Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation (PM&R) Residency

Chief Residents, Class of 2021


Mina Gayed, D.O.
Hometown: Jersey City, New Jersey
Medical School: Rowan University Osteopathic Med School
Interests in PM&R: Brain Injury, Spasticity
Why I chose this program:

“I rotated in the program as a medical student and I loved the camaraderie between the residents and overall culture of the program. Working with the attending physicians here is a huge highlight of the program. We have attendings who are experts in their particular scope of PM&R, and we work with them in a 1:1 ratio. They are engaged in resident learning and are always pleasant to work with.”


Eric Liu, D.O.
Hometown: Bloomington, Minnesota
Medical School: Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Interests in PM&R: Sports and Spine
Why I chose this program:

“In addition to the strong didactics, 100% board pass rate and fellowship placement, I love the call structure at this program. As a PGY II you do the most weekend call which was still only seven weekends in total.  It was really nice having the rest of my weekends free to pursue my personal and academic interests. Also, taking call from home is certainly nice and a lot more comfortable.”


Tomas Salazar, M.D.
Hometown: Summit, New Jersey
Medical School: Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
Interests in PM&R: Interventional Pain Management
Why I chose this program:

“I rotated as a medical student and really enjoyed the culture of teamwork among both the residents and attendings. Everyone supported each other thus creating a really strong environment for learning.”


Mina Shenouda, M.D.
Hometown: East Brunswick, New Jersey
Medical School: Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
Interests in PM&R: Spine and Sports Medicine
Why I chose this program:

“I rotated at JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute as a medical student on the Brain Trauma Unit. I was impressed by the robust educational curriculum and appreciated the smaller, more personal residency class size. I found that the JFK program offered ample resources and opportunities for the residents to explore their interests.”

Class of 2022


Gabrielle Abissi, M.D.
Hometown: Ridgefield Park, New Jersey
Medical School: Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
Interests in PM&R: Cancer Rehab and TBI
Why I chose this program:

“I really liked the small knit environment and the fact that you are one on one with the faculty. I also liked that we have a lot of hands on experience in EMGs and injections.”


Elisa Chiu, D.O.
Hometown: Holmdel, New Jersey
Medical School: Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
Interests in PM&R: Pain Medicine
Why I chose this Program:

“JFK is a well-rounded program giving residents with a strong foundation in which to build their interest upon. We also receive a lot of 1:1 hands on procedure training which helps reinforce our education.”


David Lee, M.D.
Hometown: Leawood, Kansas
Medical School: New York Medical College
Interests in PM&R: Open to everything! General rehab, Sports/MSK, Pain, Brain Injury
Why I chose this program:

“I was drawn to the program because of its unique didactic structure that is resident driven and encourages active learning with supervision from faculty. The smaller class size also allows us to work one-on-one with faculty and develop meaningful relationships.”


Roy Taborda, M.D.
Hometown: Clark, New Jersey
Medical School: Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
Interests in PM&R: Sports and Spine
Why I chose this program:

“The high number of procedures available during our rotations ensures that I will be confident and adept at performing the task myself. The training and education at JFK is also second to none because of all the experienced attending physicians.”

Class of 2023

Jessica Ace, M.D.
Hometown: Ridgewood, New Jersey
Medical School: Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Interests in PM&R: Pediatric Rehabilitation
Why I chose this program:

“I loved that this program provided opportunities to explore all areas of rehabilitation medicine.  It was important to me to have a well-rounded foundation to build my career upon.”

Kasim Babar, D.O.
Hometown: Colts Neck, New Jersey
Medical School: West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine
Interests in PM&R: Sports Medicine and Pain Medicine
Why I chose this Program:

“I wanted to be close to family and friends and be in a great program to further my education and career.”

Malcolm Carson, M.D.
Hometown: Richmond, California
Medical School: Emory University School of Medicine
Interests in PM&R: Musculoskeletal/Sports Medicine
Why I chose this Program:

“I chose this program because of its strong dedication to education of physiatry in all aspects as well as a well rounded exposure to all the physiatry sub-specialties, in order to feel completely ready upon graduation to choose any field I desire.”

Jonathan Wolbert, D.O.
Hometown: Flushing, Michigan
Medical School: Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
Interests in PM&R: Pain Medicine and Sports Medicine
Why I chose this Program:

“I was immediately impressed with the success that all of the residency graduates had after completion of the program. Their ability to consistently obtain fellowships and desired practice placement speaks to the outstanding training received here.  The curriculum provides the perfect opportunity to become a great Physiatrist with direct 1:1 teaching/mentoring relationships.”

Contact Us:

Sara Cuccurullo, M.D.
Residency Program Director
732-321-7000 ext. 62133, 62780
Sara.Cuccurullo@hackensackmeridian.org

Leslie Bagay, M.D.
Assistant Residency Program Director
732-321-7000 ext. 68244
Leslie.Bagay@hackensackmeridian.org

Beverly Bolger, PM&R
Residency Program Coordinator
732-321-7000 ext. 62133
Beverly.Bolger@hackensackmeridian.org

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