Deborah Alexander, PT, DPT
Deborah received a dual degree of Bachelors of Health Sciences and a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Touro College School of Health Sciences in September 2017. She worked part time at an outpatient PT clinical throughout her time in university. She had clinical experiences in outpatient, skilled nursing facilities in NY and TX and a 16-week clinical in the most culturally diverse hospital in New York City. She worked in Good Samaritan Hospital and Northwell Hospital in New York upon graduating. In 2020, Deborah relocated to Chattanooga where she began working in outpatient PT. In 2021, she became employed at Erlanger as a full-time staff therapist. She has been a clinical instructor for multiple physical therapy students and has assisted and educated high school students via job shadowing. She participated in a detailed vestibular continuing education course that she is able to implement in her practice at Erlanger. Currently, Deborah’s primary interest is the emergency department. When she is not at work, Deborah is involved in church as a worship leader and Sunday school teacher. She loves spending time with her husband and daughter and enjoys outdoor activities.
Alexis Bennett, PT, DPT
Alexis received a Bachelor of Science degree in kinesiology from Samford University in 2013, and then continued her education at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, earning her Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) in 2016. During her doctoral program, Alexis completed an acute care clinical internship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and inpatient rehabilitation internship at Encompass Rehabilitation Hospital. Alexis started her career in skilled nursing, then arrived at Erlanger Health as an acute care physical therapist in 2017. At Erlanger, Alexis’ primary interest is in the acute neurological population and she regularly serves as a clinical instructor for physical therapy students as an APTA credentialed clinical instructor. In 2020, Alexis became an adjunct faculty member in the DPT program at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in the PT Management of Medical Surgical Conditions III course, as well as guest lecturing throughout the program in the areas of acute care patient management. Alexis currently serves as the UTC DPT Alumni president and serves on the UTC DPT advisory board. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, reading, traveling, and she is the mom to two boys.
David Brown, PT, DPT
David received a Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Science from University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and his post-graduate Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree in 2008 from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. After graduation, David initially worked for a local hospital with five therapy settings including outpatient (three locations), acute care, wound care, SNF, and a short-stay rehab unit. He spent the much of his time there as Clinic Coordinator for two satellite outpatient clinics. Following this, David spent a short stint working in the Home Health arena before joining Erlanger Health as an acute care physical therapist in 2016. He has been known to float to the outpatient world here to help in times of need, but spends most of his time working with the orthopaedic and trauma populations in the acute setting. David regularly serves as a clinical instructor for physical therapy students. He is involved at Erlanger serving as an educator to other departments on posture and ergonomics. In his free time, he enjoys traveling with his wife, two sons, and a daughter, is involved at church and in his community, and loves anything outdoors.
Timothy Buffington, PT
Tim graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the UTC in 1991 and later with a BS in Physical Therapy from the same institution in 1998. Tim has worked in a variety of settings in his 25-year career as a PT, beginning in acute rehabilitation at Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation with a focus on the traumatic brain injury population. Following this, Tim worked in the North Georgia area at a regional hospital in multiple settings including acute care with a diverse patient population, as well as performing wound care, whirlpool and sharp debridement, and finally in the subacute rehab setting where Tim helped to oversee a small rehab office of multidisciplinary colleagues. Then in 2006, driven by a strong desire to directly serve individual patients in their unique home settings on a one-to-one basis to better help them achieve their specific life centered goals, Tim worked as a Home Health PT serving a broad spectrum of patient groups in both Georgia and Tennessee. In the patient-specific Home Health setting Tim developed an affinity for both the geriatric and cognitively impaired populations, often joking he shared at least one trait in common with these appreciative, unique, and hard-working individuals. In 2019, Tim handed in his laptop and returned to join friends and colleagues in the acute care setting at Erlanger, serving the most robust and often challenging patient populations including general medical, post-surgical, neuro, orthopedic, trauma, psychiatric, vestibular and emergency care patients of all ages and from all backgrounds, sharing in that institution’s sense of commitment to excellence in care, and with empathy and liberal applications of humor mixed with earnest sincerity and compassion for all for whom he cared. Both in this current and his previous work experiences, Tim has served as colleague, clinical instructor to PT students, and attended innumerable courses and workshops covering a wide gamut of topics and areas within the practice of PT. With his (nearly) adult children out of the home and beginning their life journeys, Tim fills his increased free time with his eclectic collection of classic Americana and military relics, an ever growing list of DIY and home improvement projects and traveling both domestically and internationally with his wife and best friend Debbie, without whom much of the above may never have come to pass.
Emma Byland, PT, DPT
Emma graduated with a B.S. in Health Sciences from Furman University in 2013 and a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 2016. Emma completed acute care clinical rotations at Williamson Medical Center in Franklin, Tennessee, and Blount Memorial Hospital in Maryville, Tennessee. Upon finishing physical therapy school, Emma initially worked as an acute care physical therapist at Northeast Alabama Regional Medical Center in Anniston, Alabama for a year and half. In 2018, Emma returned to Tennessee and worked in inpatient rehab and acute care at Tennova Healthcare in Knoxville before eventually moving back to Chattanooga in the spring of 2019 and starting her career at Erlanger. Emma enjoys the variety of the acute care setting and working on all floors and intensive care units, and she worked on the PT COVID team during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Outside of work, Emma enjoys hiking and backpacking with her 2 dogs, skiing, and traveling.
