AGEM Candidate Statements

Home / About SAEM / Leadership / 2023-2024 Elections / AGEM Candidate Statements

President-Elect Candidate


Katie Hunold Buck, MD


The Ohio State University

I am an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at The Ohio State University with a research focus on older adults and I serve as the Director of Geriatric Emergency Care overseeing our Level 1 Geriatric ED. I I have been involved in AGEM since I was an undergraduate student and I have served as the Medical Student Representative, Resident Representative and am currently a Member-At-Large. I am also currently a member of the Membership & Communications Committee and help oversee the AGEM website. Within SAEM I have also served on the RAMS Executive Board. These previous positions have provided me with experience working as part of an executive board, geriatric-specific training within emergency medicine and mentors and collaborators within geriatric emergency medicine. In addition, I an understanding of what is required of an AGEM President. At every stage of my career thus far, I have benefitted from AGEM and its members and my goal if elected as President-Elect will be to ensure that AGEM continues to advance the careers of each member. My experience has been that everyone within AGEM truly wants to make those around them successful and I want to ensure this continues. During the years I have been on the Executive Committee, this has been most evident with the focus on improving AGEM resources and support for students, residents/fellows and early career physicians through projects such as the RAMS Geriatric Road Map, the Geriatric Leaders Web Event, and recent website resource updates. I hope to build off the work being done now and the work that will be done during my President-Elect year to continue to build the AGEM arsenal of resources and support.


Secretary Candidate


Surriya Colleen Ahmad, MD


Bellevue/NYU Langone

I am originally from Louisville, KY, graduated from Emory University in Atlanta, GA with a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Spanish, and received my Doctorate of Medicine from University of Louisville in Louisville, KY. I completed my combined Emergency Medicine and Internal Medicine residency at the State University of New York Downstate Health Sciences University (SUNY DHSU) and Kings County Hospital Center (KCHC) in Brooklyn, NY. I completed my Geriatric Emergency Medicine (GEM) Fellowship at Weill Cornell/New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York City. I have been a member of SAEM and AGEM for almost four years, starting on the AGEM Outreach Committee. I served on the AGEM Executive Committee as a Member At Large 2021-2022, and I am currently serving as Treasurer on the AGEM Executive Committee for 2022-2023. In December 2020 I co-organized and co-hosted a Leaders in GEM virtual event with the aim of generating early interest in GEM amongst medical students and residents and helping to connect them with mentors who have been successful in the field. I graduated from the 2020-2021 EMRA Leadership Academy. I am running for Secretary because I have a passion for older adults and for AGEM and SAEM and I want to serve its members and collaborate with other leaders with a similar passion of providing the best care possible to older adults via this organization. If elected to the executive committee for 2023-2024, I hope to continue using any skills I possess to serve the organization, including to help advocate for the allocation of resources and funding towards diversifying the field of Geriatric Emergency Medicine, and minority and underserved Geriatric patients including decreasing depression, loneliness and social isolation in older patients. I also hope to bring my experience designing a Physician Wellness Curriculum in residency to advocate for physician wellness within the executive committee and team bonding activities.


Treasurer Candidates


  • Kalpana Narayan Shankar - Kalpana Shankar
    Kalpana Narayan Shankar, MD, MSc, MS


    Brigham and Women's Hospital

    I have been had a particular interest in the care of older adults since my time in residency. I have been conducting geriatrics research since I was a resident at Brigham and Women’s and Massachusetts General Hospital through a variety of quality of care projects and continued during my time as a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania with a focus on caregivers. Most recently, I have been focusing on older adult falls and social determinants of health as it pertains to the older adult with a number of grant funded initiatives through the Health Policy Commission and through consulting work for the MA Department of Public Health during my time at Boston Medical Center. I am currently working at Brigham and Women’s as the Director for Geriatric Emergency Care and Fellowship Director for the Health Policy and Translation Fellowship.

    I have been an SAEM member since 2006 and an AGEM member since 2010. I served as an at-large board member for AGEM and have helped to coordinate and facilitate SAEM’s didactic submissions for the 2019 conference. I have also helped to maintain the AGEM website and content from 2019-2020. I enjoyed my time as an at-large member and have tried to be as available as possible for any initiatives that the board seeks to push forward and currently serve as secretary from 2022-2023. I seek to run for Treasurer to further my voice in this capacity and hone in on ways we can be creative with our budget. I hope that serving in this role will allow AGEM to innovatively reach out to current and potential new members and get them excited about AGEM research and initiatives. I believe that SAEM and AGEM strive to push forward evidence based practices and as someone who strongly believes in data driven initiatives, I know that I can stand behind the work and agenda that AGEM tries to lead. Conversely, I also hope to reach out to our members to voice their opinions on what our societies can do for them to help them implement best practices. My career has been focused on keeping older adults safe and healthy in the community and I hope to continue that by continuing to serve that on the AGEM board.

