The Speakers


Dr. EdI Albert


Ski Medicine: Alpine Sports Medicine - the life and times of a ski resort doctor

December 14th, 2021

Dr. Edi Albert is a rural and remote generalist, based in Tasmania, Australia. He works with to the aero-medical retrieval team of the Royal Flying Doctors Service in Central Australia.  Previously he has worked as a doctor in Antarctica and has spent 10 winters as a ski resort doctor. Additionally, he acted as the founding director of the pre-hospital care charity in Sandpiper, Australia. Currently, Dr. Albert is the director of the Healthcare in Remote and Extreme Environments Program at the University of Tasmania. In his free time, he enjoys traveling, climbing, kayaking, skiing and sailing.

Joshua Albritton


Decision-Making in Search & Rescue: 10 years of lessons learned

September 22nd, 2022

Joshua Albritton is an AEMT (Park-Medic) and certified Rope and Swiftwater rescue technician for the National Park Service in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN/NC. He has extensive backcountry experience and has led or assisted in hundreds of search and rescue (SAR) missions in the park. Joshua also has training and qualifications in lost person behavior, IPMBA ems cyclist operator, and incident command structure (ICS). Joshua works part-time as an AEMT for his local county 911 ambulance service and also teaches wilderness medicine courses for Landmark Learning and the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS).

Outside of the park, Joshua is an enthusiastic trail runner and yoga practitioner, and mediocre gardener. He currently lives in Knoxville, TN with his wife Karla and step-son Oliver, and 2 dogs Casey and Grover

Dr. Lauren Altschuh


Medicine at Sea

January 17th, 2024

Lauren’s day job as an Emergency Medicine Physician in San Diego gives her plenty of time for her true passion, playing outside. She trained in York, Pennsylvania, and completed her Wilderness Medicine Fellowship at UC San Diego. She came to medicine after years as a ski patroller, sailor, and mountain guide, and continues to incorporate these into her practice. She provides education and medical direction for ski patrol and search & rescue teams, and teaches medical students and outdoor enthusiasts about marine and mountain medicine.

Dr. Andrea Alvarado


Cold Weather Medicine: Cold and Freezing Injuries

March 25th, 2021

Dr. Andrea Alvardao is a PGY2 at the Jackson/UM/Holy Cross Emergency Medicine residency program. Prior to this she completed her medical education at New York Medical College in New York followed by a research fellowship at MGH in Boston. While originally from Venezuela, Dr. Alvarado spent most of her childhood growing up in South Florida, but while living in the Northeast, fell in love with snow and winter sports. Although her passion for diverse pathology brought her back to South Florida, she stills remains passionate about cold weather activities. Her current interests within emergency medicine include critical care, medical education, and wilderness medicine. 

Dr. Robert Barry


Toxicoloy: Marine Envenomations

February 4th, 2021

Dr. Robert Barry is a PGY2 at the Jackson/UM/Holy Cross Emergency Medicine residency program. Prior to this he completed his medical education at Stony Brook School of Medicine in NY. While growing up Dr. Barry split his time between Los Angeles, CA and Honolulu, HI, where he enjoyed a variety of ocean faring activities including surfing, diving, and fishing. Dr. Barry has had privilege to explore much of the South Pacific including Micronesia, French Polynesia, Fiji, and Palau, as well as some of south Asia, Central America, and the Caribbean. His passion and interest in dangerous marine animals/marine envenomations comes from experiencing more of them first hand than he would have liked. 

Capt J. Pearce Beissinger


Toxins and Poisons in Mountain Medicine

October 18th, 2023

Pearce is a California native who grew up on the East Coast. With previous experience in orthopedics, he has spent the last decade serving as a physician assistant in cardiothoracic surgery and emergency medicine. "Going vertical" has been a life-long pursuit for Pearce. Pearce is a Fellow in the Academy of Wilderness Medicine (WMS) and an AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor (SPI). After having completed his Diploma in Mountain Medicine(DiMM), he has continued to provide locums instruction at the University of New Mexico International Mountain Medicine Center. He has served on the board of directors for the Appalachian Center for Wilderness Medicine (ACWM)and has dedicated many years of service to search and rescue teams across the country. He is currently the Assistant Medical Director of Portland Mountain Rescue (PMR) and chair of the Rescue Systems Committee. Alongside multiple wilderness medicine publications and his work with the outstanding members of PMR, Pearce serves in the Oregon Air National Guard, 142nd Fighter Wing- CERFP Unit. Pearce is the recipient of the 2017 Warren D. Bowman Award for contributions in service to wilderness medicine and to the Wilderness Medical Society, the 2018 PA-Citizen of the Year Award from the Oregon Medical Association, and the 2019 Founders Award from the Appalachian Center for Wilderness Medicine.

Dr. Brad Bennett


Desert Medicine: Essentials of Desert Medicine: An Overview

January 14th, 2021

Dr. Brad L. Bennett served honorably for 27 years in the United States Navy, as a physiologist in the areas of research, development, education, and training in support of Naval and Marine Corps operational forces. In 1994 he was selected to serve as faculty and an assistant professor in the Military & Emergency Medicine Department (MEM), F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (Department of Defense), Bethesda, MD. In 1997-2001, Dr. Bennett was selected as the Vice-Chairman, MEM Department. In 2001, Dr. Bennett was selected to enter Navy Executive Management positions and served as the Commanding Officer, Field Medical Service School, Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, CA; and in 2004, he served as the Commanding Officer, Naval School of the Health Sciences, Portsmouth, VA. Since 2003 to present, Dr. Bennett has served continuously as a subject matter expert to the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care, Department of Defense. From 2007 to 2018, Dr. Bennett has served on the Board of Directors, Wilderness Medical Society (WMS), and in August 2014 to August 2016, he was confirmed as President, WMS. Dr. Bennett currently serves as the Section Editor and serves on the Editorial Board for Wilderness & Environmental Medicine journal

Dr. Jeffrey Bernstein


Toxicology: Land Envenomations

December 9th, 2020

Dr. Jeffrey Bernstein is board certified in Medical Toxicology, Clinical Pharmacology and Emergency Medicine and is an associate professor for the University of Miami Department of Pediatrics and Medicine. He is the Medical Director for the Florida Poison Control Center in Miami, Florida and Medical Director for the National Marine Envenomation Hotline. He also works as an Emergency Medicine Attending Physician in the EM Department at Jackson Memorial Hospital. 

Dr. Frederick Bossert


Obstetrics in the Wild

April 9th, 2024

Dr. Frederick Bossert is a board certified obstetrician and gynecologist in Chattanooga, TN. He is part of the clinical faculty for the UT Health Science Center College of Medicine, Chattanooga Department of OBGYN and the Director of the OBGYN Surgical Skills and Simulation Lab. He loves teaching, wellness, the outdoors, and his family. 

Dr. Tiffany Brainerd


The Elusive Work Life Balance: Non-Traditional Approaches to Wilderness Medicine and Clinical Practice

May 17th, 2022

Tiffany Brainerd is an anesthesiologist and pediatric anesthesiologist with Vanderbilt University. She divides her time between clinical practice in the Nashville, Tennessee area, and her home in Durango, Colorado, where she is Medical Director of La Plata County Search and Rescue. She has served as the Medical Director of the North America UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup Series and was recently named to the Board of Directors for the American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE). Dr. Brainerd is a former faculty member of Harvard University and completed a Diploma in Mountain Medicine (DiMM) as well as a Fellowship with the Academy of Wilderness Medicine (FAWM) through the Wilderness Medical Society, The University of Colorado, and The University of Utah. Raised in Florida and now a converted rock and ice climber, backcountry skier, trail runner, and mountaineer, she has been privileged to reach the summit of many notable peaks including Aconcagua, the highest point in the Western and Southern Hemispheres at 22,837ft.