Amy Castle, PT
Amy received an Associate of Applied Science in Physical Therapy Assistant from Chattanooga State Technical Community College in 1996 and worked in the skilled nursing setting. She continued her education at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and earned a bachelor of science in physical therapy from East Tennessee State University in 1999. She initially worked in the skilled nursing setting, and then started at Erlanger Health as an acute care physical therapist in 2001. Amy has worked in a variety of settings within Erlanger including hemophilia clinic, ALS clinic, and the burn unit. She is an APTA credentialed clinical instructor. Amy’s primary interest is in critical care and she helped implement the ABCDEF bundle and early mobilization in the medical ICU. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons, playing and watching sports with them, and traveling.
Stephanie Eton, PT, DPT, GCS
Stephanie is a practicing physical therapist of ten years and has been working in the academic setting for six years. She graduated with her BS in psychology from the University of Central Florida and her Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of South Florida. She has experience teaching undergraduate pre-physical courses and advising students in pre-physical therapy majors. Dr. Eton completed an 18-month ABPTRFE accredited faculty development residency which focused on developing her teaching, scholarship, service, and governance abilities. She became board-certified in geriatric physical therapy in 2020 and her specialties include outpatient neurology, geriatric physical therapy, and patients with limb loss. Dr. Eton teaches at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga in courses for second and third year DPT students focusing on her areas of specialty. In her free time, Dr. Eton enjoys spending time with her husband and four children, relaxing on the beach, and practicing yoga.
Dacey Fisher PT, DPT
Dacey graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science degree in exercise science. She was also a member of the University Honors Brock Scholars program and graduated with highest honors after successfully completing a departmental thesis. Dacey continued her education at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, Tennessee and graduated with a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) in 2017. Dacey has clinical experience in outpatient, acute inpatient, skilled nursing, and acute care settings. She has been an acute care physical therapist at Erlanger since 2017. In her free time, Dacey enjoys improv comedy, running, playing soccer, and spending time with her husband and two dogs.
Kaitlyn Hambrick, PT, DPT
Kaitlyn graduated with a B.S. in Physical Education with a concentration in Exercise Science from the University of Alabama in Birmingham (UAB) in 2013. During her years at UAB, she was a member of the University Honors Program (UHP), volunteered in several research projects, and graduated Magna Cum Laude. She graduated with her Doctorate of Physical Therapy in 2016 from the University of South Alabama (USA). Kaitlyn was President of her class and received honors in both undergraduate and graduate school. Her team's graduate research associated with the A Matter of Balance program was accepted to APTA CSM in 2016, and she received the National Award for Geriatric Student Research. She has worked in the acute care setting for seven years with six of those years at level one trauma centers. Kaitlyn began her career at Huntsville Hospital working mostly in the Trauma/Surgical ICU and Medical ICU. She moved to Rome, GA to join the team at Floyd Medical Center as lead therapist for ICU and Neuro teams. Kaitlyn has been at Erlanger since 2021 where she works in a wide variety of areas in the hospital, with increased involvement in the Orthopaedic Center of Excellence Joint Replacement Program. She is currently in training for further development of a Vestibular Rehab Certification. Outside of work, Kaitlyn can most likely be found traveling and enjoying time with her family and friends.
Susan Higley, PT
Susan did her pre-physical therapy didactic work at East Tennessee State University and received her Bachelors of Science degree in Physical Therapy in 1983 from Georgia State University. She started work at Erlanger in Chattanooga in 1983 after graduation to get a year or two experience in acute care, and has stayed there since. She became the Clinical Coordinator for Education in 1986 and has held that role since that time. Her primary interest is working with acute care orthopedic patients, including orthopedic trauma and elective total joint replacements. She has served on the advisory boards for the Chattanooga State and Southern Adventist PTA programs and for the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga DPT program. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, traveling and cooking.
Elizabeth Kelley, PT, DPT
Liz received a Bachelor of Science degree in exercise science from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 2015, then continued her education at UTC, earning her Doctor of Physical Therapy in 2019. During her doctoral program, Liz completed an acute care clinical internship at Erlanger and a neuro-rehabilitation internship with the traumatic brain injury team at University of Alabama at Birmingham's Spain Center which began her interest in polytrauma & traumatic brain injuries. Liz started her career in acute care at Erlanger after graduation in 2019. She worked with the COVID rehab team for eight months before transitioning to critical care, specifically Trauma/Surgical Critical Care. Liz participates in multi-disciplinary rounds with the trauma team daily. During the academic year, she assists with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center medical students during their geriatric-palliative internships, UTC DPT students in their acute care course, and as a clinical instructor for DPT candidates. In her free time, Liz enjoys spending time with her friends and family, her dog Waylon, reading and listening to podcasts as well as traveling.
