Meet Our Staff
Dr. Kim Ankrom graduated from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2010. A native of southern Ohio, she grew up riding horses and finished a 1 year internship in equine medicine and surgery after veterinary school. After 2 years in mixed animal practice in northern Indiana, she joined a small animal emergency center in Champaign, Illinois. She was very excited to have the opportunity in the summer of 2017 to join the team at NCVEC. Dr. Ankrom loves the constant variety of cases in emergency medicine as well as being able to provide compassionate care to her patients and their owners through stressful situations. She and her husband reside in South Bend, Indiana with their two sons, her cat, and her flock of backyard chickens.
Dr. Ashley Sabedra is a Northwest Indiana native and she completed her undergraduate degree in Biology at Indiana University in 2011. She graduated from Purdue University, College of Veterinary Medicine in 2015 and started her career at a fast-paced clinic in Northwest Indiana. Dr. Sabedra completed a rotation in emergency medicine at North Central Veterinary Emergency Center during her final year of veterinary school and has worked here as a relief veterinarian since graduation. She has always loved emergency medicine and finally decided to take a full-time position at NCVEC 2 years after graduation. Dr. Sabedra and her husband live in Chesterton, Indiana with their 2 dogs where they enjoy hiking the Indiana dunes, biking, and long distance running. Dr. Sabedra is very excited to be a part of the team at NCVEC and looks forward to providing quality and compassionate care for all your pets.
Dr. Jeff Wallis did his undergraduate studies at Michigan State University and later went on to Ross University, School of Veterinary Medicine. He finished his studies at the University of Illinois in 2005. Dr. Wallis has really enjoyed his time so far with NCVEC and hopes to continue providing quality medicine our patients. Currently living in Valparaiso with his wife, son, two dogs, and a cat. Outside of work, Dr. Wallis trains to run half marathons, enjoys camping, traveling, and most of all, spending time with his family.
Dr. Jen Bochnowski grew up in northwest Indiana and completed her undergraduate degree in Biology at Purdue University. She graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in 2004, and started her career in general practice before joining NCVEC in 2012. Dr. Bochnowski enjoys being a mom to her young daughter, drawing, bike riding, being outdoors, and traveling.
"I am particularly drawn to the bond owners have with their pets and knowing I can help them with their 'family members' when they need it most is extremely gratifying."
Dr. Jeff Klemens graduated from the Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine in 2005. He spent his first 8 years in general practice at two busy day practices in North Central Indiana. He joined NCVEC in Sept of 2013 with the intent to do relief work for only a few months. The fates it would appear had other plans as he has melded seamlessly into the full time staff. He primarily works the overnight shifts at our Westville facility, and doesn't mind the late nights or early mornings. While not keeping the watch fires burning Dr. Klemens is an avid gamer and sci-fi/fantasy enthusiast. He enjoys putting on his Chef Jeff hat in the kitchen, especially in the summer when the ingredients are fresh. He loves to travel, having stepped on 3 continents and both hemispheres already. On a warm afternoon there is a good chance you'll find him outside with his wife Dr. Lyndsay Klemens and their menagerie of pets at their property in La Porte County.
"My mother once told me that life happens when you are making other plans. That fits my arrival to NCVEC perfectly. It's an amazing opportunity to be part of such a great team of co-workers and provide a much needed service to the pet owning community. I've yet to be part of a more enjoyable work environment, even with the gloom and doom that can manifest some shifts."
Dr. Amanda Mink is originally from the suburbs of Chicago. She attended the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana, where she completed degrees in Animal Science (B.S.) and Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M). She has also gained certification in Veterinary Spinal Manipulation Therapy (commonly known as animal chiropractic) from the Healing Oasis and provides this service for dogs, cats, and horses. Dr. Mink and her husband Josh live on a small farm with their mutant chihuahuas, Danes, genius Corgi mix, cats, horses, the cutest little filly ever (seriously!) and one trouble-maker parrot. Her hobbies include wine-tasting and riding her horses.
“I have been with NCVEC since 2011. The best part of working for this practice is having the ability to provide exceptional patient care 24 hours a day with the most dedicated, caring, and talented team in the field!”
Dr. Lisa Polazzi is a graduate from Cornell University, where she majored in Animal Science. After graduation, Dr. Polazzi attended the Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Polazzi then completed a dual internship at North Carolina State University and a private emergency clinic in North Carolina. Prior to joining the North Central Veterinary Emergency Center, Dr. Polazzi worked at an emergency clinic in Atlanta, Georgia. She enjoys spending time with her dogs and competes in agility and flyball. Spare time activities include teaching and training her dogs in agility and fly ball, hiking, reading, and traveling. Dr. Polazzi is one of 2 County veterinarians for La Porte County and an active volunteer with the Dog Agility Project in Porter County.
“I have enjoyed helping to grow North Central Veterinary Emergency Center from a start up after hour emergency clinic to 2 thriving 24 hour emergency clinics. There is nothing as rewarding as sending home a sick or injured pet after several days in the hospital.”
Dr. Lori Ross completed her undergraduate degree at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. She then pursued a master’s degree at Iowa State University where she studied penguin endocrinology while traveling to Antarctica. Dr. Ross completed her DVM at the University of Illinois in 2002. She has always had a passion for emergency and critical care medicine. She loves the fast paced environment of the emergency work, but has really developed a passion for the critical care side of this field.
“I really love working up cases and solving the puzzle of why a pet is ill. I feel that I can make the most positive impact on the animals that are critically sick or injured and need that extra time involved in their care and comfort. I am lucky to work at North Central Veterinary Emergency Center with wonderful doctors and technical staff. We have developed a remarkable ICU in which to treat and attend to these seriously ill pets and their very concerned owners.”
Heather Barbour is a graduate of Valparaiso University with a focus in marketing management and business administration. In her most recent role prior to NCVEC, Heather recruited human physicians and midlevel practitioners for large hospital systems and medical groups. She also has management and event coordination experience in the hospitality industry. Heather enjoys managing NCVEC’s amazing staff and looks forward to strengthening the relationships between NCVEC and the veterinary community. She and her husband have two wonderful girls (Makayla and Kendra). Heather also has two Border Collies, “Marley” and “Keegan”, along with a new addition to the family, “Lucy”, a Terrier mix that rules the household.
“My position at NCVEC has been the most challenging role I have ever held. It has also been the most gratifying. We are going through such an amazing period of growth and development, I am lucky to be a part of it.”