Dr. Andrea Caracostis is the Chief Executive Officer of the Asian American Health Coalition dba HOPE Clinic, which was designated a Federally Qualified Health Center in 2012. As a physician with a Master’s in Public Health, Dr. Caracostis has over 10 years experience working with migrant and community health centers with special, vulnerable populations. She worked as a provider at the 330 funded Migrant Health Center (MHC), and served as a consultant to the Migrant Clinicians Network providing technical assistance to Community Health Centers around the country. Dr. Caracostis has been active in the Bureau of Primary Health Care’s Health Disparities Collaborative and is a member of many national health care advisory committees. The Asian American Health Coalition dba HOPE Clinic, under Dr. Caracostis’ leadership since 2008, has advanced significantly in its efforts to reduce health disparities through community awareness campaigns, affordable prevention services and accessible treatment and medication while connecting patients to a health home.
Penny Yang joined HOPE Clinic in 2014 and has brought her extensive experience in corporate finance to lead and manage HOPE Clinic’s finance department. She holds a Master’s in Industrial Technology and is professionally credentialed to sit for the CPA examination. Under Penny’s financial leadership, HOPE Clinic manages its federal and state grants and foundation revenues in compliance with federal guidelines. Penny develops and maintains financial management policies and procedures that align with HOPE’s mission, ensuring IRS compliance and non-profit best practices.
Shane Chen provides professional experience in health care administration and public health with a special concentration in minority health disparities. She has over 10 years of experience working with the community and advocating around various Asian American health issues surrounding health equity and health access. Shane oversees HOPE Clinic’s operations, ensuring compliance, efficiency and growth. Alongside the executive team, Shane leads strategic planning to set long-term and short-term strategies and action plans to improve workflow and operational outputs.
Dr. Andrews is an experienced family doctor who grew up in Spain. He has a special interest in treating patients with Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C in culturally and linguistically diverse populations.
Dr. Shahedul Islam is a board certified physician in Internal Medicine. He graduated from medical school in Bangladesh and completed his Internal Medicine residency in Brooklyn, NY. Dr. Islam worked in a VA outpatient clinic in Indiana, prior to moving to Arizona, where he worked at a community health clinic. He joined HOPE Clinic in 2014 and is very passionate about providing quality care at affordable prices.
Dr. Natarajan (Raji) received her medical degreee from Kilpauk Medical College & Hospital at Chennai, India. She trained in Family Medicine at LSUHSC, New Orlean School of Medicine at Lake Charles, LA, and is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine. Dr. Raji gained experience working for community health centers at Baylor College of Medicine before joining HOPE Clinic in March 2017. Her interests include women’s’ medicine, preventative medicine, and weight management. Dr. Raji enjoys spending time with her daughter, traveling, and gardening.
Kara Green is a Board Certified Family Nurse Practitioner working with patients across their lifespans in primary and preventive care. She has worked in nursing and the medical field for more than 15 years. She also serves as the Continuous Quality Improvement Officer for HOPE Clinic. Kara graduated from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston with her Master of Science Degree in Nursing and lives in Sharpstown. She enjoys caring for families at HOPE Clinic and helping them toward health and wellness.
Tiffany Nguyen is board certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner through the American Association of Nurse Practitioners and is a member of Sigma Theta Tau National Honor Society. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing and her Master of Science in Nursing in 2009 and 2012 respectively, from University of Texas Medical Branch. Tiffany believes that comprehensive health management encompasses the benefits of prevention, patient empowerment and lifelong learning in the patient-provider relationship. Her goal is to be proactive and supportive while delivering culturally appropriate care to each individual patient. Raised in Houston, TX, Tiffany in her spare time enjoys spending time with family and traveling.
Dr. Matti Korhonen is board certified by, and a fellow in, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He is committed to helping his patients make well-informed choices about their health and well-being. Dr. Korhonen has delivered thousands of patients and is an advocate for conservative medicine. He is married with two children and loves boating and fishing.
