In addition to the faculty listed below, we have a multitude of adjunct faculty at the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus Internal Medicine Residency.
Sarah Assem, M.D., FACP
Dr. Sarah Assem is a native Arkansan and University of Arkansas graduate earning a bachelor of science in biology in 2007. She went on to earn a medical degree with high honors in 2011 from the Ross University School of Medicine. She completed her internal medicine residency in 2015 at the UCLA-Kern Medical Center, serving as chief resident during her final year. Dr. Assem received the Department of Medicine’s Chairman Award as well as the Community Service Award in 2015. Before coming back to Arkansas, she practiced in Vancouver, Washington initially as a hospitalist physician at Peacehealth Southwest Medical Center and then as an outpatient Internist at the Vancouver Clinic for several years. During this time she was appointed clinical faculty positions at Washington State University and the University of Washington and helped teach medical students during their 3rd and 4th years. Through the partnership of Vancouver Clinic and Legacy Health, Dr. Assem was intimately involved in the formation and accreditation of the Legacy Salmon Creek Internal Medicine Residency which matched it’s first class in 2022. She served as the core faculty for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Social Determinants of Health. While in Vancouver, Dr. Assem engaged in community panels, grand rounds and many other platforms discussing and formulating strategies to tackle health inequities in the area.
Dr. Assem finds real joy teaching not only about medicine, but the importance of being a socially aware physician in the 21st century. Being a first generation Iranian-American is at the core of Dr. Assem’s existence. Through her own struggles while growing up in Farmington, Arkansas and watching those of her parents, she has been an advocate for the equal treatment of the underrepresented paying particular attention to communities who have endured significant generational trauma for centuries. She hopes to build relationships with local community groups and health organizations to create pipeline programs for area youth who desire to become physicians in the future. She also hopes to train and retain high quality residents to stay in NWA after graduation to help serve the rapidly growing population of the area.
Dr. Assem is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) in Internal Medicine. She is also a member of the American College of Physicians.
Kristen Brandon, M.D., FACP
Associate Program Director
Dr. Brandon received her undergraduate education at Baylor University. She received a Bachelor of Science in Biology with a minor in Chemistry and Spanish. Dr. Brandon went on to medical school at UAMS and went on to complete a Med/Peds residency at UAMS. She served as a PGY-5 Chief Resident at Arkansas Children’s Hospital and found the experience a formidable one that invigorated her to remain in medical education. After she completed her chief residency, she went on to practice rural-based hospitalist medicine at Baptist Hospital in Arkadelphia for several years.
During her time working as a hospitalist, she taught medical students from NYIT College of Medicine at Arkansas State University and in 2021 began teaching residents for UAMS. Dr. Brandon has won several awards including the NYIT Preceptor of the year award in 2020, Top 20 under 40 years old in Arkadelphia and the Trademark Women of Distinction Award in 2018.
Dr. Brandon is married and has two daughters. As a family they love spending time in the outdoors, especially with their dog, Scout. They love fishing, hiking, camping and Razorback sports! In her free time, she loves to run, read, and cook.
Dr. Brandon is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Pediatrics. She also serves as a Fellow for the American College of Physicians.
Larry D. Wright, M.D., FACP, AGSF
Dr. Wright is the associate program director of the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus Internal Medicine Residency Program and an associate professor in the UAMS Department of Internal Medicine. He received his medical degree at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock. He completed his internal medicine residency at St. Louis University and his geriatric medicine fellowship at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New York. He was in a community-based practice with Rogers Diagnostic Clinic in Rogers, Arkansas, for ten years before joining the UAMS Donald W. Reynolds Department of Geriatrics. He also serves as a staff physician at the Butterfield Trail Village retirement community.
Dr. Wright was the founding director of the Schmieding Center for Senior Health and Education. His was the principle investigator in several research projects funded by the Schmieding Center, Reynolds Foundation, and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation Awards. His scholarly activities have resulted in publications in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society and other academic journals and national magazines. He has extensive community involvement and served on the board of directors for organizations in this area including the Northwest Health System. During his tenure at UAMS, he was awarded the Red Sash Award for outstanding clinical teaching by the fourth-year medical students in 2014.
Dr. Wright is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and a fellow of the American Geriatric Society. He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in Internal Medicine and Geriatric Medicine. He is also a certified hospice medical director.
Amanda L. Jones, M.D.
Core Faculty at Mercy Hospital Rogers
Dr. Jones is a hospitalist at Mercy Medical Center in Rogers, Arkansas, and a core faculty of the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus Internal Medicine Residency. She received her medical degree at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock. She then completed her residency in internal medicine at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City. She joined the staff of Mercy Medical Center in February 2019 and served as adjunct faculty for the UAMS/Mercy Internal Medicine residency from October 2019 until joining the core faculty in November 2022.
Dr. Jones is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) in Internal Medicine.
Robert W. Donnell, M.D.
Core Faculty at Mercy Hospital Rogers
Dr. Donnell is a hospitalist at Mercy Medical Center in Rogers, Arkansas, and a core faculty of the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus Internal Medicine Residency. He received his medical degree at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee. He then completed his residency at St. Louis University in Missouri. He has served on numerous hospital committees including facility medical informatics, infection control, pharmacy and therapeutics, and antibiotic stewardship. He also published more than a dozen articles on Medscape, a web-based resource for physicians and healthcare professionals.
Dr. Donnell has been a member of Society of Hospital Medicine, American Medical Association, Southern Medical Association, and Arkansas Medical Society. He is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) in Internal Medicine.
Glenda M. Patterson, M.D., FCCP
Core Faculty at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks
Dr. Patterson is a staff physician with the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks and a core faculty of the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus Internal Medicine Residency. She received her medical degree at Emory University in Georgia. She completed her internal medicine residency at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in Houston. She completed a pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship at the Medical College of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and a heart/lung and lung transplant medicine fellowship at Stanford University in California. She has held academic appointments at the University of South Florida, University of Mississippi, and Morehouse School of Medicine.
Dr. Patterson has served as the director of the pulmonary rehabilitation program and adult cystic fibrosis program at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She served on the committees of the American Thoracic Society including the clinic practice committee, postgraduate education committee, and task force on women’s issues. Among her various professional activities, she served on the ventilator management committee at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks and institutional biosafety committee at the University of Arkansas.
Dr. Patterson is a fellow of the American College of Chest Physicians and a member of the American Thoracic Society and International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation. She is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, and Critical Care Medicine.
Drake J. Rippelmeyer, M.D.
Core Faculty at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks
Dr. Rippelmeyer is a staff physician with the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks and a core faculty of the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus Internal Medicine Residency. He received his medical degree at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis and was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honorary Medical Society. He completed a family practice internship at Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He then completed his internal medicine internship and residency at the Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he served as a chief resident. He was also trained in upper GI endoscopy and colonoscopy.
Before joining the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks, Dr. Rippelmeyer worked at the Whiteriver PHS Indian Hospital in Arizona, where he served both as a primary care provider and as an internal medicine consultant. He was also the director of several clinics there as well as a member of the ethics committee and pharmacy and therapeutics committee. After his service in Arizona, he joined the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks, where he served as a hospitalist and the chief of medical service. He is currently an assistant chief of medicine.
Dr. Rippelmeyer is a member of the American College of Physicians. He is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) in Internal Medicine.