1st Year

Joshua Deutsch, MD, MPH

Born and Raised: Oakland, CA
Medical School: University of Wisconsin-Madison

I’m thrilled and honored to practice medicine at Natividad. I came here to serve an incredible patient community with significant unmet medical needs. I also appreciate the opportunity to live in one of the most beautiful regions of the world. I received my MPH from UC Berkeley in 2005 and proceeded to initiate self-directed nutrition and sanitation projects in rural Central America. I subsequently founded a landscape construction company called Backyard Food Gardens, which I managed for 7 years. My interests include gardening, construction, biking and political activism. I spend most of my free time with my wife Seema and adorable 2-year old son Jayden.


Alejandra Espinoza, DO

Born and Raised: San Francisco, CA
Medical School: A.T. Still University

I am first generation, born and raised in San Francisco. I attended San Diego State University where I graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology. Following my graduation, I spent time working in healthcare to get a better understanding of what medicine life would entail. I worked as a medical assistant for an orthopedic surgeon in the Mission District in San Francisco where most of our patients were low-income, uninsured Hispanics. It was during my time there where I developed a passion and dream to become a medical provider for the underserved. I look forward to my time working at Natividad Medical Center where I will receive full scope training in Family Medicine while serving the community of Salinas. Asides for my passion for medicine, I enjoy spending time with my husband, Stephen and our 6-year-old chocolate Labrador, Remington, family time (especially with my two handsome nephews, Donovan and Roman), eating out, working out, hiking, and reality television (guilty pleasure!).


Forrest Hamlin, DO

Born and Raised: Detroit, MI
Medical School: Michigan State University

An analog man in a digital world, I believe that the infinite possibilities of our experience are not able to be transposed to a digital medium with its finite constraints. Or maybe that’s just my elaborate way of saying I don’t like the way I look in selfies. It’s probably my beard. My journey in medicine brought me to this place for the infinite possibilities. The people I will meet, the medicine I will practice, the health people seek to achieve are infinite. My goal in coming to Natividad was to help people find what their definition of health is, and the infinite possibilities of wellbeing that could provide. Add that to the checklist of an ocean nearby, surrounded by mountains and some of the best Al Pastor Chimichangas I’ve ever had, and I had a place that my wife and I could call home. Prior to my career in medicine, I was a Pediatric Critical Care nurse for nearly 7 years. My wife and I fell in love with California when we took nursing positions at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford. Then I had to go mess it all up with going back to medical school at Michigan State University (Spartans Will.). Now, we're so thankful to be back together again in California and excited to begin our family in the place we love and call home. If you know what I mean. Infinite possibilities, Chimichangas, no selfies necessary. It’s the perfect place for us.


Anne Irvine, MD

Born and Raised: Carlisle, Pennsylvania
Medical School: Carlisle, PA and Asheville, North Carolina

After living in the same room of the same home for the first 18 years of my life, the second 18 years have moved me out of town, out of state, across the country, and across borders. All those years in motion, continually pursuing fun and adventure helped identify both my desire to be a caregiver, and the priceless value of belonging to community. I studied medicine in Guadalajara, Mexico, which was a tremendous adventure in and of itself. My brain loved switching gears from being holed up in my room studying medicine in English to walking down the street to the bodega to buy produce in Spanish to working out in a gym surrounded by bodybuilders wearing amazing technicolor spandex. I fell hard for Mexico lindo y querido, y su gente tan amable. I graduated with hopes to train in a high volume county hospital where I could continue to care for Spanish speaking patients. I am thrilled that hope is becoming a reality as I join the NMC community, and have the privilege of helping to meet the medical needs of the people of Monterey County. In my life outside the hospital, I love spending time exploring the most beautiful part of California with my husband, sweet baby Rosemary, and our two dogs. We are taco enthusiasts, avid otter watchers, and love little more than a good laugh.