Alexandra Laband, PT, DPT
Ally graduated with a B.S. in Exercise Science with a minor in Psychology in 2015 and a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Simmons College in 2018. During the doctoral program, Ally completed a hospital-based outpatient clinical at Beverly Hospital in Beverly, Massachusetts as well as acute care clinical internships at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missoue,nri, and Wentworth-Douglass Hospital in Dover, New Hampshire. Ally began working at Erlanger as a full-time staff therapist in August of 2018. At Erlanger Ally was a member of the PT COVID team during the height of the pandemic, currently works with the Center of Orthopedic Excellence joint replacements, and enjoys working with all patient populations and areas throughout the hospital. In her free time, Ally enjoys reading and traveling.
Margaret Leighty, PT
Margaret received her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Tennessee Technological University in 1988 and then continued her education at the University of Tennessee at Memphis, earning her Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy in 1990. Upon graduation, Margaret moved to Chattanooga to begin a career in Physical Therapy at Erlanger in 1991. Margaret specialized in acute care physical therapy with an emphasis in wound care, neurological and general medicine population for four years before transferring to Erlanger North where she continued to work for the next t years with both an acute care and outpatient emphasis to include general medicine, geri-psych, orthopedics, neurology, wound care, and geriatrics. Margaret left the Erlanger for ten years to work in outpatient/sports medicine and in home health before returning in 2015. Margaret’s areas of interest are in the acute orthopedic and neurological population and regularly attends multi-disciplinary rounds on NW7. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, reading, and traveling.
Catherine Mabee, PT, DPT, NCS
Catherine received her Bachelor of English degree in 2009 and Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2016 from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. She has worked at Erlanger since graduating in 2016. Catherine has also worked as a physical therapist in home health and skilled nursing facility settings and as a college professor teaching one of her favorite subjects, anatomy and physiology. She loves learning and is passionate about helping individuals with neurologic impairments. She was awarded her APTA Board Certification Neurologic Clinical Specialist in 2020. Specific populations that Catherine enjoys working with include individuals with spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, those who have suffered from strokes, vestibular impairments, and those with functional neurologic disorders. She serves as a clinical instructor for physical therapy students. Outside of work, Catherine enjoys gardening, being in nature, and spending time with her family.
Gina Rahn, PT
Gina graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with her BS in Physical Therapy in 1996. Prior to PT school she worked as a PT tech at Erlanger in the outpatient setting. Over her career she has been in a variety of settings including inpatient rehabilitation, outpatient, pediatrics, women’s health, home healthcare, and acute care. She began her PT career at Erlanger in 2014 and became the PT Team Lead in 2018. She currently manages 60+ employees at two campuses. She is involved in multiple committees throughout the hospital. She is married with two adult children. The true love of her life is her four year old golden doodle, “Louis”. She enjoys being active and playing golf. She currently serves as the residency director.
Laura Robbins, PT, DPT
Laura received a Bachelor of Science degree in rehabilitation science from The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 2012, and then continued her education at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, earning her Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) in 2016. During her doctoral program, Laura served as president of her class helping coordinate various events as well as communicating between her classmates and professors. Laura started her career as an acute care physical therapist at Erlanger straight out of school. Laura spent time as the primary therapist for the orthopedic center of excellence, and then transitioned to caring for the cardiovascular population focusing on the ICU patients. Laura is one of Erlanger’s bilingual therapists helping the Spanish-speaking population receive care and communicate in their native language. She regularly serves as a clinical instructor for physical therapy students. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two children, napping, and being outdoors.
Amber Rogers, PT
Amber Rogers earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy from East Tennessee State University in 1999. She began her career as physical therapist at Erlanger Medical Center in 2000. After ten years of full time employment there, she remained on staff and worked at Center for Sports Medicine followed by working as Director of Rehab at Kindred Hospital in Chattanooga. She returned to Erlanger in 2012. She has worked in every unit at Erlanger and enjoys treating a wide variety of patients. During her career at Erlanger she has also worked in the hemophilia clinic and participated in educating the nursing staff in body mechanics. She is an APTA credentialed clinical instructor and has enjoyed teaching many students throughout the years. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, hiking, and traveling.
Allison Slaven, PT, DPT
Allison received a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 2014, and then continued her education in graduate course work at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, earning her Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) in 2017. During her doctoral program, Allison completed an acute care clinical internship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Allison began her career at Erlanger as an acute care physical therapist in 2017. She also worked as an inpatient rehabilitation physical therapist at Encompass Rehabilitation Hospital in Chattanooga. At Erlanger, Allison's passion is with patients who have suffered from an acute traumatic injury or polytrauma. She also serves as the primary physical therapist for Erlanger's amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) clinic and Huntington's Disease clinic. She regularly serves as a clinical instructor for physical therapy students. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters, crocheting, and traveling.