Our Feline Focused Team
We understand that every cat, cat parent, and cat home dynamic is unique. There are no universal solutions to any medical problem. Healthcare choices differ in risk, benefits, cost, and comfort level. Our doctors and staff will work with you as a team, providing the information you need to be comfortable and confident that you are making the best healthcare decisions for your cat, and the most sensible choices for you.
Fern B. Slack, DVM
Dr. Fern was born in Georgia and raised all over the world in an Army family. She drove her mother crazy by adopting cats everywhere they went. Dr. Fern graduated from the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine in 1982. She went into Emergency Medicine and became the first Secretary of what is now the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society. In 1993, she realized a lifelong dream when she entered feline-exclusive medicine, operating a successful feline practice in the Washington, DC area for many years. Dr. Fern has served two terms on the Board of the American Association of Feline Practitioners, and remains an active member. Her primary interests are Feline Wellness, Feline Nutrition, and Feline Internal Medicine.
Dr. Fern moved to Boulder, CO in 2015 to open a Feline-Exclusive veterinary practice and to become part of a vibrant, progressive, and active community. She rejoices in a most wonderful family: husband Marc, two non-furry children, Glenn and Cory, and two feline children, Fireball and Hurricane. When not practicing medicine (or being a wife and mom), she loves to read (especially science fiction, mysteries and the Crooked Media), solve crosswords, collect rocks (and make jewelry out of them), listen to prog rock, bicycle, hike and write stuff about cats.
Dr. Fern is the cofounder of the “Secrets to Cat Health and Happiness” Meetup, and is a member of:
Barbara was born in Syracuse, New York, and spent most of her life thereafter in Virginia, except for five heavenly years in Fraser, CO (an experience that had more than a little to do with our family’s decision to move to Boulder). She graduated in 1986 from VA Tech with a degree in Geophysics, and even has the piece of paper to prove it. Barbara is mother to a wonderful daughter who is currently attending college in Virginia; and to two feline children, Jade and Jasper, who have generously agreed to serve as her alarm clock, although she really didn’t want the clock set at 4am, to which they answered, “and WHO makes the decisions around here?” and so the alarm is still set to 4am.
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When not running a veterinary hospital or saving the world from terrorists, Barbara can be found hiking, working out, making gorgeous jewelry, indulging in binge TV, and sharing deep and profound thoughts with her cats (especially regarding appropriate start times for morning activity.)
Jessica Fine, DVM, MS
In my early career as a vet technician, I had the good fortune to work with Dr. Sally Haddock, a pioneer among women veterinarians and author of, “The Making of A Woman Vet”. Working in her clinic, St. Marks Veterinary Hospital, in the heart of the East Village of Manhattan for 5 years gave me a rich experience with diverse pets—and their families—and crystallized my desire to become a full-fledged veterinarian.
In 1996, I moved to Fort Collins, Colorado to pursue a degree in veterinary medicine at Colorado State University’s, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. I received my Masters Degree in anatomy and neuro-science in 1999, then went on to get my Degree in Veterinary Medicine in 2003.
I’ve been practicing small animal medicine, surgery and dentistry for 13 years in both small practices and nationally affiliated clinics, collecting the best practices from each environment and honing my speciality in feline care.
Feline medicine has always been my passion. As a young adult I read the book, “All my Patients are Under the Bed”, by Dr. Louis J. Camuti – Memoirs of a Cat Doctor, and a dream was born. Joining Uniquely Cats is a dream come true.
I’m a resident and lover of Fort Collins, where I live with my partner Steve, a wildlife biologist and woodworker, our two dogs, Ellie and Iris (both rescues), and four cats, Jasmine, Kashi, Tic-Toc, and the newest addition Squidward The Sphynx (thank you Sponge Bob).
When I’m not working I enjoy spending time with family, running, hiking, camping, reading, painting, watching movies and tending to my small vegetable garden.
Barbara Goodrich, DVM
Doctor B.G. is a lifelong cat-fanatic and a philosopher with CU-Denver who fell in love with the feral cats in her Golden neighborhood. After spending most of her free time gentling older ferals, fostering kittens, and helping with trap-neuter-return, she decided to become a feline veterinarian as well, graduating in 2014 from CSU. Dr. B.G. is still teaching the occasional philosophy class. She advocates grounding philosophy in biology beyond Homo sapiens and publishes on this and philosophy of neuroscience. Cat-med and philosophy aren’t a traditional combination, but they go together beautifully!