  • Neha Raukar, MD, MS


    Mayo Clinic

    The subspecialty of Geriatrics is undergoing a renaissance. As the country gets older, and disparities in care and outcomes are better understood, and highlighted, the care given in the acute setting plays a pivotal role in affecting the trajectory of the lives of our geriatric patients. As I work to help my own healthcare institution achieve Geriatric Accreditation, I realize many areas of improvement in the way we deliver care in our US emergency departments. As is the mission of AGEM, through collaboration, research, and education the quality of care can be improved. Furthermore, AGEM stands as the voice of our geriatric patients to advocate for continued education of our colleagues. AGEM is also positioned to encourage innovation in the clinical and operations realms to generate solutions. Through collaboration with other SAEM Academies and Interest Groups, we can advance the care we deliver as a community to this population. I am running for the position of AGEM Treasurer because I realize that these types of innovations have a price tag and I am motivated to find areas to obtain funding that will eventually lead to better patient care. I do have executive committee experience on other Academies and look forward to bringing my experiences and expertise to help promote the missions of AGEM.


Member-at-Large Candidates


  • Anita N. Chary, MD, PhD


    Baylor College of Medicine

    I am an Assistant Professor in Emergency Medicine and Health Services Research at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX. I obtained a PhD in medical anthropology from Washington University in St. Louis and served as chief resident of the Harvard Affiliated Emergency Medicine Residency. My research focuses on implementation of care innovations in geriatric emergency medicine. I am running for office with goals of promoting equity and inclusion in geriatric emergency medicine, attracting diverse trainees and mentees into the geriatric emergency medicine fold, and fostering scholarly connections across SAEM academies. I previously served on the Executive Committee of AGEM as a resident member. During that time, I developed relationships with leaders of AGEM and various SAEM academies/interest groups to develop collaborative webinars and mentoring programs. I will draw from this foundation to accomplish my goals of expanding AGEM membership and producing inclusive scholarship.

  • Cameron Gettel cropped
    Cameron Gettel, MD, MHS


    Yale School of Medicine

    My name is Cameron Gettel, and I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the Yale School of Medicine. Most recently, I completed Emergency Medicine residency at Brown University and the National Clinician Scholars Program at Yale University. I have been a member of the SAEM AGEM since 2016 after developing an interest in all things geriatric emergency medicine as a resident. I have been fortunate to be the recipient of a welcoming academic home within SAEM’s AGEM, and as part of AGEM’s Executive Committee I aim to contribute to AGEM’s spirit by particularly working to enhance the career and professional development of junior clinician-investigators. I am also excited to welcome new members into the geriatric EM community, promote collaboration among its members, and encourage innovation, and ultimately improve the clinical care for older adults seeking emergency care. Within the past 2 years, I have led an ACEP Task Force and an SAEM Workforce subcommittee, and I will draw on those experiences to more effectively serve in a leadership role for SAEM AGEM.

  • Kuxhause - Photo - Jessa Kuxmith
    Jessica Kuxhause, MD


    Beaumont Hospital

    I am currently completing my fellowship in Geriatric Emergency Medicine at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan, where I completed residency in 2022. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health in 2019, through the Wisconsin Academy of Rural Medicine (WARM) program. I am passionate about improving wellness in medicine and medical education, having served as Co-Chair on both department- and hospital-wide wellness committees during residency. I also served on the House Officer Committee, advocating for resident interests and hospital quality improvement.

    I am running for office to further my engagement in AGEM and promote geriatric emergency medicine, particularly in medical education. I would like to increase our outreach to medical students and residents to solidify a pipeline in GEM for its longevity and success.


