Program Leadership

Welcome to the Cleveland Clinic Internal Medicine Residency Training Program…
Where Every Resident Receives a World Class Education!

The Cleveland Clinic Internal Medicine Residency Program provides innovative, comprehensive, and high quality clinical and didactic learning experiences in an academic setting. Caring for a diverse population of patients from around the world, across the state of Ohio, and from our own local neighborhoods exposes our trainees to an unparalleled spectrum of disease. Such diverse training coupled with world renowned experts providing outstanding mentorship and teaching uniquely positions our graduates to successfully pursue academic and clinical careers in general internal medicine or to continue training in one of the subspecialties of internal medicine.

Abby L Spencer MD, MS, FACP

Abby L Spencer MD, MS, FACP

Nationally and internationally recognized for outstanding clinical care, innovative practice, and landmark research, our clinical faculty are full-time clinicians who are deeply committed to mentoring residents in their professional development, teaching and role-modeling exceptional clinical care, and coaching residents to conduct and present high quality research projects. Our academic environment is further enriched by the presence of The Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine students for whom we are the primary training site as well as University Track students from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine who rotate through the Cleveland Clinic. Our residents excel in the vigorous learning environment enriched by the extensive resources offered by the Cleveland Clinic (eg, state of the art simulation center, new expansive resident learning center, rotations in multiple practice settings, renovated call rooms, innovative medical school program, and the Cleveland Clinic Academy courses offered by the Cleveland Clinic Education Institute) and we enthusiastically embrace resident roles as clinical teachers and educational and health care leaders.  We are Sabbath-observant friendly.

Our Residency Mission Statement

Within a supportive, innovative learning environment, the Cleveland Clinic Internal Medicine Residency Program cultivates internists who provide safe, high-quality, and patient-centered care, engage in collaborative relationships, embrace diversity and teamwork, promote health and well-being of self and others, communicate empathically and clearly, demonstrate mindful clinical reasoning, and achieve distinction in clinical care, scholarship, leadership, and commitment to lifelong learning.

We accomplish this mission by ensuring that:

  • Patients receive the highest quality care (Cleveland Clinic motto “Patients First”)
  • Education is valued, protected, and embraced (Cleveland Clinic mission)
  • Learning climates are positive and supportive
  • Residents are inspired, challenged, and mentored
  • Outstanding faculty and trainees who support this mission are recruited, developed, and retained
  • Faculty and residents are committed to continuous improvement of ourselves and our training program

Please explore our website and view the variety of outstanding and innovative educational opportunities that we can offer to you. You will see that Cleveland is a great place to live and work! We could not be more proud of our program and the physicians we train and look forward to sharing our program with you.

Thank you for visiting our website! Please feel free to contact us with any questions about our unique training opportunities; our internal medicine training program; living, dining, and enjoying the metro parks in our city and region; or even about our Cleveland Sports teams and exceptional cultural gems. Welcome back LeBron!


Abby L Spencer MD, MS, FACP .
Director, Internal Medicine
Residency Training Program

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Cleveland Clinic possesses a unique combination of resources and professional development opportunities that enrich the training experience.


Cleveland Clinic is a large academic medical center with:

Andrei Brateanu, MD, FACP
Director of Evaluation & Assessment
Staff, Internal Medicine

I think research is not only an essential component of a scholarly life but also an absolute requisite for the strength and success of an individual physician. Some might choose to follow an academic, research oriented career; others might find a clinical pathway more rewarding. Regardless, all should search for knowledge and learn where to find it.

I believe Cleveland Clinic provides a home for residents who are passionate about what they do and need the proper environment and support system to become better at what they do. This is the place where they have the opportunity of becoming members of a dynamic consortium of researchers, educators, and clinicians while fully expressing their own personalities. They have the privilege of learning new teaching tools and strategies, receiving support and mentoring and working in such a collaborative environment like our campus.

I know that my professional career in the last 13 years, while working for the Cleveland Clinic, has been influenced and shaped by working with residents and I can wholeheartedly say that it was the best time of my life.

Janet Buccola, MD
Director of Curriculum

Colleen Colbert, PhD
Director Evaluation & Assessment

Michael Faulx, MD
Director of Cardiology Education
The Robert and Suzanne Tomsich Department of Cardiovascular Medicine

I joined the staff at Cleveland Clinic in 2005 after completing eight years of Internal Medicine and Cardiology training at University Hospitals Case Medical Center. I made the short trip down Euclid Avenue because I felt Cleveland Clinic offered me the best opportunity to be a true "triple threat," combining the nation's best cardiovascular medical care with ample opportunity to teach, write and investigate. I haven't been disappointed.

