Please click on a resident image or name to view their profile and learn more about them.
Class of 2013
Jennifer White, MD
Jessica Knapp, DO
I moved to Wilmington from Pennsylvania, the northeastern most part that gets dumped on with snow. I love that there are no snowstorms here. It's like being on vacation, especially with the palm trees. I wanted a residency program that supported my learning and growth as a physician and fosters a close knit family environment. That is what I’ve gotten here. There is always something to do with your fellow residents and I think that sense of camaraderie makes work fun. I also have a strong interest in sports medicine and have opportunities to get team doctor experience as well as do research. I am very happy with my choice to come here!
Mindy Fairbanks, DO
I grew up in the gorgeous Pacific Northwest, near Portland, OR. After getting married and having my first daughter in Oregon, my husband and I started medical school at Kansas City University School of Medicine and Bioscience (KCUMB) in Kansas City, MO.
Shortly after completing medical school, my husband and I, along with our two daughters, moved out to eastern NC to start family medicine residency. My husband recently completed his residency at the Naval Hospital at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, NC while I am completing my final year at New Hanover Regional Medical Center.
My interests include women's health, pediatrics, and obstetrics. In my spare time, I enjoy boating and swimming in the amazingly warm ocean (compared to the OregonCoast), playing board games and cards, baking with my daughters, reading the 'classics,' and playing piano.
Monique Moona, MD
I grew up in Beaufort, SC. I attended Wake Forest University as an undergrad, and medical school at St. Matthew's University in the Cayman Islands. I particularly enjoy the faculty and culture of learning at the NHRMC residency program. My interests include women's health, behavioral and HIV medicine. In my spare time, I'm often at the beach, boating, working out, traveling, cooking or spending time with my loved ones.
Class of 2014
Chris McCarty, DO
My wife and I moved here from Philadelphia and we love Wilmington. I was born in Philadelphia but I lived my entire life in a rural area about an hour and a half outside the city. For undergrad, I went to Kutztown University (the real KU) where I met my wife Natalie. After graduation I moved back to Philadelphia where I attended Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. My wife also attended PCOM where she earned her master's in counseling and health psychology, making us dual alumni.
I have been excited about a career in family medicine for a long time. It is one of the few careers in medicine where all aspects of medicine come together. The best part is the opportunity to form relationships with families and see them grow and develop. The program at NHRMC does a great job encouraging this and the faculty is very knowledgeable and caring. I truly believe the training here is far above almost all other Family Medicine Residencies.
We ended up in Wilmington because it was a combination of a great program and an awesome location. After spending the past four years in Philadelphia, where winter meant fighting for parking spots in the snow, we were excited to look for a big change. Wilmington is full of outdoor activities all year round. Whether you like running, kayaking, shopping or people watching, Wilmington is the perfect place. And if there is nothing else to do, there are always several awesome beaches. We are glad that you are checking us out on the web and we really hope you come for a visit.
Jona Lamphier, DO
Hello! My name is Jona and I am blessed to be a family medicine resident at NHRMC! I grew up in the small town of Wellsboro, Pennsylvania. Wellsboro is home to the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon and many excellent opportunities for outdoor fun! I attended Penn State University where I received an undergraduate degree in Premedicine and Biology. We Are, Penn State! I graduated from the Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia before starting my residency in family medicine at New Hanover Regional Medical Center.
I chose family medicine because I enjoy all aspects of medicine and plan to practice rural medicine. I really enjoy mission work and have a passion for underserved care of all varieties. I also have a strong interest in obstetrics and pediatrics. So obviously, family medicine was and is the perfect choice! I plan to practice full spectrum family medicine in a medically underserved area.
I chose New Hanover Regional Medical Center because of the team atmosphere and strong, versatile family medicine program in a great place to live. Our residency also offers several opportunities to serve others including free clinics and mission trips. I feel our program provides excellent training, a family (medicine) atmosphere with lots of food and fun!