Dr. Sean Bush


Stings and Things

October 14th, 2021

Dr. Sean Bush is an Emergency Physician with more than 20 years of experience as a professor in teaching hospitals. He is an expert in medical management of venomous bites and and consults on matters related to snakebites for the World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control, and various other agencies. He continues to work toward advancing the field of “Envenomation Medicine,” a focus he founded, and his pursuit of snakebite research, education and prevention.

Dr. G. Patricia Cantwell 


Disaster Medicine: A Medical Manager's Experience with South Floriba Urban Search and Rescue, Task Force 2

January 27th, 2021

G. Patricia Cantwell, MD, FCCM is Professor and Chief of the Division of Pediatric Critical Care Medicine at the Holtz Children’s Hospital/University of Miami. She spearheaded the formation of the Holtz Children’s Hospital Pediatric Palliative Care Team in 2008. Dr. Cantwell provides medical oversight of the Holtz Children’s Hospital PediPals Team, an interdisciplinary palliative care initiative.

She received her medical degree at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine/Wake Forest University, completed her pediatric residency at the Portsmouth Naval Hospital; and pursued her Pediatric Critical Care Fellowship at the Jackson Memorial Hospital and remained on the attending staff since 1990. Dr. Cantwell has received multiple awards for teaching.

Dr. Cantwell has been a Medical Manager for the FEMA Urban Search and Rescue South Florida Task Force 2 since 1994. She has deployed with the team numerous times including to the 2001 World Trade Center, multiple hurricane responses and the 2010 Haiti Earthquake.

Robert (RJ) Casey


Movie Medicine

September 21st, 2021

Robert Casey is a combat veteran with 30+ years of Special Operations experience in the Department of Defense and other government agencies. Worldwide locations include Afghanistan, Colombia, Iraq, Pakistan, the Philippines, Somalia, and Syria. Currently, he is principle and co-founder of the Brigands Company for which he is the consultant for special operations, personnel recovery, aerospace, remote medicine, feature film/TV and other areas as needed. He is also a combat rescue officer where he serves as Team Commander and Director of Operations during combat search and rescues and personnel recoveries for many governmental agencies. Casey is additionally a physician assistant who acts as a direct independent contractor for on-going ground and maritime operations. 

Dr. Stanley Chartoff


War, Wilderness and Disaster - Evolution of a Career in Medicine

November 15th, 2022

Stanley Chartoff, MD received his medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in 1986. He received an MPH from the Harvard School of Public Health in 1990 and completed residency in emergency medicine at Cook County Hospital in 1996. Dr. Chartoff then served in the US Air Force for 30 years where he deployed numerous times including several tours as a physician member of Critical Care Air Transport Teams. Dr. Chartoff currently works as an emergency medicine physician at Hartford Hospital in Hartford, CT and is a faculty member of the University of Connecticut Emergency Medicine Residency and Fellowship for International Disaster Medicine. Dr. Chartoff continues to assist in disaster response operations as a volunteer and North Branch Medical Lead of Team Rubicon International. He has also served as Assistant Chief Medical Officer for the Boy Scouts of America National and World Jamborees since 2010.

Dr. Rowena Christiansen


Space Medicine: From the Outback to Outer Space - Upskilling for Space Medicine in Remote and Austere Locations 

October 5th, 2021

Dr Rowena Christiansen is an Australian physician practising in pre-hospital emergency care and medicine in extreme and austere environments, with a focus on space health. She teaches human physiology and clinical practice within the University of Melbourne Medical School. Rowena is a Fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association and of Ormond College at Melbourne University.  She is a passionate aerospace medicine advocate and educator, a member of the Australian Space Agency Space Medicine and Life Sciences Technical Advisory Group, and Founder of the “ad astra vita” project. Rowena is a UNOOSA Space4Women Mentor for 2020-21 and an ISU alumna and mentor.

Dr. Jonathan Clark


Stratospheric Balloon Mission, Past, Present, Future

October 28th, 2021

Jonathan Clark is an adjunct Associate Professor of Neurology and Space Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Clark served 26 years on active duty with the U.S. Navy, and qualified as a Naval Flight Officer, Naval Flight Surgeon, Navy Diver, U.S. Army parachutist and Special Forces Military Freefall Parachutist. Dr. Clark worked at NASA from 1997 to 2005, was a Space Shuttle Crew Surgeon on six shuttle missions, Chief of the Medical Operations Branch and a senior FAA Aeromedical Examiner (AME). He was the Space Medicine Advisor for the National Space Biomedical Research Institute from 2005 to 2017. In 2008 he was an expedition physician supporting the Haughton Mars Project on Devon Island in the high Canadian Arctic. He has served as Chief Medical Officer for the orbital commercial space company Excalibur Almaz from 2007 to 2012, and the Inspiration Mars Foundation since 2013. Dr. Clark was Medical Director of the Red Bull Stratos Project, which in 2012 successfully accomplished the highest stratospheric freefall parachute jump from 127,852 feet, achieving human supersonic flight (Mach 1.25) at 843 miles per hour. In 2012 Dr. Clark joined the StratEx Space Dive and was medical advisor for a new high altitude exit freefall record of 135,890 feet, and reaching Mach 1.22 at 822 miles per hour. He currently is a consultant for Virgin Galactic, Heinlein Prize Trust, Paragon Space Development Corp, JAG Human Performance, Space Perspectives, Operator Solutions, and Foundation for Aerospace Safety and Training. Dr. Clark is board certified in Neurology and Aerospace Medicine and is a Fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association.

Dr. Derek Covington


Introduction to Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine

December 17th, 2020

Dr. Derek Covington, Director of the Undersea & Hyperbaric Medicine Clinic and Assistant Professor in the Division of Multi-Specialty Anesthesiology at the University of Florida. Dr. Covington is a member of the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society and previous Medical Director for Dive Safety International. He was one of the two physicians on-site for long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad during her record-breaking swim from Havana, Cuba to Key West, Florida. Dr. Covington is an experienced closed-circuit rebreather and cave diver. 

Dr. Julio M. De Peña


Mountain Medicine: Emergency Care on the Roof of the World - The Golden Hour Above 26,000ft 

January 6th, 2021

Dr. Julio M. De Peña is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Emergency Medicine at the Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, Florida International University, graduated from medical school Universidad  Iberoamericana (UNIBE) School of Medicine, completed his residency in Emergency Medicine at the University of Puerto Rico and a Former coordinator for Hospital General Plaza de la Salud Emergency Medicine Residency Program. He is board certified in Emergency Medicine, he is a fellow of the American College of Emergency Physician (FACEP); the American Academy of Emergency Medicine (FAAEM) and the Academy of Wilderness Medicine (FAWM) and member of FEMA/ Florida Urban Search and Rescue Task Force, Department of Homeland Security.

Dr. De Peña served as medical officer for the first and second Dominican expedition to Mount Everest. Furthermore, he is an avid photographer with his work being showcased in several venues such as the book; “Soñando el Everest” by Federico Jovine, Wilderness Medicine Session for ACEP Scientific Assembly 2011.

