About us

Alaska Rheumatology Alliance is a 501c(6) organization whose purpose is to promote and improve rheumatologic care in Alaska through educational programs, the interchange of ideas, and increasing awareness of rheumatologic conditions in Alaska. 


John Botson, MD


Dr. Botson treats both adult and pediatric patients in close care coordination with referring physicians.


At Ohio Northern University, Dr. Botson double-majored in pharmacy and chemistry — graduating Summa Cum Laude in both. After obtaining his medical degree from The Ohio State University, he served as resident at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, and in 2009 completed his rheumatology fellowship at the National Institutes of Health.

In addition to his expertise treating a variety of conditions as a rheumatologist, Dr. Botson has additional training in musculoskeletal ultrasound used to diagnose and treat various musculoskeletal diseases.  He also has an interest in rheumatology research, including conducting clinical trials.

When he is not treating patients, Dr. Botson enjoys family time and an active lifestyle. He participates in distance running events, basketball, skiing, and bowling. He is also passionate about community service, having volunteered with the local Arthritis and Lupus foundations. 

Ryan Ragle, MD

Vice President

Dr. Ragle completed his internal medicine residency and rheumatology fellowship from the University of Utah and his medical degree from Creighton University Medical School.

Dr. Ragle treats all rheumatological conditions.

Born and raised in Alaska, Dr. Ragle is excited to practice medicine in his hometown community — and to enjoy all its great recreational opportunities.

Summer Engler, MD


Dr. Engler was raised in Sterling, Alaska on the Kenai Peninsula. After nearly a decade of medical training in the Lower 48, she has fulfilled her dream to return home and provide rheumatologic care to Alaskans. It is her joy and privilege to help patients manage complex rheumatologic conditions using expertise and compassionate care. She enjoys all aspects of rheumatology with special interest in lupus and scleroderma.

A proud alumna of the University of Alaska Anchorage, Dr. Engler attended Alaska's medical school, WWAMI, through the University of Washington School of Medicine. After obtaining her medical degree, she completed internal medicine residency at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle where she served on the Institutional Review Board at Benaroya Research Institute, an international leader in autoimmune disease research. She attended rheumatology fellowship at the University of California Irvine.

Outside the clinic, Dr. Engler plays and composes music for guitar and piano. She enjoys boating, fishing, hiking, camping and experiencing Alaska's bounty with her family.

Elizabeth Ferucci, MD

Board Member

Elizabeth D. Ferucci, MD, MPH is a rheumatologist and clinical researcher with the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC) in Anchorage, Alaska.  In the clinical setting, she practices adult rheumatology at the Alaska Native Medical Center, incorporating field clinics and telemedicine for outreach to rural patients.

Dr. Ferucci conducts research related to the epidemiology of autoimmune diseases in Alaska Native and American Indian people, as well as quality of care and access to care with a recent focus on telemedicine in rheumatoid arthritis and other chronic diseases.  She also has an interest in research ethics and the protection of human participants in research, and currently serves as a co-chair of the Alaska Area Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Dr. Ferucci received her undergraduate degree at Columbia University, MD from New York University School of Medicine, MPH from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and completed her internal medicine residency and rheumatology fellowship at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver.