Our team is comprised of genuinely gifted and caring medical professionals

Rheumatologist

Dr. Richard Lai, MD

Dr. Lai’s specialties are in various connective tissue diseases such as systemic lupus erythromatosus, inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and Sjogren's syndrome, osteoarthritis, gout, pseduogout and all rheumatologic conditions such as vasculitis, seronegative spondyloarthropathies, sarcoidosis and scleroderma.

Dr. Lai earned a medical degree from the University of SintCQ Eustatius School of Medicine in Cole Bay, St Maarten He then spent one-year post-graduate in clinical research at Jerome Greene Sjogren’s Center at Johns Hopkins University before he completed his residency in internal medicine at Franklin Square Medical Center in Baltimore. Dr. Lai then went on to complete his fellowship in rheumatology at Washington Hospital Center in Washington, DC.
Dr. Lai is known for his practical evidence-based medicine approach. His special interests are in various connective tissue diseases such as systemic lupus erythromatosus, Sjogren's syndrome and scleroderma, inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, crystalline induced arthritis such as gout or pseudoout, and all other rheumatologic conditions such as vasculitis, myositis and sarcoidosis, etc.
Dr. Lai has participated in research assignments, abstracts and publications, and nonresearch-related academic activities. Outside of his medical practice, Dr. Lai has become a permanent fixture within the Great Falls community through leading and organizing Tai Chi and badminton clubs.
Rheumatology

Stacey Johnson, FNP-C

Stacey Johnson specializes in various inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, gout, pseudogout, and Sjogren’s syndrome. She has also received training in treating and diagnosing connective tissue diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus, seronegative spondyloarthropathies, sarcoidosis and scleroderma.

Stacey Johnson earned her Master of Science in Nursing from Georgetown University. She completed most of her training in Internal Medicine where she discovered her passion for working with patients with complex diseases and helping them live their best lives. Prior to becoming a nurse practitioner, she obtained her ASN from Montana State University Northern and her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from Chamberlain University. After working as a nurse for 8 years at a local hospital she knew she wanted to provide more in-depth care for her patients and decided to pursue her Nurse Practitioner License. After obtaining her Nurse Practitioner License she worked in primary care until she found this opportunity to specialize in rheumatology. She completed training courses to become a Nurse Practitioner in Rheumatology and was trained by Dr. Lai himself. She prides herself on staying up to date on evidence-based medicine as well as providing patient centered care. Stacey’s interests are in various inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, crystalline induced arthritis (gout or pseudogout), various connective tissue diseases such as lupus, scleroderma and Sjogren’s syndrome, as well as other rheumatological conditions including vasculitis, myositis, and sarcoidosis, etc. Her goal is to help you manage your disease. She and Dr. Lai work as a team to provide their patients a holistic treatment plan. Outside of the office Stacey enjoys spending time with her family and getting in as much fishing as possible.
Nurse Practitioner

Sadra Thomas, NP

Sadra attended school at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in 2005. She earned her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Colorado and became a Board Certified Adult Geriatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner.

Sadra attended school at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in 2005. After working as a Certified Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurse for many years, she decided to earn her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Colorado and became a Board Certified Adult Geriatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner. She completed the American College of Rheumatology courses and was trained by Dr. Lai himself. Her interests are in managing various inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, crystalline induced arthritis (gout or pseudogout), various connective tissue diseases such as lupus, scleroderma and Sjogren’s syndrome, as well as other rheumatological conditions including vasculitis, myositis, and sarcoidosis. Sadra takes special pride in helping patients and families reach their health goals and enjoys working with the Montana Arthritis Center team. She loves spending time with her son and husband, as well as sewing, baking and enjoying the great outdoors.
Nurse Practitioner

Christina Richey, MSN, FNP-C

Christina earned her undergraduate nursing degree from the University of Louisiana at Monroe. Her graduate education stems from the University of Cincinnati, Herzing University, and the University of Phoenix. Christina spent many years in the intensive care unit, nursing case management, nursing education, and infusion within the rheumatology setting.

Christina earned her undergraduate nursing degree from the University of Louisiana at Monroe. Her graduate education stems from the University of Cincinnati, Herzing University, and the University of Phoenix. Prior to becoming a nurse practitioner, Christina spent many years in the intensive care unit, nursing case management, nursing education, and infusion within the rheumatology setting. Rheumatology is where Christina found her passion helping patients living with autoimmune diseases. Christina enjoys developing productive relationships with patients and believes that informed healthcare decisions are nurtured by educating patients on their disease process. Christina works closely with the entire team at Montana Arthritis Center to ensure that the patient’s best interests are at the core of any treatment recommendations. She has successfully completed courses developed by the American College of Rheumatology to become a rheumatology nurse practitioner. She has also completed an intensive preceptorship with Dr. Richard Lai at the Montana Arthritis Center. Christina’s goal is to provide the latest evidence-based care to those with autoimmune diseases so that the patient can live their best life. In her free time, Christina enjoys personal hobbies such as home improvement projects and exploring her new environment in Montana.