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Sunstone Veterinary Specialists Sunstone Veterinary Specialists

Phone (503) 505-7255 Address Portland, OR Email ClientCare@SunStoneVets.com

Meet Our Staff

Veterinarians

Dr. Joshua Elliott
MA, DVM, DACVIM (Small Animal Internal Medicine), Medical Director, Co-Founder

Joshua  Elliott

Raised in Hawaii and California, Dr. Elliott is a native of the Pacific Basin and loves the Pacific Northwest for its cooler climate, warm and friendly people, and dedicated pet parents.

Dr. Elliott’s higher education began at UC Santa Cruz where he earned both his undergraduate degree and a master’s degree in marine biology. He went on to vet school at UC Davis; followed by an internship and residency, both in private practice in Southern California. Dr. Elliott is a Board Certified Small Animal Veterinary Internal Medicine Specialist. He has been practicing internal medicine in the greater Portland area since 2008 when he finished his residency at the California Animal Hospital.

Dr. Elliott’s training and expertise as an internal medicine specialist allows him to focus on his patients especially complicated medical problems. While he enjoys all aspects of internal medicine, he is particularly skilled in ultrasound and endoscopy and has trained many veterinarians in these modalities. His goal is to help his patients live higher quality lives through thoughtful diagnostics and careful treatment.

Our internal medicine team is here to offer you and your pet the support you need to find a path forward. Rest assured, your pet will receive the highest level of care at Sunstone in a comfortable environment where you and your pet will feel welcomed.

Dr. Elliott and his family moved to the Pacific Northwest so that he could join a veterinary specialty practice where he could practice a high quality of medicine and be able to make a good life and a future for his family. They love all that the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Dr. Elliott especially loves snowboarding and training in Aikido. He holds a black belt in Aikido.

Dr. Regina Tobin
DVM, DACVIM (Small Animal Internal Medicine)

Regina Tobin

Dr. Regina Tobin attended veterinary school at Cornell University. Following her graduation in 1994, she completed a one year internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Angell Memorial Animal Hospital in Boston. Dr. Tobin then spent a year in general practice in the Boston area before starting her small animal internal medicine residency at UC Davis. She became board certified in small animal internal medicine in 1999. Dr. Tobin has worked in clinical practice in Oregon since 1998, with the exception of a two year period when she worked as a consultant for a major diagnostic lab.

Although she manages dogs and cats with all types of complex medical problems, Dr. Tobin is well known for her expertise in liver disease, kidney disease, gastrointestinal disease, immune mediated disorders, and hormonal diseases.

Dr. Tobin feels strongly that her role as a small animal internist is to offer clients all diagnostic options that are available for their pets, provide compassionate high quality care to her patients and support her clients through difficult decisions.

When she is not working, Dr. Tobin enjoys camping, reading and traveling. She has started horseback riding, an activity she enjoys with her daughter.

Dr. Debra Klaser
DVM, DACVIM (Small Animal Internal Medicine)

Debra Klaser

Dr. Klaser grew up on the west coast and earned her undergraduate degree at UC San Diego.  She then headed to the University of Georgia (go Dawgs!) where she worked as a research assistant and then graduated from veterinary school with the class of 2000.  Her next move took her to New York City, where she completed her internship and residency at the Animal Medical Center, becoming certified in small animal internal medicine in 2004.  She worked in a large referral hospital in Annapolis, MD in the years since, enjoying many of the east coast amenities.  

2019 brings her west again, and joining Sunstone feels like she is coming almost full circle.  She is looking forward to being back on the coast “where sunsets belong over the ocean”, where she is close to family and some favorite friends, and where she can be surrounded by the beautiful northwest and its people. 

She is one of the lucky few who have truly always known what she was meant to do, and is grateful to her mentors along the way, from those who gave her her first job in a veterinary clinic in 10th grade, to those who trained and helped her become the clinician she is today.  Dr. Klaser enjoys many aspects of internal medicine, particularly endocrinology and ultrasound.  She finds that the most rewarding part of her job is getting to know her patients and their families as she helps manage some complicated and multifaceted medical scenarios.

Dr. Klaser and her husband have 2 children, Sabrina and Finn, so they keep quite busy. They typically have at least one geriatric cat and a yellow Labrador living in their home.   Dr. Klaser considers the journey of parenthood to be her greatest life accomplishment, and in her spare time enjoys reading, spending time outdoors, and cooking (especially over a campfire). 

Dr. Lillian Su
DVM, MVSc, CCRP, DACVS (Small Animal Veterinary Surgeon)

Lillian  Su

Dr. Lily Su is a Board Certified Veterinary Surgeon and she is thrilled to be serving the Portland pet community at Sunstone Veterinary Specialists! She has focused her veterinary career specifically on the practice of small animal surgery since 2005.