Wilmington boasts a great mixture of culture, arts and outdoor activities. I met my husband, Stephen, here during my intern year. Stephen is a fellow resident, a "local" and a wonderful tour guide. Thanks to him and to New Hanover Family Medicine Residency, I now call Wilmington my home. In my free time I enjoy traveling, playing sports, being outside, playing with our dogs, reading and cooking.
Mostafa Rezk, DO
My name is Mostafa Rezk, PGY-2 in Family Medicine. I was born and raised in Utica, NY, which is a small town outside Syracuse, NY. I attended Utica College of Syracuse University and received my B.S. in Biology. Following school, I took two years off and worked in a clinical laboratory where I was able to appreciate the scope and depth of medicine that doctors are accountable for. I was also able to appreciate the gifts that they can provide to their patients, which is one of the main reasons why I chose medicine.
I returned to school and attended New York College of Osteopathic Medicine, receiving my D.O. degree in May 2011. I also received my M.S. in Neuro Musculoskeletal Sciences. I chose Family Medicine for the ability to take care of entire families and the ability to be a part of their maturation. I really enjoyed and was impressed with the family-centered model that NHRMC provided to their patients. I was impressed by the ability to work alongside many specialists one-on-one.
Outside of my residency, I like movies, racquetball and biking. I really enjoy Wilmington because of the environment and its diverse patient population. My future plans include working in a teaching center while maintaining a practice that performs Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment as well as treating entire families and delivering babies. Some of the reasons why someone should consider NHRMC are that they provide all of the resources of a larger university setting with the compassion and patient-centered approach of a community hospital.
Richie Smits, MD
Hey, my name is Richie Smits and I am a PGY-2 resident. I grew up mostly all over the South, but call North Carolina my home. I went to undergrad at UNC-Wilmington which is where I first got involved with the family medicine residency program. I volunteered at the program during my senior year of college which is when I fell in love with all the faculty and staff. The residents at the time introduced me to the idea of going to a Caribbean medical school and that's when I decided to go to SabaUniversity. The school was on the island of Saba, which not only provided me with a quality education, it also gave me the opportunity to experience world class scuba diving, hiking and sailing.
I have been interested in family medicine ever since my first thought of becoming a physician. I love the concept of preventative medicine and educating patients on how to have a healthy lifestyle. I am looking forward to working with the variety of patients that family medicine has to offer, from obstetrics and newborns to adults and the elderly. I have an interest in one day becoming one of the teaching faculty at the program and continuing to help produce strong, well-rounded family physicians.
I interviewed with multiple programs, but when it came time to make a decision, I knew that the Wilmington program was the perfect fit for me. Having the chance to volunteer and after doing a rotation with program, I experienced first-hand how dedicated the faculty is in educating the residents. I have never witnessed so many close and interactive relationships in making sure the residents are learning on a daily basis. Another huge advantage of the program is that everyone treats you like family. We have found many activities outside the hospital to spend time together, such as going to Wrightsville Beach and hanging out by Wilmington's riverfront. What more could you look for in a program?
Sonya Williams, MD
Hi everyone! I'm Sonya and am thrilled to have joined the New Hanover Family Medicine Residency. I grew up in Durham, N.C. and headed to the University of Alabama for college where I competed on the varsity swim team. Prior to medical school, I came back to the triangle area where I met my husband, Zach, and worked at the UNC Cystic Fibrosis Center.
Zach and I are both fortunate to have attended the University of North Carolina School of Medicine in Chapel Hill. During medical school I was active in our student run free clinic, worked in Honduras at a women's health clinic, and competed in several triathlons.
A career in family medicine was an easy choice for me because I really enjoy the challenge of providing care for a diverse group of patients throughout their lives. I am excited to be training at a program with a great group of residents and attending physicians where I feel a strong sense of commitment to the community. I look forward to pursuing my interests in working with underserved patient populations, women's health and preventative medicine throughout my residency education.
In my spare time I enjoy swimming, cooking, rock climbing with my husband and running with my two dogs. Zach and I are also excited to kayak at the beach and finally have the chance to learn how to sail while in Wilmington.
