The next meeting of the Medical Board of California will be in Sacramento January 26-27. The MBC’s two-member medical marijuana task force will meet soon thereafter to hear from “interested parties” on whether to modify the board’s current policy regarding physicians authorizing patients to use cannabis as medicine.
The Federation of State Medical Boards is pushing “model guidelines” that would constrain cannabis clinicians. The Society of Cannabis Clinicians wants the board to reject the changes the Federation is proposing. Most odious: the FSMB would prevent doctors who approve marijuana use by patients from using it as medicine themselves! A close second: investigations would be triggered by the number of mj approvals a doctor issues (instead of complaints of harm).
The two MBC members who volunteered to be on the marijuana task force are Howard Krauss, MD, and Kristina Lawson. Krauss, according to a reliable source, is “brilliant but anti-cannabis.” He’s an opthalmologist who trained at UCLA. Doesn’t he know that Hepler confirmed Robert Randall’s intraocular pressure going down when he smoked? “Krauss trained under Hepler himself,” said our source. “He says there are other glaucoma drugs now, and you’d have to be smoking constantly all day.” Could Krauss be brilliant and not know about edibles? Does not compute.
There is a vacancy on the board —a member of the public to be appointed by Governor Jerry Brown. Marsha Rosenbaum of the Drug Policy Alliance would be a good fit and would have useful knowledge to contribute.
Below you’ll find nuts-and-bolts info from the Medical Board of California website, including brief biographies of the members.
Current membership is 15 —8 physicians and 5 public members appointed by the Governor; 1 public member appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly; and 1 public member appointed by the Senate Rules Committee.
Board Members – May 2016
|Name||Classification||Appointing Authority||Appointment Date||Term Expiration|
|Dev GnanaDev, M.D.
|Ronald H. Lewis, M.D.
|Michelle Anne Bholat M.D.||Physician||Governor||03-02-15||06-01-18|
|Michael Bishop, M.D.||Physician||Governor||12-21-11||06-01-17|
|Judge Katherine Feinstein (ret.)||Public||Governor||01-13-16||06-01-20|
|Randy W. Hawkins, M.D.||Physician||Governor||03-02-15||06-01-20|
|Howard R. Krauss, M.D.||Physician||Governor||08-20-13||06-01-17|
|Kristina D. Lawson, J.D.||Public||Governor||10-28-15||06-01-18|
|Sharon Levine, M.D.||Physician||Governor||02-11-09||06-01-19|
|Brenda Sutton-Wills, J.D.||Public||Senate Rules Committee||04-06-16||06-01-19|
|David Warmoth||Public||Speaker of the Assembly||03-04-16||06-01-19|
|Jamie Wright, J.D.||Public||Governor||08-20-13||06-01-18|
|Felix C. Yip, M.D.||Physician||Governor||02-01-13||06-01-18|
Governor appointees may continue to serve in a grace period for 60 days past their expiration date.
Senate and Assembly appointees may continue to serve in a grace period for one year past their expiration date.
Medical Board of California Officers
Dev GnanaDev, M.D.Dev GnanaDev, M.D., of Upland, has been appointed to the Medical Board. He serves as chair of the Department of Surgery at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, a position he has held since 1989. He is a clinical professor of surgery at Western University for Health Sciences and an associate professor of surgery at Loma Linda University. He served as president of the California Medical Association from 2008 to 2009. Dr. GnanaDev has received a multitude of honors and recognition for his outstanding work and commitment to those who utilize public health programs, including the Medical Board’s Physician Recognition Award in February 2005. He earned his medical degree from the Kurnool Medical College in Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 06/04/15 | Term Expiration: 06/01/19
Denise PinesDenise Pines, of Los Angeles has been appointed to the Medical Board. She is responsible for strategic planning and business development for Denise Pines, Inc. She served as President for The Smiley Group from 1998 to 2010. She launched Pines One Publications in 1993. Prior to starting her business over 15 years ago, Ms. Pines held management positions at AT&T, Neiman Marcus, Louis Vuitton, and The Gap.
Ms. Pines has a bachelor of science degree in marketing from San Francisco State University, a master’s degree in international business from John F. Kennedy University and a master’s degree in finance from Stanford University.
Classification: Public | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 09/11/12 | Term Expiration: 06/01/20
Ronald H.Lewis, M.D.Dr. Ronald H. Lewis, of Rancho Mirage, California, was appointed to the Medical Board of California in 2013 by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Dr. Lewis has been a physician and surgeon with the California Department of Corrections at Ironwood State Prison since 2008. He also has been an assistant clinical professor at the University of California, San Diego Department of Medicine since 2000. Prior to that, Dr. Lewis was an urgent care physician at Eisenhower Immediate Care from 2003 to 2008, and Sharp Rees-Stealy Medical Group from 2001 to 2004. Lewis was the director of medical affairs at Agouron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 1997 to 2001 and at Sequus Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 1995 to 1997. He was a clinical assistant professor at Stanford University School of Medicine from 1993 to 1999, and held multiple positions at Syntex Laboratories, Inc. from 1987 to 1995, including associate director of medical services, senior associate director of medical services, and senior associate director, clinical investigation. Dr. Lewis was an emergency department physician at St. Mary’s Hospital and Medical Center in San Francisco from 1985 to 1995. Dr. Lewis earned his Doctor of Medicine degree at The George Washington University in Washington D.C., and is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 08/20/13 | Term Expiration: 06/01/17
Michelle Anne Bholat M.D.Dr. Michelle Anne Bholat was appointed to the Medical Board by Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr., in 2015. She is Professor and Executive Vice Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. In 2014 she was elected to the Board of the California Beach Cities Health District serving the communities of Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, and Redondo Beach, California. She is also an appointed Los Angeles County Public Health Commissioner.
