Cardiac Surgeons & Other Speci​alists

Our pediatric heart transplant team includes cardiologists, surgeons, transplant nurses, transplant social workers and dieticians.  

Cardiologists

Transplant Surgeons 

  • Carl L. Backer, MD, division head, Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery, surgical director, Heart Transplant Program 
  • Riccardo Superina, MD, division chief, Transplant Surgery, co-director, Siragusa Transplantation Center  

Transplant Administration 

  • Berni Chrobak, RN, MSN, MBA, transplant managed care contractor
  • Renee Shores, MAFM, CAC, transplant financial coordinator 
  • Brian Stahulak, RN, BSN, MBA, Administrator, Transplant
  • Sam Wing, MPH, transplant data and quality coordinator

Nurse Coordinators 

  • Anna Arens, APN
  • Susan Blensdorf, APN 
  • Elizabeth Karnes, APN
  • Kathleen Schmiege, APN

Nutritionists 

  • ​Trisha Lewin, RD 

Organ Procurement Coordinators 

  • Justin Boese
  • Ryan Mitchell 

Transplant Support Staff 

  • Alicia Aldas, ParentWISE coordinator, Siragusa Transplantation Center 
  • Leslie Stach, PharmD, transplant pharmacist 
  • Richard Jentzen, MSW, LCSW, social worker, heart transplant
  • Nayda Rivera-Escanio, transplant assistant
  • Mi-Young Ryee, PhD, pediatric psychologist, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry​