Our Veterinarians


Dr. Shelli Karl, DVM

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be a veterinarian. While still in grade school I volunteered at the Nature and Science Center in Bay Village, OH. I then worked for a multi-doctor small animal veterinary hospital during high school.

I went to The Ohio State University for my undergraduate work and graduated with a degree in parasitology. I received my veterinary degree from the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1983, then was blessed to be selected by NC State University to join their advanced training internship program in small animal medicine and surgery. After working for several years as an associate veterinarian, I started Falconbridge Animal Hospital and later added our satellite clinic, Village Veterinary Hospital in Chatham County. In addition to cats and dogs, I enjoy seeing exotics including reptiles and pocket pets. My specialty is surgery. I enjoy soft tissue surgery as well as orthopedics.

I have a wonderful son Ryan and fiancee Jessica who have blessed this world with my grandson Wesley. My beautiful daughter Jenna will soon be adding a Doctorate to her name as she is graduating from a Physical Therapy program. We have a menagerie of fur babies at this time; Zoey the rambunctious black lab, Gabriel the sweet whippet pup, Aspen the look-alike for Falkor from the “Never Ending Story” and Monte and Simba, 2 kitties that think they own the house!

In my “free time” I enjoy outings with my grandson, traveling, and scuba diving.


Dr. Lara Burkholder, DVM

I’m a native of a small town in Nebraska who has now lived in the mid-Atlantic region for more than half my life. I first moved to the east coast to attend Davidson College in North Carolina where I received my undergrad degree in Biology. After graduation, I worked in research on the coast of North Carolina and then at Georgetown Medical Center. These experiences taught me many things, including the fact that I didn’t want to be a research scientist. I began working as a receptionist at a veterinary hospital because the best part of my day was coming home to see my dog and I wanted to know if I could turn that into a career. A few years later I received my Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, VA. I began practicing in Greensboro, NC and have spent the past 12 years working around Roanoke, VA.

I am relocating to Durham to be near those Davidson friends I made so many years ago. My two southwest Virginia mutts and a feisty cat named Zesty are joining me on this new adventure. I enjoy hiking, running on land, paddle boarding and skiing in the water. My Nebraska roots ensure that I continue to try my hand at gardening and baking even though the results are often disappointing 😊.

My veterinary interests include soft tissue surgery, dentistry, and radiology as well as behavioral and geriatric medicine. I also am certified in veterinary medical acupuncture which is a great tool in addressing pain and neurologic diseases with few side effects. I look forward to meeting many new dogs and cats and working with their pet parents to enhance the lives of the pets and people alike.


Relief Doctors


Dr. Ginger Stell, DVM

Dr. Ginger Stell is from Davidson, North Carolina. She attended Rice University in Houston, Texas, and originally pursued a career in chemistry. After deciding to make a change to veterinary medicine, she worked in human cancer research for 6 years while obtaining the biology prerequisites and experience needed for veterinary school. Since graduating from NC State College of Veterinary Medicine in 2013, Dr. Stell has worked in coastal NC and Durham. She now enjoys the variety of providing relief/locum veterinary care to the Triangle area.

Dr. Stell’s professional interests are in infectious disease, dentistry, feline medicine, and in minimizing pet fear and stress at the veterinary clinic. In her free time, she loves to hike and travel. She shares her home with 3 adorable cats: Petey, Brie, and Jade.


Dr. Grace Skaff, DVM

Dr. Skaff received her DVM from Mississippi State University and has been practicing small animal medicine for six years. Her special interests include dermatology, geriatric medicine and dentistry. Her ultimate goal is to provide high quality medicine with compassion.


Practice Manager


Kimberly, Practice Manager

Kimberly is from Pittsburgh, Pa. She moved to NC in 1989 with her family. She has a Bachelor degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Human Resources Management, where she graduated with high honors. Before coming to Falconbridge Animal Hospital, Kimberly worked the human side of medicine at UNC Hospital in the cardiac intensive care unit, Pruitt Hospice and Home Health as a Community Relations Representative and Carolina East Hospital in various departments.

She has an amazing and kind husband, Bryan. They are world travelers and have traveled to over 23 countries. She recently got married in Cinque Terre, Italy with close friends and family by their sides. She has a beautiful daughter Desirea, son-n-law Andrew and granddaughter Aria. Kimberly has a 14lb Mountain Feist Terrier named Bianca and enjoys long walks and snuggles with her.

On her time off, she enjoys traveling, spending time with family, biking and trying new restaurants.


Our Staff


Sydney, Vet Assistant

I have lived in Durham my whole life and graduated from Jordan High School in 2018. During my senior year in high school, I had the opportunity to take a course in veterinary assisting. I decided to take the course because I plan on attending veterinary school after college. I became a Certified Veterinary Assistant through this program and had previously interned and volunteered at Falconbridge to gain my needed experience and hours. After getting certified, I wanted to work here! I help out caring for the pets who are boarding with us, as well as by helping the veterinarians and technicians with anything they may need.

Until I move to college this fall I live with my mom, dad, and younger sister. We are an active family that likes to travel and being outdoors. We have 2 cats and a leopard gecko. I love nature, science, and obviously animals. When I’m not working with animals I prefer to fill my time with reading, running, and spending time with my family. I will begin my freshman year of college at NC State this fall.


Jamie, Vet Assistant

Jamie is one of our veterinary assistants that is cross-trained to work in our reception area. She is from Bahama, NC and grew up on a farm with many farm animals. She previously worked at a pet boarding facility before starting her veterinary assistant career. After graduating high school in 2021, she knew her passion was for animals and began taking classes at Penn Foster College to become a Fear Free Certified Veterinary Technician. After she graduates college as a Veterinary Technician, Jamie wants to specialize in nutrition and anesthesia. Jamie has been with us since August of 2021. Her and her fiancé Brantley have two dogs, Nala (Lab/Jack Russel), Toby (Chihuahua), and one cat, Pawlie (Polydactyl with 27 toes!).


Brittany, Receptionist

Brittany is one of our amazing receptionists here at Falconbridge. She moved to the Durham area 2 years ago from Chicago. She went to Purdue University and has her bachelor’s degree in biology. She has worked in clinics before but is a microbiologist by trade. After working on brain tumor research, she decided her heart was still with the animals and came to work with us in November 2021. Brittany spends her free time hiking at Eno River with her boyfriend, John, and their two dogs, Domino (dalmatian whippet) and Sophie (pitbull). She also has a cat, Heather, and 2 parakeets, Echo and Delta.


Eira, Receptionist

Eira is a graduate of WGU with a BS in Healthcare Management. She has worked with animals for many years doing everything from a kennel attendant to assisting the veterinary technicians and doctors. She lives in Cary with her husband and 2 dogs, Luffy a standard poodle, and a Shih Tzu named Afton.


Ashley, Receptionist

Ashley is one of our receptionists at Falconbridge. She moved to Raleigh in 2021 from Connecticut. Ashley is pursuing her Veterinary Technician Associate Degree. After being a Cosmetologist for 9 years she found her love in animals which brought her to Falconbridge to pursue her dreams. Ashley spends her free time exploring NC with her husband Mark and their 2 dogs Sunni and Summer.