Jordan Katz, MD

Born and Raised: Long Island, New York
Medical School: University of Buffalo

I was born and raised on Long Island, New York and graduated from Binghamton University with a BA in Psychology and a pre-medical concentration. After graduating, I worked as a researcher for eighteen months in Western NY, where I conducted experiments aimed at investigating the molecular underpinnings of cryosurgical treatment of various cancer subtypes. Before starting medical school, I went on a six month, eleven country trip of a lifetime. I attended medical school at the University at Buffalo where my interest in issues of social, health, and economic justice flourished through personal and professional relationships, leadership of mission-driven student groups, and public health advocacy. During my clinical rotations, I became interested in the concept of hotspotting – identifying patients in the highest tier of health care cost and developing progressive interventions to more effectively provide care. I took a gap year between my third and fourth year to work with a local family FQHC lead by family medicine physicians to develop a program aimed at targeting the needs of the most at-risk patients in an exceptionally vulnerable population. My experiences during that year reinforced my commitment to family medicine. My fiancée and I are so excited to relocate to such a beautiful area of the country. Some of my interests include woodworking, ethnic cooking, and anything outdoors where our dog can join… We’re so happy to be joining the Natividad family!


Natalie LaCorte, MD

Born and Raised: Hollister, CA
Medical School: Ross University

Born and raised in Hollister, California, the beautiful Central Coast is where I call home. As a native to the area and a farmer’s daughter, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to serve the local agricultural community where I grew up. After graduating high school in 2000 without the intention of going to college, I worked as a waitress, a loan consultant assistant, loan processor, and rode horses professionally. During this time, my brother, Paul, got into a car accident that left him paralyzed from the waist down. My involvement in my brother’s recovery introduced me to the field of medicine At the age of 24, I decided to start college with a clear vision of becoming a doctor. Beginning at the community college level, I graduated first from Gavilan College before transferring to UC Merced and earning my Bachelor's degree in Biology. During college I found purpose in volunteering my time to help my immediate underserved community. My altruistic desires continued into medical school where I volunteered within our student-run medical clinic for the native Caribbean peoples on the island of Dominica. This is where I fell in love with family medicine and decided to dedicate my life to what I like to call, the front line of medicine. Natividad Medical Center has an overwhelming commitment to the surrounding community which is one of the many reasons I am so grateful and proud to be joining the NMC Family Medicine Residency Program. This past year, while completing my medical school journey, I also earned a MBA with an emphasis in Health Services from Keller Graduate School of Management. In my free time I enjoy my family and friends, outdoor adventures, cooking, baking, canning, horseback riding, reading, and traveling.


Steven Liu, MD

Born and Raised: San Francisco, California
Medical School: St. George’s University

Growing up in San Francisco, I was exposed to a full array of cultures which helped me develop who I am today. I completed my undergraduate studies with a BS in Molecular Biology down the street from Salinas at UC Santa Cruz (100% Slug), and then immediately ventured off to Grenada, West Indies to pursue my medical degree at St. George’s University. While I was in medical school, I was involved in annual health fairs in Grenada and I also took advantage of an opportunity to travel to Thailand for a medicine selective. These experiences had further drawn me into Family Medicine because they fulfilled my motive to work with patients of every age from different backgrounds. In my free time, I like to stay active by going to the gym and playing outdoor sports, as well as traveling to different countries (while immersing myself in their culture and food!). I am proud and honored to be returning to the Central Coast to start my training as a physician at Natividad Medical Center.


Ben Ramsden-Stein, DO

Born and Raised: San Jose, CA
Medical School: Touro University

I grew up in San Jose, CA where my family still lives. After serving an Americorps program in Boston, MA, I attended Pitzer College, where I studied Human Biology with a focus in cross-cultural health and healing. Following college, I worked for three years participating grassroots organizing and advocating on behalf of causes including climate change, hunger and homelessness, and health care reform. I then spent a year and a half living with and taking care of my grandmother before starting osteopathic medical school at Touro University in Vallejo, CA. I am committed to Street Medicine, addressing health inequalities and improving health outcomes for all people, regardless of their documentation status, race, ethnicity, cultural background, sexual orientation, gender presentation, religion, class or background. Outside of medicine I enjoy outdoor adventures, music, dancing, and spending time with friends and family.


