consultants for more than 20 years. Dr. Gillanders received his medical degree from the University of California at San Francisco. He completed his residency at the University of Washington and practiced for 10 years in White Salmon, Washington, before pursuing an academic career. 

    Kent Voorhees, MD, FAAFP

    Dr. Voorhees is an Emeritus Professor of Clinical Practice at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine.  He has been working in GME since 1992, where he helped to develop the University of Colorado Swedish Family Medicine Residency, using his private practice, where their first residents began in 1994.  After serving as its medical director and then program director, he moved to the Department of Family Medicine at the CUSOM full time in 2006 as Vice Chair for Education, where he oversaw all the department’s educational programs including family medicine residencies, fellowships (which include sports medicine, palliative medicine and also addiction medicine which he helped to develop)  He also helped to oversee and restructured medical student education and served on the departments executive committee since 2006.  He helped to develop the department’s rural training track in Ft. Morgan, Colorado, and helped to write 2 bills for the Colorado Legislature that help to fund this.  Dr Voorhees is also a consultant for the HRSA Rural Residency Program Development and the Technical Assistance Center grants.  He has expertise in GME financing, advocacy, and rural program development. Dr. Voorhees has served on the RPS Panel of Consultants since 2010.

    Send Us an Email

    Have questions about our services, or want to start working together? We can't wait to hear from you and learn about your goals.

    Reach out today by emailing rps@aafp.org.

    Order the Criteria for Excellence

    The Residency Program Solutions Criteria for Excellence is an industry-leading publication outlining best practices and policies in residency education. In the June 2023 edition, the Criteria is a set of aspirational guidelines used in RPS consultations. It represents the collective wisdom of consultants, each with decades of experience. Ideas and practices, peer-level experiences as residency educators, and ongoing assessments of the GME learning environment form the basis for the Criteria for Excellence.

    Updates include:

    • Newly released program requirements - including how to exceed ACGME requirement changes
    • Workforce Diversity, Health Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)
    • A self-assessment tool to help initiate conversations with key stakeholders, stimulate questions, and become part of a process of continuous improvement for program leaders

    Purchase Your Digital Copy

    RPS Criteria for Excellence June 2023 Edition


    AAFP members: $50
    Nonmembers: $75

    Preview the Table of Contents