Current Residents Matthew Dashnaw, MD Matthew Dashnaw is a PGY7 resident in neurosurgery. He attended medical school at Ross University School of Medicine. He did his undergraduate studies at Albany College of Pharmacy. His Research / Subspecialty Interests include General Neurosurgery and Traumatic Brain Injury. His hometown is Saranac, New York. Kristopher Kimmell, MD Kristopher Kimmell is a PGY6 resident in neurosurgery. He attended medical school at University of Oklahoma. He did his undergraduate studies at University of Oklahoma. His Research / Subspecialty Interests include General Neurosurgery, Cerebrovascular, Neurocritical Care, Evidence-based Neurosurgery and Outcomes in Neurosurgery. His hometown is Santa Rosa, California. Jonathan Stone, MD Jonathan Stone is a PGY6 resident in neurosurgery. He attended medical school at the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and graduated with AOA in 2010. He performed his undergraduate studies at Drew University where he graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2006 after completing a honors thesis in neuroscience. He plans on pursuing general neurosurgery but has an interest in pediatrics. His current research projects include a retrospective shunt database, quality analysis of carotid artery ultrasound for predicting stenosis and techniques for percutaneous trigeminal rhizotomy. His hometown is Rockland County, New York and he currently lives in Cornhill, Rochester. He enjoys anything outdoors including snowboarding/skiing at Bristol, hiking/camping at Letchworth and Allegany State Parks, and bike riding on the canal trails in Rochester. Stephen Sandwell, MD Steve Sandwell is a PGY5 resident in neurosurgery. He attended medical school at the University of Louisville ('11). He graduated from UC Davis with his BS in Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior ('99). He also completed Physician Assistant training at Alderson-Broaddus College ('02), and worked as a Neurosurgery PA for several years. His sub-specialty interests are in General Neurosurgery, Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery, and Pain. His research interests are in facial pain and CSF related disorders. His hometown is Fairfield, California. He enjoys water polo, fly fishing, swimming, and travel. Katarzyna Czerniecka-Foxx, MD Katarzyna Czerniecka is a PGY4 resident in neurosurgery. Kate attended Medical School of Jagiellonian University, in Krakow, Poland. During her medical education, she undertook elective rotations in neurosurgery and plastic surgery at Hopital de Hautepierre in Strasbourg, Hopital Rothschild in Paris, and at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. She has participated in various research projects on pain science, and traumatic brain injury. Her clinical subspecialty interests include spinal and general neurosurgery. Her hometown is Jaroslaw, Poland. In her free time, she enjoys travelling, working out, and reading about the latest science and technology trends. Kenneth Foxx, MD Kenneth Foxx is a PGY4 resident in neurosurgery. He attended the University of Rochester and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor of science in Biomedical Engineering and a minor of Chemical Engineering. There he was elected to the Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society as a junior and to Phi Beta Kappa as a senior. He went on to graduate from the New York University School of Medicine, where he was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society. His professional interests include spinal and general neurosurgery. In his free time, He enjoys running, biking, snow skiing, water skiing, and spending time with friends and family. Vanessa C. Milano, MD Vanessa C. Milano is a PGY3 resident in neurosurgery. She attended medical school at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and graduated with academic honors in 2009. She was elected to AOA in her junior year, received the Aust Award in recognition of outstanding performance in the Department of Surgery, and was awarded a scholarship from School of Medicine alumni for overall excellence in service to the community, research, and clinical work. While in medical school, Vanessa was actively involved in her regional Neuroscience Society and she tutored junior medical students in neuroscience. She has also performed community work and disaster relief in Nicaraguan and Texas border communities. Prior to medical school, Vanessa attended the University of Notre Dame and completed a curriculum with concentrations in biological sciences and Russian language. Her research at the MD Anderson Cancer Center has focused on molecularly directed therapy in glioblastoma multiforme, and she hopes to continue similar work in the future. Clinically, Vanessa is interested in neurosurgical oncology and neurotrauma. Outside the hospital, Vanessa can be found baking delicious treats, biking or rowing on the canal, playing the violin, or throwing knives in the wilderness. Her hometown is The Woodlands, Texas. Tyler M. Schmidt, DO Tyler M. Schmidt is a PGY3 resident in neurosurgery. He attended medical school at Lake Erie COM and graduated as the academic leader in 2013. He was elected to Sigma Sigma Phi Academic Honors Fraternity as a first ballot selection. Tyler completed his undergraduate studies at Pennsylvania State University and graduated summa cum laude in 2010 with a bachelor of science in biology. He is developing his interests in neurosurgery and research. His hometown is Hometown, PA. In his spare time he enjoys spending time outdoors, working out, reading, hunting, and swimming. Clifford Pierre, MD Clifford Pierre is a PGY2 resident in neurosurgery. He attended medical school at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. He was inducted to the Gold Humanism Honor Society. While in medical school, Cliff served as Co-liaison of the Neurosurgery Focus Group. Cliff was active in community outreach and mentorship of underserved minority populations. He co-founded the Minority Male Leadership Association (MMLA) an affinity group focused on advancing achievements of men of color in Rochester, NY. He also founded the annual premedical conference hosted by the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) which exposes hundreds of high school and college students in the region to careers in the health professions. Cliff also engaged in neuroscience research in the laboratory of Dr. Maiken Nedergaard studying cerebrospinal fluid hydrodynamics as it relates to hydrocephalus. His clinical and research interests are in neurotrauma and pediatric neurosurgery. His hometown is Brooklyn, New York. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling, dancing, and playing basketball. James Towner, MD James Towner is a PGY2 resident in neurosurgery. He is from Madison, Alabama and attended medical school at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine in Mobile, AL. During his medical school career, he was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Society and elected into the Gold Humanism Honors Society by his peers. He was also awarded both the American Academy of Neurology Medical Student Prize for Excellence as well as the Donna B. Ledet Memorial Scholarship. Prior to entering medical school, James graduated cum laude from the University of Alabama with a bachelor degree in chemical engineering and minor in chemistry, having completed two research internships at NASA. His interests in neurosurgery include traumatic brain injury and neurocritical care. In his free time, he enjoys collecting and listening to jazz and rock & roll records, reading, watching Crimson Tide football and spending time with his wife, Mary, and their dogs, Franklin & Elly. Audrey Paulzak, MD Audrey Paulzak is a PGY1 resident in neurosurgery. She was born and raised in the Florida panhandle, and attended medical school at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, AL. During her medical school career she was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Society and the Association of Pathology Chairs Honor Society. She also presented abstracts on neurotrauma clinical research at AANS and ACS national meetings. Before attending medical school, she graduated with a degree in Biophysics from the University of South Alabama at Birmingham, where she participated in medical nanoparticle research that included a summer funded by the National Science Foundation conducting research in Poland and the Czech Republic. In her free time she enjoys spoiling her three dogs, remodeling her Rochester home, playing the piano, traveling, and tackling a garage full of Pinterest projects. Thomas Pieters, MD Thomas Pieters is a PGY1 resident in neurosurgery. He was born and raised here in Rochester, New York and attended The Pennsylvania State University for his undergraduate studies where he received a degree in Psychology with a focus in neuroscience. He attended medical school at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston. During his medical school career he was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Society. While there, he studied language and general cognitive functioning through cortical stimulation mapping, fMRI and electrocorticography. He also spent time involved in international medical outreach, working in hospitals in both Panama and China. His neurosurgical interests are in both epilepsy and pediatric surgery. In his free time, he enjoys going to the park with his dog, traveling, and spending time with family.