Dr. B.G. has special interests in feline behavior, analgesia, and geriatric medicine, with feral cat care on the side. She has been a member of the American Association of Feline Practitioners and the Veterinary Information Network since in vet school. She is delighted to be a part of the Uniquely Cats team, with their outstanding medical care and feline-friendly priorities.
Dr. B.G. lives with fellow-philosopher spouse Bill, one anarchist ginger tom, and a very good-natured pit bull. She loves silly British comedy and Laphroaig, and over-the-top operas. She has set up two computer keyboards at home so she can have one too.
Weronika Gajowniczek, DVM
Dr. Weronika was born in Poland, but her family came to the United States when she was two years old. She grew up in a Chicago suburb, where there was always a cat or two in the house. Dr. Weronika earned her BA in Biochemistry at Lawrence University in Appleton, WI and later graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in 2019. Before moving to Boulder, Dr. Weronika spent a year working in Mt Prospect, IL. There she developed a love for dentistry.
Dr. Weronika has held a special place in her heart for cats throughout her whole life. At vet school, she was the president of the Feline Club. During her last year of vet school, she happened upon Uniquely Cats and set up a short internship. She enjoyed her experience at the clinic so much, that she decided to eventually move to Boulder and join the veterinary team!
Dr. Weronika loves the typical Colorodo activities of hiking, biking, and trying craft beers. She has also been working on expanding her cooking and crafting repertoires while listening to a variety of podcasts. She has a very curious and independent cat, Roxanne (Roxie).
Client Care Director
Shifra’s animal hospital career began years ago when she brought her first rescue kitten for his first vet appointment and saw the “Receptionist Wanted” sign taped to the front desk. From Minnesota to San Francisco to Chicago, Shifra has specialized in veterinary medical client service and hospital operations, and is now thrilled to join the team at Uniquely Cats!
A cat lady by nature, Shifra nonetheless finds herself currently the mother of a ridiculous and adorable inherited 12-year-old Pomeranian named Tokyo, living in Lyons with her equally adorable tech-exec/ultracyclist partner Bryce, and waiting patiently for her next cat to present itself.
Lori Barnabe, RVT
Patient Care Director
Lori is a Colorado native. She returned to Colorado in 2017 after living in Oakland, CA. She received her Registered Veterinary Technician license in 1998. Lori has held a variety of positions as an RVT, but her true passion is working with cats. In all her years working as an
RVT, cats are truly dear to her heart, She loves working with cats, enjoys teaching her colleagues the way of the cat, and helping her colleagues learn new ways of handling and treating cats.
Lori’s hobbies include fly fishing, pyrography, and camping. On her days off she enjoys spending time with her cat River.
Client Care Specialist
Jill grew up in upstate New York. She traveled west to study at CU Boulder then continued west to San Francisco where she worked in the special events industry. San Francisco is a special place, but the lure of the mountains was too strong, and she and her family moved to Boulder in 2004. Jill and her family love spending time in the mountains camping, hiking, adventuring and bagging the occasional 14er.
After an extended stint as a stay-at-home mom of three, Jill is excited to be working in a fun and caring environment that promotes the health and well-being of all cats. Jill has always loved cats and has never not had at least one cat in the house. She currently has two adorable rescue cats, Tikka and Peanut.
Originally from Texas, Mina has recently relocated to Northern Colorado and has started her journey to become a licensed veterinary technician. She is a self-proclaimed “crazy cat lady” and is happy to be joining the team at Uniquely Cats.
In her free time, she enjoys snuggling between her 5 cats and sitting around the campfire with her husband and son.
Mary is an animal lover and has a passion for helping animals. She was born in Chicago, Illinois and moved to Florida when she was eight years old. She grew up in Florida and moved to Boulder about a year ago with the intent on becoming a Veterinary Technician specializing in Felines. She is very excited to be working with cats at Uniquely Cats Veterinary Center.
Mary has a black and white cat back in Florida named Capone, who is mischievous and lives up to his name. She currently has a dog and two geckos here in Boulder and is determined to convince her fiancé to get a kitty. For fun, Mary lifts weights, hikes, swims….doing anything outside is her “go to” for a fun day! She is super excited to work with a team that loves cats as much as she does!
Monica was born in Wentzville, Missouri and traveled all over the United States in an Army family. From infancy she lived with five cats and has truly become a Crazy Cat Lady at heart. Her love of cats has motivated her to become a certified veterinary technician. She currently attends Bel-rea institute in Denver in pursuit of this goal.
Monica lives in Boulder with her supporting boyfriend and her beautiful white cat Cleo. Monica and her boyfriend love to go to the mountains in their extra time. At home they love watching rom coms and cuddling with Cleo.
