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San Marino Psychiatric Associates (SMPA)
2400 Mission St.
San Marino, CA 91108


Professional Staff

Many of our staff are recognized leaders in their field, teach others in the profession, and have a long-standing devotion to their professions. All have a devotion to excellent service. Timothy Pylko, MD is described in LA Magazine's Super Doctors as one of the top psychiatrists in the Los Angeles region. Pasadena Magazine's Top Docs, 2014, selected Warren Christianson, MD, Sheela Gade, MD, David Marcus, MD, Frank Minero, MD, Aura-Marie Pawley, MD, Timothy Pylko, MD, and Daniel Suzuki, MD as seven of the fourteen top psychiatrists in the San Gabriel Valley and beyond. Rebecca Nejera, DO was selected for the 2016 edition.
Read article in pdf format (download).


Warren Christianson, D.O.
Dr. Warren ChristiansonWarren Christianson, D.O.
Board Certification: Adult Psychiatry
Dr. "Beau" Christenson is Board Certified in Adult Psychiatry. He completed an Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine in Texas, and he did his Psychiatry Residency at University of Southern California. He has significant experience at the Houston/DeBakey Veterans Administration Hospital and at the prestigious Menninger Clinic in Houston, Texas. He earned his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine from Touro University in Nevada.

Medical School: D.O. (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) from Touro University in Henderson, Nevada
Psychiatry Residency: University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Psychiatry Fellowship: Specialty in Addiction, Baylor School of Medicine, Houston, Texas
California License: 20A8664

Sheela Gade, M.D.
Dr. Sheela Gade is Board Certified in both Adult Psychiatry and in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Dr. Gade completed her adult Psychiatry Residency and Child & Adolescent Psychiatric Fellowship at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, MA. She was the Co-Chief Resident of her Child Fellowship. She was involved in psychiatric resident teaching, and she was also active in teaching medical students at Tufts University Medical School in Boston, MA. Dr. Gade's philosophy is to provide individualized, evidence-based care, and she believes in a collaborative approach with psychologists, therapists, general medical practitioners, pediatricians, and allied providers in psychiatry.
Areas of interest are, but not limited to, the diagnoses and treatment of ADD/ADHD, mood disorders including depression and bi-polar disorder, anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorders, schizophrenia, and other psychotic disorders. Dr. Gade sees children, adolescents, and adults.

Medical School: M.D. degree
Psychiatry Residency: Tufts Medical Center, Boston, MA.
California License: A106042

Frank Minero, M.D.
Dr. Minero OfficeDr. Frank V. Minero is Director of Child and Adolescent services for San Marino Psychiatric Associates. He graduated from the New Jersey College of Medicine, and he completed both a Psychiatric Residency and Child-Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at Los Angeles Country - University of Southern California. He has been in private practice in the Pasadena / San Marino Area since 1974 and with Dr Berry McCord planned and started up SMPA in 1980. His practice includes the evaluation and treatment of children, adolescents, and adults on an outpatient basis.

Dr. Minero has been a member of the Southern California Psychiatric Society for 40 years. He was elected for two terms as a District Councilor and has served on the Ethics Committee. Dr. Minero has supervised Psychiatric Residents at Los Angeles County - University of Southern California as a Clinical Associate professor of Psychiatry since 1975.

Medical School: M.D. degree, New Jersey College of Medicine
Psychiatry Residency: University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Fellowship in Child-Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
California License: G20479

Rebecca Najera, D.O.
Dr. Rebecca Najera is Board Certified in Psychiatry and completed both a Psychiatric Residency and Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship at Los Angeles County – University of Southern California. She served as Chief Resident of inpatient psychiatry during her training. She was a peer elected Graduate Education Representative during her third and fourth years of residency. She was awarded Outstanding Resident from her Psychiatry Residency Program. She has been actively involved in academics, including clinical research, teaching of residents, and medical student education. She continues her role in academia and education as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and the Behavioral Sciences at Keck School of Medicine at USC. She was selected as one of the “2016 Top Docs,” as published in Pasadena Magazine. She is an active member of the American Psychiatric Association and the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. She provides expert opinions as a forensic psychiatrist. In her practice, she treats a wide range of disorders.
Medical School: D.O. degree, Western University of Health Sciences, CA
Psychiatry Residency:  University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Fellowship in Forensic Psychiatry: University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
California License: 20A12794

Aura-Marie Pawley, M.D.
 Dr. PawleyDr. Gigi Pawley as she is commonly known, completed both her residency training in General Psychiatry and Fellowship training in Child, Adolescent and Family Psychiatry at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California. Upon completion of training, she joined San Marino Psychiatric Associates (SMPA) and Pacific Clinics East in Monrovia, where she was Medical Director for several years. Dr. Pawley has extensive training and experience in the diagnosis and management of acute and chronic psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders, developmental and other disorders of childhood. She is especially interested in taking care of ADHD patients as children, youth, or adults, along with their families.

