Family Medicine


Additional Information

Contact Us

Health Science Campus
Ruppert Health Center
2000 Arlington Avenue
Toledo, OH 43614
Phone: 419.383.5555

Department of Family Medicine Faculty

To schedule an appointment with a Family Medicine physician, call the Department of Family Medicine at (419) 383-5000.

Dr. Julie A Brennan Picture

Julie A. Brennan, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.
Assistant Professor, Family Medicine and Division, Adult Psychiatry

Dr. Julie Brennan is a licensed psychologist and a licensed and registered dietitian in the state of Ohio.  She received her Ph.D. in counseling psychology from The Ohio State University and completed her psychology internship at the Northwest Ohio Psychology Consortium.  She is currently the Director of Behavioral Science at the St. Luke’s Hospital/University of Toledo Family Medicine Residency. She is certified in Primary Care Behavioral Health. Her research interests include: wellness, health behavior change, obesity, depression and anxiety. Dr. Brennan is a member of the Ohio Psychological Association and Society of Teachers of Family Medicine.


Tara Erbele, M.D.
Assistant Professor, Family Medicine

Dr. Erbele joined the residency program in September 2012, relocating from Idaho, where she was in rural practice providing care, including OB care, in a clinic and hospital. She is a graduate of Albany Medical School in Albany, New York, and completed her residency at Family Medicine Residency of Idaho in Boise, Idaho.

Dr. Erbele’s medical interests include preventive care, management of chronic illnesses, well child, and women’s health. She provides full scope family medicine care including obstetric care. She strives to establish a relationship with her patients to help them take care of themselves in the best possible way.

In her free time, Dr. Erbele enjoys being out in nature biking or hiking with her family, including her two small children.

Dr. Linda M. French

Linda M. Speer, M.D., FAAFP
Professor & Chairman

Dr. Linda Speer, formerly Dr. Linda French, was appointed professor and chair of the Family Medicine Department at the  University of Toledo (UT) College of Medicine in November 2006.  She earned her medical degree from Austral University Medical School in Valdivia, Chile and completed her family medicine residency at Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn, Michigan.  Dr. Speer is board certified in family medicine. After completion of her residency training, Dr. Speer joined the residency faculty at Oakwood and completed a primary care faculty development fellowship at Michigan State University (MSU). Prior to coming to UT, Dr. Speer was Senior Associate Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at MSU.  She is a Fellow in the AAMC-sponsored Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) program for the development of women leaders in academic medicine, class of 2007. Dr. Speer is nationally recognized for her expertise in women’s health and evidence-based medicine.

Her research interests include medical decision-making regarding menopausal hormone use and breast cancer risk assessment in primary care practice.  She has published extensively on varied topics related to women’s health and is a member of the editorial boards of the journals Family Medicine and The Journal of Family Practice, peer-reviewed journals in the specialty. In 2005 she received the Outstanding Clinician Award at MSU and was also inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society.

Dr. Murthy Gokula Picture

Murthy Gokula, M.D., C.M.D.
Associate Professor/Program Director: St. Luke’s Hospital Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program     

Dr. Murthy Gokula’s passion is Geriatrics. He is the Program Director for the St. Luke’s Hospital Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program in association with The University of Toledo teaching faculty.

He earned his medical degree at Siddhartha Medical College in India and completed his Family Medicine residency at Sparrow Hospital/Michigan State University in Lansing, MI.  After his residency, Dr. Gokula continued his training at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he completed a fellowship in geriatrics. He is board certified in Family Medicine, Geriatric Medicine, and Hospice and Palliative Medicine. He also is a Certified Medical Director for long-term care. He is currently the Medical Director of Lutheran Village at Wolf Creek and Otterbein of Perrysburg nursing home. Over the past several years he has been asked to edit Clinical Practice Guidelines for the American Medical Directors Association. He was recently nominated to the American Geriatric Society BEERs Criteria SWAT TEAM to help keep the new BEERs criteria for polypharmacy updated on an ongoing basis. He has received grant funding to help reduce the inappropriate use of Foley catheters and urinary infections in the long-term care setting and is currently working on a project to help improve hydration in the elderly. He is the founder/advisor for the Interdisciplinary Geriatrics Club at the UT College of Medicine. He is a strong advocate for interprofessional geriatric education, research, and clinical care.

He has been an invited speaker at several national and regional conferences and has written multiple publications, including several on the inappropriate use of urinary catheters in elderly patients as well as on polypharmacy.

Dr. Gokula’s special clinical interests include polypharmacy, diseases of the elderly and palliative medicine; he has conducted extensive research about the inappropriate use of Foley catheters in hospitals and new models of geriatric care in practice.

