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Dr. Robin Crisman

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Head Veterinarian and Director

Robin graduated from Texas A&M University with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree and Bachelor of Biomedical Science, Veterinary Science. She has been in practice for over 25 years. Robin has worked in a variety of environments including emergency small animal medicine, the horse racing industry and as a horse stud vet. She has a great love of native wildlife and works with Australian Walkabout Wildlife Park, Blackbutt Reserve and Australian Reptile Park.

Robin developed her love for emergency and critical care during her time as Assistant Chief of Staff of a 15 doctor practice back in Texas. While working at this practice she was voted as the "Best Vet in Dallas".


She discovered her love for travel shortly after graduation. She is a certified scuba diver and has travelled all over the globe in search of the perfect dive site.

Robin's achievements also include:


Practitioner Of The Year 2019 - ASAV

Wildlife Rehabilitation Award 2017 - Australian Wildlife Society


Gabriela Dahmen


Business Manager, Canine Myofunctional Therapist and Director

Gabriela combines her finance and human resources skills with a passion for all animal welfare.

It was this combination that gave traction to the concept of a mixed practice animal hospital able to cater to a wide range of animals large, small, domestic and wild. As a team with distinctive skill sets, Gabriela joined up with Robin to create Somersby Animal Hospital.

Gabriela is a Canine Myofunctional Therapist. Canine Myofunctional Therapy (CMT) is a therapeutic treatment that integrates specialised remedial massage of soft tissues and stretching techniques; it encourages proper muscle function and aids restricted joint movement by addressing muscular dysfunction. It also helps in the treatment of common musculoskeletal problems.

Gabriela holds a Certificate and Diploma in Canine Myofunctional Therapy from the National College of Traditional Medicine (NCTM) and she is a member of the Small Animal and Equine Naturopathic Association (SAENA).

Gabriela enjoys the company of her three dogs, Gavin, Murphy and Kuki, her horse Corsica, four goats and a flock of chickens.

Dr. Katerina Skarbek

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Veterinarian and Social Media Coordinator

Katerina graduated from the University of Sydney where she completed a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and a Bachelor of Veterinary Biology. Prior to this she completed a Bachelor of Biomedical Science with first class honours from the University of Newcastle. Throughout her studies she worked as a veterinary nurse in both an inner city small animal clinic and a specialist equine hospital.   

Katerina has always wanted to be a vet. She grew up on a boutique horse stud in the Hunter Valley, where she was always doing something animal-related; be it fostering kittens, hand-raising goats, rehabilitating wildlife or training young horses. Outside of work, Katerina now spends her time with her zoo of animals - her dogs, Charlie, Blair and Carmen, her cat, Tabitha, her galah, Zombie, her snakes, Fluffy, Lemon and Orange and her horses, Storm and Aramis.

Wildlife, horses and exotic species are Katerina’s key interests as a veterinarian. Working somewhere that would give her the opportunity to treat a variety of animals was very important to Katerina and as such she is incredibly excited to be part of the team at Somersby Animal Hospital.

Dr. Luke Glendenning



Luke graduated from the University of Sydney with a combined Bachelor of Veterinary Biology and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. He has a passion for mixed practice and feels very lucky to work in a clinic that sees all creatures great and small. 

Luke's special interest is in exotics and wildlife, particularly reptiles. He shares his living room with 14 pet reptiles and continues to work as a casual reptile keeper at Taronga Zoo. Luke is passionate about the interaction between animal health, husbandry and welfare and loves working with owners to build captive environments that help their animals thrive.

Outside of the animal world, Luke keeps busy with a range of art, photography, and music projects. Luke is an avid traveller and enjoys visiting unique parts of the world to hike, scuba dive and chase after wildlife.

Dr. Nicki Martinson



Nicki graduated from Cambridge University with a BA and Batchelor of Veterinary Medicine in 2002 and spent the next decade working as a small animal veterinarian in the UK and Australia. After completing a Master of Veterinary Studies in Small Animal Practice with Murdoch University she took a career break to start a family before rejoining the profession with a renewed passion for helping people and their pets.  


Nicki enjoys all aspects of veterinary science, but has a particular interest in behavioral medicine. Welcoming her two rescue greyhounds, Monty and Bertie, into the family and helping them adjust to pet life was the inspiration for her to pursue further study in this area, although she is quick to point out they still have some way to go before they could win any medals in obedience. Nicki recently gained membership by examination to the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Surgeons in Animal Behaviour and as an 'elite' fear-free practitioner she is passionate about helping even the most timid patients cope with veterinary visits.


Outside of work Nicki enjoys attempting to grow vegetables in her garden, listening to books, bush walks, and cleaning up after her two boys (ok that last part isn't true).

Dr. Sally Fawcett



Sally graduated from the Sydney University Veterinary School in 2008. She spent her first years in the profession in the Hunter Valley working in a mixed practice with a strong focus on equine reproduction and general equine medicine.

