Animal Imaging’s staff includes five DVM’s, an MRI technologist, a nuclear medicine technologist, an anesthesia supervisor, MRI technicians and additional personnel in supporting roles. Our center is the only private practice in the region to have three board-certified radiologists on staff full-time. Animal Imaging’s skilled and highly trained radiologists offer accurate treatment recommendations and professional case management.
Meet The team
Jake Hersman, DVM, Equine Director, Founder
Jake Hersman graduated from Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1980. Dr. Hersman established the Argyle Veterinary Clinic in Argyle, Texas. In 1990, he established the Las Colinas Veterinary Clinic, which premises are now devoted to Animal Imaging. Dr. Hersman’s areas of interest include radiology, scintigraphy and lameness diagnosis and treatment for the equine. Dr. Hersman directs the equestrian imaging program for Animal Imaging.
Rita Echandi, DVM, DACVR
Dr. Echandi received her DVM from Ohio State University in 2003. After completing her radiology residency in 2007 from the University of Tennessee, she then accepted an assistant professor position in the radiology department of Ohio State University. Dr. Echandi joined the Animal Imaging team in 2009. She is available to perform small animal diagnostic procedures at Animal Imaging. Dr. Echandi serves as our Radiation Safety Office and small animal medical director.
Beth Biscoe, DVM, MS, DACVR
Dr. Biscoe received her DVM from Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in 2006 and a Master of Science degree (Veterinary Sciences) from Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2014. She did her diagnostic imaging residence at Washington State University from July 2011 to July 2014 and obtained diplomate status in September 2014. Prior to her radiology residency, she completed fellowship training with Dr. Mary Beth Whitcomb at the University of California, Davis in large animal ultrasound. Dr. Biscoe grew up on a dairy farm in Virginia and likes to spend her spare time horseback riding, cooking and hiking with her dogs and husband, Kyle. Dr. Biscoe is also a new mom of a beautiful baby boy.
Dana Neelis, DVM, MS, DACVR
Dr. Neelis received her DVM from Michigan State University in 2006. After completing her radiology residency at Washington State University in 2011, she took a position as assistant professor at Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia. She performed an equine ultrasound and cardiology fellowship with Dr. Virginia Reef at the University of Pennsylvania, New Bolton Center, prior to her radiology training. Dr. Neelis enjoys imaging all species and has extensive experience with the equine.
Jared Sharp, DVM
Dr. Sharp received his DVM from Oregon State University in 2015 and has a special interest in advanced imaging having had experience utilizing nuclear scintigraphy, MRI, radiology and ultrasonography during previous internships. Dr. Sharp is engaged in the management of both equine and companion animal cases. Outside of work, he enjoys roping and riding his horses and spending time with his girlfriend and mini Aussie Sydney.
Lynne Castleman, Nuclear Medicine Technologist
After a career in the radio and television industry, Lynne turned her lifelong love of horses into a nuclear medicine technologist position with the Imaging Center conducting bone scans for both companion animals and the equine. Lynne is consistent in her ability to produce quality studies to enhance the diagnosis of pathologies and abnormalities in her imaging patients.
Susan Willenbrock, Practice Manager
Susan has been involved in veterinary medicine since 1988, including experience at a large veterinary referral hospital in North Texas. Susan’s role as office manager at Animal Imaging includes being a liaison between Animal Imaging and referring veterinary clinics. Her knowledge of the companion animal and equine practice is invaluable.
Michael Stratmann, MRI Technician
Michael has been involved in the IT field for over 10 years. He joined the Animal Imaging team in 2008 and has extensive training in MR technology.
Sunni LaRue, LVT, Anesthesia Technician
Sunni is a Licensed Veterinary Technician (LVT). She has worked for Animal Imaging since 2009. After earning her LVT at a community college in San Antonio in 2003, she went on to graduate from Texas A&M University in 2008 with her Bachelor’s Degree in Animal Science. Sunni worked as an ICU technician at the Texas A&M Veterinary Teaching Hospital before coming to Animal Imaging. When she’s not at Animal Imaging, she and her husband spend their time raising their 2 boys. Their fur family includes 3 dogs Happy, Sam, and Luka, 2 cats Calli & Mouse, a horse named Jinx, and a small herd of beef cattle.
Angela Cimaglia, LVT, Anesthesia Technician
Angela is a Licensed Veterinary Technician (LVT) and has worked for Animal Imaging since 2013 monitoring anesthesia on all the patients we see that require it. She graduated from Cedar Valley College in 2010 and honed her skills in emergency hospitals before coming to AI. Angela has two dogs, Gio and Grace, and two frisky felines named Aphrodite and Spookie. She has a passion for horses and all that is country and is in the process of building the farm of her dreams. Angela LOVES the outdoors, going outside every chance she gets.
Heather Boyd, Anesthesia Technician
Heather is a Veterinary Technician and has worked for Animal Imaging since 2013 helping in every appointment AI has to offer. She is currently working on getting her LVT and worked at a stable in East Plano before coming to AI. Heather has two cats, Scout and Jack, a dog named Ivy, and a horse named Honey Pot. Heather spends most of her time riding her horse and spending time with friends.
Carie Turner, LVT, Ultrasound Technician
Carie is a Licensed Veterinary Technician (LVT) that has worked for Animal Imaging for many years as the radiologist’s right hand woman when it comes to ultrasound, nuclear medicine, and fluoroscopy. She graduated from Cedar Valley College in 2002 and worked at an emergency referral center as an internal medicine technician before coming to AI. Carie completed her certificate in Advanced Imaging in 2008. Carie has a large four-legged family including her dogs, Max, Bones and Petrie, her cats’ Tory and Taz, as well as her Irish Sport Horse Liam. Carie spends most of her off time at the barn riding or spending time with family and friends.
Pedro Pacheco, Barn Manager, Veterinary Assistant
Pedro has been with working with Dr. Hersman since 1990 and has been the Barn Manager at Animal Imaging since it was opened. Due to Pedro’s gentle demeanor he is AI’s horse whisperer and one of the biggest assets to the clinic.
Amanda Foley, Veterinary Assistant
Amanda is the newest member of the Animal Imaging team, joining us in 2017. She is originally from Washington State and moved to Texas with her fiancé, who is attending Parker Chiropractic School. Her biggest passion is for horses. She likes to compete at rodeos and barrel races and would love to own her own equine rehabilitation facility in the future. Amanda has 5 horses, a mini donkey, and 4 dogs. Since Amanda has worked with horses most of her life, she is a major asset to AI.
Celeste Bryant, CVA, Technician, Receptionist
Celeste joined the Animal Imaging team at the end of 2016. She graduated from Cedar Valley College in 2016, but started in the veterinary field in 2010 as a Kennel Tech and Vet Assistant in a small animal practice in Dallas. Celeste has three kitty cats named Soot, Millie, and Annabelle and a dog named Rivett. In her free time, she likes to play with her animals, create fun costumes and delve into the realms of Dungeons & Dragons with her friends.
Melinda Burr, Head Receptionist
Melinda is the smiling friendly face at the front desk and has been with Animal Imaging since July of 2014. She has worked in the veterinary field since 2006 starting out as a Vet Assistant in the small college town of Socorro, NM. After moving to Dallas, she started to hone her skills to become a technician by working at an emergency clinic in Arlington. In 2011, Melinda became a receptionist when she found out she was pregnant with twin girls. She has stayed a receptionist since then, but also helps where help is needed. Having 7, Melinda is very much a cat lover. Two dogs have also worked their way into her heart. Melinda enjoys her family, drawing, gaming, and cooking.