I presently function as a full service general cardiologist and staff the cardiology inpatient resident service about three months of the year when I am no seeing patients in the office, reading echocardiograms or performing diagnostic heart catheterization. I am also keenly interested in housestaff education and as an associate program director for Internal Medicine I draw from my experience as a resident and chief resident to strengthen the training program through recruitment, advisership and contribution to the cardiology curriculum. My principal academic interest concerns the relationship between obstructive sleep apnea and heart disease, specifically using imaging and biomarker assays to help determine how sleep apnea independently contributes to cardiovascular disease risk. These endeavors have allowed me to maintain collaborative ties to Case Western Reserve University, though in time I would like to expand to collaborate with staff here on the main campus, involving fellows and residents in my research and writing.

When I'm not at work I enjoy spending time with my wife (a gastroenterologist) and two young, energetic sons (presently entertaining careers in professional basketball and stock car racing). We enjoy traveling, skiing and watching the Cavs play at the Q. I am a die-hard fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, a fact that becomes self-evident upon entry into my office.

Catherine Fleisher, MD
Director of G10 Resident Clinic

David V. Gugliotti, MD, FACP
Director of Hospital Medicine Track
Hospital Medicine

I joined the Cleveland Clinic staff in 1999 in the Department of General Internal Medicine as a hospital based internist. My group has expanded to the Department of Hospital Medicine where I currently care for inpatients on the hospital teaching service, non-teaching service, inpatient medical consultation, and in the IMPACT center (pre-operative evaluation clinic).

I trained in Internal Medicine at Emory University in Atlanta, GA which was a very clinically based program. My main joy during residency and until this day, are the interactions with others in the hospital clinical care setting. Learning from others and teaching about care for patients in the hospital is always interesting, exciting, challenging, and rewarding for me. After residency, I came back to my home state of Ohio. At Cleveland Clinic, I found a place that is focused on providing excellent patient care, a robust educational environment, a strong research climate, and most of all people who are caring and dedicated to patients.

I feel very privileged to be a part of Cleveland Clinic's Internal Medicine Residency program. I think Cleveland Clinic is an exceptional place for training in Internal Medicine due to its richness of resources, faculty, and residents. I am excited to work with the program to continually adapt to the challenges of Internal Medicine training and continue to prepare our residents for fellowship training and clinical practice.

Carlos Isada, MD
Director of Inpatient Experience

Lakshmi Khatri, MD
Director of Ambulatory Experience
Strongsville Family Health Center

After training at Case Western Reserve University / University Hospitals Medical Center, I was on faculty at University of Michigan. I was drawn back to Cleveland in 2004 and chose Cleveland Clinic because of its dedication to excellence in education and patient care throughout the community in Northeast Ohio.

As Co-Director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program Longitudinal Clinic, I have been able to interact closely with the residents and be able to facilitate their real-life outpatient practice experiences. This setting of general practice allows high quality primary care with the availability of highly specialized tertiary care for patients in the regional community. I believe this is what makes Cleveland Clinic unique. I hope to continue to encourage residents to consider primary care as a career path, all the while supporting a well-rounded Internal Medicine academic teaching program.

Brian Mandell, MD, PhD
Director of Scholarship
Editor-in-Chief, Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine
Staff, Department of Rheumatic & Immunologic Disease

I am one of the associate program directors, and my primary responsibility within the residency program is director of the scholarly activity and CLINSCHOP programs. I am also the Professor and acting Chairman, Department of Medicine and the Editor in Chief of the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine.

I am the former education program director for the Department of Rheumatic and Immunologic Diseases. My clinical interests are multisystem inflammatory diseases and crystal induced arthritis. At a national level I am involved in several educational venues including the American College of Physicians and American College of Rheumatology national meeting planning committees, and I am editor of the MKSAP 14 Rheumatology book.

I have been at Cleveland Clinic for 15 years; previously I was on faculty in rheumatology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where I firmly acquired a taste for the music of Bruce Springsteen. I am available at anytime to provide consultation on matters relating to sushi.

James Pile, M.D.
Director of Systems Based Practice
Staff Physician, Hospital Medicine

Trained as an infectious diseases specialist as well as a general internist, I primarily practice as a hospitalist, with a secondary focus on infectious diseases. I attended medical school at The Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health, followed by completion of an internal medicine residency at University Hospitals of Cleveland and an ID fellowship at the National Naval Medical Center. I had the privilege of serving on the medical staff at the Cleveland Clinic from 1999-2005, and then returned in 2012. My particular interests include the considerable interface between infectious diseases and hospital medicine, medical editing (I’m a former editor of The Hospitalist, and a current deputy editor of the Journal of Hospital Medicine), perioperative/consultative general medicine, and medical education.

