I was born and raised in the small, rural town of Venetia, Pennsylvania. While interning at Tripler Army Medical Center, I discovered that the islands have the same friendly, small-town feel as my hometown, but with much better weather. My mother was a registered nurse who encouraged all her daughters to be doctors. I volunteered many hours with her at the geriatric hospital where she worked. I was always impressed with the care my mother gave her patients. She treated every resident in the county home where she worked with dignity. She spoke happily to them, even when it was unclear if they could hear or understand her. Although my mother never worked in Hawaii, her philosophy was in line with "caring for Hawaii's people like family."
My college counselor suggested I consider podiatry, dentistry or optometry after I discussed my aspirations to balance a career and a family with her. I spent four weeks shadowing at the optometry school and decided that was where I wanted to be. At the Hawaii Permanente Medical Group, I love having the ability to work with other specialists as part of a team. Rather than worrying about equipment, staffing, etc., I can instead focus my attention on my patients and their care. I truly love where I work and what I do, especially talking with my patients and hearing their stories. Knowing that I can make such an important difference in my patients’ lives is important to me. Outside of work, I am active with the Girl Scouts and in my church and choir.
To stay in shape, I jog, ride my bike, and lift weights. I also enjoy word games and spending time with my husband and three daughters who participate in a variety of sports and activities.