Her training and education have taken this native Californian all over North America.

Dr. Su’s journey to become a Board Certified Small Animal Veterinary Surgeon began at UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. After vet school, she completed internships at Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston, and Wheat Ridge Veterinary Specialists in Colorado, followed by a fellowship at the University of Wisconsin. She completed her residency in small animal surgery at the University of Saskatchewan in 2011. Following her residency she taught small animal surgery at The Ohio State University.

Her desire to bring high quality, comprehensive, and personalized surgical care to each patient made Dr. Su a perfect fit for Sunstone. While she enjoys using the skills her years of training and education have given her, she feels her greatest success is in seeing her patients return to a normal life. To that end, she is also a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner. Dr. Su works with her clients, their primary care veterinarians, and local rehabilitation facilities to provide the very best outcomes for her patients through their post-operative recovery.

When not working, Dr. Su enjoys spending time with her perfect (but slightly naughty) herd of animals, trying out interesting places for food / drink, and exploring the mountains and rivers of the Pacific Northwest.

Medical Support Staff

Alicia
AA, AAS, CVT, Surgery Technician

Alicia

Alicia is the surgery technician here at Sunstone Veterinary Specialists. She has been an Oregonian her whole life and is the youngest of three with two older brothers. Animals have always held a special place in her heart and she is so thankful to be where she's at today. She attended the PCC Vet Tech Program where she earned her associates of applied science in Veterinary Technology. She has been certified since 2009. She enjoys working with Dr. Su and the rest of the surgery team at Sunstone.

She has two cats; Sparrow was a rescue with one eye and Alfie was a rescue in her younger days and has two eyes! She also rescued Missy, a German Shepherd, but would love to rescue a Greyhound one day!

In her spare time she loves to fish, read, run, hike, spend time with family/friends, and hang out with her niece. She also loves the fall when she gets to work on her families pumpkin farm!

Jen
BS, AAS, CVT, Internal Medicine Technician

Jen

Jen is excited to join the Sunstone Veterinary Specialists team as an internal medicine technician on Dr. Tobin’s team. She assisted Dr. Tobin for several years prior to joining her at Sunstone Veterinary Specialists. Jen works closely with Dr. Tobin’s patients, providing personalized care for clients and their pets. Jen loves working in internal medicine and considers it an honor to help patients and their families on their path to recovery. Jen grew up in upstate New York, working in animal welfare for 5 years before completing an A.A.S. in veterinary technology at State University of New York at Delhi in 2005. She worked as a veterinary technician in emergency/critical care for 7 years both in NYC and after moving to Portland, OR in 2008. She completed a B.S. in organismal biology at Portland State University in 2013, and later that year began working in internal medicine.

In her free time, Jen enjoys cycling, woodworking and restoring her 1920s bungalow, where she lives with a shy lab mix named Adeline, a precocious beagle named Scout and a fancy long haired black cat named Jessie.

Karla
CVT, Patient Care Technician

Karla

Karla joins the Sunstone team as one of our Patient Care Technicians. She brings with her almost 20 years of experience in specialty veterinary care, working as a surgery technician for the majority of her career. She loves providing a high quality of care to her patients and enjoys bonding with them individually during her shifts. She truly enjoys the bond between owners and pets and hopes that while in her care, our patients feel a connection to her as well.

In her free time, she likes to hike, kayak, and spend as much time with her children and grandchildren as she can. Her favorite place in the world to be is at the beach, soaking up the sunshine and listening to the waves. She enjoys reading and likes to listen to audiobooks while driving. Karla has a very loved, very spoiled, 9 year old cat names Tonks, who’s quite the character. She let us know that Bigfoot believes in her, too. :)

Heather
AA, CVT, LVT, Surgery Technician

Heather

Heather joins the Sunstone team as a part of the Surgery department. She has spent many years in specialty medicine, and we’re grateful to have her expertise and knowledge here at Sunstone. Not to mention her kind and thoughtful personality!

Heather started her journey in veterinary medicine by moving to Denver to attend Bel-Rea. She graduated in 2005, earning her associates in an applied science. After graduating, she returned to the Pacific Northwest and found her home in specialty medicine. Her goal as a technician is to keep our patients pain free, educating – both fellow co-workers and clients, and improving the lives of every patient she meets.

Heather enjoys being outside on our sunny PNW days, weeding between her flowers and biking with her family; but rainy days are spent inside with a yarn project under a comfy blanket. Heather is an avid Labrador enthusiast, as evidenced by her busy household. However, she is not biased, and will be sure to give your fur-baby all the scritches and compliments they desire.