Daniel P Hickey Picture

Daniel P. Hickey, JD, MBA
Associate Professor and Vice Chair, Finance and Strategy

Mr. Hickey is an Associate Professor of Family Medicine and Pediatrics and Vice Chair, Finance and Strategy. He graduated from the University of Toledo with Master of Business Administration and Juris Doctor degrees and received a graduate certificate in Medical and Health Science Education from the Medical College of Ohio. Mr. Hickey's areas of teaching expertise include practice management and medical/legal issues in health care. He is board certified in healthcare management and is licensed as an attorney in Ohio. His research interests include advance care planning and preclinical medical education.

Dr. Sanford R. Kimmel

Sanford R. Kimmel, MD
Professor, Vice-Chair 

Sanford R. Kimmel, M.D. is Professor and Vice Chair of Family Medicine of at the University of Toledo College of Medicine and is the Medical Director of the Main Campus Medical Center. He is a graduate of the Ohio State University College of Medicine. He completed his family practice residency at St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Dayton and pediatric training at The (Nationwide) Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Family Medicine and the American Board of Pediatrics. He currently serves on the Ohio Department of Health Immunization Advisory Committee.

Dr. Kimmel has authored many textbook chapters including Growth and Development in Rakel’s Textbook of Family Medicine and Selected Problems of Infancy and Childhood in Taylor’s Family Medicine Principles and Practice. He has also authored many articles for scientific journals on immunizations, and is a co-editor and contributor to Shots 2013, a PDA program on immunizations that is recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He has given many local, regional, and national presentations on immunizations and other topics.

Dr. Mina

Mariam Mina, MD
Assistant Professor

Dr. Mina was appointed Assistant Professor of the Department of Family Medicine at the University Of Toledo College Of Medicine in August, 2013. She earned her medical degree from the school of medicine, Cairo University in Egypt. She was born in Cairo, Egypt and moved to the USA in 2004. Dr. Mina completed her Family Medicine Residency at St Luke's Hospital/ University of Toledo Family medicine program. She is interested in mental health and depression.

She is married and blessed with two children. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, reading, cooking, and doing activities with her kids.



 Dr. Saudia Mushkbar

Saudia Mushkbar, MD
Assistant Professor

Dr. Mushkbar is a graduate of Dow Medical College, Karachi-Pakistan. She completed her family medicine residency at St. Luke’s Hospital / The University of Toledo Family Medicine Residency Program.

Dr. Mushkbar is board certified in Family Medicine. She completed her faculty development fellowship from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Dr. Mushkbar is an assistant professor and serves as part of core faculty in the residency program. She worked in  Fort Wayne, Indiana, for three years before joining as a faculty in the program. Dr. Mushkbar’s clinical interests are preventive medicine, depression and women’s health.

When not working, Dr. Mushkbar enjoys spending her free time with her family, reading books, making sketches, and painting pictures.

Dr. Chayanika Pal

Chayanika Pal, MD
Assistant Professor

Dr. Pal was appointed Assistant Professor of the Department of Family Medicine at the University Of Toledo College Of Medicine in July, 2012. She earned her medical degree from Bankura Sammilani Medical College, Kolkata, India. She was one of the merit students that were covered under the fully sponsored Government Colleges in Kolkata, India. She received National Scholarships and other academic excellence awards in India.

After her graduation she started her assignment as a faculty member at the same medical institute and then began practicing Medicine in India.  She joined the University of Toledo College of Medicine’s Residency Program in Family Medicine in 2009 at St Luke’s Hospital.  During her residency, she was awarded best resident for her outstanding patient relationships. She was also awarded for Excellent Professionalism in 2009 and 2010. After completing her residency, Dr. Pal joined UTMC and began her practice at the UTMC Fallen Timbers Primary Care Clinic in Maumee.  She has a vast interest in preventive medicine. While focusing on patient care from newborns to geriatrics, she is committed to pursuing women’s health and improving the overall health for this community. Her research interests include cervical cancer and breast cancer.

Dr. Swapna Palla

Swapna Palla, MD
Assistant Professor

Dr. Palla earned undergraduate degree with gold medal and honors from Lala Lajpat Rai Memorial Medical college in India. She worked as a primary care physician in India with a focus on women and children’s health before starting family medicine residency at St. Luke’s Hospital/University of Toledo, OH. During the residency she received Excellence in Professionalism Award, served as vice chief resident for the program, and graduated in the summer of 2012. Her medical interests include preventive medicine, women’s health and research interests include evidence based medicine.
She is married to Ravi and the couple are blessed with a son. She is a happy & proud mom and enjoys spending time with her family. She likes to listen to music and go on family vacations in her spare time.

Dr. Jyothi Sri Pappula 

Jyothi Sri Pappula, MD
Assistant Professor

Dr. Pappula earned her Medical degree at Siddhartha Medical College in India and completed her Family Medicine Residency at Sparrow Hospital/Michigan State University in Lansing. She is interested in College Health and Women's Health issues.