Dr. Romany Gawargious is a board certified OBGYN and fellow of the American College of OBGYN (ACOG) with a special area of interest in infertility. He completed his residency at the Montefiore Medical Center in New York and worked as an Assistant Professor of OB/GYN at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine before joining HOPE Clinic. Dr. Gawargious is happily married and has 3 children. He is also fluent in Arabic, English, and is learning Spanish.
Dr. Dilshad Lalani, an OB/GYN physician, attended the University of Texas and went on to medical school at the University of North Texas Health Science Center followed by training at Texas Tech University Health Science Center at El Paso. She resides with her husband and 3 children. She loves taking care of the health care needs of women and enjoys exercise and gardening in her free time.
Dr. Ameer Touadrous lived in Cairo, Egypt until the age of 28, when he moved to Brooklyn, NY. He attended Cairo University for medical school and completed his residency at the Brooklyn Hospital Center. Dr. Touadrous became an OB/GYN because of the combination of clinical and surgical care. He joined HOPE Clinic in March of 2015 and is proud to serve our community. Dr. Touadrous performs Obstetrical care as well as Gynecologic surgeries. There is a real need here for doctors and surgeons who specialize in caring for women, and he is both proud and humbled to be able to help. Dr. Touadrous, his wife and two kids love being here in Houston. His philosophy: I believe in doing the ordinary things extraordinarily well.
Dr. Pablo Orezzoli was born and raised in Argentina, where he completed his education and full training as an obstetrician and gynecologist. About 10 years ago he emigrated to the United States where he successfully completed two years of clinical research in women’s cancers at one of Harvard’s teaching hospitals, graduating in 2012 from Brown University with a full license to practice as an Obstetrician and Gynecologist in the USA. Since then, he has developed a career centered in populations at risk and minorities in of low resource areas, delivering high quality and compassionate care.
Paresa Alizadeh is a Certified Family Nurse Practitioner. She received her Master’s in Nursing with honors from Chamberlain College of Nursing, Downers Grove, IL and a Bachelors of Science in Nursing with honors from Texas Tech University Health Science Center, Lubbock, TX. Prior to joining Hope Clinic, she was a registered nurse for seven years. Paresa has a special interest in women’s health and patient education. Paresa resides with her husband and their beloved standard poodle named Louis. In her spare time, Paresa and her husband enjoy exercise, weight lifting, and traveling all over the world.
Dr. Anna Arunachalam received her medical degree from Thanjavur Medical College in South India. She trained in Pediatrics at University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She is board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and practiced in Louisiana for 4 years prior to moving to Houston and joining HOPE Clinic in 2013. She is married and has 2 children.
Dr. Nourelhoda Farah is a board certified pediatrician originally from Sudan. She completed medical school and residency training at The University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC). Following her residency training, she remained at UMMC as Assistant Professor of Pediatrics , and more specifically, as a Pediatric Emergency Medicine physician for three years. She joined Hope Clinic last year after relocating to Houston. She has a multitude of interests in her field but special interest in breastfeeding, preventative medicine, building strong relationships with her patients and their families, eczema, asthma, and mental health. She enjoys getting to know new people and spending time with her two young children. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Farah is fluent in English, Arabic, and speaks some Spanish.
Dr. Smitha Nair is a board certified Pediatrician certified by American Board of Pediatrics. She graduated from Metropolitan Hospital Center NY (affiliated with New York Medical College). Dr. Nair believes in continuity of care to patients and has interest in, and has done QI projects on, asthma, insight of parental attitudes towards breast feeding, childhood obesity, insight of parental attitudes towards childhood vaccinations, parental awareness and knowledge of early childhood developmental and developmental delay and parental awareness of common infections in children. She has been awarded the CME/CPD award by American Academy of Pediatrics and the Physician Recognition Award by the American Medical Association. She is fluent in Hindi, English and Malayalam. In her free time, Dr. Nair enjoys spending time with her husband and her two children, travelling and visiting new places and she loves listening to music and reading.
Carleen Waller is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Clinical Trauma Professional. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. Her experience includes working with individuals who have experienced trauma as well as providing services for children, adolescents and adults with various mental health issues.
