CAP’s Board of Directors and the Board of Trustees of the Mutual Protection Trust are leading physicians in their fields of medicine. The CAP Executive team hails from all aspects of medical professional liability coverage, including claims and legal, risk management, and insurance. Together, they govern the organization with our members’ and healthcare facilities’ best interests in mind.
Executive Management Team
Sarah E. Scher, JD, RN is the chief executive officer of the Cooperative of American Physicians, Inc. (CAP) and the Mutual Protection Trust (MPT). In this role, she draws on her extensive leadership background in healthcare, law, patient safety, risk management, captive insurance, and medical professional liability to direct CAP’s core businesses – MPT and the CAPAssurance Risk Purchasing Group, which provide access to superior medical professional liability protection, patient safety education, and risk management services.
Prior to joining CAP, Ms. Scher was corporate vice president of risk management and insurance, president of the Advocate Physician Partners Risk Purchasing Group, and chair of Advocate Insurance SPC for Chicago-based Advocate Health Care, Illinois’ largest health system.
During her tenure at Advocate Health Care, Ms. Scher was responsible for developing, implementing, and directing the system-wide insurance, risk financing, risk management, and claims management programs to ensure a consistent and optimal approach to minimizing liability and risk exposure. Under her leadership and through her vigilant governance of litigation, utilization of risk financing alternatives, and fostering of strategic insurance partner relationships, the organization built a multi-million dollar reserve and significantly reduced expenses.
Early in her career, Ms. Scher worked as a trauma nurse at a level I emergency department and as a prosecutor in the criminal division of the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office.
She was also an adjunct associate professor at Valparaiso University in Indiana, an expert speaker on clinical-legal issues to physicians and nurses, and lobbyist on behalf of the insurance and healthcare industries before the U.S. Congress.
A Nursing graduate of Purdue University School Calumet, Ms. Scher earned her Juris Doctor degree (Summa Cum Laude) from DePaul University College of Law with a Certificate in Health Law. Ms. Scher currently serves on the board of the California Hospital Medical Center Foundation, the U.S. Bank Advisory Board, the Los Angeles County Bar Association Healthcare Law Executive Committee, and the National Insurance Industry Council.
Along with responsibility for the company’s Corporate Communications, Human Resources, and Risk Management and Patient Safety Departments, Mr. Acuna manages all CAP business development and membership services, a function he has performed since 2015.
With 34 years of experience in the medical professional liability industry that has incorporated a wide range of expertise in marketing, sales, retention, and customer/member service, Mr. Acuna joined CAP in 2007. Prior to joining CAP, he worked for 18 years at SCPIE Holdings, Inc., (later acquired by the Doctors Company}, where he served as Vice President of Marketing. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and studied in the MBA program at California State University, Northridge.
Aline Babaian is the Senior Vice President of Operations for Schmid & Voiles, a law firm dedicated to the defense of CAP members.
Mrs. Babaian is charged with ensuring that the law firm meets its strategic and financial goals, including the development of formal policy in areas of personnel and general administration. She also oversees the recruitment of attorneys, legal paraprofessionals, and non-legal support staff.
A graduate of California State University, Los Angeles, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature, Mrs. Babaian is also an MCLE Provider and reports to the California State Bar all continuing legal education programs that she has produced to improve attorney skills/knowledge. She provides speakers and topics through the collaboration of Schmid & Voiles’ highly qualified attorney staff.
Muzzammeel (Muz) Bhattha is Chief Financial Officer of the Cooperative of American Physicians, Inc. Mr. Bhattha is a fellow member of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants and a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the state of California.
As CFO, Mr. Bhattha directs all of CAP’s financial functions, including planning and reporting; accounting practices and treasury functions; and managing relationships with external auditors, actuaries, and rating and regulatory agencies.
Before joining CAP, Mr. Bhattha was a senior manager with Ernst & Young LLP. He specialized in the audits of property and casualty insurance companies for seven years in the United States and five years with KPMG LLP in United Arab Emirates and Pakistan. He also helped clients navigate through various acquisitions and debt offerings. Mr. Bhattha is also a past board member of the Insurance Accounting & Systems Association Southern California Chapter.
Alyson Lewis is CAP's Senior Vice President and Chief Underwriting Officer. She oversees the underwriting functions of the entire CAP enterprise and has executive responsibility for all CAPAssurance business development. She is President and Chief Operating Officer of the Cooperative of American Physicians Insurance Company, Inc. (CAPIC), a Hawaii-domiciled subsidiary of CAP.
Ms. Lewis joined CAP in 2016. She has 30 years of industry experience and has held leadership and senior underwriting positions in the healthcare practices of large global insurance companies. Ms. Lewis earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Southern California and her Juris Doctor degree from Concord Law School.
Douglas Shin is general counsel for the Cooperative of American Physicians, Inc. Mr. Shin directs a legal staff and outside counsel to deliver legal solutions to this industry-leading medical professional liability company. Mr. Shin earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, San Diego, and his law degree from Loyola Law School where he was a member of the Loyola Law Review.
