Bridget Barthelemy, DVM
A New Orleans native, Dr. Barthelemy graduated from Xavier University with a degree in Biology. After obtaining her Bachelor's, Dr. Barthelemy relocated to Gainesville to attend University of Florida's College of Veterinary Medicine where she earned her Doctorate in 2000. Immediately after graduation Dr. Barthelemy moved back home to New Orleans where she began working as a veterinarian for the SPCA.
After having her two beautiful children Dr. Barthelemy took a reprieve from veterinary medicine to focus on being a mother, but she couldn't stay away from her passion for too long. In 2017 she joined the team at Low Cost Animal Medical Center..
When she's not here at the hospital Dr. Barthelemy enjoys spending quality time with her talented children Zoe (18) and Graham (12) as well as her precious pit bull Waffles and his entertaining sidekick, Kodak the cat. Dr. Barthelemy also enjoys Bikram Yoga, traveling, listening to local music and the color orange.
Marisa Muniak, BVM&S
Dr. Marisa Muniak was born and raised in Northern Michigan. She moved to New Orleans to attend Tulane University earning a degree in Cell and Molecular Biology in 2011. Continuing to use education as an excuse to travel, she moved to Scotland in 2012 to attend The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies at the University of Edinburgh.
Her fascination with animals started early in life – her first word was “Kitty!” In middle school, after nursing a sick kitten found in her backyard back to health, she started shadowing her local small town vet. In high school she attended a summer camp at Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. During her undergrad she was hired as a kennel technician and worked her way up to the treatment area eventually becoming an overnight technician.
Since moving to Louisiana she has adopted a Catahoula/Australian Shepherd mix named Bowie.
Gene Jessop, DVM - Surgeon
If destiny or fate has a hand in anyone’s life it is Dr. Gene Jessop’s. Dr. Jessop, a Maryland native, attended the McDonough Military Academy a boarding school for boys that was funded by John McDonough, a fellow Maryland native who also funded over 30 schools in the New Orleans area. Dr. Jessop’s path eventually led to spending the past 34 years as a staple of the New Orleans veterinary community, ensuring his life came full circle.
Dr. Jessop completed the pre-veterinary program at the University of Maryland, followed by receiving his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Georgia and finishing his collegiate career with a post-doctoral degree at Tulane Medical School.
He has lent his surgical skill to numerous clinics including but not limited to the Louisiana SPCA, Southern Animal Foundation, River Ridge Veterinary Clinic, NOLA Animal Clinic, Parish Animal Hospital, Ark Animal Hospital, and Gentilly Veterinary Hospital. Prior to his career as an independent veterinary surgeon he served in the United States Air Force stationed at NASA Michoud Station in New Orleans East for 15 years where he operated as a surgeon for subhuman primates.
Dr. Jessop has received numerous distinctions in his prolific career including Meritorious Service Award from the United States Air Force, The Horseman’s Award for Contributing to Integrity in Thoroughbred Racing for his work as the Test Barn Vet with Fairgrounds Race Track, and New Orleans Healthcare Heroes Award 2016.
Needless to say LCAMC is thrilled and honored to have Dr. Gene Jessop as part of our team.
April Ulmer, DVM
Dr. April Ulmer was born in Mississippi, is a life time animal advocate and rescuer and is most proud to be mom to her daughter RubyJane and their furry family members. She is a proud Mississippi State College of Veterinary Medicine Class of 2001 graduate – HAIL STATE!! She also loves those LSU Tigers and cheers for them as long as they are not playing her DAWGS. (She and RubyJane also cheer for anyone playing Ole Miss.) Dr. April and her daughter are STELLAR BLACK&GOLD BLEEDING SAINTS FANS and she has always considered New Orleans also as home, growing up in and out of the city her entire life. She finally got back to settle here in 2013 after a 12 year U.S. Army Veterinary Corps career where she proudly served her country in support of our Military Working Dogs and our military families and their pets across the globe. She worked with LASPCA for five years and joined the LCAMC family on Valentine’s Day of this year 2019. Dr. April has a special love for feline medicine and is a proud crazy cat lady. She also loves all Shepherd breeds, especially those K9 HEROES that help protect our country. Dr. April enjoys general medicine especially feline medicine and behavioral issues, dentistry, and dermatology. In their spare time, Dr. April and RubyJane love to read, cook and explore the world as well as fospice older cats who have been abandoned by their humans.
