Orange Coast Magazine


To be selected for the 2014 Physicians of Excellence honor, applicants were required to meet the following baseline criteria:

  • Be certified by a member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties, a member board of the American Board of Osteopathic Medical Specialties, or an equivalency board recognized by the Medical Board of California or Osteopathic Medical Board of California
  • Be in good standing with the Medical Board of California or Osteopathic Medical Board of California
  • Maintain his/her primary practice in Orange County for the last five years
  • Be in practice within his/her specialty field for the last five years


Applicant nominees also were required to meet at least two of the following four criteria. The Selection Committee determined whether the applicant met the criteria, and in some instances, discretion was used.

1) Physician Leadership

  • Recent (within the past three years) positions as an elected or appointed member of a medical organization including but not limited to: chief of staff, member of the medical executive committee, department chair or vice chair, board of director position for Orange County Medical Assn., the California Medical Assn., the American Medical Assn., the American Board of Medical Specialties, or other medical groups. Excludes full-time paid administrative positions, although a paid position as a medical director is acceptable.

  • Recent (within the past three years) elected/appointed positions as a member of a peer review organization/journal including but not limited to: Medical Board of California, hospital-based peer review committee, or a peer-reviewed journal.

  • Current (within one year) significant community leadership positions such as PTA president or district school board member.


2) Teaching/mentoring

  • Current (within one year) medical school or university faculty appointment and/or involvement in teaching of other physicians, medical students and pre-med students, or other healthcare professionals.
  • Currently (within one year) active in peer-reviewed clinical research activities, have unique skills within field of nomination including but not limited to performing or introducing a unique breakthrough medical procedure, development of a unique and important treatment protocol.


3) Humanitarian service

  • Current (within one year) activities and names of affiliated organizations while serving as a volunteer physician outside applicant’s regular practice, not receiving compensation, or philanthropic activities supporting medicine. This does not include providing care as a part of applicant’s regular practice for which applicant was not compensated.


4) Unique contributions not included above

  • Unique, unusual, or human-interest contributions or activities not included above, and significant awards and recognitions related to substantial contributions in medicine, healthcare, or on behalf of humanity.



Standiford Helm II, M.D., president
Thomas C. Kockinis, M.D., president-elect
Sudeep Kukreja, M.D., secretary-treasurer
Joanna Tan, M.D., immediate past president
Rakesh Bhola, M.D.
George Garcia, M.D.
Darla S. Holland, M.D.
Quynh Kieu, M.D.
Christian Lising, M.D.
Eric Mervis, M.D.
Abhay Parikh, M.D.
James Pierog, M.D.
Diana E. Ramos, M.D.
Ramesh Rathod, M.D.
Smita Tandon, M.D.
William M. Thompson IV, M.D.
Paul Yost, M.D.



Darla S. Holland, M.D.

committee chairwoman; chairwoman, Regional Credentials Committee; physician in charge, Lakeview Medical Offices, Department of Family Medicine, Southern California Permanente Medical Group

Robert Breezley

office manager, Insightful Minds Inc.

Albert Chang, M.D., M.P.H.

regional medical director Orange County, AltaMed Health Services Corp.

Dona Constantine

risk management and patient safety specialist, Cooperative of American Physicians Inc.

Richard S. Frankenstein, M.D.

past president, California and Orange County Medical Assns.; delegate, American Medical Assn.

Standiford Helm II, M.D.

president, Orange County Medical Assn.

Richard F. Kammerman, M.D.

past president, Orange County Medical Assn.

Tom Loats, MSW, M.P.A.

program director, Behavioral Health Services, St. Joseph Hospital

Sarada Mylavarapu, M.D.

chief of staff, Fountain Valley Regional Hospital

Mark Refowitz, MSW

director, County of Orange Health Care Agency

David Safani, M.D., MBA

resident physician, Department of Psychiatry, UC Irvine; California member-in-training representative, American Psychiatric Assn.

Saif Siddiqi, M.D.

past president, Orange County Radiological Society

Aisha Simjee, M.D

past president, Orange County Medical Assn.

David Souleles, M.P.H.

deputy agency director, County of Orange, Public Health Services

Joanna Tan, M.D.

immediate past president, Orange County Medical Assn.

Matthew Wade, M.D.

assistant clinical professor of ophthalmology, UC Irvine Department of Ophthalmology, Gavin Herbert Eye Institute

Jay Ross Zubrin, M.D.

past president, Orange County Medical Assn.

Robert McCann, MHA

CEO/Executive Director, Orange County Medical Assn.


Members of the OCMA Board of Directors and Physicians of Excellence Selection Committee are not eligible to be selected as Physicians of Excellence.

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