Mr. Shin began his career as a legal intern for the technology transfer team at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and coauthored an article on the commercialization of intellectual property in central and eastern Europe. He also previously worked as a litigator, defending numerous clients in the general and medical malpractice liability, employment and healthcare arenas, including settlement of numerous matters and an arbitration.
Jeffrey Stoner is senior vice president of Claims for the Cooperative of American Physicians, Inc. (CAP).
With a professional background that includes almost a decade as a trial attorney, Mr. Stoner joined CAP in 1995. As senior vice president of Claims, Mr. Stoner oversees all claims provided to CAP’s Mutual Protection Trust, as well as all third-party administrative activities. In this capacity, he advises claims review committees in their decisions of which cases should go to trial and which are settled out of court. He was also instrumental in the development and oversight of the CAP Cares program, which provides resources and emotional support for member physicians in crisis who are facing adverse outcomes with their patients.
Mr. Stoner is also a committee member for the Medical Professional Liability Association (MPLA), a leading trade association representing domestic and international medical professional liability companies owned and/or operated by physicians, hospitals, dentists, and other health care providers.
A native of Pennsylvania, Mr. Stoner earned a law degree from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in World Literature from Pennsylvania State University. As a trial lawyer, he practiced in both Georgia and Pennsylvania.
Cooperative of American Physicians (CAP) Board of Directors
and Mutual Protection Trust (MPT) Board of Trustees
Stewart L. Shanfield, MD is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and currently practices with St. Jude Heritage Medical Group at St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton. A graduate of the University of Texas Health Science Center, he completed his internship and orthopedic residency in Los Angeles at USC and a fellowship at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. He has been a member of CAP since 1998. Dr. Shanfield has served in several appointed and elected positions at St. Jude Medical Center including Chief of Staff, Chief of Surgery, Chair of Board of Trustees at St. Jude Hospital, Chair of Physician Well Being Committee, and Chair of Allied Health Professions. He served as the physician facilitator of CREW Resources Management; a patient safety program implemented at St. Jude Medical Center. The Orange County Medical Association has selected him as an orthopedic physician of excellence from 2004 to 2022. He was the Arthritis Foundation honoree in 2015. He currently serves as the Medical Advisor to the Medical Executive Committee at the Medical Center and was recently appointed as Chair of the Physician Well Being Committee. Active in his local community, he was the volunteer medical director of the North Orange County SWAT Team for nearly 10 years. He was a board member of Fullerton Community Bank and served on the bank’s Audit and Finance Committee. He has served in several CAP and MPT positions including Chair of the Finance and Audit Committees, CAPIC, and CAP Physicians Insurance Agency. Currently, he serves as the Chair and President of the Cooperative of American Physicians and Chair of the Mutual Protection Trust.
Lisa Thomsen, MD, FAAFP is a Glendora-based board-certified family practitioner in solo private practice since 1990. In 1987, Dr. Thomsen graduated from the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, and completed her residency training at the University of Southern California-PIH Family Medicine Residency Program. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians and serves on the California Academy of Family Physicians Medical Practice Affairs Committee. As an independent physician representative, Dr. Thomsen worked on the Los Angeles Regional Accountable Care Organization Board of Directors in 2012. She was recognized as Physician of the Year in 2010 by the Citrus Valley Health Partners (CVHP). Before starting her solo practice, she was CEO of Foothill Family Practice Medical Group. A former Chief of Staff at Foothill Presbyterian Hospital, Dr. Thomsen also served on the CVHP Board of Directors and currently is an active member of Emanate Health's (formerly CVHP) Governance Committee. Dr. Thomsen currently serves as the local medical director in California for Aledade, Inc., which supports physicians and their practices with enrollment in value-based care. She also participates as the physician representative for the Purchaser Business Group on Health (PBGH) and Integrated Healthcare Association (IHA) to promote the California Advanced Primary Care Initiative. Dr. Thomsen has been a CAP member since 2003 and is Chair of the Cooperative of American Physicians Insurance Company, Inc. (CAPIC), a Hawaii-domiciled subsidiary of CAP. She actively participates on the MPT Risk Assessment Peer Review Committee and the MPT Nominating and Governance Committee. She formerly served on the CAP Member Engagement and Education Committee and the CAP and MPT Litigation Advisory Committee. Dr. Thomsen was elected to the CAP Board of Directors in 2011 and has served on the MPT Board of Trustees since 2019.
Meagan M. Moore, MD, FACOG is a board-certified obstetrician/gynecologist practicing in Fountain Valley, California since 2001. Dr. Moore earned her medical degree from The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of California, Irvine and has been caring for pregnant patients and women with gynecologic conditions for 22 years at Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center. Dr. Moore has extensive experience in robotic surgery, complex obstetrical conditions, and the management of hormonal deprivation induced by surgery and/or menopause. She is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. As an educator, Dr. Moore continues to have physician assistants, nurse midwives, nursing students, and medical students rotate through her office and takes great pride in having trained and mentored many health care providers who have established successful practices in Orange County. Dr. Moore is a charter member of the Orange Coast Memorial Robotic Surgery Steering Committee and CIN OB Council. She became a CAP member in 2001 and has served as a Chair of the MPT Ob/Gyn Risk Assessment Peer Review Committee. Dr. Moore is a current a member of the MPT Finance Committee and is Chair of the MPT OB Claims Review Committee.
