Lyndsey Milcarek, PA-C, MPH

Lyndsey Milcarek, PA-C, MPH attended the University at Buffalo where she received a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology, graduating Magna Cum Laude. Additionally, she continued at the University and earned a Master in Public Health with a concentration in Health Services Administration. Lyndsey's graduate student research included working in North Bengal, India where she compiled a community health assessment report with interventional recommendations for funding organizations. She also has a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies from Daemen College. Incorporating her PA education and volunteerism abroad, Lyndsey worked at universities in South Africa in partnership with the American International Health Alliance (AIHA) teaching students physical exam skills, gross anatomy and medicine topics to train as Clinical Associates (CAs). Currently, she works as a primary and urgent care provider in upstate New York.

With her extensive experience abroad and dedication to patient care, Milcarek continues to advocate for the PA profession beyond international borders. Moreover, she hopes to continue breaking down the barriers that divide our profession as Advanced Practitioners (Physician Assistant, Physician Associates, Clinical Associates, Clinical Officers, etc.) so that we can universally advocate for our profession.  Her vision is to become an international organization that benefits all Advanced Practitioners by providing opportunities in medicine and public health around the globe, regardless of country of origin.

Mary Showstark, PA-C, MPAS, FAWN
Vice President

Mary Showstark is a PA who graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in 2001 and a Master’s Degree in 2004 from the University of Florida. She started off her career working at Shands-University of Florida in Trauma Surgery. Mary's clinical experience is in trauma surgery, emergency medicine, urgent care, and disaster preparedness for the federal government in cities to include: Los Angeles at USC/LAC, Maui, NYC and Miami Beach. Mary has also spent many years working in event medicine and concierge services utilizing her PA career around the world from Johannesburg to Sydney with multiple cities in between; she has worked and consulted with private athletes and individuals, including the World Surf League, Burning Man, US Open of Tennis, Tough Mudder, The Indies Trader, Sea Paddle, NYC Marathon.  She has worked post-quake in Haiti and in Nepal providing medical care in rural and austere environments. She also consults in remote areas such as Nicaragua, Marshall Islands, and the Philippines performing medical needs assessments and helping with clinic development, setup and sustainability projects.

Showstark currently is an instructor at Yale’s Online Physician Assistant Program.  She is the Chair of the Online IPE Committee and spearheading the Virtual Reality Projects utilizing The Stanford Heart and Augmented Reality, teaching students proper hand hygiene through SureWash Go Technology. She also works with the federal disaster teams, FAST teams, serves as one of the Executive Directors on the board of Surfer’s Medical Association, and is a consultant for the education board for Welch Allyn.  In addition to her PA work, Mary is also certified in massage therapy and yoga teacher training. In her free time Mary enjoys traveling and has travelled to over 50 countries and all 7 continents.

Patricie Stephens, PA-C, MPAS

Patricie Stephens graduated from the UT Southwestern PA Program in Dallas, Texas. She was born in the Czech Republic, raised in Aruba for twelve years, and now has been a US citizen for 12 years. Through her PA studies, she was selected as the Chair of Global Health Outreach and successfully organized the first medical mission trip for PA students. Annually, the participants traveled to Sarstun, Guatemala with Refugee International to provide medical and surgical care to indigenous people. Combining two of Stephens' passions, Women's Health and Global Health, she hopes to increase access to medical and preventative care to women worldwide. She's currently employed at UT Southwestern in Dallas as a robotic surgery PA in the department of OBGYN. In her free time she also enjoys spending time with her dog, running, yoga, rock climbing, hiking, photography, and traveling.

Annette Volpe, PA-C
Volpe attended Seton Hall University, where she earned my B.S. in biology and M.S. in Physician Assistant studies. Throughout her education, she engaged in activities which only amplified her passion for global health. At Seton Hall, Annette had the opportunity to travel to the Philippines for a global health. She currently works as a surgical Physician Assistant at NewYork-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan, one of the few PA run hospitals in New York. She is also involved in the PA Lecture series at NewYork-Presbyterian which provides CME lectures for PAs throughout the NYP system. Volpe is particularly passionate about global health education and the role of the Physician Assistant around the world. Additional interests include fitness, running, yoga, and live music. 
Mirela Bruza-Augatis, MS, PA-C
CME Chair

Mirela is a research scientist at the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA), an adjunct professor at the Department of Physician Assistants at Seton Hall University, and works clinically as a PA in family medicine in Hillsborough, New Jersey. Ms. Bruza serves as a CME chair for Physician Assistants for Global Health (PAGH) and is a peer reviewer for national and international healthcare/educational journals. For the past 16 years, her clinical experience has been in the fields of endocrinology and family practice. Her research focus lies in underserved population health, and her professional interests include endocrinology, metabolism, and underserved population health.  

Melanie Lucks, MMS, PA-C
Director of Publicity

Melanie is a graduate from the Wake Forest University School of Medicine PA Program. She received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Michigan in Biopsychology, and Cognitive Neuroscience, and originally became interested in women's health while working at a holistic gynecology practice in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She has 5 years of experience working in inpatient Obstetrics and Gynecology and currently works as a Labor & Delivery Clinical Research PA. Melanie currently serves as the Vice President for Association of Physician Assistants in Obstetrics and Gynecology (APAOG) is on the Medical Advisory Board for the Mansaray Foundation, a non-profit working to reduce the maternal mortality and morbidity rates in Sierra Leone, Africa.  Through PAGH and as a provider she hopes to promote the development of PAs abroad, and to continue to bring awareness, education, and resources to all women. Melanie also enjoys cooking, reading non-fiction, practicing yoga, and painting in her free time. 