Since returning to the Clinic and having the opportunity to serve as an associate program director, I’ve been impressed by the robust nature and very thoughtful direction of the IM residency program. The breadth and depth of our patients’ pathology is almost breathtaking, leading to a clinical training experience that is unsurpassed at any other institution in the country. The residency program’s commitment to scholarship has clearly grown deeper since my last tour of duty here, and the opportunities to become a well- rounded internist grounded in scholarship and evidence-based practice are superb, and virtually limitless. I believe that even deeper involvement at a programmatic level in quality improvement and patient safety represents our next significant opportunity. This is a terrific place to train in internal medicine, and we are committed to making it even better.

Nathan Houchens MD
Director of Communication/FRAME
Hospital Medicine

After graduating from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine, I completed residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan, where I was honored to serve as Chief Medical Resident. During this time, I developed an appreciation for the ability of clinician-educators to facilitate educational sessions that are brief but nonetheless highly practical and relevant to busy residents. Creating and delivering quality educational content in an accessible and dynamic way was an endeavor I strived and continue to strive to perfect. I practiced as a Hospital Medicine physician there for another two years in both teaching and non-teaching roles. My clinical and research interests include academic and clinical writing, patient safety and quality improvement, and communication in healthcare settings.

I joined the Department of Hospital Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic in 2013. I have been delighted by the significance the organization places on education, not just of its students, residents, and fellows but of its staff as well. I have been an active participant in elevating my own teaching ability via courses within the Cleveland Clinic Academy and look forward to seeking new and innovative teaching methods. During my time with our residents, I am continually impressed by their clinical acumen, professionalism, interpersonal skills, and thirst for knowledge, qualities essential for all outstanding physicians.

I hope to share my experiences in the arena of academic and clinical writing with the program’s residents and mentor them to success in top tier journals. As a National Correspondent for the Clinical Care Conundrums section of the Journal of Hospital Medicine, I plan to continue honing my own writing ability and soliciting high impact clinical cases for discussion. I served as a faculty mentor for the Patient Safety Learning Program at Michigan and am delighted to continue this work through longitudinal patient safety and quality improvement projects at the Cleveland Clinic in the Hospital Medicine Track. I facilitate the Foundations in Healthcare Communication course for Cleveland Clinic physicians and feel the relationship-centered communication skills learned there can improve the lives of our patients and ourselves. It is with great enthusiasm that I bring these experiences to the Internal Medicine Residency Program at the Cleveland Clinic in an effort to create a rewarding and meaningful educational experience for all.

Rachel Taliercio, DO
Director of Resident Coaching Program
Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine

I moved to Cleveland in 2005 at the start of my Internal Medicine residency. After completing my residency training, I served as Chief Medical Resident and then went on to pursue specialty training in Pulmonary/Critical Care at the Cleveland Clinic. I decided to stay in Cleveland to complete my training because I feel both the residency and fellowship programs are among the best in the country. My clinical practice is general pulmonary medicine with a focus on obstructive lung diseases, primarily severe asthma. My inpatient responsibilities include rotations as a teaching attending on the Primary Pulmonary service as well as the Pulmonary Consult service. I am also committed to improving communication in healthcare and work with the Center for Excellence in Healthcare Communication as a faculty facilitator for the Foundations in Healthcare Communication course.

I continue to be so impressed by the strength of our Internal Medicine residents. They are thoughtful, confident, knowledgeable physicians who provide excellent patient care. At the Cleveland Clinic, you are given the unique opportunity to practice both community medicine and highly specialized care. At our institution you are exposed to an extraordinary amount of resources designed to enhance the training experience in clinical medicine as well as provide a wealth of opportunities for academic research.

I am honored to return to my roots and serve as Core Faculty for the Internal Medicine Residency Program and look forward to a closer working relationship with our outstanding residents.

Rendell Ashton, MD
Director of Procedural Curriculum
Ali Mehdi, MD
Director of Clinical Reasoning

Dmitriy Golovyan, MD
Dmitriy Golovyan

Medical School: Netherlands Antilles - American University of the Caribbean

Hello, and welcome to Cleveland Clinic's Internal Medicine Residency Program. As leaders in clinical and academic medicine, our program is proud to offer world-class training in Internal Medicine through exposure to diverse pathology both in general internal medicine and in the various subspecialties.

Looking back on my experience over the past three years, the things that stand out most are the camaraderie, teaching, and the diverse clinical experiences that we were privileged to be a part of. Our residency program prides itself on being a warm and welcoming place to one of the most diverse groups of residents in the country. From bedside teaching, to academic half days rich with educational resources including group discussions and state of the art simulations, to traditional case conferences, and cutting-edge Grand Rounds, we are committed to providing residents with the world class education. There is no better place to put those lectures into practice than on our wards and units, which draw patients from the other side of town and from the other side of the world. This wide clinical area ensures residents exposure to common diseases, while providing everyone a chance to regularly diagnose and rare and challenging conditions.

