Meet Our Team

  

Debbie Osborne

Practice Owner (B.V.Sc)

Our fearless leader Deb did the classic "lets move to Alice Springs, just for a year or two", and never left!  Dr Deb is the practice owner and has proudly been a part of the Alice Springs Community since 1984 when “we were just a small clinic on the north Stuart Highway”.

Deb became a vet because of a keen interest in science and medicine but the desire to treat more than just one species led her to veterinary medicine.  She enjoys learning about the amazing advancements in medicine that we can put into practice to “improve the lives of our patients, and by keeping our patients healthier for longer, we are improving the lives of their owners”.

Although Deb is mostly behind the scenes now, working hard to “keep the business running as a place I would want my pets treated and employing staff I would want caring for my pets”, she still practices as one of our most senior and experienced vets, and believes that a great vet not only knows whats best for the pet, but also how to make that work for the owner too.

Like most of us in the industry, Debs pets have been mostly made up of strays or abandoned patients that she has fallen in love with at work. Sometimes our pets find us! Her family is made up of her husband Bryan, their two adult children, and a Kelpie named Sid who was originally purchased to help with Bryans cattle work and can be seen here hogging the camera as usual!

Whilst Deb has many accolades and acronyms to her name spanning an illustrious career as a respected veterinarian, she is also an excellent cook who often bakes us fresh loaves of bread that disappear from the staff room in minutes, and treats us to an indulgent Christmas feast for our staff Christmas party every year.

In the little spare time she has she enjoys cooking and hiking, although rarely finds the time for the latter. One of her goals is to find the time to complete the Larapinta Trail.


Richard Bishop

Veterinarian (B.V.Sc)

Dr. Richard comes from a farming background but wanted a career with animals, not "machinery and crops". Richard has been in the veterinary industry for more than 35 years, having extensive experience working with companion animals, working dogs, cattle, sheep, horses, goats, alpaca and some pigs and poultry. Originating from New Zealand, Richard has always had an interest in surgery, both soft tissue and orthopaedics, and enjoys the challenge of managing very involved medical cases. He is a very valued senior vet who kindly mentors our vet students and new grads and there doesn't seem to be much he doesn't know or can't do!

His family is made up of his wife Liz, two grown up children, one Grandson and one very spoilt dog Jess (pictured). Richard believes "it is compulsory to have a sense of humour and fun in your work" so is always making us laugh. He is also a great believer in remaining calm, "there is no situation you cannot find a resolution to with a calm and reasoned approach", so we often go to Richard with our problems for help :) Dr. Bishop is known for his kind, gentle and loving manner with pets and is always talking to his patients who adore him!

Outside of work he is a gym and crossfit enthusiast, armchair sports fan (especially rugby union and cricket), a keen chess player and is interested in world share markets, current events and documentaries about the world we live in.

At staff meetings we all enjoy what we call "Story Time with Richard", where Richard shares with us his plentiful and amusing yarns from the yesteryear!

 


Dr. Chris McComiskie

Veterinarian (BSc BVMS (Hons))

Dr. Chris McComiskie is one of our most recent additions who began his FIFO work with us in February 2018. Chris resides in Adelaide but flies up to Alice every couple of weeks to work with us. He has fast become very popular with staff and clients (and patients!) alike.

The desire to work with animals began in his teenage years, where he developed a fascination with animals that grew into him become the amazing vet he is today. Chris believes that to be a great vet, it is essential to "not only appreciate the dependence that animals have on their human carers, but equally the dependence that humans have on the loving presence of their pets". Anyone who has had the pleasure of a consultation with Chris knows that he treats pets with the utmost respect and is very aware that they are "an important member of the family unit".


Chris has foster failed a plethora of furry friends, so much so that his fiance Kate has banned him from bringing anything else home! They are already pet parents to a small pug cross called Ralph, 3 cats – Oscar, Eddie and Norman, 2 turtles – Frank and Fred, and a cage full of budgies all named after R&B and rap artists from the early 90s.

Dr. Chris loves his footy, and as a fanatical West Coast Eagles supporter he can often be found screaming at the televison if they are losing (luckily they have been having a good year this year!).
 


Dr. Janet Choi

Veterinarian (B.V.Sc(Hons))

Dr. Janet is originally from South Korea, and came to Australia for university in 2012. Janet first joined us as a vet student in 2017 and we were so impressed we offered her a job! Janet met an injured, stray puppy while she was here on placement and fell in love. After "foster failing" Ally (named after Alice Springs), she took her home to Sydney after her placement, then promptly brought her back to her home town when taking on a position here at Alice Vet Hospital.