Kevin Puzycki, DVM
Dr. Puzycki is a native of North Haven, CT and worked as a veterinary assistant for 9 years before going to veterinary school. He is a graduate of St. George's University in Grenada and did his clinical year at Louisiana State University (GEAUX Tigers!). He decided to move to New Orleans because he's fallen in love with the city over the years, and because he loves warm weather. He shares his home with his rescue pup Mame (as in Edamame) and kitty Eli. Outside of work Dr. Puzycki loves to run, explore the city, garden, and has a strong passion for drawing and painting.
Ariel Oro – Operations Manager
Ariel Oro is a native of New Orleans and through her love of all living critters found her calling in veterinary medicine. Ariel especially enjoys working at a hospital that is dedicated to helping the community and caring for as many animals as possible. Ariel, who is also fluent in Spanish, enjoys playing video games, watching Bob Ross, shopping for treats and going on adventures with her dogs Woobie, Gigi, and Deebo. Her goal is to open a sanctuary for senior dogs and pitbulls in need.
Meredith Rubin, MBA - Technician Manager
Meredith began her career in Veterinary Medicine after serving in the Army for 10 years. She has a BA in English from Boston University and a Master's Degree in Business Administration from Excelsior College. Her veterinary background includes General Practice, Canine Physical Therapy, and small animal cardiology. Her passion is in training and empowering veterinary technicians and community education. She is an administrator for Street Dog Coalition, a quarterly clinic for homeless people and their pets, and is dedicated to outreach which fosters the human animal bond in underprivileged communities. Meredith has a three year old daughter, Iris, who keeps her busy in her free time. Meredith loves to travel and has been to 49 states and 6 continents! Antarctica is on her ultimate bucket list. She has a Chiweenie named Judith and a beautiful tortoiseshell cat named Nicks.
Shane Rodriguez, CPhT - Pharmacy Technician & Media Coordinator
Born and raised in the New Orleans area, Shane is currently working on his master’s degree in counseling he also holds a bachelor’s degree in the Science of Psychology from University of New Orleans. While in school, Shane works in our pharmacy, manages our social media, and website. He has been in the pharmacy field since 2016 and became a Certified Pharmacy Technician in 2017. Shane currently owns one cat, Filbert, a Siamese breed. He thought he preferred cats over dogs because they require less attention however, Filbert has since proved his theory wrong because he is very needy. Shane lives with his sister Christen, a vet tech, who also works at our clinic. Shane originally worked in the hospital and retail pharmacy setting and did not plan on moving to the veterinary field, however, he has no regrets and loves it here at Low Cost Animal Medical Center.
Veterinary Technicians and Assistants
Chelsea Price - Technician Supervisor & Certified Veterinary Assistant
Kara Alexander, RVT - Dental Technician
Kara Alexander is a native of Louisiana, a proud registered veterinary technician and a graduate of Delgado Community College's Veterinary Technology Program. Kara has worked in the veterinary profession for six years. She lives with her fiancé' Jonny and their one-eared cat Vincent Van Gogh. In her spare time she loves to read and take naps.
Abby Raye Boesch - Surgical & Veterinary Assistant
Abby has been in the veterinary field for almost 2 years. Born in New Orleans but raised in the bayou, she enjoys drinking a beer on Sundays and wrestling gators on a Monday.
Christen Rodriguez - Veterinary Assistant
Christen has been in the veterinary medicine field since 2011. As a child she always loved all animals and dreamed of growing up to be a veterinarian. Her favorite thing about working in this field is constantly learning new things and perfecting her technician skills. She resides in New Orleans with her son and their dog Brixx. They also have a blue-tongued skink named Chloe and a Pink-toed Tarantula named Davey.