Most of all, we pride ourselves on always striving for improvement- to constantly reevaluate what we do, what works, and what can be done to advance our goal of providing the best resident education in the world. Every year we leave this program a different and better than the year before.

I am truly honored to assume the role of chief medical resident at Cleveland Clinic. I am fully confident that training here will undoubtedly be the pillar of whatever career path you choose. I look forward to meeting you at this important juncture of your career and will always be available for any inquiries about the program.

Aldo Schenone Giugni, MD
Aldo Schenone

Medical School: Universidad De Carabobo Valencia, Venezuela

Welcome to Cleveland Clinic's Internal Medicine Residency Program. We are proud to provide balanced, world-class training that perfectly amalgamates a strong academia delivering relevant education within and beyond medicine, a diverse pathology exposure with access to novel treatments, and leadership development and research opportunities.

From an early stage in my medical career, I have been moved by a strong desire to stretch my intellect and performance beyond my potential. My past experiences within the medical field range from medical student leadership positions and a professorship in biochemistry to working as a general practitioner in large medical centers as well as with rural indigenous populations. When applying for residency, I was looking for a place with solid training in internal medicine that could offer me the opportunities to grow beyond the clinical world into a scholarly leader and researcher.

My training at Cleveland Clinic has helped me to mature as a fine internist with the confidence to manage a great variety of pathology across the spectrum of complexity that only a world reference center like the Clinic can offer. I was able to learn directly from world renowned clinicians during close interaction in medical rotations in all specialties. As a member of the select, clinical scholar track with dedicated time for research and clinical teaching, I had the opportunity to grow as academic physician working on many projects mentored by leading researchers in my field of interest. I can state with confidence the Internal Medicine Residency Program at the Clinic supported me with opportunities to stretch my potential beyond limits I previously accepted for myself.

Here at Cleveland Clinic, there is a unique sense of brotherhood, a strong commitment to resident education, and a hunger for continuous innovation. For all the aforementioned reasons, I recommend training at the Clinic without hesitation. I am truly honored to become a Chief Medical Resident. In this role, I hope to continue fostering the program’s academia as an active member of the administrative team leading one of the program’s strategic initiatives for innovative resident education. I look forward to meeting you.

Shylaja Mani, MD
Mani Shylaja

Medical School: P.S.G Institute of Medical Sciences and Research

Welcome to Cleveland Clinic Internal Medicine Residency Program. Our program offers the best of clinical and academic medicine needed for the well rounded training of an Internal Medicine physician.

During my final year in medical school, I was looking for a top notched residency program that offered diverse clinical experience and provided opportunities to explore areas of future interest and help me grow into a well-rounded internist. Cleveland Clinic has offered me that wide menu of clinical and research experiences which have helped hone my skills as an internist and launch my career path. True to its motto that every resident deserves world class education, our program offers the opportunity to train under world renowned physicians and worked side-by-side with them. Mentors who are stalwarts and experts in their fields have offered great support in shaping my career goals and have taken genuine interest in my professional growth. More importantly, the program recruits residents from all over the globe every year and this not only sets a great learning climate for training, but fosters cultural and ethnic diversity which was a key for someone like me who trained in India.

Training at Cleveland Clinic has had an unparalleled impact in my professional and personal life and has far exceeded my goals. It is an honor to serve as a Chief Resident in our program and be able to promote the education and training in return to what the program has bestowed upon me. We would love to have you come and visit our institution and I will be glad to offer more information on my firsthand experience of the world class training I have received here at Cleveland Clinic.

William Shomali, MD
William Shomali

Medical School: University of Jordan, Jordan

Welcome to our Internal Medicine Residency Program. Our program offers broad clinical exposure to various specialties in internal medicine. Here you will see common and rare diseases, and nourish your clinical skills as a well-rounded internist. You will be exposed to various educational activities that will help you build a strong foundation in medicine that will continue to grow while pursuing your future venue as a general internist or subspecialist. Furthermore, our program offers various tracks to accommodate your future career goals.

Cleveland Clinic is a destination for patients from around the globe, and our program is proud of its cultural diversity. Here you will learn from various cultures and have the opportunity to build collegial relationships with our world-renowned faculty members. During your residency training at the Cleveland Clinic you will learn to act as a unit.

Cleveland has a wide variety of activities to enjoy during your time here. I enjoy nature and Cleveland offers superb parks and lakes to visit. Cleveland also offers numerous museums and various year-round festivals.

It is an honor to be a chief resident at the Cleveland Clinic. I look forward to meeting you and sharing my wonderful experience. It is truly a world class program.