Daniel Juarez is a Licensed Masters Social Worker (LMSW) and is currently in the process of becoming a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). Daniel is bilingual in English and Spanish and was born in Mexico, but has lived most of his life in the U.S. He received his BA in Social Work from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and his MA in Clinical Social Work from the University of Houston. Daniel has worked with adolescents, young adults and older adults along with their support systems. He has been in practice since 2011 in a variety of clinical settings including for profit and non-profit organizations. Although Daniel has experience working with affluent populations, he mostly focuses on providing mental health services to underserved communities and is committed to empowering and providing a supportive environment to all who seek therapy.
Daniel specializes in working with a large variety of adolescent and young adult issues such as Borderline Personality Disorder, Bi-Polar Disorder, Suicide, Non-suicidal self harm and other Mood Disorders. Daniel is dynamic in his approach to therapy and has training and experience in Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) and Solution Focused Therapy.
DeHorne Sia is a Registered Dietitian who has been serving the community with HOPE Clinic for the past 3 years. He received his Bachelors of Science of Nutrition Sciences from the University of Houston and Master of Science of Nutrition Sciences from Texas Woman’s University. DeHorne is part of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, American Association of Diabetes Educators and Chinese Americans in Nutrition and Dietetics. His focus on continuing education as a dietitian is in Diabetes Self Management and working on becoming a Certified Diabetes Educator. DeHorne has a passion for helping individuals achieve a healthful eating and active lifestyle and loves working with people suffering from diabetes. In his free time, DeHorne likes to play basketball, lift weights and try new and interesting cuisines from around the world.
Dr. Ahmed Abdin is board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and completed his residency at the New York Medical College (Metropolitan Hospital Center) in New York City. Prior to HOPE Clinic, Dr. Abdin worked at Comanche County Memorial Hospital and Lawton Community Health Center in Lawton, OK and has experience in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Dr. Abdin is bilingual in Arabic and is passionate about providing quality care for patients and the community!
Dr Apoorva Murthy received her medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and completed her training in pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine/Texas Children’s Hospital. Her interests in the field include healthy eating, adolescent wellness, and social determinants of health. She was drawn to HOPE Clinic by its ability to serve people from all over the world and its commitment to reducing health disparities. She’s a proud Houstonian – you may spot her around town exploring one of the city’s many delicious restaurants, on your nearest running trail, or cheering for the Houston Rockets!
Dr. Huyen Duong received her doctorate in medicine from Texas Tech University School of Medicine. She subsequently did her residency in Internal Medicine at University of Texas at Houston in the Houston Medical Center. She is board certified in Internal Medicine and has worked in both hospital and clinical settings. She enjoys reading, skiing and spending time with her husband and daughter.
Dr. Lauren Krenek is a pediatrician from Houston. She completed medical school at Baylor College of Medicine followed by Pediatrics Residency at Baylor College of Medicine/Texas Children’s Hospital. Her pediatric interests include weight management, eczema, acne, and asthma. Dr. Krenek speaks English and Spanish.
Dr. Olubukola Ayeni, an OB/GYN physician, attended Virginia Commonwealth University and went on to medical school at Howard University followed by training at Bayfront Health in St Petersburg, Fl. She resides with her husband and child and she loves taking care of the health care needs of women and enjoys spending time with family, cooking and reading in her free time.
Dr. Seema Jain completed medical school at Saint James School of Medicine in the Netherlands Antilles, followed by pediatric residency at East Carolina University in North Carolina. She is board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and has completed a fellowship in Pediatric Endocrinology at Baylor College of Medicine/Texas Children’s Hospital. Dr. Jain has many interests in the field of pediatrics including: short stature, thyroid disease and obesity management. In her free time, you can find her taking spin and yoga classes, traveling and spending time with her fiancé and their dog.
Dr. Sheila Sasieta received her medical degree from Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2012. She completed her General Psychiatry residency at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, Arkansas and completed a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. She speaks both English and Spanish. She enjoys nature, travelling and spending time with her family.