Congratulations on deciding on a career in family medicine and please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about Wilmington or the New Hanover Family Medicine Residency Program.
Stephen Sasser, MD
Hi, I'm Stephen and I'm very excited to be doing my residency in my hometown of Wilmington, N.C. I love Wilmington and all it has to offer. From the beach to the river, the people and the food, there is no place I'd rather live. My family and a lot of extended family live in town as well. I graduated from LaneyHigh School where I played soccer, wrestled and sang in chorus. Then I spent four wonderful years in undergrad at Appalachian State University. Go Mountaineers! Torn between the mountains and the ocean I earned my medical degree right in the middle at UNC-Chapel Hill.
I am a very active person with many outdoor hobbies. In the mountains I spent a lot of time rock climbing, skiing and camping. Here at home I surf, kayak, fish, hunt and spend time with my dog. He is a golden retriever named Tucker. There is a lot to do here in Wilmington and the weather is warm most of the year to help with that. Winter may bring a day or two of snow but I've also worn shorts on Christmas Day. Wilmington has a lot of history as well with a historic downtown, cemeteries, ghost tours, the USS NC Battleship, Morris Creek Battlefield and Fort Fisher.
I chose family medicine for the variety and continuity of care with my patients. NHRMC is a great place to learn. It's large enough that a lot of pathology comes through the door and small enough that you can get to know most of the physicians and staff. The hospital has also expanded over the past several years with a new Surgical Pavilion and Women's and Children Center. All the floors in the main tower have also been redone. I'm thankful the residency program here has expanded so more people get to experience the place I love!
Class of 2015
Billy McLeod, DO, MBA
Hi my name is Billy McLeod and I am a graduate of NC State University and Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences. Born in Canada, I moved to North Carolina at 8 years old and consider it my home. I was married in the summer of 2012 to my lovely wife Suzanna. I'm a big Wolfpack fan and I look forward to attending football games in the fall. Also, in my spare time I enjoy going to the beach, playing yard games, and grilling with friends.
I decided to go into Family Medicine because I feel I can build relationships with my patients. I consider this a unique opportunity to impact patients and help them have healthier lives. I chose to come to New Hanover Regional Medical Center for residency because of the outstanding residents and faculty and the great support the program offers its residents.
Emily Cook, DO
To make the residency interview trail more exciting, my husband and I traveled here on a whim! We fell in love with Coastal Family Medicine at the dinner with the residents and at the interview the next day. Plus North Carolina is gorgeous! As natives of Arizona, it was hard to say good-bye to family, but we were excited to move somewhere green, with TREES, ocean, and humidity! So far we have enjoyed touring the area on beach cruisers, visiting the local tourism sites, and eating at all the local restaurants!
A little more about me: I was an artist before deciding to become a doctor. I graduated from BYU with a degree in painting. I also studied printmaking in Italy before graduating. To find some practical use for my art I attended the Gemological Institute of America to become a Jeweler and Gemologist. After graduating and working as a production artist, I quickly realized that trying to make a living by creating, made me miserable! So I turned to a second love: science, and medicine. I studied medicine at Midwestern College of Osteopathy in Arizona. I realized throughout my 3rd year of school that my favorite physicians were Family Medicine doctors, making my decision to pursue primary care very easy. I love the broad scope of practice, the ability to offer care in rural/underserved areas, and the chance to work internationally. I also enjoyed my Osteopathic training, and was attracted to the fact that this program is dually accredited. Overall, this residency program has been a great fit!
Kimberly Howe, MD
As a Wilmington “native,” I’m very excited to be a part of the NHRMC residency program. After receiving BA in psychology from UNC-Wilmington and a masters’ degree in counseling psychology from Nova University (now Nova Southeastern), I moved to back Wilmington with my family in 1990, and taught psychology at Cape Fear Community College for many years before deciding to pursue my two lifelong dreams—to live on an island, and to attend medical school. I completed my pre-medical course work while teaching, and was accepted to the American University of the Caribbean. My first two years of medical school were on St. Maarten, my third in London and my fourth in the United States (North Carolina and Florida), graduating in 2012.