Brittany
AA, CVT, LVT, Surgery Technician

Brittany

Brittany joined our Sunstone team as a Surgery Technician, and is excited for the opportunity to get to practice more specialized patient care here in the beautiful PNW. Growing up, living in North Carolina most of her life, she started her career in veterinary medicine in 2010 by completing the Veterinary Medical Technology program at Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College in Asheville, NC. She would then spend 5 years in small animal general practice, before moving to Knoxville, TN and getting the amazing opportunity of working at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine as a ER/ICU technician. Gaining a love for specialty, and emergency care, as well as teaching during her time spent in academia, she moved back to NC where she continued working in Specialty & Emergency as an ER technician, Shift Supervisor, and member of the educational leadership team. Seeking a change of scenery, and always wanting to live on the West Coast, she moved to Oregon in 2019.

She has always had a love for animals for as long as she can remember, and feels incredibly blessed to be able to have a career where she gets to help make a difference in all sorts of creatures' lives. She shares her life with three cats (Church, Midas, & Apache) who always keep things interesting, and two geriatric lab mixes (Bea, & Igby).

In her spare time, Brittany enjoys hiking, camping, gardening, rock hounding, days spent at the coast, baking, live music, photography, painting, and anything generally crafty.

Cecilia (“CC”)
CVT, Internal Medicine

Cecilia (“CC”)

CC is very happy to be a part of the Sunstone family and Dr. Elliott’s internal medicine team. She has been working in the veterinary profession since 1999 and she has been a Certified Veterinary Technician since 2010. Most of her experience in emergency medicine, though she also has experience working in general practice and small animal surgery.

CC is constantly marveled by the human-animal bond and she loves getting to know all the personalities that come through the door at Sunstone. Her number one priority is making sure nervous or fearful patients are made to feel as calm and comfortable as possible.

She moved to Portland from Los Angeles in 2009. CC lives with her son and two rescue Chihuahuas, Sydney and Izzy. She enjoys exploring all the beautiful landscapes and parks in Oregon. She also loves music and sometimes plays guitar along with her son who plays the drums.

Jennifer
BS, CVT, Internal Medicine Technician

Jennifer

Jennifer is excited to join the Sunstone Veterinary team as an Internal Medicine Veterinary Technician. She's previously worked with Dr. Tobin, and during the five years on her team, she discovered how much she loved building trusting partnerships with clients during their journey of caring for their pets. She is passionate about being a resource to clients and providing quality care for their pets. Jennifer grew up in Utah and moved to Oregon to work in veterinary medicine while earning a B.S. in Microbiology. Jennifer has worked in many areas of the veterinary field, including general practice, emergency, internal medicine, surgery, education, diagnostic laboratory, and shelter medicine.

Jennifer is a mom to two teens and after a short stint of no fur-pets, has added two cats, Odin and Kitty, and a dog Snowflake to her micro-homestead of 5 chickens. She enjoys hiking, running, kayaking, camping, and fiber arts

Colleen
BS, CVT, LVT, Internal Medicine Technician

Colleen

Colleen was born and raised in the Seattle area and graduated from Washington State University in 2012 with a bachelor's degree in Zoology. She worked in the veterinary field in a variety of roles before joining Sunstone in 2015 shortly after its founding, and is so proud to call this her home. Colleen has been a certified veterinary technician since 2021. She is passionate about ensuring the highest level of comfort to every patient.

Colleen lives in Portland with her husband and son. During her downtime, she prefers to be found in a sunbeam with a book in her hand and a cat on her lap.

Arlene
Internal Medicine Assistant

Arlene

Arlene was born in beautiful Los Angeles, California. At the age of 5, Arlene and her parents packed everything and made their way to Portland, Oregon where she lived up until she was 18.  She now resides in Vancouver, Washington.

Beginning at a young age Arlene set her mind to work around people who would share the same compassion and care for animals. Her career as a veterinary assistant started in a small veterinary practice in Portland where she worked for 3 years. Eager to further her training and knowledge, she joined Sunstone to work in our internal medicine department.

In her free time, Arlene enjoys supporting new local venues with rooftop views, spontaneous drives with friends to enjoy the PNW scenery, and live hip-hop concerts. Arlene has a beautiful 3-year-old domestic longhair kitty named "Kitchune."

Kristy
Internal Medicine Assistant

Kristy

Kristy is a sweet southern lady from Louisiana . She moved to Portland in 2008 to be with her husband after meeting on a cruise vacation in 2006. She has loved animals ever since she can remember and knew she would work with them one day. 

She graduated from Apollo College and received a diploma for Veterinary Assisting in 2010. Luckily, she landed a position in a small animal hospital shortly after graduation, where she started as a Technician Assistant and then became the Office Trainer. She worked there for 9 wonderful years, learning so much about general medicine and mastering her title as “The Chihuahua Whisperer”. She still has dreams of going back to school to receive her Certified Veterinary Technician licenses.
  