Throughout her career, Dr. Bholat has worked to improve access and quality of care for all patients including the vulnerable and underserved. She co-founded the UCLA International Medical Graduate (IMG) Program, a nationally‐recognized effort to increase the number of bilingual Family Medicine physicians serving in medically‐ underserved rural and inner‐urban communities. Dr. Bholat is a former leadership fellow of the National Hispanic Medical Association (NHMA), and has received the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services Recognition of Service Award for her leadership and dedication.
Dr. Bholat earned her medical degree from the University of California Irvine College of Medicine, and her Master of Public Health degree in health care policy and management from UCLA.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 03/02/15 | Term Expiration: 06/01/18
Michael Bishop, M.D.Michael Bishop, M.D., of San Diego, has been appointed to the Medical Board. He is director of anesthesia for same-day surgery at the University of California, San Diego Medical Center in Hillcrest and held this position since 2008. He is an attending anesthesiologist and clinical professor of anesthesiology at the University of California, San Diego and serves as quality officer for the Department of Anesthesiology. Dr. Bishop worked as a private practice anesthesiologist from 1992 to 2006. He received his medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 12/21/11 | Term Expiration: 06/01/17
Judge Katherine Feinstein (ret.).Katherine Feinstein retired as Presiding Judge of the San Francisco Superior Court, after serving 12 years on the bench. As a trial judge, she presided over virtually every type of case to come before a state trial court. Concurrently, she served a four-year term on the Commission on Judicial Performance, the body responsible for the discipline of judges and justices.
Feinstein’s past public service also includes membership on the San Francisco Police Commission and as Director of the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice. Currently, she sits as a Member of the Board of Directors of the Edgewood Center for Children and Families, an agency dedicated to providing residential and community services for children suffering from the effects of abuse, neglect and a broad spectrum of mental illnesses.
Feinstein is a Phi Beta Kappa undergraduate of UC Berkeley and received her J.D. from UC Hastings College of the Law.
Classification: Public | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 01/13/16 | Term Expiration: 06/01/20
Randy W. Hawkins, M.D.Dr. Randy W. Hawkins of Los Angeles was appointed to the Medical Board by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. in 2015. He has been in private practice since 1985. His medical practice is composed of primary care, pulmonary and critical care medicine and hospice care. He is Board Certified in internal medicine and pulmonary and critical care medicine. He is clinical assistant professor of medicine at the Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science. Dr. Hawkins is president of the Charles R. Drew Medical Society of Los Angeles (2014-15) and is a member of the Golden State Medical Association of California and the National Medical Association, the American Thoracic Society, California Thoracic Society and Trudeau Society of Los Angeles. He earned a Doctor of Medicine degree from Hahnemann Medical College in 1979. He completed his pulmonary and critical care fellowship at the University of California at San Diego in 1985.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 03/02/15 | Term Expiration: 06/01/20
Howard R. Krauss, M.D.Dr. Howard R. Krauss was appointed to the Medical Board by Governor Edmund G. Brown in 2013. He has been in the private practice of ophthalmology in West Los Angeles since 1984. He is also Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology and Neurosurgery at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Director of Neurosurgical Ophthalmology for the Saint John’s Brain Tumor Program in Santa Monica and Director of Ophthalmology at Pacific Eye & Ear. He is a Mentor Examiner, training Examiners for the American Board of Ophthalmology. He is a founding member and past member of the board of the North American Skull Base Society and currently serves on the boards of the California Medical Association, Los Angeles County Medical Association, California Ambulatory Surgery Association and the Center for the Partially Sighted. Prior to entering medical school he was a Systems Engineer with the Hughes Aircraft Space & Communications Group in El Segundo. He holds degrees in Electrical Engineering from The Cooper Union and Aeronautics & Astronautics from MIT. He completed Residency at the UCLA Jules Stein Eye Institute and Fellowship in Neuro-ophthalmology and Orbital Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh.
Dr. Krauss earned his medical degree from New York Medical College.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 08/20/13 | Term Expiration: 06/01/17
Kristina D. Lawson, J.D.Kristina Daniel Lawson, of Walnut Creek, has been appointed to the Medical Board of California. Lawson is a partner at Manatt, Phelps and Phillips, LLP in San Francisco, where she practices land use and environmental law. Lawson was a member of the Walnut Creek City Council from 2010 to 2014, and served as Walnut Creek’s Mayor in 2014. Lawson earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Santa Clara University School of Law, and a B.A. from the University of Arizona.