Dr. Susana Moreno is a Board Certified Therapeutic Optometrist and Glaucoma Specialist. She currently serves as Visiting Clinical Assistant Professor at the University Of Houston College Of Optometry where she oversees third and fourth year clinicians. She completed her optometric clinical rotations at the Indian Health Service in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Randolph Airforce Base in San Antonio, Texas. She then completed an extensive clinical teaching fellowship at the University Of Houston College Of Optometry in community based primary eye care with emphasis in corneal and retinal disease. She has also served in volunteer international vision clinics in Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras and strongly believes in the importance of community partnerships to prevent blindness in high risk populations.
Justin King was hired as Director of Information Technology in 2016, bringing nearly 20 years of IT experience across multiple industries to the HOPE Clinic family. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from Harvard and has specific industry experiences in Data Center Operations, Insurance and Hospitality. Collectively, Justin brings many different points of view to the technological aspects of running HOPE Clinic. At his core, Justin strongly believes in the use of technology as a means to make operations smoother and more efficient, thereby improving the patient and employee experience. In his free time Justin loves spending time with his family, specifically watching his sons play Rugby, and occasionally playing Rugby himself!
Lauren Graham is a Licensed Professional Counselor, National Certified Counselor, and Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor. In addition, she is certified in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). Lauren is bilingual in English and Spanish. She was born and raised in Galveston, TX. Lauren received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Texas State University and a Master of Arts in Counseling from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She is currently pursuing further training and education from Prescott College to specialize in art therapy. Her experiences include providing individual and group therapy services to address various mental health issues with children, adolescents, and families.
Dr. Nadijah Tamimi is a Licensed General Dentist and proud Alief alumnus. She was granted the Terry Scholarship to attend the University of Texas at San Antonio where she graduated Cum Laude from the Honors College with a Bachelors of Science Degree in Biology. She received early admission to the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio Dental School and graduated with a Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree. Dr. Tamimi’s favorite pastime is enjoying nature when there is a cool breeze and there are no mosquitoes.
Naomi Madell-Hernandez is a bilingual (English/Spanish) Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Registered Play Therapist who was born and raised in California. She received her BA in Psychology from the University of California, Santa Cruz and her MA in Counseling Psychology from National University. She has worked with children, adolescents and families for the last 20 years in a variety of clinical settings including non-profit organizations. She has worked with a number of populations but has mostly focused on providing mental health services to under-served communities.
She specializes in working with a large variety of childhood issues such as Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder, behavioral and emotional disorders, juvenile justice mental health issues, grief and trauma related issues as well as anxiety disorders. She has extensive training and experience in Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, as well as in Play Therapy and Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT). She is an approved provider in Positive Parenting Principles (Triple P). Naomi is committed to providing a positive and supportive environment to all children and families.
Rocio Baute was born and raised in Venezuela. She is a Board Certified Family Nurse Practitioner credentialed through the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and a member of Sigma Theta Tau National Honor Society. She received both her Bachelor of Science and Masters of Science degrees in Nursing from Prairie View A&M University in 2010 and 2013, respectively.
She believes that comprehensive health management encompasses the benefits of prevention, patient empowerment and lifelong learning in the patient-provider relationship. She focuses on disease prevention and strives to emphasize the benefits that healthy choices and an active lifestyle have in optimizing health. She actively listens and educates her patients and families to help them achieve their healthcare goals. She speaks Spanish. In her spare time, she enjoys spending quality time with family.
Rodolfo Orna is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. He attended school in Peru and California. Rodolfo has worked for more than 16 years in community agencies in Los Angeles and Houston, providing services to patients of diverse populations and ages afflicted by trauma and emotional disturbances. He is originally from Peru, is bilingual in Spanish and English and comes from a multicultural background. Rodolfo is an affiliate to the National Children Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN).
Shahrzad Afshin Yekta is a bilingual (English/Farsi) Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Licensed Professional Counselor. She received her Master’s from University of Houston-Clear Lake and has years of experience working with families, adults, adolescents, and children with various mental health issues. Shahrzad offers patients a perspective they may otherwise not be able to see due to feeling stuck in a problem. She enjoys traveling and reading as a way to learn about different people and cultures.