Dr. Lara Kollab, whose anti-Semitic tweets cost her a residency at Cleveland Clinic in 2018, has requested a hearing before the State Medical Board of Ohio through a Columbus lawyer. Kollab is facing potential discipline before the State Medical Board of Ohio following a June 19 investigatory deposition in which she admitted to having authored a series of anti-Semitic tweets beginning in 2011 and ending in 2013.
The tweets were revealed by Canary Mission, which tracks and publicizes anti-Semitic rhetoric on social media. “This is a very unfortunate set of circumstances,” said Columbus lawyer James M. McGovern, who confirmed his firm is representing Kollab. “And the doctor is doing everything she can to make things right for the people that she has upset or harmed through her comments.”
McGovern, whose firm Graff & McGovern specializes in representing licensees in front of licensure boards, said he could not specify what actions Kollab is taking. “Those I can’t discuss with you, but I can assure you that there are steps being taken,” he told the Cleveland Jewish News on Aug. 22.
Tessie Pollock, director of communication for the State Medical Board of Ohio, said Kollab’s request for hearing was filed Aug. 7 by McGovern. On July 10, Dr. Kim Rothermel, secretary of the medical board, sent a certified letter to Kollab’s home in Westlake and to both McGovern and Cleveland lawyer Ziad Tayeh.
The four-page letter detailed several of Kollab’s tweets. “On or about October 7, 2013, your initial application fee was submitted to Touro Osteopathic Medical School (Touro), which you described in your February 2019 sworn statement as ‘a school deeply rooted in Jewish tradition.’” Rothermel’s letter stated. “At your June 2019 deposition, you admitted that after being accepted Touro, you deleted the anti-Semitic tweets from your Twitter feed. You also acknowledged that if Touro had known of your anti-Semitic tweets they probably would not have admitted you as an osteopathic medical student.”
The letter states that Kollab told Kerns Medical Center in Bakersfield, Calif., she left her Cleveland Clinic residency because of a death in the family.
“You did not disclose that, in fact, you had resigned in lieu of termination due to your discriminatory social media posting,” Rothermel wrote. “On or about December 27, 2018, you sent the following reply message to @canarymission and @WeAreTouro in which you falsely claimed that Canary Mission used a fake account in an effort to frame you. When questioned about this message at our June 2019 deposition, you admitted that the content of your December 27, 2018 message was false and that you knew it was false at the time you authored and posted/tweeted the message. …”
“Although you asserted at your June 2019 deposition that you now feel ashamed of your discriminatory comments, when asked if your tweets reflect good moral character, you admitted they do not.”
Rothermel’s letter outlined possible disciplinary action the medical board might take, which could take the form of limiting, revoking, permanently revoking, suspending, refusing to grant or register or renew or reinstate her “training license/certificate to practice osteopathic medicine and surgery, or to reprimand you or place you on probation…”