Sheilah M. Clayton, MD, FACS is a board-certified general surgeon practicing in Pasadena since 1990. She graduated from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and completed her residency at Martin Luther King Jr./Charles R. Drew Medical Center. Dr. Clayton has extensive experience in all aspects of general and trauma surgery and has more recently developed an interest in breast surgery, especially in underserved populations. Currently, she serves as the Chair of Surgical Services at the Martin Luther King Jr. Surgical Center, where she has co-authored several papers relating to molecular biology in breast cancer, nurse navigation, and surveillance models in breast cancer survivors. Dr. Clayton is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and is a member of the American Society of Breast Surgeons. She has served as a member of the Anthem/Blue Cross California Credentials Committee since 2004. Dr Clayton became a CAP member in 1990 and serves as Chair of the CAP and MPT Audit and Finance Committees and Chair of the Deferred Compensation Committee.
Steve Kasper, MD was born and raised in Alhambra, California. He attended the University of Southern California, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychobiology. He also received his medical degree from the USC School of Medicine in 1988. Dr. Kasper then completed his residency in family practice at Glendale Adventist Medical Center and served as chief resident in his final year before graduating in 1991. Dr. Kasper has practiced primarily in solo or small groups in Southern California since 1991. In 2010-2011, he was appointed by the United States State Department as the Regional Medical Officer at the United States Embassy in Addis Abba, Ethiopia. Dr. Kasper currently enjoys an active solo practice in Glendale, California. At the USC School of Medicine, Dr. Kasper has taught Introduction to Clinical Medicine (ICM) to first- and second-year medical students since 1993. He also precepts third-year students on their family medicine rotations in his office. Dr. Kasper has extensive experience in case management and peer review. He was the physician advisor to the Case Management Department at Glendale Adventist Medical Center from 2014- 2018. In 2021, Dr. Kasper was selected to serve as Chair of MPT’s Family Medicine Peer Review Committee and Physician Closed Claims Review Committee.
Wayne Kleinman, MD completed his term as Chair and President of the CAP Board of Directors in 2021. He is a past Chief of Staff at Providence Cedars-Sinai Tarzana Medical Center and a past Chief of the Division of Anesthesiology. Currently, Dr. Kleinman is the President and Chief Financial Officer of Tarzana Anesthesia Medical Group, Inc. A board-certified anesthesiologist and internist, he earned his medical degree from Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine and performed postgraduate training at both UCLA and the VA West Los Angeles Medical Center. Dr. Kleinman is currently a volunteer assistant clinical professor with the Department of Anesthesiology at UCLA’s School of Medicine and is a member of more than half-a-dozen professional societies and associations on national, state, and local levels. He has also held key positions in numerous community and charity organizations and events, including the Guardian Hoops Club and AYSO’s youth soccer program, in addition to coaching youth baseball and being involved with AIDS Ride Los Angeles and Physicians Caring Holiday Food Drives. Dr. Kleinman has been a CAP member since 1992. He was selected as a CAP Fellow by the Board of Directors in 2014, was elected to the CAP Board of Directors in 2015, and elected Chair in 2017. He also previously served on the MPT Los Angeles Claims Review Committee.
John Kowalczyk, DO, FACOS is a Los Angeles-based urologist and founder of the Urology Group of Southern California where he specializes in prostate cancer, male impotence, incontinence, and urodynamics as well as gender dysphoria and gender confirmation surgery. Dr. Kowalczyk became a Fellow of the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons in 1999 and served as President of the Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of California in 2016. He has been a California delegate to the American Osteopathic Association House of Delegates every year from 2010 to 2020 and has been an expert reviewer for the Osteopathic Medical Board of California since 2010. Dr. Kowalczyk serves on the board of the Physician’s Aid Association (2013-Present), the Good Samaritan IPA (2011-Present) and the Medical Executive Committee of Good Samaritan Hospital (2003 to Present). While on staff at Good Samaritan Hospital, he has served as the Chair of the hospital’s Patient Safety Committee since 2009 and was a member of the Clinical Practices Committee from 2005 to 2012, the Urology Department from 2002 to 2016, and the Interdisciplinary Practice Committee in 2004. He is a clinical professor of surgery at Touro University and Western University, as well as clerkship director for the Surgery Department of St. George’s University School of Medicine. He received his Doctor of 5 Osteopathy from Midwestern University, completed his internship and residencies at Chicago Osteopathic Hospital and Olympia Fields Osteopathic Medical & Trauma Center, and received his fellowship training in uroprosthetics at Indiana University. Dr. Kowalczyk has been a CAP member since 2005 and has served on the CAP and MPT Audit and Finance Committees since 2020.