Following this, Sally spent a few years travelling and working as a vet all over the world, practicing in countries such as Turkey, America and Sri Lanka, before returning to mixed practice on the Central Coast.Sally enjoys everything about being a vet, in particular the ‘problem solving’ aspect of veterinary cases.


When she's not saving animals, Sally likes to spend time hiking, horse riding, baking and travelling.

The first pets she had were two cats – Oliver, a ginger tom, and Rosanna, a female tortoiseshell. When she was young, she would sneak them into her bed at night where they would proceed to attack Sally's feet under the covers.

Dr. Justine Norwood



Growing up in Sydney with a menagerie of much adored pets (including dogs, cats, birds, rodents and reptiles) and caring for orphaned and injured wildlife, Justine has a passion for pets and wildlife.


With a background in wildlife and tourism businesses and the qualification of Master in Business Administration,  Justine returned to study at University of Sydney, graduating as a veterinarian 2017.


Since qualifying as a veterinarian,  Justine has worked in general practice and emergency care in Sydney and the Central Coast.


Outside of work, you will find Justine exploring bush walking trails or at the dog beach with her family and super enthusiastic dog, joined by a foster puppy or two.

Dr. Micaela Elphick



With over 35 years experience in small animal veterinary practice Micaela still loves her chosen profession.  She graduated with honours and has a post graduate Diploma in Veterinary Clinical Sciences.  Over the years she has worked at the University of Sydney, owned her own practice, managed veterinary hospitals and worked at many different practices across Australia and the UK. 


She currently divides her time between a large welfare organisation, an emergency clinic and SAH.  She enjoys both medicine and surgical cases and her passion is travelling overseas to provide welfare (neutering) programs in developing countries and help those countries develop their veterinary services.

At home Micaela has 2 dogs and a cat, all rescues.  Outside of veterinary practice she enjoys community theatre, travelling, cycling and hiking.

Frances Wilson

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Human Resources Manager

Frances holds a Bachelor of Management degree, majoring in Marketing and Human Resources. She worked in the pharmaceutical industry as an HR advisor for 8 years before making a change and becoming a Retail Store Manager.

With her strong passion for people, animals and customer service, she is here to support the team. Frances will help us to provide an even greater level of service and care to our clients and patients. 

In her free time, Frances loves to do yoga, play tennis and go to the beach with her family and dog, Daisy.

Tash Carlier

Natasha Carlier

Receptionist and Veterinary Nurse

Tash grew up in England has always been surrounded by furred family members - from her parents cat Skittles that used to protect her as she slept in her cot (from her poor unsuspecting Nan!) to rabbits, guinea pigs and birds. She has always been obsessed with horses, and around the age of 12 she finally prevailed and her Dad agreed to let her get her first horse. Tash now lives with four horses, two cats and her long-suffering husband! Thankfully caring for and riding horses here on the Central Coast involves a lot less mud than it did in England!


Tash has devoted her life to animals, having worked in several riding schools and yards over the years. Whilst working in a local saddlery, Tash developed an interest in helping people to improve the well-being of their horses, and this in turn led her to pursue veterinary nursing. She loves the continual learning, challenges, and the variety of animals, as well as helping people to improve the well-being of all their animals. Tash began work experience placement at Somersby Animal Hospital in 2016, and obtained her certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing at the end of 2018. At the end of 2019 she officially joined the team at SAH as a vet nurse.

Michelle Spratt


Head Veterinary Nurse

Michelle has had an affinity with animals her whole life. She has a particular interest and affection for the Australian wildlife and so in 2009 she began working at a local wildlife park. This was an opportunity to further her education and evolved her skills a carer of native animals; getting them back to health and into their environment.


Michelle extended this love for animals into the veterinary world and began her veterinary nursing qualifications. Since 2012, Michelle has been a veterinary nurse and continues to enjoy all aspects of nursing, in particular dentistry.


Michelle also continues her education in special areas such as pathology and critical care nursing. She has adopted and hand raised her beautiful Ragdoll cat Luna. Luna is full of personality and has everyone very well trained as a comfortable cushion when it comes time to relax at home.

Leah Zwaanswijk


Veterinary Nurse - 2IC Head Veterinary Nurse

Leah was born in Albury and spent a lot of time growing up on her grandmother's farm with her horses and dogs, where her love of animals started. She worked as a chef for 20 years before changing career paths and chasing her dream of working with animals. She joined the Somersby Animal Hospital team in 2020 and has been a wonderful addition. 

Leah is particularly passionate about horses and large animals, and would love to do further studies into their care. She spends a lot of time on her father's horse property. 

Leah is also passionate about large dogs and has a 4 year old husky, Harley and 1 year old malamute,  Nalah. The dogs, along with her two teenage daughters, keep her very busy outside of work!

