Congratulations to Our 2014 Award Recipients
Lee Rehak, University of Alberta
Lee grew up near High River in southern Alberta. Thanks to some hard work and constant support from many generous people, he’s been given the greatest challenge of his life with a career in medicine. It has been fulfilling, humbling, and a real gift from day one.
Lee is a family man, pursuing family medicine throughout his schooling and travelling home with his wife every chance they get. Whenever they’re not at school or at home, they’re in the mountains. As soon as they can, they’ll return home for good.
The one thing I love about family medicine is: building relationships with the people I work with and the patients I work for.
Family Medicine Mentor: Dr. Ron Gorsche and Dr. Chris Powell – a couple of family docs from home, each with their own skills and experience and happy to share them.
The one thing that surprised me about being a family physician is: the scope of practice. Everyone knows that family medicine covers lots of areas of expertise, but every day I see new examples of what generalist physicians can accomplish.
If I wasn’t a family physician, I’d be: travelling.
Born-and-raised in Calgary, I returned home to pursue medicine after completing my Physiology and Developmental Biology degree at the University of Alberta. I am now in my final year, and am very excited to start a Family Medicine Residency next year.
When I’m able, I enjoy going for walks in Fish Creek Park with my two Chihuahua-Yorkies, hiking in the mountains, or catching up with friends over a cup of coffee. In the future I hope to work with underserved Aboriginal populations in rural or urban centres, and have a comprehensive practice including obstetrics, palliative care, and Aboriginal health.
The one thing I love about family medicine is: the unique physician-patient relationship and trust that can only be formed through continuity of care.
Family Medicine Mentor: Dr. Grace Sit, who has been my mentor since starting medical school, and who has always been extremely generous with her time and guidance.
The one thing that surprised me about being a family physician is: the diversity of experiences it has to offer. Whether it is the birth of a child or death of a loved one, we have the privilege of being present for the important life moments of our patients.
If I wasn’t a family physician, I’d be: a lawyer avidly pursuing a career in medicine!
Family Medicine Resident Leadership Award
Alim Nagji recently completed his Family Medicine training from the University of Alberta and is currently seeking enhanced skills in Emergency Medicine. As a writer and actor, Alim’s experiences have lent themselves to communications research, curriculum development, and a passionate appreciation of others’ perspectives.
He has been fortunate to work in Uganda, Afghanistan, Malta, India, Tanzania and France, amongst other world travels. He hopes to pursue a career in international health, medical education, and family and acute care medicine. He is grateful to his mentors in residency, as well as family and friends for their support.
The one thing I love about family medicine is: being invited to share our patients’ stories; from inspiration to heartbreak, family physicians are honoured with intimate invitations into the reality of peoples’ lives.
Family Medicine Mentor: My mom (Dr. Noor Nagji) & my sister (Dr. Ashnoor Nagji) for providing me the inspiration to pursue a career in family medicine!
The one thing that surprised me about being a family physician is: Struggling to know a little bit about everything.
If I wasn’t a family physician, I’d be: an actor and writer.
ACFP New Professional Award
Like many Albertans, Tally grew up in Saskatchewan and started her undergraduate training at the University of Saskatchewan. She moved to Edmonton for medical school and family medicine training at the University of Alberta, finishing in 2009. It was in Edmonton that Tally found her passion working with people struggling with homelessness, addiction, and mental illness. She moved to Calgary in 2012. She was involved with teaching first-year medical students at the University of Calgary this year and was inspired by their energy!
She currently works with a housing first program called Pathways to Housing, and at CUPS medical clinic doing clinic and outreach work with some of the most marginalized people in Calgary.
The one thing I love about family medicine is: the relationships that develop over time with people, and the trust that patients put in you. It’s really an honour to be let into people’s lives in this way.
Family Medicine Mentor: Dr. Mat Rose in Edmonton – I changed the course of my career after doing an elective at the Boyle-McCauley Health Centre during residency. Mat’s passion and dedication to working with people in the inner city has inspired many learners over the years-many who end up working with him!
The one thing that surprised me about being a family physician is: the breadth of knowledge to keep up on! I learn new things every day. Thank goodness Google exists.
If I wasn’t a family physician, I’d might have: moved from land-locked Saskatchewan and studied marine animals, or tried to be a professional surfer.