Elizabeth J. Olson DVMCCRT
Dr. Olson earned her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Florida, College of Veterinary Medicine in 2002. She received several honors during her education there including the Toby Fastiggi Award for Excellence in Patient Care and the Kaytee Avian and Special Species Excellence Award for accomplishments in avian research, medicine and surgery. Dr Olson is an active UF CVM alum, representing the Class of 2002 on the Alumni Council and serving on the Admissions Committee.
She is a graduate of Rollins College in Winter Park and received her Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in Environmental Studies in 1985. Dr Olson spent 11 years working in Central Florida as an Aquatic Biologist for various government agencies prior to beginning her journey into veterinary medicine.
Dr. Olson has worked as a veterinarian in the Central Florida area since graduating in 2002. Her career path has taken her from full-time positions at two local clinics to a variety of clinics seen as a traveling veterinarian. All these experiences have culminated in the opening of Varsity Veterinary Center. While the bulk of her experience is with typical companion animals like cats and dogs, Dr. Olson has seen many unusual patients as well. She has worked extensively with a variety of exotic species including many varieties of birds; a large variety of reptiles like iguanas, turtles and snakes; small mammals such as rabbits, ferrets and guinea pigs and amphibian and aquatic pets as well. As a carryover from her days as a biologist, Dr Olson takes a special interests in the wildlife that share our Central Florida habitat. She has worked with a variety of these creatures including birds of prey such as Bald Eagles and various hawks, migrating birds such as Sand Hill Cranes and Florida Gopher Tortoises.
Additionally, Dr. Olson is a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist (CCRT). Her course work, exams, and case studies were done through the Canine Rehabilitation Institute. This special training enables Dr. Olson to better diagnose and treat a variety of issues that range from post-surgical complications to arthritis and neurological diseases. Many aspects of her training allow her to give owners the ability to help their pets at home thus improving overall treatments, outcomes, and quality of life!
Dr. Olson's non-human companions include: Maybelline, a little terrier cross; Tater, a lab cross; Amelia the Great Explorer (a really inquisitive cat!!); I'Lean to the left, a three legged cat; Eli, a Blue and Gold McCaw; Emily, a physically challenged Quaker Parrot, Flapjack, a slightly irregular Sulcata Tortoise and two Florida box turtles, Geronimo and The Other One.
When Dr. Olson is not working or caring for her menagerie, she enjoys being outside, hopefully involved in some water activity, reading a huge variety of novels, cooking, gardening, photography, family outings, and anything involving the Gator Nation!
Kristin MariashDVMAssociate Veterinarian
Dr. Mariash is our associate veterinarian.
Leah joined our team in July 2015. She is originally from Cleveland, Ohio and has been working in the veterinary field since 1997. Starting as a kennel technician in Manassas, Virginia she was quickly promoted to Veterinary Technician Assistant and learned how to care for pets. Given the option to continue as a technician or transfer to the reception area, Leah moved to the receptionist position. She discovered that for her, working closely with the clients was the most rewarding way of helping pets. After attending Seminole State College to obtain certification in human medical billing and coding, Leah couldn't imagine working without animals so she stayed in veterinary medicine. Leah loves spending time with her teenage son They frequent Walt Disney World and the Orlando Science Center together. When there is any spare time, Leah enjoys writing and spending quality time her her dog 'Lily' and her cat 'Gogo'.
Ali has been working in the veterinary field since June of 2021. She has always had a love for animals and saw that working as a receptionist would help her expand her horizons. She is currently working toward her Bachelor's in the sciences at Valencia College and has a special interest in veterinary triage, surgery, and of course, puppies! When she's not at work, Ali enjoys going to the beach, cooking and watching Netflix. She also shares her home with an adorable 5-year-old Boxer named Gronk.
Makayla has been in the animal field since 2014. She's worked in the veterinary field since 2017 where she started as a kennel tech and worked her way up to veterinary technician. Her special interests in veterinary medicine include surgery, dentistry, and marine animal medicine. She is currently enrolled in St. Petersburg' College's Veterinary Technology program and plans to receive her CVT in 2023. In her spare time, Makayla enjoys video games, theme parks, boating, snorkeling and movies on Netflix. Makayla shares her home with three cats: Willow, Leyla and Eve and two dogs: a Siberian Husky named Laika and a Rottweiler named Achilles.
Bio coming soon!
Kathy is our facilities manager. She recently 'officially' joined the Varsity team but is very familiar with the workings of our hospital as she has been behind the scenes since our opening in 2010.