Kevin Steiner - Surgical & Veterinary Assistant
Kevin was born in New Orleans and has always had a strong passion for wildlife and animal conservation. He loves travelling and his favorite animal is a penguin. He currently owns a Panther Chameleon named Kyle Bean Busch Jr. and a kitty named Carmelo Phillip Bean Busch Jr Jr. He also has two family dogs at home he takes care of named Cooper and Bella. Kevin went to College of Charleston and graduated with a Bachelor's of Science degree in Public Health. He has been in the veterinary field for about two years now. In the future, Kevin plans on owning a penguin farm and animal sanctuary.
Kiara M. Smith - Veterinary Assistant
Kiara has been in the field of veterinary medicine for 10 years. Raised in New Orleans she developed a passion for helping and caring for animals at a young age and brings that passion to Low Cost Animal Medical Center everyday! She studied Biology at UNO and is currently pursuing her Registered Vet Tech diploma through the Penn Foster program. She is a loving and caring mother to her son Joy and fur mother to her American Akita named Remy Lebeau and American Staffie named Citrine. She is a caring and hardworking individual here at Low Cost and we truly value all that she does!
Rashif Holmes - Veterinary Assistant
What's up!? My name's Rashif, I was born and raised in New Orleans with 3 dogs of my own and cant wait to get more!
Brandon Sundquist - Veterinary Assistant
Brandon was born and raised in Metairie. He has just started his journey in veterinary medicine in May of 2021 here at Low Cost Animal Medical Center. He grew up as a dog person and since has made the jump into the world of felines and has adopted 3 cats. Ahsoka, Sagira, and Karma have the best cat dad in the world!!
Emilie Holmes - Veterinary Assistant
Emilie was born and raised in Waggaman, and is currently in college to become a Registered Veterinary Technician. Emilie has always had the drive and compassion to care for animals since she was 8 years old! She has a farm plenty of different fur babies, including horses, cats, a dog and even a goat!
Lainie Cantrelle - Veterinary Assistant & Receptionist
Lainie was born and raised in New Orleans, she is currently studying to become a Registered Nurse. She spends the majority of her time loving on her fur baby, Willow. She has always had such a loving, caring heart towards animals which makes her love her job even more.
Client Care Specialists
Jamie Lynn Bergeron - Receptionist
Jamie has been in the veterinary field for 20 years. She has 4 pets: Odie, Lance Moore, Harker the general, and Toejam. Jamie was born and raised in Kenner and spends the majority of her time working, hanging out with her family and fur babies, and rocking out to 80's music. Her passion and love for animals makes her love her job every minute of the day. Jamie loves making people laugh but also is quick to give a helping hand. When asked if there is any other place she would rather be, she says "absolutely not".
Shandraka Nicole Cheatham - Receptionist
Shandraka Cheatham, also known as Dreaka, is a native of New Orleans. She has been part of the LCAMC family since 2018 and has especially enjoyed getting to meet and greet all the fur babies. Dreaka is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree in Web Design and Business and in her rare free time enjoys going to the movies and shopping. Dreaka lives with her mom, fiancé, daughter, and new to the family, twin boys. She has two fur babies, Suga and Gemini.
Joheidi Funes - Receptionist
Joheidi is one of our customer care representatives. She is new to the veterinary field and started in June of 2020 but so far she has enjoyed every moment of it. She was born in North Carolina and raised in New Orleans. She currently is studying to become a Registered Nurse at Delgado. She has 3 pets: Darwin the guinea pig, Scooby, a Great Dane, and Ava who is a mixed breed. Joheidi loves reading and drawing in her spare time and gets her nails done three times a week.
Yesenia Oro - Receptionist
She loves her job here at Low Cost Animal Medical Center
Copey Pulitzer - Chairman & Founder
Amanda Rizzo - President
M. Cleland Powell, III
Laura Freeman, DVM
Alan H. Philipson
Ashley Keller Nelson