For fun, she likes to hang with her two little dogs, Truffles and Sprinkles, who are spunky Chihuahuas with a lot of heart. She enjoys making greeting cards and crafts as often as she can. She and her husband, Lyle, love nature and enjoy camping and hiking near beautiful streams. 

Administrative Staff

Marie Xavier
BFA, CVT, Business Manager, Co-Founder

Marie  Xavier

Marie Xavier has worked in the greater Portland area since 1997. She spent 10 years at DoveLewis Emergency Animal Hospital. At Dove, Marie was able to combine her love of design and space planning while working as the Project Manager for the new DoveLewis Northwest location in 2005. Following the construction of the new hospital, Marie worked as the Operations Director for several years.

In late 2007 she was recruited to build a new specialty practice in Southwest Washington. During her tenure as Hospital Director, she opened a new practice in Seattle, built a new 12,000 square foot veterinary medical facility in Vancouver, WA. She hired many wonderful and talented people growing the collective staff, in Vancouver and Seattle, from 19 people to over 120 talented people.

In mid-2015 Marie formed Sunstone with Dr. Josh Elliott. Together they envision an environment where management systems and veterinary leadership make positive a difference in the lives of their employees, clients, and patients.

Today, she is happy to be a business owner, working diligently to create a culture that the Sunstone staff proudly represents.

Marie enjoys spending her free time renovating her house, gardening, or enjoying the beach with her wife and their dogs.

Crystal Ochsner
Practice Manager

Crystal   Ochsner

Crystal is the new Practice Manager here at Sunstone Veterinary Specialists.  She is a wonderful asset to our team, and is passionate about ensuring that our patients, clients, and staff members are happy and cared for.

She started her journey in the veterinary field by volunteering at the Humane Society for Southwest Washington in 2006. Her time there showed her how excited she was about this field, and that she wanted to build a career in it. She went on to complete a veterinary assisting program in 2008, and started a job as a veterinary assistant at a local emergency and specialty hospital. She spent 10 years there, progressing through several different leadership roles, until she became the practice manager in 2015.

Crystal is so excited to join the team here at Sunstone, and can’t wait to get to know everyone!  She enjoys hiking with her two dogs Nina (pibble) and Sarge (boxer), and spending as much time at the beach as she can.

Lisa Heiting
BA, Systems Manager

Lisa  Heiting

Lisa is a native Oregonian.  After high school, she went to Oregon State University for 2 years before flying off to Hawaii.  A short 3 years later, she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Marine Science from the University of Hawaii Hilo in 2000.

She began her career in veterinary medicine in 2001 as a receptionist at a general practice in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Her restless spirit soon carried her to Orlando, Florida where she spent 7 years at an avian/exotic practice, before moving back home to the Pacific Northwest in 2009. Lisa spent the next 9 years working at an emergency and specialty hospital in Southwest Washington as the Financial Coordinator and Systems Manager. 

Lisa is excited to be part of the family here at Sunstone and to be working with her dream team of people.  Her job is to inspire us all to peak performance by supporting our systems, helping us embrace technology, and adopt best practices for our systems (whatever they may be).  She is a very patient person.

Lisa lives in Vancouver with her partner, Tony, and two cats. She is a huge Harry Potter buff and avid music lover. You may spot her around town in her handmade Gryffindor beanie or at a show!

Erin Johnston
BS, Front Office Manager

Erin  Johnston

Erin is the Front Office Manager at Sunstone Veterinary Specialists. She works closely with the medical team in the back, to ensure our clients and patients receive the best experience possible. She loves building relationships with our clients, and does everything she can to keep them comfortable in any situation.

Erin earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Washington State University Pullman in 2013. She made her move into the veterinary world that same year. She spent five years at a local emergency and specialty hospital - learning the ropes of reception and into a leadership role. She came to us in February of 2018, and couldn't be happier to be a part of this amazing team!

Erin lives in Vancouver, WA and spends her free time camping, gardening, and reading with her family and her dog and cat - Zola and Tiger.

Tanya
Referral Coordinator

Tanya

Tanya grew up near Salt Lake City, Utah, and has called Oregon home since 2004. She started her career path in veterinary medicine in 2000 as a veterinary assistant in New Hampshire. She then spent over 10 years working in a veterinary specialty and emergency hospital in southern Oregon where she held various leadership and client care positions. It was here that she gained valuable experience and discovered her passion for client relations. She loves witnessing the bond that pet parents have with their best friends.

Tanya lives in Portland with her husband, 3 spry cats, and a very sweet rescue dog from Mexico, who is learning all about the good life of being a family dog. Tanya loves our Portland Trailblazers, listening to vinyl records, cooking, and enjoying all the local restaurants and activities the city and Pacific Northwest have to offer. She considers working with the doctors and staff here at Sunstone an absolute pleasure!

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