The Nurse Practitioners of South Denver Cardiology Associates are highly skilled professionals with impressive credentials. They function in our practice as physician extenders and collaborate with physicians in an ongoing manner to enhance and improve the quality of care provided to our patients. They attend treadmills and tilt tables and are part of our team approach to consultations, hospital follow-ups, and discharge teaching.
Amber Abrams, MSN, FNP-BC, I am originally from Dickson, TN, and completed my BSN degree at the University of Iowa with honors. My career as an RN began in Iowa, Florida, and Colorado caring for cardiac, pulmonary, neuro and multi-trauma patients. I then obtained my MSN- FNP at Kaplan University. My focus on education and practice began in family medicine and primary care. I quickly realized my joy in my career lies in cardiology, and I began to specialize in structural heart disease in the hospital setting. I now have joined SDCA to further pursue the care of cardiology patients in both the hospital and outpatient clinic settings. I am a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
I love spending time with my husband and two dogs, trail running, traveling, hiking, fishing, and enjoying many outdoor activities.
Elizabeth Carter, MSN, AGACNP-BC Elizabeth joined South Denver Cardiology in April of 2013 after completing her dual Master’s Degree in Adult Acute Care and Family Nurse Practitioner degree, with Sigma Theta Tau, honors from Colorado State University-Pueblo. She obtained her Bachelor of Science degree at Metropolitan State University’s Accelerated Nursing Program. Her nursing experience includes telemetry, Progressive Care Unit, and several years as an Intensive Care Nurse.
Originally from Minnesota she and her husband have made Colorado their home, together raising their 1-year-old daughter. She enjoys the Colorado outdoors, running, hiking, and skiing.
Julie Garside, MSN, APRN, ANP-BC is an Adult Nurse Practitioner with South Denver Cardiology Associates. Julie received her Bachelor’s in Biology from the University of Colorado, Boulder, in 1992, followed by a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Regis University in 1996 with the honor of Sigma Theta Tau. From there, she gained extensive nursing experience in a level one Emergency Department prior to graduating with honors from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in 2001 with a Master’s of Science in Nursing. She has enjoyed the challenges of working as a Cardiology Nurse Practitioner since that time.
Julie is a Colorado native and is married with two boys. She loves the outdoors and enjoys many activities including playing tennis, running, skiing, hiking, yoga, reading and of course, savoring quality time with her family.
Whitney Groth, MSN, APRN, ANP-BC: I was raised in Arlington, Texas and began my nursing education at Texas Christian University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. I worked at Parkland Hospital in Dallas in the cardiac intensive care unit. After moving to Denver, my experience in surgical and trauma intensive care and work in the emergency department at Denver General drove my desire to continue my advanced education. I earned my Masters of Science in Nursing at the University of Colorado, with focus as a Family Nurse Practitioner. Cardiology has been my interest since the beginning of my career, and I joined SDCA in the summer of 2000. I thoroughly love the field of cardiology and it’s ever-evolving therapies, procedures, and treatments, as well as the tried and true preventative arm of diet and exercise. When I began work at South Denver, I had a 5-month-old boy, and two years later came a little girl. They have provided us with a lot of entertainment over the years, watching their sports, skiing and traveling together when we can.
My perspective has changed a bit over the years, starting out as a young mother, now with teenagers and aging parents, but my passion for learning and growing my knowledge base so that I can provide the highest level of care to our patients has not. I look forward to many more rewarding years in this field.
Christine Harms, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, is a family nurse practitioner that joined the South Denver Cardiology family in May of 2018. I was born and raised in Florida and obtained my first nursing degree at the age of 19 years old. Shortly after, I achieved a bachelor’s of science in nursing at Arizona State University and practiced in several different specialties throughout my career. I graduated from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs with a Doctorate of Nursing and became an independent nurse practitioner serving the community in a primary care setting. My love for a challenge brought me to the SDCA team where I now play an important role in the lives of our patients.
I reside in Colorado with my husband, Dave, and we enjoy fitness, family, friends and the great outdoors.
