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Our Bariatric Team

A team approach to weight loss.

Our bariatric surgeons, nutritionists and psychologists are each involved in providing you with ongoing support through your weight loss surgery and beyond, helping you understand the benefits, as well as the changes and challenges, that accompany life after bariatric surgery.

Physicians

Dr. Anthony DiBenedetto, Bariatric surgeon

Anthony DiBenedetto, MD, FACS
Medical Director, Bariatric Services

Medical School: State University, Buffalo, NY
Internship/Residency: State University, Buffalo, NY
Board Certifications: Bariatric Surgery

 

Gandhi_A
Alok Gandhi, DO, FACOS
Bariatric Surgeon

Alok D. Gandhi, DO, FACS is board certified in general surgery. He completed an internship and residency at St. Barnabas Hospital and a bariatric surgery fellowship at the University Medical Center at Princeton. Dr. Gandhi completed his undergraduate and medical school at the New York Institute of Technology / New York College of Osteopathic Medicine. Dr. Gandhi is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons as well as a Fellow of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). He was elected to the Board of Trustees serving in the New York Chapter of the ASMBS by his fellow New York bariatric surgeons since 2010. In addition, he serves on several local and state committees focused on improving access to quality healthcare. He has published several papers in the fields of bariatric and general surgery.

Midlevel Providers

Niki Legler, NP

Niki Watts is a Nurse Practitioner with a passion for the field of bariatrics. Niki is a Rochester native. She holds a Master’s of Science from the State of New York, University at Buffalo.  Niki holds American Academy of Nurse Practitioner national certification as a Nurse Practitioner in Family health. She has experience in occupational health and critical care. In recent years she has specialized in surgery and has achieved RNFA certification to first assist in surgery .  Niki’s responsibilities include patient management in the office and hospital settings as well as first assisting in surgery as a part of the Rochester General Hospital bariatric team. 

Jaclyn B. Baloga, MPAS, RPA-C

Jackie is a Rochester native who graduated with a Bachelors of Science in 2007 and then a Masters of Physician Assistant Science from Gannon University in Erie, PA in 2008. She worked in Neurosurgery in Harrisburg, PA from 2008 until May of 2010. Jackie then moved back to Rochester, NY and began working in Bariatrics of Western New York in 2010 until present. Jackie also travels to a satellite office in Newark-Wayne to care for patients both preoperatively and postoperatively. She works as a first-assist in the operating room with the surgeons. Jackie's responsibilities are in the office seeing patients, in the operating room and on the hospital floor caring for patients admitted to the hospital.

Megan Kellen, PA

Nurses

Sue Rodems, RN
Clinical Nurse Specialist 

Sue is a Clinical Nurse Specialist on 4500 which is the inpatient unit that specializes in the care of bariatric surgery patients at Rochester General Hospital. Sue earned her Master of Science in Advanced Practice Nursing from St. John Fisher College. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Alfred University and an Associate in Applied Science in Nursing from Erie Community College.

Teresa DiBenedetto, CNS
Clinical Nurse Specialist 

Teresa DiBenedetto is a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) who in the past 4 years has developed a strong interest in the bariatric field and has pursued a specialty in bariatric surgery.  She provides resources to staff, management, physicians, and other health team members regarding care of the bariatric patient.  She also counsels patients and coordinates the monthly support groups.  Teresa is a Registered Nurse (RN) who hold a Masters' of Science degree in Nursing, with a Clinical Nurse Specialist in critical care from the University at Buffalo State, University of New York.  She is a graduate of Niagara University where she received a Bachelors' of Science degree in Nursing.

Nutritionist

Christina JackowetzChristina Mior Jackowetz is a Registered Dietitian (New York State Licensed Dietitian-Nutritionist) with a special interest in weight management and bariatrics. She holds an honors Bachelor of Science degree (with a specialization in Foods and Nutrition) from The University of Western Ontario in London Ontario. She completed her dietetic internship with ARAMARK Healthcare in Toronto Ontario. Christina has several years of experience working in various inpatient departments; more recently, she has taken an interest in outpatient counseling and chronic disease management. She has attended several conferences on obesity management, and continues to research better strategies to counsel patients for behavior change. She is a member of the American Society of Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery Integrated Health Network.

Christina enjoys running, roller blading, baking/cooking and spending time with family and friends. Her interest in cooking led her to complete a Culinary Arts Certificate from George Brown College in Toronto Ontario.

Support Staff

Mariangela Knapp, Bariatric TeamMariangela Knapp 
Program Manager