Dr. Mia Derstine


Wilderness Plant Toxicology: An Approach to Toxic Plant Ingestions

September 114th, 2021

Dr. Mia Derstine is an emergency medicine physician in the Denver area. She took a non traditional path to medicine with stops in Ecuador, Ghana, and Japan before completing medical school at the University of Michigan. She returned home to the Chicago area where she grew up for residency at the University of Chicago where she was chief resident.  Most recently, she completed her fellowship in wilderness medicine at the University of Colorado. Outside of the hospital she loves hiking/camping with her dog and husband, foraging, bouldering, and cooking for family and friends.

Dr. Howard Donner


Expedition Medicine: The Expedition Doctor - Practical Considerations 

April 14th, 2021

Dr. Howard Donner began his career working 8 years as a professional river and mountain guide.  Now he is renowned as one of the “world’s most experienced expedition physicians”, Dr. Donner is co-author of The Field Guide to Wilderness Medicine, worked on numerous medical projects in the Himalayas, 3 seasons as a rescue doctor on Mt. McKinley in Alaska for the National Park Service at the 14,000 foot medical/rescue station, expedition physician on the first American ascent of Kangchenjunga, the world’s third largest peak (28,000 feet), Olympic physician for the United States White Water Team in Atlanta (1996) and 5 years of service as a medical operations consultant for NASA. Dr. Donner has been prominently featured in two award-winning NOVA television documentaries including; "Deadly Ascent" which chronicles mountain medicine and research on 20,320 ft Denali (Mount McKinley); and "Everest - The Death Zone". 

Dr. Will Duffin


Extreme Medicine: Views from the Medical Director of World Extreme Medicine

August 24th, 2021

Dr. Will Duffin synergizes clinical medicine with leadership, teaching and presenting roles for World Extreme Medicine, NB Medical Education and Bristol University.

Dr. Duffin has provided medical cover for well over a dozen overseas expeditions, from commercial high altitude treks, to working with UNICEF in Myanmar, through to reality TV in remote pacific islands. He thrives in newly formed teams operating in low resource and remote environments that require camaraderie and grit.

Dr. Ben Easter


Space Medicine: Designing Medical Systems for Space Exploration 

October 28th, 2020

 Dr. Ben Easter, an assistant professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine! Dr. Easter serves as Deputy Element Scientist for Exploration Medical Capability at NASA and is Co-Founder of the University of Colorado Space and Extreme Environment Medicine Program! Dr. Easter spearheaded the development of the Martian Medical Analogue and Research Simulations (2MARS), an innovative simulation program to teach aerospace medicine to medical professionals in an operational environment.

Dr. MaZen El Sayed


Emergency Response to Beirut Port Explosion 

May 18th, 2021

Dr Mazen El Sayed is a physician, researcher and administrator in the fields of Emergency Medicine and emergency medical services (EMS). His is an Associate Professor of Clinical Emergency Medicine in the Faculty of Medicine at the American University of Beirut. Dr El Sayed is American Board certified in Emergency Medicine, in Emergency Medical Services and in Clinical Informatics. His graduate education includes an MD (AUB, 2004), an MPH in Health Policy and Management (Boston University, 2011) and Master’s in Healthcare Management (Harvard University, 2017). As director and faculty at the Department of Emergency Medicine at AUBMC, he helped organize the response to several Mass Casualty Incidents including bombings, riots and the Beirut Port Disaster in 2020.  

Dr El Sayed currently serves in many administrative leadership positions at AUBMC. His research interests include assessing EMS &Trauma systems, outcome research in EMS priority conditions (Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest, Trauma…) and disaster preparedness and response. His publications include over 70 peer-reviewed manuscripts in international high impact emergency medicine journals. 

Dr. William Fernandez 


Space Medicine: Emergency Medicine in Space

September 1st, 2021

Dr. William L. Fernandez recently completed his Emergency Medicine residency at the University of Maryland and is now completing the Aerospace Medicine residency program through NASA and the University of Texas Medical Branch. He is currently working on several projects, including the creation of NASA’s Covid-19 clinical practice guidelines for astronauts, evaluating wearable technologies for commercial spaceflight, and working with NASA’s Exploration Medical Capability element for the medical planning of Lunar and Martian missions. After he completes his Aerospace Medicine residency, Dr. Fernandez intends to work with both NASA and SpaceX as an operational flight surgeon.

Dr. Susan Fondy 


Aviation Medicine Physiology 

November 18th, 2021

COL Fondy is board certified in Aerospace Medicine, Occupational Medicine, and Pediatrics and is an Associate Fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association. She currently serves as the President of the Society of US Army Flight Surgeons, the Chair of the Education and Training Committee of the Aerospace Medical Association, and as a Member-at-Large on the Aerospace Medical Association council. She has authored several peer-reviewed publications and presented at numerous professional conferences. She has been selected by name to serve on international committees on aerospace medicine. Her awards include the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (4 OLC), the Air Medal (Numeral 2), the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal (1 OLC). She is one of a handful of physicians in the Army to hold the Master Flight Surgeon badge and also holds the Basic Space Badge and Combat Action Badge. She was recognized for her outstanding service to military membership by election as a member of the Order of Military Medical Merit. She was also the recipient of the Army Aviation Association of America Medicine Award (Flight Surgeon of the Year) for 2008, the Building Better Leaders Female Physician Award for 2012, and the Theodore Lyster Flight Surgeon of the Year for 2014. COL Fondy holds a third degree black belt in taekwondo and has run two marathons.

Dr. Daniel Grace


Exploring Human Factors on Expeditions

February 28th, 2023

Dan is based in the Brecon Beacons where he works as a portfolio GP. He also works for Nomad as a travel health physician, and is a trainee BASICs doctor, volunteering with Medserve Wales and the Welsh Ambulance Service. He holds the International Diploma in Expedition and Wilderness Medicine, from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow and the Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene from Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. He is also a fellow of the RGS. Dan has worked on multiple endurance events and treks, ranging from the tea plantations of Kenya to the deserts of Jordan to the wilderness of the Canadian Yukon. He has also worked in Fiji with World Extreme Medicine on the US reality TV show ‘Survivor’."

Dr. Stuart Harris


Climate Medicine

February 8th, 2022

Dr. Stuart Harris is an emergency physician and the founder and director of the MGH Division of Wilderness Medicine. His research pedigree is expansive and includes the pathogenesis of high altitude pulmonary edema and the health effects of the climate crisis; his work has taken him around the world, from the Mt. Everest region, Denali National Park, the Iowa Writer's Workshop, and the Woods Hole Research Institute. In 2005, he founded and annually teaches Medicine in the Wild, a 28 day senior medical student course exploring the intersection of literature, health, ethics, and the biosphere.  He is faculty at the Kennedy School Arctic Initiative working with Dr. John Holdren on health and policy. We are delighted to welcome Dr. Harris to this first installment of our climate and health noon conference series.

