Staff

  • Dr.
    Joni Samuels, Founder

    Dr. Joni is originally from the Midwest but has lived in the Santa Ynez Valley since 1979. She is a 1977 graduate of Michigan State University. She founded Buellton Veterinary Clinic in 1981 with just one part time employee and has watched it grow into the full service hospital it is today. Although she remains the business manager of the clinic, Dr. Joni is looking at “semi-retirement” and works only 1-2 days a week, mostly in the business office. She is eternally grateful to all the clients over the last 40 years who have entrusted her and the clinic staff with their pet’s well-being.

  • Dr.
    Mary Margaret Gross, Veterinarian

    Dr. Gross graduated from the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 1995. After practicing for 22 years in Las Vegas, she is happy to join the BVC family in 2019. She continues to expand her knowledge and understanding of veterinary medicine, including alternative approaches. She feels comfortable in either the exam room or surgery room. Outside the office, she enjoys doing sports with her dog, 'Justy', reading, hiking and watching movies.

  • Dr. Kate Napawan, Veterinarian

    Dr. Kate Napawan joined BVC in June of 2021. She moved to our beautiful part of the world from Iowa where she graduated from Iowa State University, College of Veterinary Medicine in 2014. She is comfortable both in the exam room and the surgical suite and is expanding her skills in the area of ultrasound. She shares her home with her husband and 5 adorable small dogs. In her spare time she loves hiking, traveling and photography. She has a personal goal of completing the 52 Hike Challenge which has her completing a new one-mile hike weekly for a whole year. 

  • Stacie Morris, Bed & Breakfast Boarding Staff

    Stacie has been a part of BVC’s Bed and Breakfast team since 1992. Her compassion and love for animals appears so natural that the work doesn’t even seem to be an equation - although we do appreciate the fact that she is a bit of a “neat freak”. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, biking and all things leading to a healthy life style.

  • Julie Esola, Groomer
    Julie, our Senior Groomer has been working at Buellton Veterinary Clinic since 1995 and has earned an excellent reputation for her work. She has over 20 years experience grooming animals in addition to having worked as a veterinary technician. She is also a Behavior Certified Companion Animal Hygienist and is our resident puppy trainer. Julie has completed advanced training in behavior issues and is also available for consultations
  • Brianne Gonzales, Client Care Representative

    Brianne has worked in the veterinary field since 2001. She joined the Buellton Veterinary Clinic in February of 2005. In the time that Brianne has been with BVC, we have watched her develop her knowledge and skills both in customer service and product knowledge. In her spare time she is also involved with C.A.R.E. 4 Paws,  an active advocate for reducing overpopulation of animals. She especially enjoys spending time with her husband and their dog Lemmy.

  • Charlene Guerra, Bed & Breakfast Boarding Staff

    BVC’s Bed and Breakfast team had the pleasure of adding Charlene in 2011. Charlene’s initial goal was to add some work experience to her college education but we grew on her and she has become a long-term employee. She studied Animal Biology at UC Davis with an emphasis on infectious diseases and wildlife. Charlene spends her spare time with her husband, their dog “Charlie” and cat “Mimi”. She enjoys reading, hiking, gaming and nature watching.

  • Sandra Hecker, Registered Veterinary Technician

    Sandra joined Buellton Veterinary Clinic in December 2018. She comes to us with 12 years of veterinary technician experience. Sandra completed the alternate route program at Allan Hancock and in 2017 she passed her board exam to become a licensed RVT. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her husband, two daughters and three dogs, 'Oz' 'Lucy', and 'Roscoe'. 

  • Luis De la Cruz, Technician Assistant

    Luis joined Buellton Veterinary Clinic this year as Technician Assistant. He has completed the Registered Veterinary Technician Alternate Route Program at Allan Hancock College and is working towards taking the Exam to be an RVT. He is also working on a Bachelors in biology. In his free time he likes spending time with family and his two dogs Charlie and Coco. 

  • Rosemary Gutierrez, Receptionist

    Rosemary Joined Buellton Veterinary Clinic this year as a Receptionist. She has customer service experience in the hotel industry. She has used all her experience and transitioned smoothly into the Veterinary field. She loves to try new foods, drawing/painting, skateboarding, and watching movies. She hopes to one day hold an art show and write a full-length screenplay or sitcom. Her dream pet is owning a Bull Terrier. 

  • Niccole Julien, Grooming Assistant

    Niccole joined Buellton Veterinary Clinic in May 2021. She is passionate about animals and shows that through her kindness to all the pets that come in for baths. Niccole’s goal is to continue learning about animal care so she can one day open her own rescue. Niccole loves to go dancing, work in her garden and hike out in nature. Niccole has 4 rescue dogs, 1 rabbit and 1 chicken who she loves all very much. 

  • Idaly Tista, Bed and Breakfast Staff

    Idaly joined BVC’s Bed and Breakfast in March 2022. She has volunteered at VIVA cat shelter prior to joining Buellton Veterinary Clinic. Idaly plans to attend Allan Hancock College. Her future goals are to be a Registered Veterinary Technician. Idaly enjoys learning different languages, watching True Crimes and spending time with her 3 kitties.