William A. Johnson, M.D. - Founder
William A Johnson founded the Albanian Health fund and served as board chair until his death in 2012. He was 89 years old. Dr. Johnson was engaged in the practice of general surgery for more than 40 years in California. He was a Diplomate of the American Board of Surgery and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He was a graduate of the Northwestern University Medical School and completed his internship and surgical residency at Cook County Hospital in Chicago, Illinois.
He served his country both as a member of the United States Navy in WWII and Army as M.A.S.H. surgeon in Korea. He also served as the National President of the Christian Medical Society. In addition to his surgical practice, he participated in multiple short-term medical missions -- including missions to Africa, Bolivia, Ecuador, Thailand, Zimbabwe, and the Comoro Islands off the Coast of Africa.
Ryan M. Kwok, M.D. - President
Dr. Kwok is a Major in the U.S. Army and practicing gastroenterologist and transplant hepatologist at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda. He serves as associate program director for the GI fellowship and has an appointment as an assistant professor of medicine at the Uniformed Services University. He has served missions in the United States, East Asia, Ecuador, and Albania.
John W. Gillan, D.D.S, M.S. - VP
Dr. Gillan holds a specialty certificate and masters degree in Endodontics. He is in private practice in Mesa, Arizona and is a past president of the Arizona Endodontic Association. John has served with our team in Albania since 1994. He and his wife, Cindy, have served several times with a medical/dental team in Cameroon, Africa since 2005. He has also served on teams in Romania and Kosova
Phillip G. Svalya, Esq. - Secretary
Mr. Svalya is a trial attorney in active practice in the Santa Clara Valley of California. He is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy, has served as a Navy SEAL and is a retired Captain from the Navy reserves. He is also a graduate of Santa Clara University Law School. With his wife and two children, he has made a trip to Albania accompanying medical doctors of the Albanian Health Fund.
Candy Piña - Treasurer
Ms. Piña is an Administrative Services Manager with Mid-Peninsula Water District after working more than 30 years as a private sector financial controller. She managers financial, accounting, customer service, and human resource functions. Before joining us she volunteered with the "Sports Challenge" and "Kingdom First Ministries" at Stanford University. She has a BS in Accounting from San Jose State University.
Catherine Cowles, BSN RN OCN
Ms. Cowles is a graduate of the Baptist College of Health Sciences in Memphis, and her initial assignment as a nurse was in the Cardio Pulmonary Transplant Unit at Baptist Memorial Hospital. She is currently Physician Nurse at the West Cancer Center in Germantown, TN alongside her father, Dr. Al Weir. She has also served on the staff of a local church in children's ministries.
Mark Johnston, M.D.
Dr. Johnston is a graduate of Hahnemann Medical University and works in a private gastroenterology practice in Lancaster, PA. He is a retired Navy Captain and former head of gastroenterology at the National Naval Medical Center. He has joined multiple short term medical missions to Albania, Kenya and China. He holds two US patents for his GI research and has received numerous military, academic, research and humanitarian awards.
Mary Kwok, M.D.
Dr. Kwok graduated from the University of Washington and the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, School of Medicine. She completed her residency at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and trained in hematology-oncology at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. She is now a staff hematology-oncology physician in Bethesda, MD. Mary and her husband Ryan have served our team since 2016.
Zefjan Nikolla is the General Secretary of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Student in Albania. He also serves as Pastor of the Emanuel Evangelical Church in Tirana, Albania. Mr. Nikolla has studied at the Tirana University in the fields of English language and literature as well as the Albanian language.
Rudolph Oehm, M.D.
Dr. Oehm graduated from SUNY Buffalo School of Medicine after serving in the USAF and completed his training at Boston City Hospital. He is board certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular diseases and a Fellow of The American College of Cardiology. Now a staff physician at Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, he has made medical missions to Honduras, Dominican Republic, and Mexico, and teaching trips to Kenya, Malaysia, Thailand, Kosovo, and Albania.
Eugene S. Smith, III, M.D.
Eugene Smith is an Associate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Cardiology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. For 19 years he served as Program Director of the Cardiology Fellowship Program and currently serves as the Associate Chief of Medicine at the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System in Little Rock. Eugene has participated in a wide variety of medical missions across the world over the last 35 years. In 2015, he made his first trip to Albania.
Edvin Selmani, M.D.
Dr. Selmani graduated from the University of Tirana Albania Medical School and completed his residency in Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery in 2003. He earned a certificate of Fellowship in Foot and Ankle Surgery at Campbell Clinic.He has a Masters in Orthopaedics and PHD degree. Since 2005 he has worked as an orthopaedic and trauma surgeon in the University Hospital Center Mother Theresa in Tirana and is involved with student teaching. He served as President of Albanian Christian Medical and Dental Association from 2005-2007.
Al Weir, M.D.
Dr. Weir specializes in Hematology and Oncology, and works in private practice and as a professor of medicine at UT Health Science Center as the program director for their hematology and oncology fellowship. He served as national president of CMDA from 2001-2003. His mission experience includes two years in Nigeria with the Southern Baptist Foreign Mission Board and multiple trips to Albania with AHF. Dr. Weir co-wrote and published a book entitled When Your Doctor Has Bad News and a devotional book for healthcare providers entitled Whispers.