Dr. Michael Harrison


Gravitas: Medical Emergencies in Space 

January 13th, 2021

Dr. Harrison completed his undergraduate and graduate studies in exercise physiology at the University of New Brunswick, Fredericton NB. He completed a doctorate in exercise physiology and advanced statistical analyses at the University of Regina, Regina SK, prior to medical school. While attending Saba University School of Medicine, Saba NA, he obtained a masters degree in hyperbaric medicine concurrent to his MD. He served as a chief resident at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit MI while completing a combined Emergency Medicine / Internal Medicine / Critical Care Medicine training program. Dr Harrison obtained a masters in public health from the University of Minnesota and completed his fellowship training in aerospace medicine at Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN in July 2018. He is faculty at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville FL in the departments of emergency medicine and critical care medicine. Dr Harrison is an instructor of Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) and Advanced Wilderness Life Support (AWLS) and an associate fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association. He is an award winning researcher whose interests include spaceflight, military aviation, decompression sickness, and high-altitude physiology and he has published more than 30 peer-reviewed articles. He is a three-time Ironman finisher; a NITROX certified rescue diver; an instrument rated private pilot; and the CEO of Lightyear Medical PLLC, a company providing contracted flight surgeon services to the commercial space industry.

Dr. Seth Hawkins


Drowning: Current Best Practices for Prevention and Treatment 

March 22nd, 2021

Dr. Seth Collings Hawkins is an anthropologist, writer, and physician, board certified in both emergency medicine and EMS. He is the medical advisor or director for multiple outdoor organizations, including REI, North Carolina Outward Bound School, North Carolina State Parks, Student Conservation Association, and Starfish Aquatics Institute, and is on the Board of Directors of Lifeguards Without Borders. He has extensive experience in drowning medicine and water rescue. A competitive Masters swimmer, he is a certified Swiftwater Rescue Technician and Wilderness Lifeguard instructor. He is the co-author of the current Wilderness Medical Society Practice Guidelines on Submersion Injuries & Drowning, as well as co-author or editor of multiple drowning chapters in leading emergency and wilderness medicine textbooks.

Dr. David Hillebrant


An Aged Mountaineer's Random Thoughts on Mountain Medicine

May 9th, 2023

Dr. Hillebrandt started walking in the hills aged six and rock climbing  aged 14. He works as a General Practitioner with an interest in rural Pre Hospital emergency care. He has climbed throughout the world with expeditions to Pakistan, India, Mongolia and Chilean Patagonia and made first ascents of both rock and ice routes on the sea cliffs of SW England. During this time he has also managed to become president of the International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (UIAA) Medical commission, Vice President of the International Society for Mountain Medicine (ISMM) and is the medical advisor to the British Mountaineering Council, Jagged Globe  (a commercial expedition company) and the British International Federation of Mountain Guide Associations (IFMGA) Guides. Unusually for a non academic GP he has also published some papers on Mountain Medicine.

Dr. Marty Hoffman


Ultra Endurance Medicine: Drowning from Hydration Advice: Tales of Exercise-Associated Hyponatremia in Endurance Competitions and the Wilderness 

November 4th, 2021

Dr. Martin Hoffman is Professor of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the University of California Davis. He retired from his position as Chief of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the VA Northern California Health Care System in May 2020 after over 35 years of service to the VA. He is a Founder of Ultra-Endurance Sports Science & Medicine, a non-profit organization focused on the enhancement and distribution of scientific and medical knowledge related to participation in ultra-endurance activities. He has published over 150 original scientific papers, mostly related to applied exercise physiology with focus on human locomotion, human performance and proper hydration during prolonged exercise. He is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and serves on multiple editorial boards. He has been a competitive cross-country skier or distance runner for most of his life, and still enjoys exploring his own limits…..though at a much slower pace than in the past. 

Wells Holbrook PA-C, W-EMT


Survival Principles for the Wilderness Medicine Provider

February 23rd, 2022

Currently assigned to the Tennessee Air National Guard, Wells serves as the Non-commissioned Officer in Charge of SERE Operations, preparing the KC-135 tanker aircrews for combat survival and evasion, water survival, and captivity conditions. He was the 2019 NCO of the Year for McGhee Tyson Air Base and the 2020 Air National Guardsman of the Year for Tennessee.

Wells recently became a nationally certified Physician Assistant and holds a bachelor’s degree in English and an associate degree in Survival Instruction. Wells volunteers on search and rescue operations in the Great Smoky Mountains with Team BUSAR (Backcountry Unit Search & Rescue) as the team’s training officer and as a Wilderness First Responder and EMT, with qualifications in Advanced Wilderness Life Support, tracking, Lost Person Behavior, technical rope training, swiftwater rescue, and open water rescue swimming. He intends to specialize in emergency and wilderness medicine, building on his years of experience teaching outdoors, guiding in the backcountry, and assessing students under challenging conditions.

Dr. Richard Ingebretsen


Avalanche Medicine: An Overview

August 11th, 2021

Richard Ingebretsen graduated from the University of Utah School of Medicine in 1993. And he was graduated from the University of Utah with masters and PhD degrees in biophysics from the department of physics and astronomy. He completed a residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in emergency medicine. He was Associate Dean for Students and directed the redevelopment of premedical education. He is now a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy and at The University of Utah School of Medicine, at Rocky Vista College of Osteopathic Medicine, University of California San Diego School of Medicine and at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. He is the director of the wilderness medicine program at the School of Medicine and is the medical director of Salt Lake County Sheriff's Search and Rescue. He is founder of the Advanced Wilderness Life Support (AWLS) program. He does extensive work in the environment as well. He is the founder and president of the Glen Canyon Institute and is also the vice chair of the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance. He now teaches wilderness medicine to medical students and residents in Chamonix-Mt. Blanc each year.

Dr. Jennifer Jackson 


Cruise Medicine: Medicine on the Open Seas

February 24th, 2021

Dr. Jennifer Jackson is an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. She is integrally involved in medical student education and serves as the Clerkship Director for the Emergency Medicine 4th year clerkship. She is also the Faculty Advisor and Pathway Director for medical students applying into Emergency Medicine, along with the EMT Lite Director. Furthermore, Dr. Jackson is involved in clinical skills education, PBL and the standardized patient and OSCE exams. Her academic areas of interest are in medical student education, simulation and cruise ship medicine.

Dr. Jackson completed an emergency medicine residency at Yale and works clinically in the emergency department at Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale, which is the affiliate teaching hospital for University of Miami.

Dr. Jackson has worked as a Senior Doctor onboard multiple cruise ships, leading shipboard medical operations, infection control, emergency drills and patient disembarkations/evacuations. She has presented and published on cruise medicine topics and research and is an active member of ACEP’s Cruise Ship Medicine Section.

Dr. Steve Jameson


Rural Medicine: Rural Healthcare Workforce, Now and into the Future

March 4th, 2021

Dr. Steve Jameson received his MD from U of MN – Mpls in 1989, and finished EM residency in 1993 at the Medical College of Wi – Milwaukee. Dr. Jameson worked in a level II trauma center in St. Cloud, MN, for 27 years, and transitioned to half there and half time working in rural ED’s and teaching rural and other EM providers (physicians, PA’s, and NP’s). He is the current chair of national ACEP’s Rural Section. Furthermore, Dr. Jameson has worked in dozens of rural hospitals in the US, internationally in New Zealand, China, and even as a ship doctor.

Dr. Nour Khatib


Cases From the Great White North

October 3rd, 2022

Dr. Nour Khatib is an emergency physician in Toronto working in community sites Markham Stouffville Hospital and Lakeridge health, and academic site Sunnybrook Hospital. Several times a year, Dr. Khatib also works in remote Northern communities in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. She is currently the professional development and education lead at Lakeridge Health and lead preceptor for Lakeridge Health learners. She is the VP of Finance of a not-for-profit emergency education organization creating educational events for community emergency doctors. Prior to her career in medicine, she was a financial analyst for Pratt & Whitney Canada and has a background in Finance and an MBA. Her unique work and life experiences have fueled her passion for leadership, patient education, and quality improvement.