After residency, I plan to practice patient-centered family medicine, preferably in the Wilmington area. But no matter where I end up, it will have to be close to the beach—when I have free time, I love to spend it on the beach or in the ocean. I have one son and two daughters, all grown and married, and one new(ish) grandchild, born 2011, a husband and two teenage step-daughters.
My favorite part of medicine is developing relationships with patients, being able to follow through with long-term care, and health education. I fell in love with the NHRMC program because of the quality of the residents, the fact that the program really does feel like a family, the amazing faculty, and—of course—because Wilmington is “home” as well as a great city to live in. I am particularly pleased with the supportive atmosphere, the responsiveness of the program to resident feedback, and the depth and breadth of the training. I ranked NHRMC as my top choice, and I was thrilled to be accepted.
Mary Mier, DO
Hi! My name is Mary Mier, and I am a graduate of Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine. I grew up on the west side of Michigan and also went to MSU for my undergraduate education. GO GREEN! I chose Family Medicine because I like to do a little bit of everything, and I am really passionate about preventative medicine. I feel like Family Medicine is a great fit for me, and it is the one field where I can practice preventative medicine in a variety of aspects. I chose to move from the Mitten, most importantly, because of this amazing residency program and secondly because of the weather and beaches! I feel this program fulfills my wants of a truly full-spectrum residency that will prepare me with everything from OB to Peds to Geriatrics.
Everyone from the support staff, other residents, and attendings are wonderful! Furthermore, it’s in a great city that is close to the ocean and has a lot of activities to participate in.
Shelly Odom, Jr. MD, MSMS
I was born and raised in the Sunshine State of Florida, where I spent the first 28 years of my life. My birthplace is St. Petersburg, FL where most of my family and many of my friends still reside. After completing high school at St. Pete’s Center for Wellness in Medical Professions Program at Boca Ciega High School, I ventured to the northern part of Florida for undergraduate studies at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, FL.
Following completion of a degree in Biology, I returned to the St. Petersburg/Tampa area for my Masters in Medical Sciences, and then my Medical Degree at the University of South Florida. Florida was a great place for getting my education and a fantastic place for getting accustomed to the sports and outdoor activities I have grown to love year-round. These include baseball/softball, basketball, jogging, canoeing, and camping just to name a few.
When my wife Sarah and I explored the state of North Carolina for residency interviews, we found far more similarities between the two states than we expected. In addition, Sarah was reminded of some “southern” characteristics that were reminiscent of her home state of Tennessee. As a first year resident, I hope to continue to strengthen my knowledge base and communication skills, and eventually utilize them to impact communities in a big way.
Toni Melville, MD
Hi everyone! I am so excited to be here in Wilmington! I am originally from Latham, NY, a suburb just outside of Albany and went to SUNY Geneseo for undergrad and then onto SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY for medical school. I chose to go into Family Medicine because of the opportunity it afforded to really develop and enjoy a rapport with patients. It’s the only field in primary care where you can follow a patient from before THEY are born until YOU retire.
I am interested in Adolescent and Geriatric medicine, and in family medicine, I don’t need to pick between the two. I’ve been told over and over that some day I will have a very interesting waiting room as a result. Although I knew early on that family medicine was for me, it wasn’t until I was trudging through five feet of snow at 5 am as a third year medical student in a snowstorm that lasted for four days straight that I realized I wanted to head down south, and I learned about this program through a resident I worked with up in Syracuse.
I loved everything about this program, especially once I learned that we are the only residents that see Pediatrics at NHRMC and I knew that this would be a learning environment second to none. Everyone always talks about finding the program with the right ‘fit’, and I knew that this was it for me after my interview, and I was so excited to match here. Wilmington is a great city. There is always so much going on and so many things to do, what’s not to love?