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Chief Medical Residents


Bryan Brimhall, M.D. Brimhall

​Bryan grew up in Provo, Utah where he spent his time playing basketball, fly fishing the beautiful Provo River, and enjoying the mountains. He stayed close to home for his undergraduate degree in biology at Brigham Young University, fortunately meeting and marrying his beautiful wife. Bryan subsequently attended the University of Utah for medical school where he graduated with the distinction of Alpha Omega Alpha. During his time at the University of Utah, Bryan also enjoyed exploring global health, spending time in both Guatemala and Ghana. After medical school, Bryan was intrigued by the high-quality program and collegial atmosphere of the University of Colorado residency program, and was finally enticed away from his home state.
Bryan is interested in pursuing gastroenterology as a sub-specialty, and he has been involved in research in the fields of advanced endoscopy, IBD, and luminal gastroenterology. He enjoys teaching medical students and residents and has a special interest in methods used for learning and in resident well-being. His free time is spent with his wife Niki and two girls in the outdoors where they enjoy fishing, hiking, and exploring Denver and the mountains.


Julia Clemons, M.D.

Julia is a native Coloradan. She majored in biology and Asian Studies at TCU before coming back for medical school at the University of Colorado. She loved the training sites, faculty, and most of all the residents at Colorado and decided to stay for residency - it doesn't hurt that Colorado is a pretty great place to live as well. Julia plans on pursuing a career as an Academic Hospitalist with a focus in Medical Education and improving hospital systems. Outside of the hospital, Julia and her husband Josh are major Colorado sports fans. You will find them at Broncos games in the fall, Avalanche games in the winter, Rockies games in the spring, and hiking/biking in the mountains in the summer. She also enjoys golf, running, gardening, spending time with her sisters and friends, and eating Allison's culinary creations.
Elsbeth Jensen-Otsu, M.D.

El​sbeth grew up all over the country including California, Alaska, New Jersey and Washington State.  She attended Wellesley College in Wellesley, MA and studied Spanish and Chemistry before going to medical school at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA, where she graduated with the distinction of Alpha Omega Alpha.  She then moved to Denver to complete her Residency in Internal Medicine.  Elsbeth is interested in pursuing a career in academic Gastroenterology and hopes to continue teaching medical students and residents throughout her career.  During residency, she completed research in the Division of Gastroenterology regarding outcomes of bariatric surgery including the relationship of  insurance status and acid suppressive medications on weight loss and surgical complications.  In her free time, she enjoys mountain biking, camping, hiking, skiing, and spending time with her husband, their two labrador mutts, family, and friends.   



Adrienne Mann, M.D. 

Adrienne is a Colorado native, and grew up in Denver.  Growing up she enjoyed competitive dancing and worked as a ballet instructor while attending college. She graduated with a BS in Biology from the University of Colorado- Denver and attended Medical School also at the University of Colorado.  She and her husband Scott (now ENT faculty at DHMC and DVAMC) have a baby, Amelia, and a doggie named Adelaide.  Following her CMR year, Adrienne plans to be an Academic Hospitalist here in Denver focusing on Medical Student and Resident Education. When not at work, Adrienne enjoys spending time with her family, going to the theatre, and visiting new restaurants. Despite growing up in Colorado, she is not a skier, and instead enjoys a hot-toddy and a trip to the spa!​


Allison Nitsch, M.D.

Allison is a Texas native (5th generation) who finally escaped to the greener, less humid  pastures of Denver. Allison grew up in a northern suburb of Houston. She graduated with a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin (Hook’em Horns!) before attending medical school at Texas A&M in Temple, TX. During medical school she did a visiting sub-internship at the Denver VA so she could visit the New Belgium Brewery and loved the program, the people and Denver. She made Denver her #1 choice and the rest is history. Allison entered the program with the initial intent of becoming an academic hospitalist. She joined and completed the hospitalist training program.  She later realized that her true passion was taking care of physiologically complex patients with pulmonary disease and the critically in the dynamic environment of the ICU. She is currently applying for a fellowship in pulmonary and critical care medicine.  After fellowship, she hopes to remain in academic medicine as a physician scientist, splitting her time between the research lab and clinical duties. When she isn’t at work Allison enjoys baking elaborate cakes and other sweets,  throwing dinner parties to showcase her other culinary creations, and weight training (to counteract the cakes and sweets). She also likes visiting new restaurants and breweries in Denver with friends. She has yet to hike a 14'er but did try (and injured) her hand at skiing and snowboarding.


VA Chief Resident for Quality and Safety

Joseph Johnson, M.D.Johnson

Joe Johnson was born and raised on the Gulf of Mexico in Clearwater, Florida. Upon completing high school he moved up to Philadelphia for a combined BS/MD program with Villanova University and Drexel University College of Medicine. There he got involved with a rowdy crew of South Philly community organizers through a free clinic for Asian immigrants, piquing his interest in Philly’s fragmented systems of care and neighborhood health promotion. Joe moved to Colorado for its world class primary care training program and the integrated care model at Denver Health. While it was tough to leave Westside clinic at the end of residency, he’s happy to have landed at the VA as our Chief Resident in Quality and Patient Safety. Throughout residency Joe has continued his community organizing work, developing a successful local Aurora non-profit called the Fields Foundation and establishing the Colorado chapter of Primary Care Progress. In his free time you can usually either find Joe with a cold beer playing backgammon on his lush Capitol Hill porch or hiking somewhere in the mountains.