Dr. Dan Lack


Wilderness Physiology

September 30th, 2021

Dr Dan Lack is a Family Medicine registrar in Launceston, Tasmania and currently teaching faculty with the University of Tasmania in the Expedition Medicine section. He is part of the Australian Ski Patrol medical advisory committee and medical officer for the Ben Lomond Ski Patrol in Tasmania. He has also had a 20 year career in climate change research, with field work in remote areas of the world, in addition to a 10+ year career in mountain rescue with the Rocky Mountain Rescue group in Boulder Colorado, with tenures as their training director, mission leader and chairperson of the Rocky Mountain Region of the Mountain Rescue Association. 

Dr. David Lambert 


Undersea and Dive Medicine

November 28th, 2023

Dr. David Lambert is an Emergency Medicine physician and the Medical Director of ED Observation Unit for Hyperbaric Medicine and Medical Command Physician for the PennStar Flight Program at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.  After graduating medical school, Dr. Lambert went on to a General Surgery Internship at Naval Medical Center San Diego. Once he became a US Navy Flight Surgeon, he served on the USS George Washington in the Mediterranean/Persian Gulf Operation Southern Watch 1999-2001. From 2002-2004, Dr. Lambert completed two tours in Operation Iraqi Freedom.  In addition to being trained as a surgeon, he went on to complete an Emergency Medicine Residency and a Hyperbaric and Undersea Medicine Fellowship.  He is a certified PADI Advanced Open Water Diver who has gone on several dive expeditions including the Kizilburun Shipwreck in the Aegean Sea, Turkey and the Godavaya Shipwreck, Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka.

Dr. Burjor Langdana 


Humanitarian Dentistry in Austere Environments

February 15th, 2024

Burjor is currently an NHS dentist in England. He is a professor in Extreme Medicine Univ Exeter. Dental director Team5 Medical Foundation. Faculty member of World Extreme Medicine, RCPS Glasgow, COROM,R2Ri, SFMC and editor, contributing author for the dental chapter in the Oxford Handbook of Expedition and Wilderness Medicine. 

He is also the founder of Wilderness Expedition Dentistry. He has many years’ experience in austere dentistry, having first become interested in this specialism while running dental camps in India and later when working in Oman, Antarctic, Malawi, Mobile Surgical Services in New Zealand and recently with Team5.

Major Alexander T. Le


Special Operations Medicine: Introduction to Military Special Operations Surgical Teams

November 4th, 2021

Maj Alexander T. Le is an Emergency Physician, Operations Flight Commander, and Team Lead assigned to the Special Operations Surgical Team, 720th Operations Support Squadron, Detachment 1, 720th Special Tactics Group, 24th Special Operations Wing, Air Force Special Operations Command, Birmingham, AL. He provides worldwide damage control surgery and resuscitation in austere battlefield conditions during combined, joint, and single service operations. He is responsible for pre-hospital evaluation, triage, resuscitation, and transport care of Special Operations Forces (SOF) casualties during sensitive tactical operations.

Maj Le received his commission in 2016 from Officer Training School, Maxwell AFB, AL. Prior to assuming his current assignment, he worked in the Emergency Department at Jacobi Medical Center in Bronx, NY. In 2016 Maj Le was assigned to 720th Operations Support Squadron as an Emergency Physician for the Special Operations Surgical Team in Birmingham, AL and has deployed in support of Operation INHERENT RESOLVE in 2017-2018, 2019, and 2021.

Dr. Jay Lemery


Climate Medicine: Wilderness, Climate Change, and Health 

November 18th, 2020

Dr. Jay Lemery, an Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and Chief of the Section of Wilderness and Environmental Medicine. He is the past president of the Wilderness Medical Society, is a consultant for the Climate and Health Program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and sits on the National Academy of Medicine's (IOM) Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research and Medicine.

Dr. Renata Lewis


Rescue Medicine: Medicine Beyound Boundaries

April 8th, 2021

Dr. Renata Lewis is an emergency medicine physician from Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, who also works in rural, remote, and pre-hospital areas for the past 20 years. She is the medical lead and a full search and rescue technician member for Whistler SAR, as well as a medical director and guide for several heliski and summer guiding companies, ski patrol physician for Whistler Blackcomb, and as a medical and safety consultant for rescue programs and emergency management. She has been a course developer and teacher in the field of Canadian avalanche search and rescue, and also works as a consultant in the film industry both behind and in front of the camera. 

Dr. Lewis is most comfortable flying 60 knots on the end of a 110’ helicopter longline while performing rescues deep in the big mountains and glaciers of British Columbia.

Dr. Kjell Lindgren


Space Medicine: ED to ISS - Journey to 130,000'

March 31st, 2021

Dr. Kjell Lindgren is currently an active NASA astronaut. After serving as the Deputy Crew Surgeon for STS-130 and Expedition 24, he was selected as an astronaut in June 2009 as one of 14 members of the 20th NASA astronaut class.  Dr. Lindgren flew on Expedition 44/45 and logged 141 days in space.  He participated in two spacewalks and in more than a hundred different scientific experiments. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology (minor in Mandarin Chinese) from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1995; a Master of Science degree in Cardiovascular Physiology from Colorado State University (CSU) in 1996; and a Doctorate of Medicine from the University of Colorado in 2002. Completed a three‐year residency in emergency medicine, including a chief resident year at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2005. Completed a National Library of Medicine Post‐Doctoral Fellowship and Master of Health Informatics at the University of Minnesota in 2006. Completed a two‐year residency in aerospace medicine (2008) and a Master of Public Health (2007) at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston, Texas. Dr. Lindgren is board certified in emergency medicine and aerospace medicine. Dr. Lindgren is board certified in emergency medicine and aerospace medicine. As of recently Dr. Lindgren has been training as the backup for the SpaceX Dragon test flight crew and Crew-1 which recently launched on November 14th 2020. 

Dr. Valerie Lou


Pregnancy and the Wilderness Athlete

September 5th, 2022

Dr. Valerie Lou is an Emergency Medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC).  She completed her medical degree at UC San Diego, and her residency, Masters in Public Health, and International EM Fellowship at URMC.  She completed a Diploma of Mountain Medicine in 2019 with the Wilderness Medical Society​.  She is a former Denali park ranger, certified yoga instructor, and mother of two (soon to be three!).  She is an avid maritime enthusiast with a special interest in climate change and human health.  Currently she holds the position of assistant program director for the URMC EM residency and teaches wilderness medicine to medical students and residents.

Dr. Sam Moore


Wilderness Medicine Physiology

September 30th, 2021

Sam is an ST4 anesthetic trainee and expedition medic based in Manchester, UK.

Her research interests are in rehabilitation of the high-risk surgical patient and human physiology in extreme environments, including high altitude and long duration spaceflight. Sam will be providing medical support to the UK Analogue Astronaut Mission and holds the UIAA Diploma in Mountain Medicine.

Outside the hospital, she is a mediocre but enthusiastic climber and has volunteer roles with British Exploring, the Youth Adventure Trust and the Social Mobility Foundation, focusing on widening participation and personal development. She is slowly learning the importance of a growth mindset & trying to practice what she preaches.

