Palm Beach County Medical Society
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2021 Heroes in Medicine Registration
Thursday, May 20, 2021, 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM EDT
Category: Events

Join the Palm Beach County Medical Society & Services
to celebrate the
THURSDAY, MAY 20, 2021

As we honor our 2021 Heroes in Medicine,
We would be honored if you would join us. This year’s
unique celebration will be done virtually with live entertainment and a virtual silent auction.

✪ PROJECT ACCESS, a physician led system of volunteer care for low-income residents.
✪ DISASTER SERVICES, including the Healthcare Emergency Response Coalition (HERC) which develops healthcare emergency preparedness and the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) which organizes and utilizes volunteers to respond to disasters.
✪ MEDICAL EDUCATION supports medical students, future physicians, health care leaders, and CHW Care Coordination Training.
✪ PHYSICIAN WELLNESS Initiative provides physicians resources to help address their wellness.

Over 400 physicians, health care, business and community leaders,
and others enjoy the festivities, and this year will be no different.

 Thank you in advance for your support and we hope to see you at the event!

Meet Our 2021 Heroes in Medicine

Physician Hero: Ankush Bansal, MD, Cleveland Clinic Martin Health, has taken on leadership roles and stepped into a wide variety of organizations to serve his community throughout his career. He continues to give back by guiding and mentoring students into medical school and helping them embark upon their careers. Dr. Bansal takes his role as both physician and citizen seriously. He constantly interweaves his love of medicine and public policy.

Bruce Rendina Professional Hero: Alicia Rootes, Interim Director for Diversity and Inclusion, FAU Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, receives this award as a professional who manages FAU’s Healthcare Careers Outreach Program (HCOP) whose mission is to provide middle and high school students from diverse backgrounds with the opportunity to realize their potential for success in the health care fields. Under Ms. Rootes' leadership, HCOP continues to evolve to meet the needs of students and the community.

Community Organization Hero: Kenneth Scheppke, MD, Medical Director, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue is a dual board-certified specialist in the fields of emergency medicine and EMS with over 25 years of experience. Palm Beach County officials have relied upon his immense expertise during the opioid epidemic and the COVID-19 pandemic. His influence has expanded statewide as he serves as the State EMS Director with the Florida Department of Health.

Health Care Educator Hero: Lisa M. Clayton, DO, Program Director, Emergency Medicine Residency, FAU Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, is responsible for leading 18 resident physicians and 5 core faculty that care for patients in 3 different hospitals in Palm Beach County. She helped found the FAU EM residency in 2016 as the assistant program director and has been the program director for the last two years. Selfless, intelligent, committed, and compassionate are just a few words that were used to describe Dr. Clayton.

Health Care Innovation Hero: Joseph Ouslander, MD, Professor of Integrated Medical Science and Senior Advisor to the Dean, FAU Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, wasnominated for this award for his innovation of the Interventions to Reduce Acute Care Transfers (INTERACT) program, which assists long-term and post-acute care organizations in improving care and reducing unnecessary hospitalizations and their related complications and costs,as well as the Safe Transitions for At Risk Patients or “STAR Program”, another quality improvement program that focuses on the patient safety problem of potentially preventable hospital readmissions among older adults at high risk of complications during hospitalization and transitions between care settings.

Health Care Provider Hero: Clinics Can Help is Florida's largest nonprofit that collects, recycles, and re-uses durable medical equipment (DME) and distributes it to the Palm Beach County residents who need it most. Its vision is to set the standard for making DME and supplies accessible to all in need, regardless of any financial or physical obstacles. Ensuring that every resident in our county has what they need for a quick recovery, protection from injury, and the mobility, independence, and dignity for a high quality of life is their top priority. 

Tulisa LaRocca, MD, Leadership Hero: Alina Alonso, MD, Verdenia Baker, and Darcy Davis. Thanks to their collective leadership, Palm Beach County anticipated the unexpected, organized the unprecedented, and executed the extraordinary during the COVID-19 outbreak. These three leaders collaborated to educate the public and provide skilled patient care with the shared goal to save lives.

Project Access Hero: Florida Kidney Physicians, Dr. Jose Arrascue, Dr. Marco Farias, Dr. Jhon Guzman-Rivera, Dr. Hitesh Kapupara, Dr. Wayne Kotzker, Dr. Osvaldo Valenzuela are respected and recognized as physician leaders in providing Kidney Care in Palm Beach County. Due to their commitment to compassion, empowerment and innovation patients with complex Nephrology and Kidney Disease receive high quality care.  For over 10 years Florida Kidney Physicians have improved the lives of our community’s most vulnerable patients through supporting Project Access patients.


Lifetime Achievement Award Posthumously: Malcolm Dorman, MD, a world-renowned heart surgeon and pillar of South Florida's Jewish community for over 40 years, passed away on Friday, March 26, 2021. He practiced at the Miami Heart Institute and was later recruited to JFK Medical Center to become the Medical Director of Cardiac Surgery and there he established and directed the Valvular Heart Institute. He also had the honor of serving on Florida Atlantic University's Board of Trustees and FAU's Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine Advisory Board. Dr. Dorman was a Life Honorary Member of the Palm Beach County Medical Society and will be  missed by all who knew him.

2021 Heroes in Medicine Finalists are:

  • Bianca Biglione, Medical Student
    Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, FAU
  • Jennifer Caceres, MD
    Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, FAU
  • Sankaranarayana Chandramohan, PhD
    Palm Beach State College
  • Kitonga Kiminyo, MD
    Kielle Medical
  • Bob Kropa, District Chief
    Palm Beach County Fire Rescue
  • Jemelle Mayugba, MD
    VITAS Healthcare
  • Olayemi Osiyemi, MD
    Triple O Medical, Triple O Research
  • Palm Health Foundation's Healthier Together Initiative
  • Luis Javier Peña-Hernández, MD
    Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Institute of South Florida
  • Madonna Stotsenburg
    St. Mary's Medical Center


Founding Sponsor


Platinum Sponsor


Gold Sponsor's

VIP Recpetion Sponsor


Media Sponsor

Silver Sponsor's

Platform Underwriter

Bronze Sponsor's


Shawn Baca, MD

Friend Sponsor



Gordon Johnson, MD

Claudia Mason, MD

Judge Ron and Mrs. Elaine Alvarez

Ivy Faske, MD

Contact: Katherine Zuber 561-433-3940 ext. 106 [email protected]