Dr. Stephanie Essman, owner and founder of Veterinary Imaging Consultations, Inc. completed her DVM at Oklahoma State University in 1998. After a small animal rotating internship at a very busy specialty and emergency hospital in Dallas, Texas, she completed her Radiology residency/master's program at the University of Missouri in 2003. She was an Assistant professor at the University of Missouri until 2011. During this time her research focus was based on utilizing the radiopharmaceutical Samarium-153-EDTMP in osteosarcoma treatment, but her primary interest was in teaching residents and students. She was honored to have been awarded the Golden Aesculapius Teaching award in 2005, 2007 and 2008 and the SCAVMA Teaching Excellence award in 2005.  During her tenure at the University of Missouri, she also gained extensive teleradiology experience and launched VIC, Inc. in 2007.  At the beginning of 2012, she decided to focus all efforts on her teleradiology company in order to provide the best service possible to her clientele. She enjoys consulting with veterinarians regarding their cases, and utilizes her extensive teaching experience on a daily basis when discussing cases with the veterinarian. In her free time, she enjoys cycling, backpacking, hiking and traveling. She also works closely with two California English Bulldog rescue groups, Road Dogs and Rescue and Southern California Bulldog rescue. She serves as a foster to abused and neglected bulldogs and provides her expertise in image interpretation to the Bulldog Rescue veterinarian (www.vet4healthypet.com).

Dr. Stacey Leach received his DVM degree from Texas A&M University in 2007.  He then completed both a one-year rotating internship in small animal medicine and surgery and a three-year residency in cardiology at the University of Missouri.  He became board certified in cardiology by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in 2012.  Dr. Leach is currently an Assistant Teaching Professor of veterinary cardiology and serves as the director of the small animal rotating internship program at the University of Missouri.  He has authored numerous publications, has lectured at both the regional and national level, and serves as an ad-hoc reviewer for several veterinary journals.   In his free time he can be found in the gym or enjoying the outdoors with his two four-legged kids, a Labrador named Tyson and a standard schnauzer named Layla. Dr. Leach is available for cardiac consultations, including echocardiograms and ECG’s.

Dr. Dainna Stelmach grew up in California and completed veterinary school at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California in 2009. She completed an internship at Equine Sports Medicine and Surgery in Weatherford, Texas. From there, she moved with her husband to Athens, Georgia for a residence in diagnostic imaging. She completed a combined residency and masters in diagnostic imaging and became board certified in 2014. Specific interests of Dr. Stelmach include thoracic and abdominal computed tomography, CT angiography and portography, thoracic and musculoskeletal ultrasound, as well as MRI of the brain, abdomen and musculoskeletal system. Dr. Stelmach is married to a veterinary school classmate and critical care specialist, Jordan Scherk. They live in Salt Lake City, Utah, have two young children, a Standard Poodle and an orange tabby. Before becoming parents, they enjoyed hiking, backpacking, fishing and snowboarding. Now most of their free time is spent with the kids. 

Dr. Scott Secrest is a 2002 graduate of The Ohio State University.  After six years in small animal practice, he completed a combined diagnostic imaging residency/MS program at the University of Missouri in 2012.  Dr. Secrest has particular interest in the diagnosis of urogenital and endocrine diseases using computed tomography. He is currently on faculty at the University of Georgia.  In his spare time, he enjoys doing triathlons, baking and traveling. Otherwise he is happy at home with his husband Andrew, a small animal veterinary internist and three "fur kids", Leo, Nugget and Gash.

Wendy Fife, DVM, MS

Kansas State University

Dr. Sarah Jones Woods grew up in San Clemente, California. She received her undergraduate degree from Stanford University in 2005, where she was a Pac-10 Champion, Collegiate All-American Swimmer, and team captain. After working as a clinical research coordinator for human clinical trials on post-operative management alongside her dad, an anesthesiologist, she moved to New York City to obtain a post-baccalaureate health certificate from Columbia University. She received her veterinary degree from UC Davis in 2012, and subsequently completed a one-year small animal medicine and surgery rotating internship at VCA Sacramento Veterinary Referral Center. She was accepted into a radiology residency at UC Davis, and became boarded in radiology in September of 2016. She loves to travel with her husband, Alyn, a medical doctor practicing cardiothoracic radiology in private practice in Denver.  Some of their favorite vacations have included backpacking in the Napali Coast Kauai, as well as Yosemite and the Trinity Alps, skiing in Verbier, Switzerland, and taking trips with extended family to Maui. She enjoys paddle boarding with her dog Gator, who also loves to join on the hiking and backpacking adventures

​​​Coleen Bridges

Operational Manager

Stephanie Essman, DVM, MS, DACVR

​Oklahoma State University

Mark Saunders, DVM, MS, DACVR

University of Pennsylvania

Dr. Mark Saunders graduated Cum Laude from the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, in 1981. After two years as a large-animal practitioner in Quakertown, PA, he entered the radiology residency program at the University of Pennsylvania. He became a diplomate in the American College of Veterinary Radiology in 1986. In 1994, he earned his Masters of Science in the Biomedical Studies Group at Penn, studying hemodynamics and Doppler pulsatility. Dr. Saunders was a faculty member at Penn for 18 years as a lecturer, assistant, and associate professor. For the last eight years at Penn, he was the chief of the Section of Radiology. He is the past president of the Veterinary Ultrasound Society and the American College of Veterinary Radiology.  In 2003, he left the University of Pennsylvania and moved to Shelburne, Vermont, where he and Dr. Lynn Walker started Lynks Group, PLC, a veterinary imaging company.