Ally (pictured) has grown into a gorgeous, loving dog and we are all delighted to have both Ally and Janet back.

Janet became a vet because it felt as though she could speak out for the animals who don't have a voice in this world. With every client visit she aims to "give them a better understanding of their companion animal, not just physically and physiologically but also mentally".  Janet is very kind, gentle and thorough, loved by patients and clients alike. Her areas of interest are behaviour and imaging.

When not being a vet, Janet enjoys painting, playing squash and the flute. We are so lucky to have this talented person on our team!


 


Kate Opitz

Customer Service Manager (Certifivcate IV Veterinary Nursing, Cert III in Frontline Management )

Kate is originally from Melbourne but has been living in the NT (Darwin, Katherine, Alice Springs) for the last 6 years or so. She became a qualified veterinary nurse in 2010 so is now a seasoned veteran having worked in many practices around Australia.

Kate's vet nurse career has included working in remote aboriginal communities all around the Northern Territory, as well as working as a locum vet nurse in NT, SA and back home in Victoria. She has a particular interest in dog behaviour and has experience running Puppy Pre-School.

Recently, Kate became our Customer Service Manager, a role she enjoys as she gets to speak to all our lovely clients everyday!

Kate is a tragic boxer lover, and obssessed dog mum to her 6 year old boxer Lulu and 2 year old boxer Frankie (pictured) and in her spare time enjoys wine, op shops, reality TV shows & watching her beloved Richmond Tigers win the footy!


Lauren Castle

Trainee Nurse (Certificate II in Animal Studies)

Lauren is a recent addition to the team who joined us in 2017 as a Trainee Veterinary Nurse. She moved up from Adelaide for the job and is thriving in her new role.

Lauren became a veterinary nurse because of a deep love for all animals. "These guys don't speak our language, have nothing in common with us and yet our bonds with them are often stronger than the ones we have with people." Lauren is in constant amazement of what our furry friends can survive and endure, and believes that they "are true warriors who at the end of the day want a cuddle and a warm bed".

She strives to comfort the ill, love the lost and treat every patient and owner with the respect and compassion they deserve. In her short time here Lauren has already made herself known as the "bleeding heart" who takes home all the strays who need love and around the clock care!

Her family is made up of human Mum Cherie, human partner Jonno and furry family members of the feline variety Binky, Lachy, Isis, Alakay and canine Bowser. All her pets are rescues with the most recent addition, a stray kitten who we all fell in love with and named "Gillen" after the place he was found (pictured).
 


Emily Bindle

Receptionist

Emily grew up in Alice Springs, where she completed Year 12 at Our Lady of  the Sacred Heart College. Emily spent time working in both hospitality and retail, until her passion for animals and customer service lead her to join our team as a Receptionist in April 2016.

In her spare time Emily enjoys watching comedy and crime shows. She also loves to cook and spend time with her family, including beautiful dog Zoe and cats Snowbell and Tinkerbell (pictured).


Kristen Smith

Veterinary Nurse (Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing)

Originally from Sydney, Kristen has a varied employment history, having previously worked in property, hospitality, tourism and indigenous advocacy. She began her Veterinary Nursing career whilst living in Nhulunbuy (North-east Arnhem Land) in 2010 and continued her Cert IV in Vet Nursing studies working in clinics in WA. Searching for an opportunity to return to Alice Springs, having previously lived and worked here as a tour guide, Kristen joined our team in June 2016 as a Veterinary Nurse.

Kristen became a vet nurse to "advocate for the wellbeing of the pet and to empower owners with the right advice for them to be able to care for their pet in the best possible way". She is our resident Puppy Pre-School expert and also works part time at the Desert Park as a guide.

Kristen shares her home with her beautiful German Shepherds Bonnie and Angus (pictured), and her tabby cat Clyde, who thinks he is a dog having been raised by Angus since he was two days old. The most recent addition to her furry family is a stray kitten Lily who has flourished in Kristens care.

In her spare time Kristen enjoys growing food, exploring and photographing the amazing Central Australian landscape, wildlife and wildflowers.


Ana Bolanos

Veterinary Nurse

Ana started working in the veterinary industry in Colombia in 2008. Ana and her husband moved to Melbourne, Australia in 2010. In 2014 she made the move to Alice and joined the The Alice Spring Veterinary Hospital team.