Francesca is from Hanover, New Hampshire, and graduated in May 2020 with her Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from CU Boulder. She was a coxswain on the rowing team at CU throughout her four years of undergrad and loves the sport! Francesca plans to attend veterinary school in the near future, hoping to delve into the world of veterinary medicine even further. Since high school, she has worked in the veterinary field, but this is her first time working exclusively with cats!
Francesca has two lovely fluffballs: Dipper, a black two-year-old Maine Coon mix, and Moose, a grey and white one and a half-year-old domestic longhair. They are the most amazing boys and Francesca is so glad to have them in her life! She loves taking Dipper for walks and playing fetch with Moose. In her free time, Francesca enjoys hiking, swimming, reading, and playing video/board games with her friends.
Client Care Specialist
Ellie has always felt a special connection with animals, especially cats, starting from a very young age. Cats have always been a part of her family in every place that she has lived. She was born in Westfield, New Jersey but was raised in two very different places—in Johnson City, Tennessee and in Tampere, Finland. Ellie and her brother went to primary school in Finland and continued secondary and post-secondary school in Tennessee. She studied Clinical Nutrition at East Tennessee State University and explored new hobbies in basket weaving, rug hooking and needle felting, which she still does from time to time.
In 2018, Ellie married her husband, Jacob, and moved to Boulder, Colorado with their cat, Finn. Jacob is a banjo maker and enjoys cycling, hiking, reading, and being creative. When she’s not at UCVC, she volunteers at a wildlife rehabilitation center helping sick, orphaned, and injured wildlife, works part-time as a caregiver, and enjoys going on scenic walks, taking photos, renovating her living space, and relaxing at home with Finn. Ellie is proud to be a cat-loving Finnish American and feels extremely fortunate and excited to work with such a fun and compassionate team at Uniquely Cats Veterinary Center.
Patient Care Specialist
Nicole was born in Orange County, California, and raised in central Indiana where she discovered her love for animals. Due in part to her mother’s kindhearted spirit, Nicole never turned away a stray animal and spent much of her youth caring for countless cats and dogs that found their way to her doorstep.
After graduating from Butler University with a degree in Arts Administration, Nicole moved back to California to see what her home state had to offer. With a non-profit background and a desire to help animals, she soon realized her dream of one day starting her own animal rescue. She moved to Boulder in Summer 2020 to finally put down roots and begin the journey of making her dream a reality. She was fortunate enough to find a place at UCVC and is excited to learn and grow with a team of altruistic individuals.
Outside of work, Nicole enjoys reading, baking, knitting, taking photos of the great outdoors, and snuggling with her cat, Bonnie, and two dogs, Rachel and Nugget.
Client Care Specialist
Sam grew up in Connecticut and went to school in Pennsylvania, where he majored in Film Studies. He worked in New Jersey before moving to Boulder in 2020. Sam got his first two cats – Bob and Joe – at age 6, and has been a pet lover ever since. Soon after moving to Boulder, Sam and his partner adopted a tortoiseshell kitten named Mothball, who lovingly bites them every morning at 5:30 to beg for breakfast.
Outside of work, Sam enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee and birdwatching, and he is excited to be a part of the Uniquely Cats team.
Patient Care Specialist
Client Care Specialist
Originally from the Hudson Valley, Shae spent 6 years in the Adirondacks for school and work, occasionally hiking and exploring the mountains. She graduated from SUNY Plattsburgh with a degree in Environmental Studies and double minored in Environmental Science and Biology. Shae and her family have always had a passion for animals, rescuing strays of all kinds since she was a child. Shae recently worked as a park ranger in North Dakota where she rescued 3 feral kittens. She decided to continue her journey west and has settled down in Colorado.
Shae is accompanied by her creamsicle cat Leonardo DiCattio and her array of potted plants. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, exploring, and watching moves/shows with her best friend on the east coast.
Client Care Specialist
Ashley grew up in Arkansas with her parents and two younger sisters. After never being allowed to have a cat growing up due to her own and her mother’s allergies, Ash threw caution to the wind as soon as she moved into her first apartment that allowed cats and got 2 from the humane society. Emily Lickenson and Purrmione have been by Ash’s side for the past 5 years, 6 apartments, and 3 states.
Could This Be You?
Join Team Feline!
Uniquely Cats Veterinary Center is interviewing for Feline Focused Veterinarians, Client Care Specialists, Patient Care Specialists, and Veterinary Technicians to join our team! Do you have a passion for cats, to personal excellence, love to learn, and want to be part of a team? Please click here to complete our online employment application — we want to hear from you!