Dr. Pawley conducts comprehensive and thorough psychiatric evaluations to ensure proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment of her patients. She believes in a global approach to psychiatric care, which includes biological, psycho-social, and spiritual components of treatment. It is also her practice to encourage collaborative care of her patients with other medical providers, therapists, and educators involved in the care of her patients.

Residency in General Psychiatry and Fellowship in Child, Adolescent and Family Psychiatry, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA.
California License: A63825

Timothy Pylko, M.D.
Tim Pylko, MD Findatopdoc Top Doctor BadgeAssistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, UCLA School of Medicine
Adjunct Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, USC School of Medicine
Partner, San Marino Psychiatric Associates

Dr. Pylko earned his undergraduate degree with an Honors in Neurophysiology at McGill University in Montreal and then received his medical degree at the University of Toronto where he was given the Stan Kushner Award for best student in Psychiatry. He completed both his psychiatry internship and residency at the UCLA San Fernando Valley Program. He is board certified in psychiatry. Dr. Pylko is a member of the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the California Psychiatric Association, and the Southern California Psychiatric Society.

He is an active member of Aurora Las Encinas Hospital in Pasadena, California where he also has a position as a service director of one its units. Dr Pylko has been a principal investigator or co-investigator in several clinical trials. He has been a presenter at national medical conferences including the American Psychiatric Association Institute on Psychiatric Services and the National Council for Behavioral Health. He has been awarded Super Doctor status from Los Angeles Magazine and TopDoc from Pasadena Magazine for multiple years. In 2009 at the annual meeting of NAMI California he was awarded Recovery Practitioner of the year. In 2014 he received the "Exemplary Psychiatrist" award from NAMI national that was presented at the American Psychiatric Association annual meeting in New York City. In 2015 he was honored for his “distinguished service in the field of recovery” at the “Polo in the Palisades” Promises Foundation fund-raiser for Miriam’s House.

Dr Pylko's primary specialty is working with complex mood disorders and their comorbidities, which frequently includes substance use disorders. He embraces a Bio-Psycho-Social-Spiritual approach to treating patients. He is passionate on fighting stigma in mental illness. He collaborated with the film-makers Lisa Klein and Doug Blush on the documentary "Of Two Minds" exploring the lives of those dealing with Bipolar Disorder that recently won a "Voice Award" from SAMHSA. He is currently working with them on a film project about suicide.

Medical School: M.D. degree, University of Toronto School of Medicine, Toronto, Canada (1982)
Psychiatry Residency: UCLA, Los Angeles, CA (1986)
California License: G051671

Daniel Suzuki, M.D.
Dr. Suzuki received his undergraduate degree at Stanford University, attended medical school at Northwestern University Medical School and completed his residency at the UCLA San Fernando Valley Program in Psychiatry. He is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the USC Keck School of Medicine. Dr. Suzuki was selected by his fellow physicians as a "Top Doc", as published in the June 2009 and 2013 editions of Pasadena Magazine. Dr. Suzuki is the Medical Director of Aurora Las Encinas Hospital.


Certifications: Psychiatry and Neurology
Specialties: Adult Psychiatry
Medical School: M.D. degree, Northwestern University Medical School, Evanston, IL
California License: G56664

Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Carol McCormick, NP
Carol McCormick has over twenty-Five years' experience in the field of psychiatry. She was board certified as a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in 2006. Carol has recently moved from Cincinnati where she practiced in at the Lindner Center of Hope, the first freestanding psychiatric hospital built in the US in over 25 years.

Carol's specialties include Mood Disorders, Anxiety and Depression in the Adult population. Her Special interests include women's issues related to Post-Partum Depression, Menopause and Memory related concerns. She also has extensive experience in geriatric psychiatry.

Certification: Family Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner – BCEducation:University of Cincinnati, BSN, MSN and Post Masters Certification in Psychiatry
Ohio State University: BA in Social Work
California License: 842347