DuBOIS — Two resident physicians from the very first cohort of Penn Highlands Family Medicine Residency Program graduated recently and are ready to begin their careers as attending physicians.
Ann M. Lopez, D.O., of Dallas, Texas, and Kyle Diller, D.O., of Chambersburg, were presented their residency program certificates June 25 during a small resident graduation ceremony held at Penn Highlands DuBois.
Lopez received her medical education from the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth Texas/Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine. Her future plans are to move back to Dallas to be with family. She plans to work for The University of Texas Health in their Emergency Department and Graham Regional Medical Center Emergency Department. She is married to Humberto Lopez.
Diller received his medical education from the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine. He plans to attend a Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship at St. Luke’s in Bethlehem. He will then return to WellSpan and Chambersburg, where he plans to practice primary care sports medicine and urgent care medicine. He is married to Katelyn Diller.
Led by Dr. Lisa Witherite-Rieg, the Graduate Medical Education program started in July 2017 after PHH earned approval from the American Osteopathic Association. Now the program is accredited through the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.
Three and one-half years ago, Lopez said she had never been to Pennsylvania. She said she is going to miss the close-knit community, the beautiful hikes and beautiful nature and, most of all, the friends she made here.
“There’s just so many amazing people here and thank you for letting me be a part of your community,” Lopez said. “Pennsylvania will always have a piece of my heart.”
Initially, Diller thanked Rieg and Dr. Chris Varacallo.
“They were the two people I spoke to before everybody else,” said Diller. “The first time I spoke to them was one of the most stressful days of my life. I was going to be a general surgeon, but God had other plans and thank God he did. Dr. Lisa pointed out that sports seem to be a huge part of my life and asked me if I’d ever considered being a sports medicine doctor and Dr. Varacallo told me if I came here, he would make me a competitive sports medicine applicant.
“So fast forward to today here, I’m graduating in family medicine residency, headed off to fellowship in a week and successfully completed my AOA (American Osteopathic Association) boards,” said Diller. “So I’d also like to give a huge shout out to my family and friends back home. If it weren’t for my parents, I’d probably be doing something completely different. Maybe not as happy.”
Diller also thanked his wife.
“Before she moved to DuBois, she never lived anywhere other than Chambersburg,” said Diller of his wife. “This was a huge deal for her. And I think we, to get a feel for Chambersburg and DuBois we went to TJ Maxx like 10 times in the first two months we were here. Glad that backed off.
“And finally, I’d like to thank my DME hospital clinic families, as well as the administration, because honestly, without all of you guys it wouldn’t have been possible and I’d like to share some pieces of advice for my junior residents,” he said.