Tessa Henderson, MSN, APRN, AGACNP-BC, FNP-BC,
Elizabeth Huser, MSN, APRN, ANP-BC is an adult nurse practitioner, started working at South Denver Cardiology in May of 2012. Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana, she moved to Colorado to study integrative physiology and biology at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Soon thereafter, she earned a second Bachelor’s degree from Metropolitan State College of Denver’s accelerated nursing program. She then gained critical care, spinal cord rehabilitation, and outpatient cardiology nursing experience, and graduated from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center with a Master of Science in Nursing. Shortly after attaining ANCC board certification as an adult nurse practitioner, she joined the SDCA team. When she is not working, Elizabeth loves to fill her spare time with as many activities and adventures as possible. She loves traveling. In fact, she has a long-standing tradition of visiting at least one new country annually.
She thrives on an active lifestyle, which consists of running, biking, hiking, and skiing. She also enjoys swing dancing, playing games, going to concerts and shows, reading, and delicious food – especially when others cook it.
Stephanie Kaskavitch, MSN, FNP-BC I am originally from Bismarck, North Dakota. My nursing education began at the University of North Dakota in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. My care for cardiac, vascular and stroke patients has been the main focus in my career, and I continued my education to obtain a Masters of Science in Nursing with Family Nurse Practitioner focus at the University of Mary in 2015. While my career began in family practice, my love for cardiology patients with a focus on patient education and forming active partnerships with patients in managing their health care, pulled me back to cardiology. I joined SDCA in June 2018 and look forward to a long career with our group. I am an active member of the American College of Cardiology and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
I enjoy doing yoga and spending time in the outdoors gardening, camping and hiking with my family.
Paula McDermott, MS, APRN, CCNS, CCRN, AACC: I am originally from South Dakota. I began my nursing education at South Dakota State University in 1986 as a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Nursing and minor in Military Science. My nursing residency was completed at Tripler Army Medical Center in Hawaii and continued at Fitzsimmons. I transitioned from the Army as a Captain to pursue higher education at the University of Colorado Health Science Center in 1993, where I earned my Master of Science in Nursing and graduated with honors as a Clinical Nurse Specialist. My clinical experience has been focused in critical care, cardiac transplant, cardiology, and now heart failure. Educating patients, colleagues, nurses and the community are inspiring to me and I have taught workshops for professionals throughout my career. I joined SDCA in 2003 and now enjoy my focus in the Transitional Heart Failure Clinic. I am a member of the American College of Cardiology, Heart Failure Society of America, American Association of Critical-Care Nurses and the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses. I have been honored with the Regional Florence Nightingale Luminary Award.
Spending time with my husband and daughter is the source of my enjoyment. I also take great pleasure in shopping, staying fit, and meeting up with friends.
Shari Nieman, MSN, APRN, ACNP-BC, FNP-BC Advanced Practice Nursing Supervisor, Transitional Heart Failure Clinic Supervisor. I am originally from Hollywood, Florida and attended my first nursing school in Gainesville, Florida. I completed my educational degrees at Metropolitan State College and the University of Northern Colorado. My nursing experience includes caring for patients in intensive care, medical, surgical and burn units. I have also worked in community clinics prior to focusing only on cardiology in 1994. I joined SDCA in February 1999 and found my home caring for our patients in both the hospital and clinic settings. I have a great passion for cardiology, our practice, and our patients, and it keeps me up late nights studying quite often. I am a member of Sigma Theta Tau Nursing Honor Society, Colorado Nurses’ Association, American Nurses’ Association, American College of Cardiology, Heart Rhythm Society, and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. I have a wonderful family that enjoys the outdoor lifestyle offered in Colorado.
We spend a great majority of our time hiking, skiing, biking and you will often see us at concerts -as we all love music, singing, and dancing.
Barbara Poole, MS, APRN, FNP-BC: I am originally from Jefferson City Missouri. My nursing career began in 1984 with my BSN from the University of Missouri – Columbia. I then continued on to study Counseling and earned a Masters of Arts degree from Colorado Christian University in 1994. My love for caring for patients drove me to continue my nursing education and pursue a Masters of Science at the University of Colorado- Health Sciences Center with a focus on Family Nurse Practitioner. My career began in Family Practice, but with my critical care, interventional radiology and cardiac cath lab nursing experience, I knew cardiology was the area and population of patients that guided my career choices. I joined South Denver in June of 2000. I am a member of the American College of Cardiology and of the Heart Rhythm Society. The collegial relationship with the other advanced practice nurses, the SDCA physicians, and the community providers is a very fulfilling part of my career at SDCA. And, of course, the wide variety of patients with which I interact, are what have kept me enjoying my career choice.