Resident Representative Candidates


  • Lily Berlin, MD

    Resident Representative

    Alameda Health System- Highland Hospital

    I am a first year resident at Highland Hospital in Oakland, California. I graduated from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in 2022. I have experience with AGEM, serving as Medical Student Representative on the Executive Board in 2020-2021. I have also served on the AGEM Outreach and Membership Committee for the last three years. In that time, I have continued and protocolized the AGEM Author Spotlight series, worked on a project to reach out to lapsed AGEM members to re-engage them in AGEM, worked on the AGEM twitter account, and assisted with the AGEM Gala at SAEM 2022. I also contributed to the AGEM CDEM curriculum project and served as a Medical Student Ambassador at SAEM 2020 and 2021. I am running for AGEM Resident Representative to continue to work with the incredible community and mentors within AGEM. Improving geriatric emergency care is important to me and my career, and I want to continue to contribute to and learn from this community. One of my goals is to continue to grow AGEM with younger trainees at the medical student and resident level. I hope to increase engagement in all levels of training with structured mentorship, educational webinars, continuing the quarterly journal club, and providing more resources to members and non-members. There are many geriatric ED resources that exist, but they are hard to find and not located in the same place. One potential project idea I have is to create a repository of resources, like clinical guideline tools, educational tools, community-based resources, and up-coming classes and webinars that are available to trainees and physicians. Another goal I have is to use the SAEM network and other interest groups and academies to increase AGEM’s exposure by doing partnered events via webinars and at the SAEM annual conference. For example, AGEM could team up with the Climate Change and Health interest group to discuss how climate change affects older patients specifically and what can be done to treat patients in the ED after climate-related disasters. Another idea is to work with the Social EM group with an event on social services available for older patients that can be utilized in the ED. Via these joint events, we can engage more EM providers who are not specifically interested in GEM and share our community, ideas, resources, and passion for geriatric emergency care. In addition, I want to broaden AGEM’s reach to more under-resourced settings, like county hospitals and under-resourced institutions. In my first year at a county residency program, I already see a huge need for improved geriatric emergency care with our most vulnerable older patients. I am already working with my program to improve geriatric education for my peers and to improve geriatric care for our patients. I hope to work within AGEM and the community to create a model for how under-resourced health care systems and hospitals can improve geriatric emergency care. Lastly, I am excited at the opportunity to continue to serve AGEM. I am grateful to have found this community of energized, passionate, and welcoming mentors who are working to improve geriatric emergency medicine care. I am humbled to have met and worked with many AGEM members and leaders, and I hope to continue to learn and grow from this community.

  • Sarah Pajka

    Resident Representative

    The Ohio State University College of Medicine

    I am a fourth year medical student currently interviewing for EM residency. I first became interested in geriatrics as an undergraduate, when I studied the History of Science, Medicine, and Public Health and spent time researching the origins of hospice and care for the aging and severely ill. Since then, I have worked on several studies investigating advance care planning interventions for vulnerable patients in the ED and in alternative settings like permanent supportive housing. In the future, I plan to continue to work toward improving care for aging patients in the ED and hope to incorporate this focus into my emergency medicine training. Since the last AGEM election cycle, I have enjoyed serving as a medical student representative on the Executive, Didactic, and Membership Committees. I have learned a lot while working with teams to improve member recruitment and develop didactics for SAEM 2023 and I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to continue to serve in a similar role as a resident. If elected, I hope to dedicate time to improving formal mentorship structures and building a network for our residents and medical students, by promoting opportunities and incentivizing more experienced clinicians to serve as mentors


Medical Student Representative Candidates


  • Elise Brickhouse

    Medical Student Representative

    Baylor College of Medicine

    Second year medical student at BCM, BS in neuroscience from the College of William & Mary; publication in JAGS on language discordance in delirium screening in the ED as well as other research on consulting PT for older adults who fall, the feasibility of geriatric screenings in the ED, and other academic emergency medicine topics; research experience involving members of SAEM; as our population ages, I think it will become only more important that our care for older adults improves. Through my classes at BCM, we have learned a lot about delirium and the importance in recognizing it earlier, both to improve outcomes and disposition, and as an indicator of underlying disease that otherwise might not be recognized. Through some of my research, I’ve been able to talk to numerous physicians in the ED about delirium, and have found that’s it’s an often misunderstood condition. Increasing physician awareness about delirium, fall risk, etc. and showing them the importance of finding and addressing these conditions early, could greatly improve our care for older adults in the ED.

  • Nicole Zhao

    Medical Student Representative

    Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University

    I am currently a second-year medical student at the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University. I am extremely interested in this opportunity as a medical student representative for AGEM as it combines my interests in emergency medicine with my passion for geriatric medicine. Having spent the last nine years as one of the primary caretakers for my grandmother with Alzheimer's Disease, I hope to continue advocating and improving the quality of care for these patients in the emergency room. The geriatric patient population is a considerable portion of patients seen in the ED, often requiring end-of-life care, and is highly underserved. With this opportunity, I hope to strike up critical conversations between students and AGEM mentors relating to topics on how we can promote better care in this patient population through leadership, advocacy, research, and projects that will systemically impact change. I have had exposure to EM, palliative, and geriatric medicine through my professional and personal experiences. In EM, I have led initiatives promoting the profession and advocating for more holistic care in underserved populations as the President of the EMIG at Stony Brook. In geriatrics/palliative medicine, I learned how underserved these populations are caring for my grandmother for the last nine years and my grandfather at the end of his life. I've also been a part of the PRIM-ER and EMPallA trials that aim to improve the identification of older patients in the ED with life-limiting illnesses and incorporate palliative care.