Crew 168 - Wilderness Medical Society

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Ben Easter, MD, Crew Commander

Ben Easter is an emergency physician at University of Colorado Hospital in Denver, CO. He attended Harvard Medical School and completed emergency medicine residency at Denver Health Medical Center. While a medical student, he completed the Aerospace Medicine Clerkship at Johnson Space Center, which sparked his interest in space medicine.

Dr. Richard Cole

Dr. Richard Cole completed medical school and an emergency medicine residency at the University of Arkansas in Little Rock.  He completed an Aerospace Medicine residency at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas where he concurrently earned a Master’s of Public Health degree.  He also completed an ultrasound fellowship at the University of Texas at Houston. He currently works as a flight surgeon at the Johnson Space Center and has supported multiple ISS missions and astronaut training in Star City, Russia. He also practices emergency medicine at the University of Texas at Houston and is the medical director of a freestanding emergency room.

Sarah Franks

Sarah Franks is an R.N. with a background in critical care and travel medicine. She is a first year student in the Doctor of Nursing Practice Family Nurse Practitioner program at Rush University in Chicago, IL and also in flight training in the DA20. Her interests include remote medicine, telemedicine and aerospace medicine.

Ian Connelly

Ian Connelly is a family doctor working in Elora Ontario Canada.  He graduated with a Masters in Biochemistry from The University of Western Ontario, a medical degree from the University of Toronto, and completed a residency in Family Medicine at the University of British Columbia.  He has worked in the Northwest Territories, British Columbia and Ontario Canada.  He has interests in basic Sciences and Wilderness Medicine and Space Medicine.  He thanks his family for allowing him the time to do this adventure.

Conrad Balcer

Conrad Balcer is an Invasive Cardiologist in Jefferson City, MO. He graduated with a Doctor in Osteopathy from UHS-COM in Kansas City, MO., completed an Internal Medicine Residency at Charles E. Still Osteopathic Hospital in Jefferson City, MO, and his Cardiovascular Medicine Fellowship at Chicago Osteopathic in Chicago, IL. He has been involved in healthcare delivery for over 40 years in various roles. He has interests in aerospace and wilderness medicine.

Heather Coombs

Heather Coombs is an emergency physician and assistant professor of medicine at McGill University.  She attended medical school at  Memorial University in Newfoundland and completed post graduate training at McGill University. She became fascinated with aerospace medicine while training as a flight surgeon with the Canadian Forces. She has been team physician with the women’s national ice hockey program and consults in operational medicine in her local EMS system. She has interests in music, flying, sailing, and mountaineering.

Alison Matthews

Alison Matthews is an anesthesiologist practicing in the Chicagoland area. She completed her BS in Biology at the University of Illinois, MD at Rush University, Anesthesiology residency at Mayo Clinic and completed a registrar year at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. And in 2013, became a Fellow of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine. Life is not complete without her loved ones, adventure, music, travel and laughter.

Stephanie Couch

Stephanie Couch is an emergency medicine resident in Augusta, GA. She completed medical school at Vanderbilt University and is currently active duty with the US Army. She will be going to South Korea after completing residency and has interests in wilderness and aerospace medicine.