Classification: Public | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 10/28/15 | Term Expiration: 06/01/18
Sharon Levine, M.D.Dr. Levine was appointed to the Medical Board by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2009 and re-appointed by Governor Brown in 2011. She is an associate executive director of The Permanente Medical Group and served as a pediatrician from 1977 to 1991. She was a staff pediatrician for the Georgetown University Community Health Plan; a clinical associate in infant nutrition at the National Institutes of Health; and was the director of pediatric services for Montgomery Georgetown Pediatric Clinic. She is a member of many professional associations and on the boards of directors of the Reagan Udall Foundation, the Integrated Healthcare Association, Women’s Foundation of California, California Hospital Association, and the Public Health Institute.
Dr. Levine earned her medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine.Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 06/04/15 | Term Expiration: 06/01/19
Brenda Sutton-Wills, J.D.Brenda Sutton-Wills was appointed to the Medical Board in 2016. Ms. Sutton-Wills is Staff Counsel for the California Teachers Association. She is currently a member of the American Bar Association Employment Rights and Responsibilities Ethics Subcommittee. She has presented at the American Bar Association Labor and Employment Section on topics including the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Ethics and Professional Responsibility, the Impact of Public Pension Problems on Collective Bargaining, and Disability Discrimination. She served as the 2012 Chair of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. She has also presented at the LACBA Labor and Employment Symposium on topics including electronic privacy in employment, social media, and the annual review of labor and employment law. She served as Chair of the Los Angeles Hotel Industry Diversity Taskforce. Ms. Sutton-Wills is a graduate of Drake University, and UCLA School of Law.
Classification: Public | Appointing Authority: Senate Rules Committee | Appointment Date: 04/06/16 | Term Expiration: 06/01/19
David WarmothDavid Warmoth, of San Diego, was appointed to the Medical Board in 2016. A consistent campaigner for social and economic justice issues and HIV/AIDS policy, Mr. Warmoth attended Miami University and received his B.A. in Political Science – International Relations. A pioneer in the nascent personal computer industry, as Director of Marketing, he participated in bringing the first integrated suite of software solutions to market in the early 1980s. As a consultant to government agencies at the Federal, State and local levels, he was able to reimagine processes and organizations to both improve quality of service and lower the cost of those services to taxpayers. Mr. Warmoth was a leader in the Los Angeles chapter of The Names Project, the San Diego Men’s Chorus and recently stepped down as a member of the San Diego LGBT Center’s Community Leadership Council.
Classification: Public | Appointing Authority: Speaker of the Assembly | Appointment Date: 03/04/16 | Term Expiration: 06/01/19
Jamie Wright, J.D.Jamie Wright was appointed to the Board in 2013. She is an attorney licensed to practice law in the State of California. Ms. Wright operates her own practice wherein she handles matters relating to contract drafting and negotiations; contract disputes; general litigation; entertainment transactions; sponsorship agreements; distribution deals; partnership agreements; incorporation for non-profit and for profit entities; reality television agreements; and temporary restraining orders.
Ms. Wright has previously served on the Peace and Justice Commission, City of Berkeley, and the LAX advisory committee as the Culver City Representative. She currently serves as the Secretary to the Board of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Southern California. Additionally, Ms. Wright serves as the Parliamentarian for the California Young Democrats Board. Ms. Wright is a graduate of UC Berkeley and UC Hastings College of the Law.
Ms. Wright currently hosts, and is the associate producer, of NewswireLA, a show that airs on LA Channel 36, Wednesdays at 10pm.
Classification: Public | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 08/20/13 | Term Expiration: 06/01/18
Felix C. Yip, M.D.Dr. Felix C. Yip has been appointed to the Medical Board of California by Governor Jerry Brown in 2013. Dr. Yip is a board certified urologist in private practice and is currently the Chief of Surgery at Garfield Medical Center and Pacific Alliance Medical Center.
Presently he is serving as clinical professor of urology at the Keck School of Medicine – University of Southern California and has served as clinical assistant professor of surgery at UCLA School of Medicine and Western University of Health Sciences in prior years. Dr. Yip is also a UCLA Foundation Governor and a member of the Board of Counselors at UCLA School of Dentistry.
Dr. Yip earned his medical degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, School of Medicine and Public Health, and his M.B.A. in healthcare management from the University of California, Irvine.
Classification: Physician | Appointing Authority: Governor | Appointment Date: 02/01/13 | Term Expiration: 06/01/18
- Kimberly Kirchmeyer, Executive Director
- Elizabeth Amaral, Deputy Director
- Kerrie Webb, Staff Counsel
- Curt Worden, Chief of Licensing
- Christina Delp, Chief of Enforcement
- Jennifer Simoes, Chief of Legislation
- Cassandra Hockenson, Public Affairs Manager
To contact a member of the Board or Executive Staff, please write or call:
Medical Board of California
2005 Evergreen Street, Suite 1200
Sacramento, CA 95815
(916) 263-2389 phone
(916) 263-2387 fax