Alison Garcia, DMA, MSPA, PA-C
Opportunities Chair

Alison Garcia MSPA-C started working in medicine at the age of 15. She volunteered as a First Responder and then EMT for 9 years. She attended Hartwick College in Oneonta NY and obtained a Bachelor’s degree, as a dual major in Psychology and Biology. During this time, Alison also participated in research at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Lehigh Valley Hospital. She then pursued a graduate degree at Pace University in Manhattan, obtaining a Masters of Physician Assistant studies. Upon graduation she began working in Neurosurgery at Harlem Hospital Center in NYC. She now works at New York Presbyterian- Brooklyn Hospital in Neurosurgery encompassing Stroke Intervention, Neuro-Trauma, and Neuro Critical Care. Garcia is currently the Elective Clinical Preceptor for Weill Cornell PA Students at this institution. Additionally, she works at NYU Langone Brooklyn Hospital per diem with privileges in urology, general surgery, trauma, neurosurgery, neurology, and otolaryngology/ENT. 

While Alison has not been fortunate to do a formal medical mission abroad she has traveled to 20% of the worlds countries and has taken personal time while traveling to volunteer in clinics and health centers. By the end of 2019, she will have stepped on all 7 continents of the globe. Garcia will start her Doctorate of Medical Sciences Program (DMSc) in July 2019 with the University of Lynchburg and anticipates to complete her program in July 2021 after finishing both the doctorate and two graduate certificates in Advanced PA Education and Global Health/ Disaster Medicine. Alison hopes to get more involved in medical missions and global health abroad, while also working on a database for PAs to have a more direct access to these opportunities.

Bernadette Powell
Membership Chair

Bernadette became interested in medicine while working at a free medical clinical during her gap year after high school. She then attended Franciscan University in Ohio where she earned her BA in Spanish while taking all of her prerequisites for PA school. It was during her senior year of college that she participated in a mission trip to Peru and her interest in global health grew. Before starting PA school, she and her husband returned to Peru for an additional two-week medical mission trip. After graduating from the Yale Physician Assistant Online program in 2022, she began working in an urgent care setting which largely serves the migrant and uninsured populations in her community. She hopes to return to Peru with her husband in 2023.  Outside of work, she is completing her training as a NaproTechnology Medical Consultant and pursuing her certification as a FertilityCare Practitioner, which she hopes to use to continue helping couples experiencing infertility. Outside of medicine, she serves as a meal-delivery volunteer to shut-ins in her local community and enjoys reading, Peloton classes, furniture flipping projects, and time with her husband and golden retriever. 

Arcadia (Cady) Trvalik
PA Student Liason

Arcadia Trvalik, MHS is a second-year PA student at Wake Forest University. She graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a Master’s of Health Science concentrated in Global Health Economics in 2021, completed a Fulbright scholarship in Malaysia in 2020, and completed her undergraduate studies in Biology and Public Health at George Washington University in 2017. At Johns Hopkins, she completed graduate research on the cost-effectiveness of physician assistants and equivalent roles in various country contexts across the world. She has clinical experience in Emergency Medicine as an EMT and Emergency Department Technician prior to PA school. In her past roles, she has co-authored a peer-reviewed research article on Ventricular Assist Devices, taught clinical skills to GW undergraduates, and studied public health in rural Khon Kaen, Thailand. She has also completed internships at the Smithsonian Institution, where she wrote about emerging zoonotic diseases; and Management Sciences for Health, where she engaged members of the U.S. Congress to advocate for global health initiatives.

At the Wake Forest PA program, she is Student Representative to the North Carolina Academy of Physician Assistants, is enrolled in the Global Health Certificate program, volunteers with the Wake Forest Mobile Clinic, and holds a position on the DEAC Free Clinic Outcomes Team. She has clinical interests in women’s health, pediatrics, emergency medicine, infectious diseases, and neurology. Her research interests are in pediatrics, global health, health equity, and planetary health. In her future career, she hopes to balance her clinical practice with research, advocacy, and educational roles, and to build international partnerships to study the effects of climate change on human health. She is passionate about leadership, diversity, cross-disciplinary collaboration, and health diplomacy. In her free time, she loves to run, travel, hike, volunteer, and practice yoga.

Melissa Spencer
Pre-PA Student Liason

Melissa received a Bachelor of Science from Brigham Young University in Recreation Management and Youth Leadership. She has experience working as a recreational therapist in many different capacities; She worked with various underserved populations, including minorities, refugees, the elderly, and people with disabilities. In addition, she has travelled extensively to medically underserved countries, including Nepal, Madagascar, Indonesia, remote islands of French Polynesia, and the Cook Islands. Spencer is a certified advanced EMT and currently a medical assistant at the University of Utah. She is currently a pre-PA student, her previous travel experiences have fueled her desire to practice medicine globally, and she has a special interest in tropical infectious disease and refugee health. Accepted to the University of Utah's PA Program, Melissa will be starting in May 2023.


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