Assemblymember Sarah Reyes Honors UCSF Fresno Physician With Outstanding Leadership Award

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, Assemblymember Sarah Reyes (D-Fresno) honored Katherine A. Flores, MD, director of the UCSF Fresno Latino Center for Medical Education and Research, with an award for outstanding leadership in the area of medicine.

“It is an honor to be in the company of such exceptional people,” said Flores. “It is a special thrill to be recognized for doing something that I believe in and enjoy.”

Flores was nominated for co-founding the Doctor’s Academy and Junior Doctor’s Academy in Fresno. These programs seek to increase the number of educationally disadvantaged students who consider pursuing a career in the health science professions.

The Doctor’s Academy at Sunnyside High School graduated its first class of 38 students in May. More than one-third of the students, many of them the first in their family to attend college, were admitted to University of California campuses; and all are attending college this fall.

Flores received the award at a ceremony September 16 at Arte Américas in downtown Fresno.

Born into a family of migrant farm workers and raised by her grandparents, Flores graduated from Roosevelt High School in Fresno. She earned degrees from Stanford University and the UC Davis School of Medicine and returned to the Valley to practice.

Since college, she has worked with numerous organizations to increase the number of Latinos entering the medical field. Flores also is a faculty member of the UCSF Fresno Medical Education Program and practices family medicine in a group office with four other bilingual female physicians.

Outstanding Leadership Awards are given by Assemblymember Reyes to recognize exceptional Hispanics in the Valley who have dedicated their time and effort to improving the community. Individuals are recognized in several categories including non-profit employee, public safety, small business owner, medicine, legal and justice, and community volunteer. This is the fifth year Reyes has hosted the event. Local organizations and community leaders throughout the 31st Assembly District submitted nominations for the distinguished awards.

“It is a privilege to recognize outstanding leaders in our community,” said Reyes. “These exceptional individuals have defined what it means to be a leader not only in the Hispanic community, but to our Valley.”

This marks the third year that UCSF Fresno-affiliated physicians have received the Outstanding Leadership Award in medicine. Past recipients include Edward Moreno, MD, assistant clinical professor of pediatrics for UCSF Fresno, and Adriana Padilla, MD, director of UCSF Fresno’s Undergraduate Medical Education Program.

“We are especially proud of all of our faculty and staff,” said Joan Voris, MD, associate dean of UCSF Fresno. “We are grateful to Assemblymember Reyes for recognizing UCSF Fresno’s numerous and varied contributions to advancing health care in the San Joaquin Valley.”

UCSF Fresno educates one in every three Central Valley physicians currently practicing in the seven specialty programs offered. UCSF Fresno offers specialty training in family practice, internal medicine, emergency medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry, surgery and obstetrics/gynecology. In addition, UCSF Fresno educates about 400 medical students annually