The mission of the Connecticut Chapter of the ASMBS is to encourage collaboration among surgeons, physicians, advanced practice providers, integrated health professionals, and healthcare providers who treat the disease of obesity.

We work to promote prevention, education, and treatment of obesity in the State of Connecticut.

Our focus is on improving access to care for all individuals irrespective of race, religion, or social status.

President: Saber Ghiassi, MD MPH FASMBS
Vice President: Dr. James Healy, MD, MHS
Secretary/Treasurer: Dr. Vanessa Malit, MD FACS FASMBS
Integrated Health Chair: Dawn Garcia, APRN
STAR (State Access to Care Representative): Dr. Danielle Friedman, MD, FACS
Executive Director: Katy Dunay, CPPM
Members at Large: Dr. Juan Holguin, Dr. Grigoriy Klimovich, Dr. Neil Floch

*Past Presidents:

Dr. Darren Tishler, 2021-2023
Dr. Pavlos Papasavas,
2018-2021 (extended term due to Covid pandemic)
Dr. Neil Floch, 
Dr. Aziz Benbrahim,
Dr. Jonathan Aranow,

Non-voting Board Member Obesity Medicine Liaison: Dr. Devika Umashanker

  • Established the Connecticut State Chapter in 2012
  • Established an inclusive organization that welcomes participation from surgeons, advanced practice providers, and integrated health professionals from all programs across the entire state, including private practices, medical group system based entities
  • Proud to be recognized as a top team sponsor for Walk from Obesity events in 2020, 2021 and 2022, having hosted successful walks since 2015
  • Lead Advocacy efforts since 2018 to expand Access to Care for patients in the State of Connecticut, working with state leaders to pass legislation – our work continues!
  • Collaborated and coordinated a combined meeting with The American College of Surgeons in Connecticut
  • Creation and Host of the Obesity Summit – the premier meeting in New England that provides innovative and thought-provoking content – 2018-2020
  • January 26-27, 2023 – Obesity Summit is back and in person! Looking forward to seeing you soon!