Dr. Candice Myhre


Surf Medicine: Wave, Saves & Wipeouts: Making a Splash in Sexism

November 10th, 2020

Dr. Myhre is an Emergency Medicine Physician at Wilcox Hospital in Kauai, HI. Dr. Myhre fell in love with surfing as a burnt out third year resident in Training. Since then she has volunteered numerous times as a surf doctor in underdeveloped countries like Indonesia, Mentawai Islands, FIji, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Mexico, Bhutan, Ghana. In 2013, while surfing, she saved a woman’s life who was hit by a 26 foot boat in the middle of the South Pacific and suffered life-threatening injuries. She re-enacted the story on Untold Stories of the ER and the photographs went viral when she spoke out against sexism in medicine on July 24, 2020. The Instagram post @drcandysurfvival was in response to the sexist article in the Journal of Vascular surgery. Outraged that women are still being asked to hold their private image to a higher standard to be respected in the workplace, her goal is to collectively cancel sexism in 2020. 

Dr. Claire Nordeen


Flight Medicine: Critical Care in the Air

May 5th, 2021

Claire Nordeen is a physician board-certified in Emergency Medicine and Emergency Medical Services. She completed medical school at The University of Pennsylvania, residency at Denver Health, and culminated her training with the University of Washington EMS Fellowship where she worked with Seattle Fire Medic One, the UW Paramedic Training Program, and as a flight physician with Airlift Northwest. She had the privilege of working at the epicenter of cardiac arrest research and teaching with the Resuscitation Academy. Following fellowship, Dr Nordeen spent a year in Alaska working clinically in the Emergency Departments at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage and Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau. She and her husband now live in Bozeman, Montana where she continues to work in the Emergency Department at Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital.

Dr. Susan Northup


Aerospace Medicine and the FAA

October 20th, 2021

Dr. Susan E. Northrup is the Federal Air Surgeon for the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. In this capacity, she leads the Office of Aerospace Medicine in Washington, D.C. She leads strategic management of the FAA's aviation medical programs, which oversee all pilots. Together with the Deputy Federal Air Surgeon, she shares responsibility for the direction and management of all FAA medical programs. In addition, Dr. Northrup oversees the FAA's aeromedical education programs, the planning and conduct of aerospace medical and human factors research, and the investigation of aircraft accident medical factors.

Dr. Ian Norton


Global Medicine: Disaster and Humanitarian Medicine - How to be a Part of the Solution not the Problem

March 17th, 2021

Dr. Ian Norton serves as the Founder and Managing Director of Respond Global, an emergency management organization looking to improve the local and regional responses of frontline workers during disastrous situations. Beginning in 2014, Dr. Norton lead the World Health Organization's Emergency Medical Team (EMT) Initiative program in their Geneva HQ until 2020. During his time at the WHO, he led emergency response efforts in support of various global disasters such as the Ebola outbreaks, Nepal earthquakes, and diphtheria outbreaks in Bangladesh. Prior to working at the WHO, Dr. Norton served as the Director of Disaster Preparedness and Response in Darwin, Australia and training over 700 members of the Australian Government Emergency Medical Team (AusMAT). His work has taken him around the world, training and preparing emergency response teams in well over 60 countries. Dr. Norton has seen the increasing frequency of global disasters and dedicates himself to equipping local and national management teams to provide and efficient and effective response during times of chaos.



The International Space Station: A Day in the Life & Experiments

May 3rd, 2022

Luca Parmitano is an Italian astronaut and Chief of Astronaut Operations for the European Space Agency. He was selected as an ESA astronaut in May 2009 and is also a Colonel and test pilot for the Italian Air Force. He has conducted six spacewalks in his career, totaling 33 hours and 9 minutes, and supported more than 50 European experiments and 200 international experiments in space. Col Luca was launched to the International Space Station for his second mission in the Russian Soyuz MS-13 spacecraft on July 2019 and returned February 2020. Other highlights including performing the first ‘live DJ session’ in Earth orbit, addressing world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP 25 and talking to Nobel Laureates about exoplanets and the chemistry of batteries. His 201-day mission saw him take on the role of Space Station commander for Expedition 61 – becoming the third European and first ever Italian International Space Station commander.

Justin Parrinello


Tactical Medicine: Tactical and Emergency Medical Services

October 14th, 2020

Justin Parrinello is the Director of Operations for Florida Tactical and Emergency Medical Services, Inc. Mr. Parrinello is a seasoned fire captain and currently serves as assistant SWAT Team Leader and SWAT Team Tactical Medic Unit. He is on the Regional Domestic Security Task Force (RDSTF) and the Joint Terrorism Task Force board for active shooter training and response,. He has helped to develop TEMS curriculum for various law enforcement agencies, the DOD, the US State Department and more. 

Dr. Andy Pasternak


Endurance Race Medicine 

February 26th, 2024

Dr. Andy Pasternak graduated from the University of Michigan Inteflex program (combined BS/MD) in 1993. After graduation, he moved to Madison, WI for his  family medicine residency followed by a  primary care research fellowship at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He moved to Reno in 1998 and started Silver Sage Center for Family Medicine in 2005. Along with providing care for people in Northern Nevada, Silver Sage has donated over $200,000 to area environmental groups since January 2007 through its membership in 1% for the Planet program. 

Dr. Pasternak is a community clinical professor at the University of Nevada Reno School of Medicine and research director for the Sports Medicine fellowship. He is the medical director for the Tahoe Rim Trail Endurance Races and the Western States 100. Since 2012, he has been a board member of Access to Health Care, a local non-profit in Nevada that improves the health and well-being of individuals in our community by providing and expanding access to services that address the clinical and social determinants of health. Starting in 2022, he was named as an Associate Editor for the Annals of Family Medicine. Finally, he was proud to serve as the 117th President of the Nevada State Medical Association. 

In his free time, he enjoys trail running, bicycling, cross-country skiing, and traveling with his lovely and talented wife, Dr. JoAnn Ellero.  He also plays tuba in the Reno Schnitzels Oompah band, Jibboo

Dr. Ryan Paterson


Expedition Medicine: Expedition Medicine an Intersection of Disciplines 

December 2nd, 2020

Dr. Ryan Paterson, board-certified Emergency Physician at St. Joseph's Hospital in Denver, CO, co-founder and former director for the Wilderness Medical Society Diploma in Mountain Medicine course, and United States delegate to the International Society of Mountain Medicine. Dr. Paterson has advanced certifications in tropical medicine from the London School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene and in Mountain Medicine. He has significant experience in large race/event medical management, serving as the medical director for GlobalLimits, as well as in expedition medicine, serving as an expedition doctor on Mt. Everest. He serves as the medical director for the Kolkata City Mission (KCM), working to establish sustainable development solutions in education, health, women's empowerment and more for communities in and around Kolkata, India. 

Susan Purvis


Avalanche and Search & Rescue 

September 4th, 2023 

Wilderness medicine specialist, Susan Purvis learned in the early 2000’s that if you want to practice medicine in extreme environments, keep your bags packed, don’t ask for much money and be professionally flexible.

