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The California Area Health Education Center (AHEC) is located at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine’s Fresno Medical Education Program. 


 Ivan Gomez, MD (He/Him) – Program Director and Principal Investigator

I am the current Program Director for the California Area Health Education Center (AHEC) through UCSF Fresno’s Medical Education Program as well as the Chief of UCSF Fresno Family and Community Medicine. I completed my residency with UC Davis Family Medicine Program in Merced, California. I am particularly involved in family-oriented adult and pediatric HIV/AIDS care and am currently the Medical Director of the Pacific AIDS Education Training Center in the San Joaquin Valley. My other clinical interests include obstetrics and inpatient medicine. I also precept and provide clinical care at a UCSF rural site in Selma and am an Advisory Faculty for the Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics course held yearly at UCSF Fresno.

Juan David Garza, MA (He/Him) – Associate Program Director

My professional career has focused on networking and collaborating with community organizations that focus on serving medically underserved communities. I have managed grants that focus on at-risk youth, children 0-5 years old, teen dads, and foster and juvenile justice youth. I have also managed State, Federal and Private Contracts. I also served in leadership roles such as the National AHEC Program Office Constituency Group. I served as a school board member in my community for four years, with two years acting as the Board President. I was also part of the Fresno County Board of Trustee Association Board, which represented all of Fresno County. This has prepared me for my role as the associate director for the California Statewide Area Health Education Program.

Virginia Fowkes, FNP, MHS (She/Her) – Evaluation and Strategic Planning Director

My professional career has focused on developing and evaluating programs to train health professionals for medically underserved communities including physician assistants, nurse practitioners, medical students, and other health professions students. I have worked with AHEC programs for many years, co -founding an early inner city AHEC, co-directing the national evaluation of the first three generations of AHEC programs, assisting numerous states in developing their AHEC programs or their program wide evaluation plans. I am a Sr Research Scholar, Emerita, at Stanford University School of Medicine and joined the CA Statewide AHEC Program’s leadership team in 2003 to assist with community program development and direct strategic planning and evaluation.

Shelby Fallas MA (She/Her) – AHEC Scholars Coordinator

My professional career has focused on higher education and student services. I obtained my Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and my Master of Arts in Administrative Leadership from the University of Oklahoma. I previously worked as the Assistant Director of Recruitment in private college admissions where I facilitated and created recruitment events throughout Fresno County. Prior to my relocation to California, I was working as an admissions counselor/student success advisor at an Oklahoma Community College. During my graduate career I focused on intercollegiate academic athletics at the top academic athletic facility in the country. I completed a graduate assistantship and internship in Division I academic athletics. I also completed the Disney College Program and studied Leadership at Disney University.  



Kristee Garcia BS (She/Her) – Administrative Assistant III

I obtained my Bachelor of Science degree at California State University Fresno in Business Administration Organizational Management in 2005. I have past State Civil service working at State Personnel Board and Folsom Prison. While working for US Government I assisted a new agency implementing and managing grants for a new Native American Well-Being Clinic which allowed me to become a CPA candidate in 2014. I have worked for many private industries in Silicon Valley, and for the Central Valley of California. My future endeavor for 2023 while working here for the AHEC program will be to secure my master’s degree in Healthcare Administration and Interprofessional Leadership at UCSF. I am hoping my experience and goals will help in obtaining more grants and scholarships for the underserved here in the Central Valley.