Dr. Consuelo (Connie) Casillas is a family physician at Kaiser Permanente (KP) Pasadena Medical Office Building and physician champion for the Equity, Inclusion & Diversity Committee at KP’s Los Angeles Medical Center (LAMC). Dr. Casillas enjoys providing care for a diverse patient population and leading program initiatives to improve health equity and inclusion at LAMC. She also serves as Clinical Faculty for UCLA School of Medicine and clinical preceptor for Kaiser Los Angeles Medical Center’s Family Practice Residency Program since 2000. She is currently involved in assisting with the development and integration of Equity, Inclusion & Diversity into pathway programming at the newly developing Medical School at Kaiser Permanente in Pasadena. Prior to joining Kaiser, Dr. Casillas practiced with Pomona Valley Health Center’s newly established Family Practice Residency Program as its Obstetrical Coordinator and Core Faculty between 1997-2000.
Dr. Casillas completed her undergraduate training at the University of California, Berkeley where she majored in Genetics with a minor in Chicano Studies. She obtained her medical degree from Harvard Medical School and completed an American Heart Association research fellowship at the University of Rochester, New York. After extensive grassroots experience in community based health education, outreach and health care provision for underserved populations including Anthony Jordan Health Center Teen Clinic and Centro de Salud Familiar in Rochester, NY, homeless shelters in Boston, MA, and La Clinica de la Raza in Oakland, CA, Dr. Casillas pursued her residency training at our nation’s first accredited Community Health Center-sponsored Family Medicine Residency program, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center in Lawrence, MA. There she served the predominantly Puerto Rican and Dominican urban communities in a nurturing and passionate environment of clinicians, including the completion of an obstetrical clerkship at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus and various community hospitals in Puerto Rico.
Dr. Casillas’ family hails from South Texas including Corpus Christi, Kingsville, and Raymondsville, but she was raised in the communities of Pico Rivera and Montebello in Southern California. She has enjoyed community volunteering as well as mentoring students in various capacities at the Good Shepherd Shelter in Los Angeles, with Pasadena’s Passageways Homeless Connect Day, at Adelante Mujer’s Latina Conference at Pasadena Community College, with the I Have a Dream Program of Watts and by mentoring undergraduate students with the INROADS and Health Careers Connections Program at Kaiser Permanente and with MiMentor.
In 2015, Dr. Casillas completed a Social Mission Fellowship through Kaiser’s Regional Graduate Medical Education and George Washington’s Health Policy Institute under the tutelage of Fitzhugh Mullan a long-time advocate and renown figure in national and global health equity. Dr. Casillas’ research focused on healthcare workforce development. Specifically, she reviewed the landscape and efficacy of national K-12 pathways for underrepresented minority and economically disadvantaged youth to achieve equitable educational opportunities and ultimately pursue varied careers that will improve the health of populations and communities nationwide. She is currently involved in the development and implementation of the Mentor Advisor Workshop and Medical School Readiness Series which aims to increase the numbers of Latino and other underrepresented in medicine (UIM) students to medical school under a generous grant by Kaiser Permanente’s Regional Community Benefits. Dr. Casillas plans to continue to engage and inform Kaiser’s efforts at workforce development, maintain her passion for mentorship and medical education, and continue her pursuit of the delivery of quality, culturally responsive care to Kaiser’s populations with the ultimate shared vision of “Equity & Inclusion for All.”