Tracey Taylor, DO

Born and Raised:Newport Beach, CA
Medical School: Pacific Northwest University

I was born in New Port Beach, CA and raised in the magical Pacific Northwest, where I earned my BS in Biology and BA in Spanish at the University of Washington in Seattle. It was in college that I found and embraced my love for travel and speaking Spanish. I lived in Cádiz, Spain for six months as a part of the UW Spanish Department’s study abroad program, where I attended the local university and also met my partner, who I am proud to say will be starting his pursuit of a PhD in Applied Physics at UC Berkeley this fall. Since then, we have backpacked through the Andes Mountains and the Amazon rainforest of Ecuador and I just returned from a 7-week clinical immersion program in Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca, Mexico. Though these adventures have been incredible in and of themselves, I am drawn to these places to further my knowledge of the Spanish language and the people that speak it. I am thrilled to continue my medical Spanish education here in Salinas. Gracias por la oportunidad para servir a esta comunidad magnifica. These experiences have led me to a career in primary care and Family Medicine at Natividad Medical Center, where I hope to incorporate the technical detail of inpatient medicine with the long-term, meaningful relationships of the outpatient world. Though the mental dexterity of unraveling a complicated case exhilarates me, I recall that the patient is more than a body that harbors the complicated pathophysiology of my medical school textbooks. Each individual carries with them labyrinthine emotions, expectations that may not be clearly expressed, and questions that cannot be answered with a prescription or procedure. I am dedicated to finding a unique way to connect with each patient, knowing that navigating the delicate task of the patient interview requires as much skill, patience, and attention to detail as guiding the surgical scalpel.


Shane Walker, MD

Born: Miami, Florida
Raised: University California, San Francisco

Growing up in Miami, the child of a single mother who worked multiple jobs to make ends meet (in part because she had to drop out of high school when I was born), provided me with a valuable perspective on issues facing underserved communities. Despite our struggles with money, my mother made a point of nurturing my appreciation for how fortunate we were. She wanted me to be aware that there were mothers out there -- and not just in faraway places like India or Ethiopia, but in our own city -- who didn't have the resources to feed their children or send them to school. It’s a perspective that has drawn me to community service and engagement. Service as a Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon and as a volunteer with the DoorStep School in Mumbai broadened that perspective, opening my eyes to the devastating effects of systemic poverty and the enduring power of hope and kindness. On the home front, my efforts with the International Rescue Committee working with resettled refugee families in San Diego allowed me to observe the challenges faced by immigrants in accessing public healthcare. In preparation for medical school, my involvement with the San Diego Hospice provided important perspective on how practitioners approach end of life situations with patients and their advocates. Prior to medical school, I worked as a research scientist. While I found a career in science intellectually stimulating, I came to understand that I enjoy a deeper sense of meaning and purpose through volunteerism and service. My transition to medicine has given me a unique opportunity to combine my interest in science with my passion for serving my community. Though I find the intellectual aspects of medicine enriching, it is the opportunity to work directly with patients that has provided the greatest sense of fulfillment. It is my privilege and my honor to serve and comfort patients and their loved ones on a daily basis.


Nicole Woodel, MD

Born and Raised: Shingle Springs, CA
Medical School: University of the Caribbean

I grew up in a small town called Shingle Springs, California where the population is almost 4,500. Growing up I always wanted to be a doctor and could not wait. In anticipation I worked as an EMT for nearly five years while going to college at California State University, Sacramento. There I earned my bachelors in Biological Sciences. Being from a small town I wanted to see more of the world and decided to head to the Caribbean for medical school. One of the best decisions I have ever made. I was able to travel all over the world for my education and it is where I found my fiancé. For fun, dancing is my thing. In particular line dancing, swing and salsa. My friends also tell me I have an old spirit because I love to crochet, sew and do an occasional puzzle. I am a bucket list kind of person and am willing to try anything once (most things). I also love outdoor activities including camping and biking. I feel so honored to be able to come back to California for my residency. I absolutely love the state I grew up in and I can’t wait to give back to the communities.

 

 
 
 

Natividad Medical Center • 1441 Constitution Blvd. • Salinas, CA 93906 • (831) 755-4111