Natalia Bomba

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Veterinary Nurse

Natalia comes to us with some great experience; she practiced as a Veterinarian in Colombia for 7 years and even created her own mobile vet business. Most recently she has been working as a Veterinary Nurse in various clinics throughout Australia.

Natalia’s experience has been mostly with small animals, but she is enjoying learning more about other species whilst here at Somersby Animal Hospital.

Natalia is enjoying life in Australia and hopes to obtain her Australian Vet Registration in the near future.  

In her spare time, she likes going to the beach and walking her dogs.

Kay Sugitha


Veterinary Nurse

Kay’s journey to become a Vet Nurse began in 2020, when she rescued an injured Crested Pigeon and brought it to our hospital for treatment. The visit inspired her to pursue a career working with animals. In 2022 she completed her Certificate IV in Vet Nursing and work placement at Somersby Animal Hospital and has since joined our team.


Kay loves all animals and has a real heart for birds and wildlife. She finds joy in caring for injured animals and bringing them back to good health.


Outside of work, Kay loves spending time with her family, watching movies, bushwalking, bike riding and cheering on her favourite NRL team… all the fun stuff!

Katrina Hadley


Veterinary Nurse

Katrina started work placement at Somersby Animal Hospital in 2017, obtained her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing in 2019 and has since been a valued nurse here.


Katrina was lucky enough to spend her childhood surrounded by pets of all shapes and sizes and this fostered her love and passion for the well being of all creatures great and small. 

Life at the Hadley household is rather hectic, with fourteen horses, two cats, two dogs, three birds and an array of tropical fish! Whilst we're sure that Katrina would never play favourites, two standouts would be Marnie the sheltie and Malin the Norwegian Fjord horse.

Willow Slootbeek


Veterinary Nurse

Willow has always loved animals and her desire to care for them led her to become a vet nurse, attaining her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing in 2010.

Willow has gained a wealth of knowledge working in a variety of clinics across Sydney and the Central Coast for almost 13 years now. She has predominantly been in practice with small animals but is enjoying expanding her knowledge here at Somersby Animal Hospital, where she is able to look after a wide variety of creatures.


Outside of work, Willow loves to spend time with her family including her dog, cat and 2 budgies.

Hollie Spender


Veterinary Nurse

Hollie has been a qualified Veterinary Nurse for an impressive 24 years and brings a wealth of knowledge to our team. She graduated and worked in Sydney for three years before moving to the United Kingdom where she locumed for four years, working in a variety of hospitals.


When she returned home, she joined the Internal Medicine team at North Shore Veterinary Specialist Centre where she worked for 6 years before joining their Emergency team. She now divides her time between Somersby Animal Hospital and a local Emergency Hospital.


Hollie joined our team at Somersby so she could spend more time working with Australian wildlife. She is a registered wildlife carer and is particularly passionate about macropods but adores all species. She can often be found spending her lunch breaks outside on the grass with the wallabies she is raising!

Brooke Welsh


Veterinary Nurse

Brooke grew up on a property, where from a young age she could be found bringing home ducklings and injured wildlife to care for. This sparked her passion for animals and she has wanted to be a vet nurse ever since. 

Brooke has been working in the animal industry as a qualified vet nurse since 2012. She started out in the Blue Mountains, where she developed a keen interest in wildlife and exotic animals. With this interest in mind, Brooke pursued further training and became a qualified zookeeper in 2016. She then continued to work as both a vet nurse and a zookeeper until she moved to the Central Coast. 


Brooke moved to the Central Coast in 2018, and at this point pursued further studies in animal behaviour and training, which allowed her to branch out to also teaching puppy preschool classes and other behaviour and obedience classes along side her vet nursing.

When not at work, Brooke enjoys spending time with her three dogs Remi, Patch, Chewbacca, her bird Prinny and her bearded dragon, Cheeto.

Abbey Johnston


Junior Veterinary Nurse

Abbey always knew she wanted to work with animals.  She started working at Blackbutt Reserve and completed her Certificate II in Animal Studies whilst still at school. After completing her zoo keeping qualification in 2018, she was promoted to a Field Worker.


After 8 years in the zoo industry, Abbey was looking for a career change and decided she wanted to become a vet nurse.


Abbey’s experience at Blackbutt Reserve has broadened her skills in capturing and restraining a large variety of animals including macropods, birds, other mammals, and reptiles; this is very handy given we work with so many species here at Somersby Animal Hospital. Abbey is also currently completing her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing which she hopes to complete soon!

Kiara Monardo


Veterinary Nurse

Kiara has always had a keen interest in reptiles and wildlife, and shares her life with Tzar the cat and her Bearded Dragon Bruce.

She has successfully completed her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing here with us at Somersby Animal Hospital and she is loving her new role as a veterinary nurse, caring for all animals large and small. She loves challenges of emergency procedures and critical patient care. 

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