Meet Our Team

Veterinary Specialists of Birmingham provides Birmingham and surrounding areas with exceptional emergency and speciality care for your pets. Our multi-specialty practice prides itself on exceptional communication and attention to detail to ensure that your pet receives a standard of care that you can trust.

Veterinary Surgeons

Dr. Ballagas received his doctor of veterinary medicine degree in 1999 from Auburn University CVM. From there he completed an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at the University of Pennsylvania followed by a residency in small animal surgery at Auburn University CVM. He concurrently completed a masters degree with a focus on canine cruciate ligament disease and tibial plateau leveling osteotomy. Dr. Ballagas was then a clinical instructor at Auburn University CVM before joining Veterinary Surgery of Birmingham in 2004. He completed board certification to become a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2005. In 2019, he established Veterinary Specialists of Birmingham.

Dr. Dismukes received his doctor of veterinary medicine degree in 2004 from Auburn University CVM, then completed an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Louisiana State University CVM. He went on to complete a residency and clinical instructorship in small animal surgery at the University of Missouri – Columbia VMTH. Concurrently, he completed a masters degree in biomedical sciences focusing on the alignment of the canine pelvic limb. Dr. Dismukes completed board certification to become a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2009 before joining Veterinary Surgery of Birmingham in 2011 subsequently becoming a staff surgeon at VSB in 2019.

Dr. Vaughn received his doctor of veterinary medicine degree from Auburn University CVM in 2011. He then completed a rotating small animal medicine and surgery internship at Mississippi State in 2012. Following this he entered a small animal speciality surgical internship at Hollywood Animal Hospital in Florida. He completed a residency in small animal surgery at Mississippi State University CVM in 2016. His research during his residency was focused on distal humeral fracture stabilization. He became board eligible in 2017. He joined VSB in 2016.

Dr. Wood received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Mississippi State University in 2008, followed by a rotating small animal medicine and surgery internship at Colorado State University from 2008-2009. Dr. Wood then completed a 3-year residency in small animal surgery at the University of Missouri. During her residency, Dr. Wood completed research focused on the alignment of the canine thoracic limb, specifically the humerus. Following her residency, she accepted a clinical faculty position at UM from 2012-2014. Dr. Wood became board certified by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2013. She then spent five years in a large multi-specialty private practice in middle Tennessee before joining before joining VSB in 2019.

Veterinary Ophthalmologists

Dr. Korsch-Dismukes received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Mississippi State University in 2003, graduating summa cum laude. Following this, she completed a one-year internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Korsch-Dismukes then completed a three-year ophthalmology residency at Veterinary Eye Care in Birmingham. She is a board certified Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists. She also has experience with zoo animals, exotic species and many wildlife species. She joined VSB in 2019.

Dr. Kuhn received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Ohio State University CVM in 2010, followed by a rotating small animal medicine and surgery internship in Seattle, WA from 2010-2011. She then completed a residency in comparative ophthalmology at the University of Tennessee CVM from 2011-2014, and became board certified in 2015. She spent four years working in private practice in North and South Carolina before moving to Birmingham in the fall of 2018. She joined VSB in 2019 and is also an adjunct assistant professor with the University of Alabama-Birmingham School of Medicine Department of Ophthalmology.

Veterinary Internist

Marc Bercovitch, DVM, DACVIM
Dr. Marc Bercovitch obtained his veterinary degree from UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in 1989. He then completed an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Purdue University followed by a residency in small animal internal medicine at Purdue University. He achieved board certification in veterinary small animal internal medicine and became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in 1994. Most recently he has been practicing in a multi-speciality veterinary hospital in the Nashville, TN area.

Emergency Veterinarians

Dr. Tolbert is a Birmingham native and an Auburn University graduate. He graduated with a bachelor of science in Zoology in 1993 and received his doctor of veterinary medicine in 1999. During his senior year of veterinary school, he completed an externship in the emergency room of Pennsylvania University School of Veterinary Medicine. He joined VSB in 2019 as the director of emergency medicine.
In 2007, Dr. Hinton graduated cum laude from Mississippi State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Animal Dairy Science with a focus in agribusiness management. He then attended Auburn University College of Veterinary medicine where he received his doctor of veterinary medicine in 2012. While in vet school, he was a large animal student resident and he also completed an externship with the Iditarod Race Committee. Upon graduation he began working in a private mixed animal practice. In 2015, he began his career in emergency medicine. He joined VSB in 2019.

Dr. Kane attended Louisiana State University for both her undergraduate degree and her doctorate in veterinary medicine. She earned her bachelor of science in zoology with a minor in psychology in 2003, finishing this degree during her first year of vet school. She graduated from the LSU school of veterinary medicine in 2006 and began her career doing full time emergency medicine. After six years of emergency medicine, she went into day practice for four years. In 2016, after her son was born, she went into general practice for four years. In 2019, she began working at VSB. She has one cat, Smooch, and a black lab named Ranger.

Dr. Schuessler graduated from Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1982. Upon graduation she went into private practice. In 1995, she began her career in emergency medicine. She has provided emergency medical care for the pets in Birmingham since 1995. She joined VSB in 2019.
Dr. Clark received her bachelor of science in Biology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2013. She received her doctorate of veterinary medicine from Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. Upon graduation she began practicing emergency medicine. She currently practices full time at a local private practice. Due to her love of emergency medicine, she joined VSB as a part-time emergency doctor in 2019.

Administrative Staff

Pat Tate

Pat Tate - Hospital Administrator

Hospital Administrator

Karen Duncan

Karen Duncan - Practice Manager

Hospital Manager