She’ll be the first to say, “I’m not a doctor.” But she knows a few things about taking care of patients. She worked slopeside at an urgent care clinic at the base of Mount Crested Butte, Colorado for over a decade. Over the past 25 years, Susan’s built a rewarding career anchored in gold exploration, search and rescue, ski patrol/guiding, wilderness medicine and avalanche education. As a wilderness medic, she’s led successful education programs, expeditions, and teams to the hottest, coldest, and highest places on earth. She currently trains elite special forces in winter mobility, avalanche, and wilderness medicine in the mountains of Utah, Idaho, and Montana.

Susan Purvis is a public speaker, wilderness medicine & avalanche educator, owner of Crested Butte Outdoors, and Author of the bestselling and award-winning adventure memoir, "Go Find—My Journey to Find the Lost and Myself." Susan received Congressional Recognition for saving lives in the high country of Colorado with her naughty but loveable black Lab, Tasha.

Her exploits put her in Smithsonian, Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, on CNN, the BBC and Discovery Channels. Susan lives on Bitterroot Lake near Glacier National Park, Montana.

Dr. Venkat Reddy


Wilderness Ophthalmology 

April 10th, 2023 

Graduated MBBS (i.e. MD) from UQ in 2000 before completing MPH at UQ in 2005 by research with project titled "Epidemiology and treatment of eye disease - The Cape York Regional Eye Health Programme (1999-2004)"

Worked for Fred Hollows New Zealand as Ophthalmology Fellow at the Pacific Eye Institute in Fiji in 2015. Prior to that worked in ophthalmology in Exeter, UK and New Zealand

Participated in numerous eye camps to rural Fiji and India

Cyclone Winston relief operation Team Co-Leader, Fiji, Feb 2016

Currently Clinical Lecturer in UQ MD programme - Vision module coordinator; Year 2 Clinical Practice Course Coordinator

Part time PhD candidate at UQ - "Assessing the climate resilience of the Nepal health system"

Dr. Brent Rogers


Swamp Medicine: Experiences from the Florida Everglades

April 28th, 2021 

Dr. Brent D. Rogers is a board-certified pediatric emergency medicine physician.  After attending medical school at SUNY Downstate College of Medicine, Dr. Rogers completed his residency in pediatrics at NYU and fellowship in pediatric emergency medicine at Nemours / A.I. duPont Hospital for Children.  He is an avid trail runner His passions within wilderness medicine include ultra-endurance medicine as well as studying the pediatric aspects of wilderness medicine.  Dr. Rogers is an avid trail runner who enjoys spending free time exploring the less-traveled areas of South Florida.  He currently lives in Miami, Florida with his wife and three children, and practices pediatric emergency medicine at Jackson Memorial Hospital / Holtz Children's Hospital.  

Dr. Ali Saad


Climate Medicine: what Every Doctor Needs to Know

December 15th, 2023

Ali Saad, MD is board-certified in Neurology, Stroke, and Lifestyle Medicine and has been practicing for over 10 years. He completed a fellowship in climate change and health policy at the University of Colorado's Climate & Health Program where is he now affiliate faculty. Dr. Saad is also chair of the neurology member interest group at the American College of Lifestyle Medicine. His advocacy work focuses on poor diet being the leading cause of death and disability worldwide while accounting for a third of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Dr. Aaron Saguil


Military Medicine: How to Practice Good Medicine in Bad Places

July 14th, 2021

Dr. Aaron Saguil serves as the Associate Dean for Recruitment and Admissions at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences F. Edward Hébert School of Medicine—America’s Medical School—in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Saguil is an Associate Professor of Family Medicine and is on the faculty of the Fort Belvoir Community Hospital Family Medicine Residency. He is the Vice Chair of the AAMC’s MCAT Validity Committee, a contributing editor to the American Family Physician, and Chair of the AAFP’s Commission on Continuing Professional Development.

Dr. Saguil received his B.A. in Chemistry from Duke University and his M.D. from the University of Florida College of Medicine. After completing his residency at DeWitt Army Community Hospital in Fort Belvoir, Virginia, he has been stationed in Grafenwoehr, Germany; Fort Lewis, Washington; and Fort Gordon, Georgia. He has deployed to Afghanistan and served as the Chief of Primary Care for the NATO Role 3 Multinational Medical Unit in Kandahar, Afghanistan; his actions in theater were recognized with the Bronze Star and the Canadian Chief of Defense Staff Commendation.

Dr. Aenor Sawyer


Extreme Sports Medicine: Trans-Oceanic Rowing Medicine 

March 10th, 2021

Dr. Sawyer earned her MD from UC Davis in 1993 along with her residency in orthopedic surgery in 1993, and fellowship in pediatric orthopedic surgery and pediatric & adolescent sports medicine through Harvard Medical school in 2000. Since then, Dr. Saywer has worked for two decades in Health Technology, digital health, informatics solutions as well over a decade of experience in remote medical management in extreme environments. She was the Medical Director for the transoceanic Great Pacific Race rowers, leveraging remote communications and sensing technologies. Dr. Aenor Sawyer is the Chief Health Innovation Officer for the Transnational Research Institute for Space Health, Founder and Director of the UCSF Space Innovation Center.   

Dr. M. Peter Sayers


The Physiology of Free Diving 

January 19th, 2021

Dr. M. Peter Sayers is an Emergency Physician with a subspecialty in Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine. After completing emergency medicine residency at Jackson Memorial Hospital / University of Miami, Dr. Sayers completed fellowship in Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine at the Duke University F. G. Hall Center for Undersea Medicine and Environmental Physiology. While in fellowship, Dr. Sayers was involved with numerous US Navy and NASA-funded environmental physiology research projects and authored several manuscripts, abstracts, and a book chapter on diving medicine. He now practices Hyperbaric Medicine at Mercy Hospital in Miami, the only critical-care capable 24/7 emergency hyperbaric chamber in South Florida, which has treated more injured divers than any civilian facility in the country. He also practices clinical emergency medicine with the Broward Health System.

Dr. Jan Stepanek


Altitude Medicine Research and Hypoxic Conditions 

November 11th, 2021

Dr. Jan Stepanek is board certified in internal and aerospace medicine. He served in the Swiss military as mountain infantry and flight surgeon. Currently, Dr. Stepanek is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Science Director of the Aerospace Medicine Program at Mayo Clinic in Arizona, Consultant to NASA, the federal air surgeon, and civilian space flight companies, and FAA Senior Aviation Medical Examiner. He serves as co-director of the Aerospace Medicine & Vestibular Research Laboratory (AMVRL) at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona where he completes research in high altitude related disorders, acceleration and spatial disorientation. He has authored together with the AMVRL team numerous peer reviewed articles, book chapters and abstracts. His personal interests lie in mountaineering, wilderness medicine, and clinical education. 

Dr. Jessie Stone



April 22nd, 2024

Dr. Jessie Stone graduated from New York Medical College. She gave up here medical career to be a professional kayaker and guide full-time in 2003. That was until until a kayaking expedition in Uganda when the leader of her group came down with malaria. Dr. Stone felt a call back to medicine, leading her to build a clinic in Uganda and to found the organization, Soft Power Health, which focuses on malaria education and prevention. This work has led her into work in other spheres in Uganda, consisting of family planning, contraception, and more. Dr. Stone is no longer a full-time kayaking guide, but she has shared that kayaking is the most fun, exhilarating, challenging, and engaging activity she has been lucky enough to do in her life!

