Leadership

Program Leadership

Laura E. Meinke, MD | Program Director, University of Arizona Internal Medicine Residency Program – Tucson Campus 

Dr. Meinke graduated summa cum laude with her bachelor’s degree in microbiology from the UArizona before heading to California’s Bay Area, where she acquired her medical school degree and completed her internal medicine residency and pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship training at Stanford University. At that time, she further developed her interest in academic medicine. Dr. Meinke completed the Stanford Faculty Development program in 2006, and has been an active participant in resident education since her return to the UArizona in 2007. An associate professor in the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine, she has developed several quality improvement projects, including central line complications and ultrasound-guided central venous catheterization. Dr. Meinke is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary disease and critical care medicine.

Robert Aaronson, MD | Associate Program Director, University of Arizona Internal Medicine Residency Program – Tucson Campus at TMC 

Dr. Aaronson is an associate program director for the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Tucson Campus. He oversees program activities at Tucson Medical Center (TMC) and throughout the Tucson community. A clinical professor of medicine at the College of Medicine – Tucson, Dr. Aaronson received his bachelor's degree summa cum laude in English literature from New York’s Columbia University, followed by his medical degree from the New York University School of Medicine. He completed his internal medicine residency training at the University of California, San Francisco, and his fellowship training in pulmonary and critical care medicine at Boston University. He is currently executive director of the Tucson Hospitals Medical Education Program (THMEP) and section chief for TMC’s Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine Division. Dr. Aaronson is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary medicine, critical care medicine, sleep medicine and neurocritical care medicine.

João Paulo "JP" Ferreira, MD | Associate Program Director, University of Arizona Internal Medicine Residency Program – Tucson Campus

Dr. Ferreira received his medical degree from the Faculdade de Medicina da Bahia of the Universidade Federal da Bahia (FMB-UFBA) in Salvador, Brazil. He worked for two years in urban urgent care facilities, rural emergency rooms and for a family health program in Brazil. Dr. Ferreira completed his residency and geriatrics fellowship at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Afterward, he worked for the Southern Arizona VA Health Care System as a hospitalist. In October 2013, he joined the faculty at the University of Arizona Medical Center — now Banner – University Medical Center — as a hospitalist. He now plays a vital role in the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Tucson Campus as associate program director. Dr. Ferreira is also in the preliminary stages of planning for a hospitalist fellowship here.

Joshua Malo, MD | Associate Program Director, University of Arizona Internal Medicine Residency Program – Tucson Campus

Dr. Malo graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in biophysics from John Hopkins University in Baltimore, before obtaining his medical degree from Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. He completed his postgraduate internal medicine residency and later fellowship training in pulmonary and critical care medicine at the UA. He has been an active participant in resident education since his residency, serving as a chief resident for the Internal Medicine Residency Program – University Campus in 2009-10, and as a chief fellow in 2012-13. As an influential member of our faculty, Dr. Malo serves as associate program director for the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Tucson Campus. He has developed curricula for airway management simulation and critical care ultrasonography for pulmonary and critical care. Dr. Malo is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary disease, and critical care medicine. His clinical and research interests include resident and fellow education, coccidioidomycosis, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), and lung transplant.

Tirdad T. Zangeneh, DO | Associate Program Director, University of Arizona Internal Medicine Residency Program – Tucson Campus

Dr. Zangeneh graduated from the University of Washington in Seattle with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and went on to complete a master’s degree in psychology at California State University in Los Angeles. After working in the field of HIV/AIDS for the City of Los Angeles, Dr. Zangeneh received his medical degree in osteopathic medicine (DO) from Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. His postgraduate training in an internal medicine residency program as well as an infectious diseases fellowship was completed at the University of Miami, Jackson Memorial Hospital, also in Florida. Currently, at the College of Medicine – Tucson, Dr. Zangeneh serves as associate professor of clinical medicine and associate program director for the Tucson Campus internal medicine residency program. He is board certified in both internal medicine and infectious disease.

