Meet Our Surgeons

Charles Callery, Medica Director, Bariatric Center at Pomerado Hospital, Poway, North San Diego County

Charles D. Callery, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Medical Director 

Dr. Charles Callery is a General Surgeon specializing in weight loss surgery. As Medical Director, Dr. Callery provides clinical oversight and leadership at Palomar Medical Center Poway for our Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence. He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. Since 1991, Dr. Callery has been performing bariatric surgery for patients with severe obesity.

He is a member of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) and the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES).

"I find helping obese patients achieve a more normal and healthier life both technically challenging and personally rewarding. Obesity surgery is one of the most optimistic specialties of medicine." 


Julie Ellner, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Dr. Julie Ellner was the first woman in the world to perform the laparoscopic gastric bypass and was one of the world's first instructors, teaching surgeons how to perform laparoscopic bariatric surgery. She even performed a laparoscopic gastric bypass on the surgeon who invented it. 

Her role models were country surgeons who allowed her to observe operations at a very young age, and it was from these rural doctors that she learned how to deliver care in a warm, personal manner. 

Dr. Ellner feels inspired by her patients, as many of them take up hiking, surfing, running and other activities after they lose weight. 


Sam Filiciotto, M.D.

Dr. Sam Filiciotto is a General Surgeon assisting Dr. Callery with bariatric surgery. He trained at the University of Iowa and New York Medical College. Dr. Filiciotto is fluent in Spanish.

Karen Hanna, M.D.

Dr. Karen Hanna completed her residency at the Navy Medical Center Portsmouth in Virginia, followed by a minimally invasive surgery and bariatric surgery fellowship at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri. 

She is a board-certified physician who has practiced in San Diego County since 2008 at the Navy Medical Center and in hospitals and medical centers throughout North San Diego County.

Dr. Hanna specializes in general and bariatric surgery. 

Ramin Sorkhi, M.D., F.A.C.S.Ramin Sorkhi, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Dr. Ramin Sorkhi completed his residency in general surgery at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, followed by an accredited fellowship in advanced laparoscopic surgery and bariatric surgery at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore. 

He is a board certified surgeon specializing in minimally invasive laparoscopic abdominal surgery.  He is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons, a Member of the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons, and a Member of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.


 Meet Our Team

Florence Tai, RN, BSN, CBN

Florence Tai, RN, BSN, CBN

Bariatric Clinical Coordinator

Florence coordinates your surgical process with the hospital. She is a certified bariatric nurse and is available as a patient resource throughout your weight loss surgery journey with us. 


Leilani Guirnalda, RN

Part-Time Bariatric Clinical Reviewer  

Do you have questions about the Bariatric Center at Palomar Medical Center Poway in North San Diego County? For more information please visit our Surgical Procedures or contact us