She is married to Dr. Gokula, who is also a faculty member in the Family Medicine Department, and they are blessed with two children. In her spare time, she enjoys painting, cooking, and activities with kids.  

Dr. Phelps

Kevin A. Phelps, DO
Associate Professor

Dr. Phelps is a native of Chittenango, New York, a small village east of Syracuse where “the river runs north.” It is also the birth place of L. Frank Baum, author of the “Wizard of Oz”. A “yellow brick road” courses through Chittenango. He is a graduate of Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine (OUCOM) and is a product of the former St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center / Medical College of Ohio Family Practice Residency Program. He has been in residency education for over twenty years and served as residency program director for over five of those years. He currently serves as Associate Residency Program Director of the St. Luke’s Hospital / University of Toledo Family Medicine Residency Program in Maumee, Ohio. He completed a primary care faculty development fellowship at Michigan State University (MSU) and the National Institute of Program Director Development Fellowship Program (NIPDD) through the Association of Family Medicine Residency Program Directors (AFMRD). His medical interests include patient-centered medical home, office procedures, health behavior change and electrocardiography. He is married to Kristel and they have five children. He is an avid runner completing his first half marathon last year with plans to run a full marathon in 2013. His hobbies include hunting, hiking, listening to music, traveling and cooking.

Marlene Porter

Marlene Porter, MLS
Director for Outreach, Assessment and Grants – University Libraries

Ms. Porter has been a member of the department since August 1997. She obtained her BS in Biology with a minor in Mathematics from Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, in March 1976.  Upon receiving her Master of Librarianship (MLn) from Emory University, Atlanta, GA, in August 1979, she moved to Ohio to begin her professional library career and has been in Ohio ever since.   She joined UT as a medical reference librarian in 1992 and is currently the Director for Outreach, Assessment, and Grants of the University Libraries.  She works with faculty and residents in the Information Mastery and Scholarship Curriculum for Family Medicine Residents.   Her research interests include library impact on student learning and success as well as academic library value. 

Dr. Paul Schaefer Picture

Paul Schaefer, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor, Assistant Dean of Medical Education

Dr. Schaefer was appointed Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine.  He obtained his MD from the Medical College of Ohio in Toledo, received his PhD from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, and did his residency in Family Medicine at the Medical University of Ohio in Toledo.  His research interests include mental health and depression.

Dr Constance J Shriner Picture

Constance J. Shriner, PhD, MEd
Assistant Professor

Dr. Shriner is an assistant professor of Family Medicine. She received both her Master of Education and Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Toledo. Her background and expertise include curriculum development and evaluation. She currently serves as associate dean in the College of Medicine for Faculty Development and Curriculum Evaluation.

Dr. Tafelski

Thomas J. Tafelski, DO, PhD
Associate Professor

A native of Toledo, Dr. Tafelski has a Ph.D. in anatomy and attended medical school at Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed his Family Practice Residency here at MUO. His current position at Medical College of Ohio is Clerkship Director and head of Undergraduate Division in the Department of Family Medicine. His most recent project was the development of a required six-week third-year family medicine rotation for medical students here at MUO.

Dr. David Weldy 

David Weldy, M.D., Ph.D.  
Associate Professor

Dr. David Weldy earned his medical degree at the Medical College of Ohio, Toledo and completed his family medicine residency at the Medical College of Ohio and St. Vincent Medical Center. He received a B.A. in physical education from Goshen College and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology from Kent State University.  He completed a Family Practice Fellowship in Academic Medicine from Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine (NEOUCOM), Rootstown, OH.  He is board certified in family medicine with an added qualification in sports medicine.    

Prior to returning to Toledo, Dr. Weldy spent 20 years in private practice in Hiram, Mantua, and Ravenna, OH, and since 1992, was an associate clinical professor at NEOUCOM, and an associate director of Northside Family Medicine in Youngstown.  He is team physician for Rogers High School and served other high schools, and colleges over the past 25 years.  He was honored by the Ohio State Medical Association as Outstanding Team Physician in 2012.     

Dr. Weldy is a passionate teacher of family medicine, sports medicine, and specifically musculoskeletal physical examination.  He is an active member in many professional societies, served on the family medicine research committees at NEOUCOM and OAFP, and currently for the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine.  He was cited as one of Northeast Ohio’s top doctors in 2006 and 2007, and a Top Doc in Northwest Ohio in US News and World Report in 2011 and 2012.  Dr. Weldy’s clinical interests are sports medicine and exercise physiology.  His research interests are in cognition and physical fitness as well as energy drink use, depression, and substance use.         

  To schedule an appointment with a Family Medicine physician, call the Department of Family Medicine at (419) 383-5000.
Last Updated: 9/30/15