Enjoying the Colorado outdoors is why so many of us enjoy living here and I am no exception. My family and I love biking, hiking and the many cultural events that Denver has to offer.
Bonnie Scheckenbach, MSN, APRN, ACNP-BC: As a child, I lived in many states including New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Illinois. I attended St. Mary’s College at Notre Dame, Indiana and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 1992. My nursing experience began at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago as an ICU nurse in the medical and cardiac intensive care units. I spent 6 years there as I continued my education with an advanced nursing degree. In May 1998, I graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with my Master of Science from the Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Program. Later that Summer I moved to Colorado with my husband Greg and was excited to join SDCA in February of 1999. During my tenure at SDCA, I have been allowed to grow both professionally and personally working with such a supportive and well-respected group of physicians and nurse practitioners. I continue our professional standards by maintaining my memberships with the American College of Cardiology, Heart Rhythm Society, and the American Nurses Association.
I have been married for greater than 20 years to my college sweetheart, Greg. In my spare time, I support my 3 children in their endeavors, including several sports that take us all over the country – and sometimes out of our country! I also enjoy time at home with our 2 pugs, Lola and Ruby. I am a rabid Notre Dame fan, and love to watch the Broncos, Nuggets and just about any college basketball and lacrosse.
Kristi Swim, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC Is originally from Tennessee and Mississippi. She attended the University of MS, where she obtained her Bachelors of Science in Nursing in 2001. She has enjoyed caring for cardiology patients since her first nursing position at the University of Virginia in a cardiac ICU. After arriving in Colorado via travel nursing she quickly realized she wanted to make Denver home and continued her studies at Regis University where she obtained Family Nurse Practitioner master’s degree in 2010. After a couple of years in neurology, she returned to cardiology and spent five years in cardiothoracic surgery before joining SDCA in June 2018. She is a member of Sigma Theta Tau Honors Society and American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
She and her husband love to hike, camp, and travel but have briefly placed those loves on hold while adjusting to being new parents.
Kelly Webster, MSN, AGACNP-BC I am originally from Denver, Colorado-born at St. Joseph’s hospital. I attended Arapahoe Community for my Registered Nurse degree, Chamberlain College of Nursing for my BSN, and CSU Pueblo for my MSN and Acute Nurse Practitioner degree. My nursing experience has been focused in Cardiology and critical care mostly with a smattering of surgery, medical and radiology. I joined SDCA in July of 2017 and what I love about SDCA is what an amazing group of people I work with that truly love what they do and the patients they do it for. It is an endless learning opportunity and we have wonderful patients. I am married, have 2 kids and love to travel, hike and explore the outdoors. Colorado is a perfect place for me to live my life because of this.
Amy Wischmeyer, MSN, APRN, ACNP-BC has been skiing since she was a little girl, even though she grew up in Chicago. She is excited to be back in Colorado and “close to the slopes.” She is an avid runner and has run in quite a few races although the longest was the Chicago Marathon in 1995. She is planning on training for at least a ½ marathon here in Colorado and also enjoys trail running and traveling. In the future, she would like to participate in medical volunteer work. Amy received her Master of Science in Nursing as an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner from Rush University in Chicago, Illinois.
Barb Van Horne, BSN, APRN, FNP I am a native of Colorado, originally from Denver and grew up in Wheat Ridge. My nursing career began in 1975 with my BSN from Colorado University School of Nursing. I continued on to study and earn my Family Nurse Practitioner credential from Metropolitan State College in 1981. While I began my career in Family Practice, I quickly began to focus on cardiac patients, and I am proud to work with such a capable and caring team of people who are committed to doing the best for all of our patients. Having joined the South Denver team in 1983, I have been around long enough to see many life saving and preserving advances in cardiology. I am also passionate about caring for the under-served and am appreciative that SDCA has supported my 4 missions with Global Health caring for people in the Amazon Jungle in Peru.
I have a great passion for fitness and just finished another Ride the Rockies bike tour across Colorado. When I am not riding, you may see me working toward my goal to climb all the Colorado 14ers. I am also studying Spanish with hopes for fluency one day. I have a long time marriage with my husband. Our daughter Elizabeth is living in France, where she studies, performs and writes music. She also teaches English to French native speakers.