Pediatric Neurology Residents


Class of 2014 

John Magruder, MD (Chief)
Hometown: Glen Allen, Virginia
Undergraduate: BS, Virginia Commonwealth University
Medical School: Penn State College of Medicine
Pediatric Residency: Wake Forest School of Medicine


Hi all, my name is John Magruder. I was born in Auburn, Alabama and raised in Richmond, Virginia, where I earned my BS in biomedical engineering at VCU. For med school, I went to Penn State, where I met my lovely wife in a capella singing group, and I followed her to Wake Forest for residency. When home, I love to cook, watch college football, listen to heavy metal, enjoy the great outdoors and play with my baby daughter. 


 Mellekate Vishwas - 2013 Photo
 Mellekate Vishwas, MD
Hometown: Davangere, India
Undergraduate: MBBS, JSS Medical College
Medical School: MD, JJM Medical College
Pediatric Residency: Wake Forest School of Medicine 


My name is Vishwas Mellekate, but most people just call me Vish. I was born and brought up in India where I completed my medical education including medical school and Internal Medicine residency. I came to the US with the intention of becoming a neurologist and started my career as a post-doctoral research fellow in the Department of Neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital. I was fortunate enough to join the Child Neurology Department as a resident here at Wake Forest where I am currently the Chief Resident. I am a fun loving guy and enjoy outdoor activities, but most of all, I enjoy the company of my wife and cute daughter.






Class of 2015


Ilya Khaytin - class of 2015 photo  

Ilya Khaytin, MD
Hometown: Sverdlovsk, Russia
Medical School: Vanderbilt School of Medicine
Pediatric Residency: Wake Forest School of Medicine


Considering that my mom and stepdad are neurologists, I have thought about becoming a neurologist ever since primary school. I immigrated to the US in 1992 and was naturalized 5 years later. I graduated from UC Berkley with honors in the Department of Molecular Cell Biology on the neuroscience track. As an undergraduate, I worked in an Entomology lab helping to study fungal substances that attract termites. I then did two years of psychophysics research studying the effect of rapid visual stimulus presentation on perception, followed by two years of bioengineering post-graduate work. I then started at Vanderbilt in the MD/PhD program where I continued my work on perceptual properties of the primary visual cortex. During my third year of medical school, I discovered that my passion was for Pediatrics and I combined these two interests – pediatrics and neuroscience. In my free time, I like to watch television and movies – particularly old TV series like MASH and newer ones like NCIS. I tinker with computers and actually built the one which I used for my PhD. I like photography and usually take tons of pictures with my old Canon Rebel anytime I go anywhere.


Mariana Ciobanu - class of 2015 photo  Mariana Ciobanu, MD, FAAN
Hometown:  Grinauti Raia, Moldova
Medical School: MD, State Medical & Pharma University - "Nicolae Testimiteanu"
Pediatric Residency: Wake Forest University School of Medicine

There has never been a more exciting time to train as a pediatric neurologist.  Not only can we localize the lesion with our clinical examination, but now have excellent imaging techniques and diagnostic tests that allow us to determine the nature of the lesion.  I am interested in neurodevelopmental and behavioral neurology/neuroscience, advocacy, quality improvement and the delivery of neurological care and education in resource-poor settings. I was drawn to Wake Forest Pediatric residency program due to the extraordinary array of clinical, research, and educational resources, the commitment to education and mentoring provided by the incredibly supportive faculty and staff, and the vibrant academic environment of the medical community.  I feel incredibly lucky to be part of a program that not only offers the comprehensive, rigorous training I was seeking, but also one that includes a team of extraordinarily dedicated residents, faculty and staff who take care of and support one another. The camaraderie, collaboration, and collegiality at our program are what truly makes it an exceptional environment in which to train, in my mind.  Outside of medicine, I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, especially escaping to nature, hiking or going to museums, and reading non-fiction. I have to confess that I am an avid runner and no matter what with the exception of providing patient care, I start and end my day with a 3 miles run.  I find running to be the best sanity fix and a high yield opportunity for instant sensory and mental gratification.



Class of 2016



Lilliana Banari, MDLilliana Banari - photo
Hometown: Edinet, Moldova
Undergraduate: Nursing, Republican Nursing College, Chisnau, Moldova
Medical School: MD, State Medical & Pharma University, " Nicolae Testimitanu"
Pediatric Residency: Wake Forest School of Medicine


I chose Wake Forest because of its excellent reputation for quality in medical education and residency training, the faculty dedicated to teaching, and I love the area that offers a great variety of activities. I was impressed with the feeling of camaraderie between the residents and their enthusiasm about neurology. It's so much easier to learn when people around are so passionate about what they do. The faculty (without exception) is pretty amazing neurologists, and all of them are very focused on teaching and mentorship. Another huge plus of the program is the diversity in faculty members' training so we can benefit from being exposed to different schools' trends. I really appreciate one to one teaching that is a remarkable part of my training here. No matter how busy we are we still get to enjoy each other outside the hospital as well. It's so much to do around here: from great outdoors in the mountains to art shows and great performances at NC School of the Arts.  I feel really lucky to be trained at Wake Forest! It's my dream come true!



Class of 2017

Candace Curry, MD
Hometown: Asheville, NCCandace Curry - Class of 2017 photo
Undergraduate: BS, Wake Forest University School of Medicine
Medical School: MD, Wake Forest University School of Medicine
Pediatric Residency: Wake Forest School of Medicine Candace Curry, MD 

Hi! My name is Candace. I grew up on a farm in the mountains of NC. I am what's known as a "Triple Deac".  I went to Wake Forest for undergrad where I majored in mathematics. For medical school, I had the privilege of continuing my education at Wake. When it came time to choose a residency, I looked at lots of programs but couldn't match the advantages I found right here at Wake Forest. Both the pediatrics and neurology departments are fabulous and Winston-Salem is an easy and fun city to live in. I am loving my intern year in pediatrics. We have a great balance of work, learning, and life outside of the hospital. In my free time, I enjoy relaxing at the lake, visiting family in the mountains, tackling diy home improvement projects, and attending Wake Forest athletic events.



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Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
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Last Updated: 10-16-2014
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