Meet The OGT Team

We've had amazing growth at One Good Turn this year! It takes a remarkable group of people to develop medical education for our global partners. Meet the One Good Turn team through our Q&A about their work with OGT and other fun facts! You can learn more about our entire One Good Turn team at www.onegoodturn.org/our-team.

L-R, Top: Ann Messer, MD (Founder, Exec. Director), Theresa Spalding, MD (Medical Advisory Board Chair), Lilian Estrada (Director of Operations). L-R, Bottom: Kylee Ahlstedt (Medical Programming Associate), Viana Phan (Medical Programming Associate), Eva Strelitz-Block (Medical Programming Intern).

Q: What has been your favorite part about working with OGT?

Theresa: Working with the interns creating medical information for the community health workers we serve.


Lilian: My favorite part about working with OGT is being able to meet our partners around the world. Although we have been working remotely since I began working with OGT, it is always rewarding to be on a Zoom or WhatsApp phone call with a partner, discussing their community needs.


Kylee: My favorite part about working with OGT is presenting high level medical information in a way that is accessible to those without formal scientific or medical education and is appropriate across cultures. I also love collaborating with the OGT Team and partner communities. Each person has a unique perspective that elevates the quality of our work.


Viana: The OGT Team is undoubtedly my favorite part! Everyone is incredibly kind, supportive, and passionate about what we do.


Q: What is something you worked on with OGT that you're most proud of?

Ann: I’m proud of everything - I’m most proud of our integrity, which shines through in every project we do.


Theresa: Creating the COVID-19 Handbook.


Eva: I’m most proud of my work on OGT’s WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) protocol - it really challenged me because it is a complex topic with lots of areas that require cultural knowledge and sensitivity. I was challenged, but I learned so much about what the goals of public health protocols are and what cultural sensitivity means outside of discussing in the classroom.


Q: What have you learned in your role that has been most helpful to you?

Ann: Leadership is hard. Teaching (everyone from our interns to our international partners) is a great joy for me. To be a great teacher, I must always be a diligent student.


Viana: Working with and writing for our international partners has allowed me to practice cultural humility. I find myself asking more questions about others’ cultures and reflecting on how my own has shaped my knowledge and behaviors. This has become especially useful for addressing health behaviors, terminology, and accessibility while writing health education materials.


Eva: As a medical programming intern, when I am writing medical protocols, I am now always thinking about how my language can convey respect and care for others. I am learning how important it is for me to uncover implicit biases about Western medicine, healthcare, and culture in order for me to be a culturally sensitive provider one day. This mindset is something I want to take with me into my future medical education.


Q: How have any previous experiences impacted your work with OGT?

Lilian: As an English major graduate, one of the most important things I’ve learned through my education that has impacted my work with OGT is how to think critically through a project, and approach it with thought and sensitivity. Whether in communications or medical education writing, it is essential to approach our work with care and understanding - and I like to think my education has impacted my ability to do so.


Kylee: I originally realized my genuine passion for global health during a medical service trip to the Dominican Republic in college. This gave me context for the necessity of the work we do at One Good Turn. Additionally, I earned an interdisciplinary certificate in Social Inequality, Health and Policy which featured coursework on the social determinants of health. This prepared me to address the non-scientific aspects of curriculum development.


Q: What do you enjoy doing outside of OGT work?

Theresa: Gardening, needlepoint, spending time with family.


Lilian: I’m very much a homebody, especially compared to the rest of the OGT Team, haha! I love trying new restaurants, baking, have recently become a born-again puzzle fan, and am an unashamed lover of reality TV.


Viana: I love spending time outdoors, whether it’s hanging out on city green spaces or hiking local trails. I am also always down for a board game night!


Eva: I love doing anything outside -- exploring new hiking spots and walking in new-to-me Austin neighborhoods are some of my favorite things.


Q: What did you want to be when you grew up?

Ann: A ballerina! I loved moving across the rehearsal space or stage, integrated with the music.


Theresa: A doctor, because a boy in my class told me girls couldn’t be doctors! I also wanted to help others.


Kylee: I wanted to be a fashion designer, a chef, a crime scene investigator, a veterinarian… Mostly influenced by TV I watched growing up.


Viana: I don’t remember ever thinking I was going to be anything other than an optometrist when I was a kid. There was something about going to annual check-ups that I loved. The air puff, the color blind test, even the appointment itself was like play for me. It felt safe and was so fun, so it seemed to be a great job for me.


Q: If you were a baseball player, what would your "walk-up" song be?

Ann: Boogie Down by Eddie Kendricks


Kylee: Come on Eileen by Dexys Midnight Runners


Eva: I think I have to go with a Taylor Swift song - I would definitely walk-up (dance-up?) to the plate with Shake It Off serenading me.


Q: What are you reading / listening to / binge watching right now?

Theresa: Ted Lasso


Kylee: I’m mostly listening to The Cranberries and The Smiths right now. They remind me of road trips with my dad.


Lilian: Great-British Bake Off is my Winter show! I just finished the most recent season. It is the perfect, wholesome show.


Learn more about our entire One Good Turn team at www.onegoodturn.org/our-team and our Advisory Councils at www.onegoodturn.org/advisory-council.