Ana is a kind and gentle soul who you will often find cuddling patients and carrying them around the hospital with her. She has a special way with animals and is much loved by clients and patients!

The pet parent of two lovely cats, Morwen and Verya (pictured) and wife of Omar, another vet nurse here.


Alexis Coleman

Trainee Nurse

Alexis joined us at the end of 2017 as a trainee Veterinary Nurse. Wanting a rewarding job that allowed her to make a difference, Alexis has taken to vet nursing like a duck to water and will soon begin studies to further her knowledge and skills as a Veterinary Nurse.

Alexis family is made up of a handful of younger human siblings and two Australia Shepherds Lincoln & Cooper. She likes to "appreciate the little things" and in her spare time plays netball, reads, draws, sings and plays guitar- quite the artist!


Omar Salazar

Veterinary Nurse (Certificate IV Veterinary Nursing)

Omar is originally from Colombia, where in 2003 he started working in the veterinary industry.  Omar joined us in June 2015 and has proved to be a wealth of knowledge and valued member of the Alice Springs Veterinary Hospital team. As well as extensive in clinic experience, Omar has been actively involved in conservation projects and zoo work. He is a passionate nature lover and our resident bird lover!

He is pet parents to two beautiful cars Verya and Morwen (pictured) and husband to his lovely wife Ana who also works here. Omar is often our in house go-to computer guru and very patiently attends to all our IT needs.

Omar enjoys music, guitar, books, nature, photography, spirituality and PC games.


Alex Coulsell

Trainee Nurse (Certificate II in Animal Studies)

Alex grew up on the Gold Coast, where she completed a Certificate II in Animal Studies and spent some time gaining experience in the animal industry at a local wildlife park. Alex relocated to Roma and started her career in the veterinary industry, working for 12 months as a trainee Veterinary Nurse. She moved to Alice Springs in August 2015 to join our team and is currently completing her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing.

Alex achieved her dream to become a vet nurse and to "make a difference in the lives of our amazing pets". She doesn't currently have a pet but enjoys getting as many "sneaky cuddles from our patients" as possible!

Her family is made up of her partner, Charlie and her pets who live back home on the Gold Coast with her Mum- feline Dora & Kito and turtle McLuvin'. Alex has a passion for travel and is keen to plan some future adventures. In her spare time she enjoys reading and photography.


Ray Jones

Trainee Nurse (Certificate II in Animal Studies)


Ray, originally from North East Victoria, joined Alice Springs Veterinary team in March 2016.

In 2015, Ray had decided to travel through the UK and Europe returning back to Australia to spend Christmas catching up with friends in Alice Springs. Working as a general mechanic for years and having a change of heart, Ray found the opportunity to do some work experience with the Alice Springs Veterinary Hospital and amazingly loved it, accepting the position of a Trainee Veterinary Nurse. Ray is now very close to finishing his Cert 4 in Veterinary Nursing and is one of the hardest working members of our team!

Currently petless, Ray hopes to adopt a camp dog or his favourite breed, a cattle dog one day soon but at the moment gets by with cuddles from his patients every day!

Ray is an "outdoorsy" type, who enjoys travel, rock climbing, mountain biking, hiking, camping and has hopes to someday be able to play the Ukulele.   
 


Audrey Siah

Veterinarian (B.Sc. B.V.M.S.)

Dr. Audrey hails from Singapore, having worked there for 8 years after graduating from vet school in Australia. Audrey originally joined us for just a one month locum stint that turned into a much longer arrangement- as is typical of working professionals visiting Alice Springs! Audrey fell in love with the outdoor and laid back lifestyle we enjoy here in the Red Centre, which was in stark contrast to the busting, big city life she was accustomed to.

Dr. Siah has a keen interest in birds, rodents and other (non venomous!) exotic animals, having grown up with a variety of weird and wonderful creatures.

These days, Audrey juggles her time between a husband, two young kids and a spunky ginger cat, Samson. Like many of us, Audreys pets have been acquired from strays abandoned here. Samson (who is not featured in the photo as he was bound to escape and take off on adventures) suffered from an extensive ringworm infection as a kitten and was nursed back to health by his new Vet Mum :)

Any spare time and energy left after chasing kids, Audrey spends hanging off rocks, jogging, reading exciting novels and
playing music to entertain her children.


  
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