Meet the Officers

The American Society for Hispanic Psychiatry fosters multidisciplinary collaborations in mental health treatment with a particular focus on Latino Populations. Members are practicing psychiatrists, psychologists, and other mental health workers.

It is essential to our growth and success that we maintain a broad based membership and it is essential to have the support of the academic research community to continue to provide opportunities for continuing education for psychiatrists all over the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Ruby Castilla-Puentes MD, DrPH, MBA, President
Ruby Castilla-Puentes MD, DrPH, MBA became Director, Clinical Research supporting Neuroscience Division of Janssen, Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceuticals, as well adjunct professor of Pharmacoepidemiology and Epidemiology at Temple and Drexel Universities of Philadelphia in February 2007. Dr .Castilla-Puentes was born in Colombia, SA. She earned her medical degree from the Universidad Industrial de Santander. Her postdoctoral trainings included a residency in Psychiatry at the Xaverian University, fellowships in Child Psychiatry at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, and in Psychiatric Epidemiology at the Graduate School of Public Health (Master and Doctorate Programs), University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Castilla-Puentes also obtained an MBA degree from the Katz School of Business, with a concentration in Global and International Business.

Dr. Castillla-Puentes was the Director of the Psychiatric Department of a public university hospital – Santa Clara Hospital, Bogota focusing on the development of new treatment options for psychotic disorders. She implemented a renovation process of the psychiatric inpatient unit resulting in her unit being one of the most efficient and state of the art treatment units, for this type of patients. Her research interests are new treatment development, pharmacoepidemiology, psychiatric epidemiology (in Latin American countries), and the use of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data. Her educational and training interests involve lecturing medical students, residents and graduate students, as well as participating as a graduate faculty in psychiatric-epidemiology and psychopharmacology (including University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Pennsylvania, Temple and Drexel in Philadelphia).

Dr. Castilla-Puentes dedicated her career to addressing the health of the underserved, particularly racial and ethnic minority populations, and patients with psychiatric conditions. She is serving as Senior Leadership Team Member for Medical Strategies-Hispanic Organization for Leadership and Achievement (HOLA) and Mental Health Diplomats, J&J employee resources groups. She is one of the founders of WARMI (woman in Quechua), a network dedicated to promoting women’s mental health. Dr. Castilla-Puentes is a longtime member of many global associations and the author/co-author of many scientific publications.

Juan Gallego, MD, President-Elect
Dr. Gallego is a psychiatrist, a physician scientist and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and an assistant Professor at the Institute for Behavioral Science at Feinstein Institute for Medical Research. He received his medical degree from Universidad CES in Medellín, Colombia, completed his residency training in psychiatry at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY, completed a research fellowship at The Zucker Hillside Hospital, the psychiatric hospital for the Northwell Health in Glen Oaks, NY and completed a master’s degree in clinical research methods at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, New York. His work has been focused on studying first episode schizophrenia by conducting randomized controlled trials and by studying gene expression and inflammatory biomarkers in cerebrospinal fluid and peripheral blood samples. He has recently started incorporating neuroimaging approaches to complement his work. He has received funding from the National institute of Mental Health (K23 award) and the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation. He has been a member of the American Society of Hispanic Psychiatry for several years and has served as board member and secretary. He is the current president-elect.

Pamela Montano, MD, Secretary
Pamela Montano Arteaga, MD is Clinical Assistant Professor at New York University. She works as a psychiatrist and Director of Latino Bicultural Clinic at Gouvernuer Health. She completed her Psychiatry Residency at Northwell Hofstra School of Medicine at Zucker Hillside Hospital and a fellowship in Public Psychiatry at Columbia University. She was born and raised in Colombia. Dr. Montano completed her medical school training at Universidad del Valle in Cali (CO). As an APA Minority Fellow (2014-2016), she participated in the Council on Minority Mental Health and Health Disparities. She is currently the Co-Chair of the APA workgroup trying to develop a toolkit to guide providers treating undocumented immigrant population. She is one of the recipients of the 2018 Young Physicians of the Year Awards given by the National Hispanic Medical Association. She also provides consultation for the program of Integrated Care with the Obgyn Department at her work site and she also worked for the Empower Program for victims of Human Trafficking and Sexual Trauma. She is a board member and part of the executive council of the American Society of Hispanic Psychiatry (ASHP). Dr. Pamela Montano is the officer of Infrastructure and Advocacy for the Hispanic Caucus of the American Psychiatry Association (APA) and she is a consultant member for the APA Council Minority Mental Health and Health Disparities for the 2019- 2021. She was recently elected as the chairwoman for the Council of Young Physicians of the National Medical Hispanic Association (NHMA)

Gerardo Villarreal, MD, Treasurer
Dr. Villarreal is staff psychiatrist at the New Mexico VA Healthcare System and Professor of Psychiatry and Neurosciences at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. He is also director of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy training at the UNM psychiatry residency program. Dr. Villarreal interests include the neurobiology and treatment of PTSD, medical informatics and data mining. He has published studies on neuroimaging and psychopharmacology of PTSD.

Board Members

Jose Canaca, MD
Nancy Colimon, MD
Hector Colon-Rivera, MD
Michelle Victoria Dickinson, MSc
Fernando Espi, MD
Fructuoso Irigoyen, MD
Daniel Jimenez, PhD
Yaid A. Puente Jimenez
Roberto Lewis-Fernandez, MD
Ivan Montoya, MD
Mercedes Perez, MD
Ruben Taborda, MD

Frances Bell – Secretariat
PO Box 570218
Dallas, TX 75357-0218
Office: 972-613-0985
Fax: 972-613-5532

Past Presidents

  • Moises Gaviria 1982-1984
  • Eduardo Val 1984-1986
  • Evaristo Gomez 1986-1988
  • Jose Arana (elected & deceased)
  • Bruno Lima (elected & deceased)
  • Jaime Trujillo 1990-1992
  • Walter Pedemonte 1992-1994
  • Renato Alarcon 1994-1996
  • Juan Mezzich 1996-1998
  • Jose Canive 1998-2000
  • Pedro Delgado 2000-2002
  • Javier Escobar 2002-2004
  • Manuel Trujillo 2004-2006
  • Alex Kopelpwicz 2006-2008
  • Maria Oquendo 2008-2010
  • Margarita Alegria 2010-2012
  • Roberto Lewis Fernandez 2012-2014
  • Mauricio Tohen 2014-2016
  • Carlos Zarate, M.D. 2016-2018
  • Bernardo Ng 2018-2020