Heiko Stopsack


Mountain Medicine Airway Management Starts Here

August 22nd, 2023

Heiko Stopsack is a Senior Paramedic / Rescue Specialist with King County Medic One - King County Sheriff's Air Support Unit.  His career began 40 years ago and has witnessed the evolution of prehospital airway management to where it is today.    At home in the Columbia Gorge he volunteers as a member of the Hood River Crag Rats Mountain Rescue team.  Heiko enjoys teaching avalanche safety course as a professional member of the American Avalanche Association. Both of these worlds have collided into a passion to teach and motivate fellow rescuers and medical providers that successful resuscitation and medical care can be achieved in austere environments. 

Dr. Cecily Swinburne


Search & Rescue in the National Park Service

September 21st, 2023

Dr. Swinburne is an emergency physician with special interests in EMS and Wilderness Medicine. She first became involved in EMS in college when she joined Mount Desert Island Search and Rescue, a volunteer technical rescue team working primarily in Acadia National Park. She then went on to work for the National Park Service as a backcountry ranger, primarily at Olympic National Park, and worked as an EMT and ski patroller in the off season. Eventually she decided to further her medical education and after completing training, including an EMS fellowship, she returned to Maine to practice. She is the medical advisor for Acadia National Park and continues to be an active member of the technical rescue team.

Dr. Derrick Tin


Disaster Medicine

April 25th, 2023

Prof Derrick Tin is a Disaster Medicine Specialist and faculty at the BIDMC/ Harvard Medical School Disaster Medicine Fellowship. He's an Associate Professor in Critical Care Medicine at the University of Melbourne and has extensive operational experience in austere environments. 

His talk "Journey into the Unknown" describes his personal experience and lessons learnt through many disasters around the world.

Dr. David Townes


Medical Support for Expedition Length Adventure Races 

March 14th, 2024

David Townes, MD, MPH, DTM&H, is a Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine (SOM) and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Global Health (SPH) at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. He received his medical degree from the University of Massachusetts and completed his internship and residency in emergency medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago where he also completed a fellowship in International Emergency Medicine earning a Master's Degree in Public Health (MPH) with a concentration in Health Policy and Administration. He holds a Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (DTM&H) from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

He is currently a Senior Public Health Advisor for the Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and a Medical Epidemiologist in the Global Public Health Emergency Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Previously, he was an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer in the Malaria Branch at the CDC and served as a Lieutenant Commander in the United States Public Health Service (USPHS).

In addition to his global health experience, he has worked extensively in the areas of wilderness and expedition medicine, including serving as an expedition physician in Antarctica, Costa Rica, and Mt. Kilimanjaro as well as a physician member of the National Ski Patrol and the Yosemite National Park Search and Rescue Team. He has worked in Antarctica, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Haiti, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Russia, Senegal, Tanzania, Turkey, the West Indies, and Zambia. He is the Course Director for GH 576: Health in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies.

Dr. Roople Unia


Compassionate Care

November 2nd, 2023

Dr. Roople is a practicing neurologist in Bangor, Maine. She completed her medical training in Krakow, Poland, Neurology residency and Vascular Neurology Fellowship at the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York, and Movement Disorders Fellowship at New York University in New York, New York. She is working toward her FAWM, because why wouldn’t you? She currently serves as the WMS JEDI Chairperson. In her leisure time, she climbs rocks and ice, skis, ice skates, hikes, bikes, camps, travels, teaches yoga and generally enjoys life. She’s currently learning landscape oil painting and her bucket list item is to bike across New Zealand.

Dr. Shawn Vainio


This is my Why: 20 Years of Medical Expeditions in the Indian Transhimalaya

November 3rd, 2022

Shawn Vainio, MD, FAAFP is a graduate of SUNY Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and completed his residency at the University of Utah in Family Medicine. He is currently a Board Certified Family Practitioner practicing in Bethel, Alaska at the Yukon Delta Regional Hospital (hub hospital for the approximately 26,000 people living in the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta, an area approximately the size of the state of Oregon with 26,000 people spread amongst 53 villages).  His current practice is 75% ER and 25% hospitalist/laborist where he cares for everything from frostbite, hypothermia, fish finger, seal finger, and tuberculosis, to stabilizing women with postpartum hemorrhage and helping a team stabilize 26 week triplets--all in a facility with no medical specialists, surgeon, or surgical subspecialists on-site, 400 miles by air from the closest referral hospital (no roads out here!).

Dr. Christopher Van Tilburg 


Rescue Medicine Risk and Consequences: 15 Lessons from Two Decades of Mountain Rescue

February 10th, 2021


The Mount Hood Problem

March 15th, 2023

Christopher Van Tilburg MD is a wilderness, emergency and occupational medicine physician. He is staff physician at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital where he works in Occupational and Travel Medicine, the Emergency Department, and the Mountain Clinic at Mount Hood Meadows Ski Resort. He serves as active member and medical director of Crag Rats Mountain Rescue, medical director of Portland Mountain Rescue, Chair of Mountain Rescue Association Medical Committee, a delegate for International Commission of Alpine Rescue, Hood River County Public Health Officer, and Medical Examiner for four Oregon counties. He is author of 11 books including Mountain Rescue Doctor: Wilderness Medicine in the Extremes of Nature, which was shortlisted for the Banff Festival of Mountain Books and the Oregon Book Awards, and Search and Rescue Stories: A Wilderness Doctor’s Life and Death Tales of Risk and Reward. He is first author of Wilderness Medical Society Practice Guidelines for Prevention and Management of Avalanche and Non-avalanche Snow Burial Accidents.

Dr. Rudie Van Vuuren


Conservation Medicine

April 7th, 2022

Dr. Van Vuuren is a pilot, athlete, conservationist, and personal physician of the President of the Republic of Namibia, Dr. Hage Geingob. In 2006, he followed his passion for wildlife and conservation and, alongside his wife Marlice, created N/a’an ku sê Lodge and Wildlife Sanctuary.

Often referred to as a ‘sports icon,’ he also represented his country in the 2003 Cricket World Cup and the 2003 Rugby World Cup.

Jason Williams


WMS Member Benefits and Worldwide DiMM Courses

March 10th, 2022

Jason is the Director of the International Mountain Medicine Center at the University of New Mexico where he and his faculty train healthcare professionals from across the globe in mountain emergency medicine and rescue. Jason is a paramedic and holds his Bachelors in Emergency Medicine; he obtained his International Diploma in Mountain Emergency Medicine in Switzerland under the shadow of the Matterhorn. He is the founder of UNM’s Diploma in Mountain Medicine (DiMM), a member of the International Commission for Alpine Rescue, chairs the international DiMM Regulation and Assessment Committee, and is on the board of directors of the Wilderness medical Society. Jason is a past member and president of volunteer-based Albuquerque Mountain Rescue Council and formed University of New Mexico’s first helicopter mountain rescue team in collaboration with Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office Air Support Unit. He has been featured by the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation, on National Geographic TV, and has rock climbed throughout world. Despite his breadth of world travel, he’ll let you know this any day: “Nothing beats climbing a granite cliff face in the Sandia mountains with my life-long climbing partner/wife and teaching our four year old daughter to share our love for New Mexican mountains”.

Dr. David Young


Polar Medicine: Practicing Medicine at the End of the World

October 22nd , 2020

 Dr. David Young is an esteemed faculty member at the University of Colorado. He has been a member of high-altitude research teams and was medical team leader after the devastating Nepal earthquakes in 2015. In 2016 he completed a tour as the station physician at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Research Station. He has practiced in many types of austere environments and low-income countries. 

More to be announced