M.D., President & Founder
Dr. Azzam Baker, as the President and Founder of Riverside Pediatric Group, is among the most highly-regarded and well-recognized pediatricians in the country. Dr. Baker has been a leader on a variety of issues that relate to pediatrics and child advocacy and he has devoted the entirety of his luminous 35-year career to assuring that the children of Northern New Jersey receive the best healthcare possible. Dr. Baker has been involved in the teaching and training of over 1,000 physicians from all over the world. Perhaps more impressively, Dr. Baker has, by way of organizations and community outreach efforts that he has founded or sponsored, been involved in caring for over 1,000,000 children. Indeed, there is no other figure that has done more to serve the children of Northern New Jersey and their families over the past 3 decades than Dr. Baker.
The beginning of Dr. Baker’s story started when he did his pediatric residency training at the Jersey City Medical Center from 1976 to 1978. He then went on to complete sub-specialty training in Neonatology at United Hospital-UMDNJ in Newark, NJ. Over those first 5 years of his medical career, Dr. Baker cared for the sickest children in the northern New Jersey community and he decided then that he would devote his life’s work to continuing to provide the necessary care for these same children and their families as they grew into childhood and adolescence.
Dr. Baker founded Riverside Pediatric Group in 1980 - in the heart of Hudson County – Jersey City’s Journal Square. With his uncompromising commitment to delivering the best healthcare to the patients of Hudson, Passaic, and Bergen Counties over the subsequent 30 years, Riverside Pediatric Group is now regarded as the Premier Pediatric Group of Northern New Jersey. When Dr. Baker is asked what the secret to establishing an institution of such excellence in the field of child healthcare is, he always responds very simply, “Treat every child and family that you come across with the same respect and passion that you would your own.” This simple mantra serves as the fundamental philosophy adopted by all Riverside Pediatric Group doctors.
Dr. Baker has received numerous professional accolades during his career, including most recently,
- The Patient Choice Awards in 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011.
- The Castle Connolly Top Doctor Award, New York Metro Area in 2008, 2009 , 2010 & 2011 (the most prestigious recognition in the medical community, as it is decided upon by the physician’s peers);
- The Strathmore’s Who’s Who – Lifetime Member (an award given to leaders in professional excellence)
- The Boys Scouts of America’s Distinguished Health Care Service Award in 2010.
Dr. Baker feels very strongly about serving and giving back to his community. Through Riverside Pediatric Group and Riverside Medical Group, Dr. Baker regularly sponsors and organizes free health fairs for local communities throughout New Jersey at which free medical services, flu vaccines and screenings are provided to both adults and children. In addition, he and his family founded the Izdihar A. Baker Charitable Foundation, in honor of his late wife, Izdihar A. Baker.
Dr. Baker and his late wife, Izdihar A. Baker, have three sons – Zeyad, Iyad and Omar Baker. Zeyad completed his Pediatric Residency from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) and joined Riverside Pediatric Group in July 2009. After completing his tenure as Chief Resident at Hoboken University Medical Center’s Family Medicine Resident Program in Hoboken, NJ, Iyad joined Riverside Pediatric Group and Riverside Medical Group in 2011. Omar completed his residency in Pediatrics from New York University in New York and joined Riverside Pediatric Group in July 2011.
Mayra Chicaiza APN
Michael Perlman, DPM
Joseph Buttigheri, DPM
Leo Davidson, DPM
Shari Reitzen, MD