Department Leadership

Monica Kraft, MD | Robert and Irene Flinn Endowed Professor of Medicine and Chair, Department of Medicine, University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson

Dr. Kraft earned her medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco, and completed her internal medicine residency training at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, in Los Angeles, and her pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center/National Jewish Health in Denver. She joined the UA faculty in late 2014 and also serves as deputy director of the UA Health Sciences Asthma and Airway Disease Research Center. A member of the UA BIO5 Institute, her research interests center on biomarkers and mechanisms of innate immune dysfunction, inflammation and airway remodeling in asthma, and evaluation of new therapies through clinical trials.

Amy Sussman, MD | Associate Professor, Division of Nephrology, and Vice Chair of Education, Department of Medicine, University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson

An Akron, Ohio, native, Dr. Sussman earned her medical degree at the College of Medicine – Tucson and completed her residency in internal medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, where she also was chief resident and later completed a clinical fellowship and research fellowship in nephrology. Recruited to the UArizona faculty in 2009, she serves as a clinician educator with a strong emphasis in medical student teaching recognized by multiple College of Medicine – Tucson teaching awards. She became director of the Nephrology Fellowship Program in 2013 and director of the department’s Clerkship Program in 2015. In 2016, she was promoted to associate professor. Dr. Sussman maintains an active interest in Glomerulonephritis and is a sub-investigator of the Membranous Nephropathy Trial of Rituxan (MENTOR) clinical trial. She also serves as medical director of DCI Desert Dialysis clinics in South Tucson and Sahuarita, Arizona. In addition, she has developed and is the clinical director of the nocturnal in-center dialysis program at DCI South Tucson. She got her undergraduate degree from Arizona State University.

Chief Residents

For the 2021-2022 Academic Year, Chief Residents include:

Eric S. BrucksEric S. Brucks, MD, MSc | Medical School: University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson, 2018

Dr. Eric Brucks is a Tucson native who studied marine biology before changing course to return to Tucson to study medicine at the University of Arizona. He received a BS in marine science from Eckerd College, St. Petersburg FL, and went on to study marine microbiology for a Masters of Science from the University of Hawaii at Mānoa. He enjoys the desert as well as the ocean and his hobbies include Ultimate Frisbee, hiking, aquaponics, and art.



Martin Alejandro Chacon PortilloMartin Alejandro Chacon Portillo, MD | Medical School: Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico, 2016 

Dr. Martin Chacon was born and raised in Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico. He attended medical school at the Tecnologico de Monterrey in Monterrey, Mexico.  He matched at the University of Arizona after spending a couple of years doing clinical research at Texas Children's Hospital and Johns Hopkins Hospital after medical school. After his chief year, he plans to complete a fellowship in cardiology.  During the week he loves to get his blood flowing hiking, biking, playing soccer or basketball. During the weekend he enjoys anything that involves being with the people he cares about the most. Whether it's going downtown to enjoy live music at Hotel Congress, hitting different breweries, watching a new show at the Rialto Theatre, or just trying a different restaurant. During covid times, he's been binging on Netflix shows a little bit too much.  

Shishir Rao, DOShishir Rao, DO | Medical School: Midwestern University, Glendale, 2018 

I was born in New York and raised in Northern California. I went to the University of California, Davis for undergraduate work, where I studied neurobiology, physiology, and behavior. I attended midwestern University in Glendale Arizona for medical school. Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my wife and I am an avid motorcyclist and automotive enthusiast. I plan to pursue pulmonary and critical care medicine after residency and am particularly interested in ventilator management. 




Sumana Veeravelli, MD Sumana Veeravelli, MD | Medical School: University of Arizona College of Medicine | Tucson,  2018

Dr. Sumana Veeravelli was raised in Phoenix, Arizona. She attended the University of Arizona in Tucson and completed a BS in Biomedical Engineering with a minor in Spanish. She remained in Tucson to complete her MD at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. She enjoys spending her free time outdoors and traveling.