- Who We Are
Who We Are
We are a group of students, residents, and faculty who are promoting the Penn Global Surgery Group mission through education, collaboration, and research.
Mattia Mahmoud serves as one of the Co-Directors of PGSG. She grew up in Rocky Mount, NC and studied Applied Math at Harvard College. She has spent extended periods of time volunteering in hospitals in both Ghana and Egypt, and conducted quality improvement research in South Africa. Her current interests are in both exploring sustainable surgical approaches and expanding psycho-social support services in post-operative care for patients in resource-limited settings.
Keshav is one of the Co-Directors of PGSG. He grew up in Tampa, Florida and majored in Mathematics and Molecular & Cellular Biology at Johns Hopkins University. While in college, Keshav spent a lot of time shadowing in the OR and helped coordinate multiple mobile clinics in Honduras through Global Medical Brigades, sparking his interest in global health and surgery. He hopes to combine these passions with his desire to work with pediatric populations as a physician, with the ultimate goal of opening a pediatric surgery clinic in India for underserved populations.
Lunch Talk Coordinator
Isabel Ryan is one of the lunch talk co-coordinators for PGSG. She grew up in New York and studied molecular and cellular biology and history at Johns Hopkins University. Her interest in global health stems from participating in a global brigades trip to Honduras during her sophomore year of college. She hopes to combine her passion for global health and surgery into her future career as a physician.
Lunch Talk Coordinator
Roby Daniel is one of the Co-Lunch Talk Coordinators of PGSG. He grew up in Long Island and studied Chemistry, Psychology, and Business Administration at CUNY Brooklyn College. Roby’s passion for global health arose from working with Global Medical Brigades in Nicaragua and Panama during his undergraduate career. With an interest in urology, he seeks to address issues of access to urologic care in the global setting.
Avi Dravid currently serves as one of the Events Coordinators for PGSG. Born and raised in the Chicago suburbs, he graduated from Northwestern University in 2019 with a degree in Biology and Political Science. After his time at NU, he earned an MSc in International Development & Humanitarian Emergencies from the London School of Economics, where he was a Fulbright Scholar from 2019-2020. Avi later worked for a coalition of health centers in Southern California. He is deeply interested in the nexus between health care and armed conflict, having researched this topic in depth as part of his master's program. In the future, he hopes to develop effective strategies to deliver medical care in conflict-affected and unstable environments.
Lancelot graduated from Cornell in 2020, double majoring in chemistry and biology. As a medical student, he is interested in reducing healthcare disparities around the world through global health research and service trips to increase access to surgical interventions.
Satvika Kumar serves as the Research Chair for PGSG. She graduated from Columbia University and is dedicated to enhancing access to and delivery of health technologies to resource-limited settings. To this end, Satvika leverages her experiences working with a variety of leading institutions, including Credit Suisse, Federation of American Scientists, Accenture, and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. She is interested in healthcare innovation, health equity, and global surgery.
David Rekhtman grew up in Bethesda, Maryland and graduated with degrees in Biochemistry and Biology from the University of Maryland in 2021. He first became interested in global health after providing general health and ENT screenings in Paramaribo, Suriname with the Paul Chester Children’s Hope Foundation (PCCHF). David is currently pursuing the Global Health Area of Concentration and hopes to increase global access to surgery in a sustainable way during his career as a physician.
External Relations Coordinator
David A. Spiegel, MD, is an attending surgeon in the Division of Orthopaedics at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia with expertise in neuromuscular disorders, spine conditions and fractures, and is an associate professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He attended Duke University for college, medical school, and orthopaedic surgical residency training, and then completed both a research and a clinical fellowship in pediatric orthopaedics at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Dr. Spiegel has dedicated considerable energy to volunteer work in low and middle-income countries, most frequently Nepal and Iraq. His myriad contributions to global surgical development are detailed in our At Penn section.
Faculty Research Advisor
Neil Sheth is Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania. He obtained his undergraduate degree in Biomedical Engineering with a minor in Finance at the University of Pennsylvania. He then spent 2 years on Wall Street as a Financial Analyst in Solomon Smith Barney's Healthcare Investment banking division prior to attending medical school at the Albany Medical College. Following medical school, he completed a 6 year Orthopaedic Surgery residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Following residency, he completed an adult hip and knee reconstruction fellowship at Rush University as well as a 3 month mini-fellowship at the Endo Klinik in Hamburg, Germany focusing on peri-prosthetic infection. Dr. Sheth has now returned to join the faculty at the University of Pennsylvania and focuses his research on bone loss pertaining to revision total hip arthroplasty, peri-prosthetic infection and the role of orthopaedic surgery in global health.
Jordan Swanson is an attending surgeon in the Division of Plastic Surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia with special clinical expertise in cleft, craniofacial, and pediatric plastic surgery. His innovation and research initiatives are focused principally on how surgical care can be better adapted to low-resource settings, through design of clinical devices and techniques, locally-driven leadership and team capability strengthening, and reorienting care pathways appropriate to local contexts and resources. In parallel, these initiatives are also generating insight into less-invasive, patient-directed advances for surgical care delivery in tertiary settings. He previously worked and lived in Nicaragua, collaborating with Operation Smile and the Nicaraguan Ministry of Health to build a joint Comprehensive Cleft and Craniofacial program, and is the primary investigator of the Cirugia Para el Pueblo pilot program to advance the access to and impact of rural surgical care in Nicaragua. He also serves as Director of Surgical Innovation at Operation Smile, in which he co-leads development of clinical training programs, surgical research, and clinical program design specific to lower-resource settings, and is a plastic surgeon at the Shriner’s Hospital for Children.
General Surgery Resident Advisor
Omar Ramadan is a fifth-year general surgery resident at Penn. He was born in Pittsburgh, PA, raised in Kobe, Japan, and has Lebanese roots. He completed his undergraduate studies at Emory University, double-majoring in Biology and Economics. He received his medical degree from the University of Alabama School of Medicine and spent a month in Beirut, Lebanon, with a general surgery service at a community hospital. He has a strong interest in health policy and global surgery, particularly in developing efficient and effective surgical care solutions in low-resource settings.