Meet Our Health Care Providers
Dr. Michael Freedman
Dr. Michael Freedman was born and raised in Silver Spring, Maryland. After graduating from Springbrook High School, he moved to Ann Arbor and received his Bachelor of Sciences from the University of Michigan majoring in psychology and biology. He subsequently earned a Masters in Physiology from Georgetown University before enrolling at Hahnemann University Medical School in Philadelphia (now Drexel University)
While there, he led a group which built the largest student-run medical system for the homeless in the country, and was awarded the 807th Daily Point of Light by then-President George Bush.
On graduation from Med School, he also received the following awards: The Daniel Mason Award for Excellence in Cardiology; The Hahnemann Club Award for Academic Excellence, Outstanding Leadership and Loyalty; The Joseph A. Langbord Memorial Prize for Humanitiarism in Medicine; and The Student Affairs Committee Award for Outstanding Service to the Class, the University and the Community.
Dr. Freedman was accepted by his first choice for residency training at Emory University in Atlanta. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine in 3 years, receiving letters of recommendation from some of the most respected physicians in medicine.
In 1997, he became Board Certified in Internal Medicine and moved to Annapolis to join Annapolis Internal Medicine. He has a special interests in Cardiology, Geriatrics and preventive/general wellness — both physical and mental.
Shortly after moving to Annapolis, he joined a small group of physicians who were providing medical care to the residents of the Lighthouse Shelter. This group, founded by Rich Bernstein, MD and Rich Colgan, MD, had recently begun seeing patients one afternoon per week on Clay and Washington street. Dr. Freedman was asked to assume the position of Medical Director.
While with the Annapolis Outreach Clinic, Dr. Freedman personally grew the number of participating physicians from roughly 12 to well over 150. The clinic only included primary care doctors but Dr. Freedman added GYN and women’s services, Pediatric clinics, Psychiatric services, Orthopedic and Neurologic clinics, Dermatology clinic and many others. He arranged for free Radiology services through Anne Arundel Diagnostics–including CT scans and MRIs. He got AAMC to agree to donate surgical OR time for free and was able to convince the Department of Anesthesia to donate all of their time to surgery. He found members of the Surgical services including Orthopedics, Neurosurgery, General Surgery and others to donate up to 10 surgeries per month for free. Patient are able to be referred to any specialty at AAMC and be seen free of charge now. In 2007-2008, the demand for the clinic, which by then had relocated to a permanent position at the Stanton Center on Washington Street, was outstripping the space available in the building. He found more and more doctors who wanted to volunteer their time and with over 6,500 patient visits per year, he decided that another location was necessary.
He and Bill West, who had become a close working ally, after many long arduous attempts, were able to convince AAMC to open a 2nd location which is now a Medicaid-type clinic located on Forest Drive. In fall 2011, Dr. Freedman stepped down from this leadership position to focus on his personal practice, running Annapolis Internal Medicine and raising his son.
While at Annapolis Internal Medicine, Dr. Freedman served as the Practice Administrator for over 10 years. He was privileged to build a loyal following of patients, many of whom he developed a very close, personal relationship with. He also was extremely well respected by the Specialist of Anne Arundel Medical Center and cared for many of the doctors, nurses and other staff from AAMC. As a result, his practice grew immensely.
In addition to the above, he also served on the following committees: AAMC Medical Executive Board Strategic Planning Committee, AAMC Medical Executive Board Community Needs Assessment Committee, AAMC Information Technology Advisement Committee, and AAMC’s Strategic Physician Synergy group. In 2007, Dr. Freedman re-certified for the American Board of Internal Medicine. In August of 2012, he went on sabbatical for personal reasons and in October 2013, he re-certified for the ABIM again. Since early 2013 he has been using his years of experience, both clinical and managerial, to develop what he believes is the next generation of primary and urgent care. In 2014, he opened Evolve Medical Clinics.
Deb joined Evolve Medical Clinics with extensive experience in Internal Medicine, Rheumatology, Family Medicine, Breast Oncology and Geriatric/Nursing Home Care. She has a strong interest in taking care of not just a person’s illness but in prevention, wellness and caring for each patient as if they were her own family.
Deb obtained her Bachelors of Science and Masters of Science from the University Of Maryland School Of Nursing. While in school, she was a member of Sigma Theta Tau (The Honor Society of Nursing) and president of the Student Government Association. After completing school, she enjoyed being a part time faculty member for undergrad students at the University of Maryland School of Nursing and working as a preceptor for senior family nurse practitioner students.
Denise Darrah, CMA
Denise Darrah was born and raised in Betterton, MD. She graduated with her Medical Assistant degree in 1988 and then joined Dr. Michael Freedman at Annapolis Internal Medicine in 1997. In subsequent years, she was promoted to Clinical Supervisor and oversaw all clinical operations for AIM for many years. Denise has 2 children and lives in Pasadena. She loves to travel back to her hometown of Betterton, MD to visit with family and friends. Denise brings over 20 years of clinical experience to her position. Over the years, she has proven herself to be a true patient advocate, compassionate caregiver, miraculous facilitator (helping patients get what they need) and in general, one of the best CMAs in all of Maryland. Evolve is proud and grateful to have her leading the clinical team!
Leah Canale, CHC
Leah Canale is a certified Health & Wellness Coach who we are very excited to be working with to help our patients reach their goals. She was raised with the awareness of the human body as a whole system, working together in unison. She learned from a young age that the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual parts of ourselves are equally important and greatly influence one another. Leah describes struggling for years with severe health issues and food sensitivities. She feels her decision to become a Health Coach came naturally from her desire to help others navigate through their own health concerns. She says “I want to help others transform their goals into actions and live a happy, healthy life!”
You can learn more about what Leah does on her website, Quintessential Health Coach.
Sherry Perkey first started working with Dr. Freedman in the late 1990’s. She rejoined his practice, at Evolve Medical, in 2016 and has quickly become an integral and very important part of the Evolve team. Sherry has many responsibilities at Evolve and can often be found at the front desk or on the phone. Sherry is Evolve’s heart and backbone, with her keen attention to detail, she makes sure nothing is missed and all of your details are perfect! Her positive and enthusiastic energy, as well as warm greetings, lighten everyone’s day when they come in. Sherry is also a devoted mom who spends most of her free time enjoying her family.
Samantha Hiett, CCMA
Samantha, who goes by Sam, joined the Evolve Medical Team in 2017. She comes from a long line of medical people and is excited to be moving towards more and more advanced degrees in the healthcare field. Currently, Sam is working on obtaining her RN license but eventually hopes to advance her abilities even further. Sam was married in July 2017 and could not be any happier with her husband and her Evolve family. Sam brings her upbeat attitude, strong compassion for people and her strong attention to details, which is helping Evolve be the best it can be.
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