Dainna Stelmach, DVM, MS, DACVR

Western University of Health Sciences

​​Jonathan Hayles, DVM, MS, DACVR

University of California Davis

​​Stacey Leach, DVM, ACVIM

Texas A&M University

Scott Secrest, DVM, MS, DACVR

The Ohio State University

Meet Our Team

Dr. Jonathan Hayles is a long time San Diego resident, completing a Bachelor of Science at UC San Diego in Animal Physiology and Neuroscience in 2000. He completed the DVM program at UC Davis in 2006.
Dr. Hayles then pursued a competitive one-year rotating small animal internship at the Veterinary Medical and Surgical Group (VMSG) in Ventura, CA. Directly following his internship, Dr. Hayles began the radiology residency program at Washington State University (WSU) College of Veterinary Medicine. His training in diagnostic imaging included small and large animal diagnostic ultrasound, radiography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), fluoroscopy and nuclear scintigraphy. Concurrently, Dr. Hayles earned a Masters in Veterinary Science (MS) degree, with research focusing on abdominal MRI and correlations to abdominal ultrasound; specifically regarding adrenal gland anatomy.
In 2010, Dr. Hayles successfully completed the certifying ACVR examination. After several months remaining at WSU as a clinical instructor, Dr. Hayles and his wife, Andrea, returned to San Diego.
When not working, Dr. Hayles enjoys surfing, ultimate Frisbee, travelling and spending time with his wife, two sons, Alexander and Andrew (Drew), his dog (Charles Jr.) and cat (Bali).

Sarah Jones Woods, DVM, DACVR

​University of California Davis

Dr. Michael Muhlbauer received his DVM degree from the University of Missouri in 1983 and worked as a general practitioner for 5 years.  In 1988, he began a 4 year Radiology Residency program at the University of Illinois where he was employed as a Teaching Associate.  During his tenure at Illinois he received the Outstanding Teacher and Outstanding Clinician awards.  In 1992, Dr. Muhlbauer was board certified in Veterinary Radiology and completed his Masters of Science degree in Veterinary Biosciences and Nuclear Medicine.  In 1994, he founded Veterinary Imaging Specialists, PC and is currently president of the corporation.  Dr. Muhlbauer has authored and co-authored numerous publications and has given many continuing education seminars.  He is co-author of “Radiology of the Dog and Cat: Guide to Making and Interpreting Radiographs” and currently serves on the Executive Council for the American College of Veterinary Radiology.  He has been a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Missouri Veterinary Medical Association (President’s Award), Florida Veterinary Medical Association, Greater St. Louis Veterinary Medical Association (past president), Phi Zeta Honor Society, Radiological Society of North America, and the American College of Veterinary Radiology.

Michael C. Muhlbauer, DVM, MS, DACVR

University of Missouri

Coleen Bridges is Veterinary Imaging Consultations’ Operational Manager.  Coleen graduated from Oklahoma State University with a degree in Journalism and Broadcasting in 1997. While at Oklahoma State, she was a member of the Women’s Golf Team.  Following college, Coleen worked as a publicist for NBC-TV involved in hit shows like “Friends,” “Seinfeld,” “Mad About You” and “Suddenly Susan.”  Following her stint at NBC, Coleen was a college golf coach for the women’s golf team at Rollins College in Winter Park, FL leading the team to a Division II Championship in 2000.  She worked in the sales department of Swivel-Tek, a family-owned CNC manufacturing house from 1998-2007. In 2007, she focused her attention on pharmaceutical sales and eventually entered sales in the medical device industry.  In 2013, Coleen was approached by one of her customers to become the Practice Administrator of a startup allergy/immunology office.  She helped grow the practice from 1 office to 4 in just 3 years. Coleen is happily married to her husband of 20 years, TJ, and they have an 14 year old daughter, Kaiden and a 9 year old son, Finnegan.  In her spare time she enjoys hiking, family activities, cooking and traveling.

After earning her DVM degree from Kansas State University in 1998, Dr. Wendy Fife completed
a one-year internship in small animal medicine and cardiology at California Animal Hospital in
Los Angeles. Following a year in private practice in Boise, Idaho, she completed a three-year
residency in radiology and received her Masters in Science from Ohio State University,
becoming board-certified in veterinary radiology in 2004. Dr. Fife has practiced teleradiology since 2007. She  lives in Boulder, Colorado, where she  also provides local mobile ultrasound services.
In her free time,  she enjoys trail running, Nordic skiing, traveling, and spending time with her husband
and two young sons.