Barb Cole, DVM
Dr. Cole began practicing at Aurora Animal Hospital in April 2008. She received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, in 1999. She initially moved from Canada to Juneau in the year of 2000 and arrived in Fairbanks in 2008. Dr. Cole is certified for PennHip radiographs and her special interests are Orthopedics, Ophthalmology, Rehabilitation, and Endocrine Disorders.
On January 2012, Dr. Cole became the proud, owner of Aurora Animal Hospital. For fun, she enjoys nurturing her daughter, knitting, dog agility, and hockey. The Coles’ pack of animals includes a Brittany Spaniel “Raymond”, as well as Labrador Retrievers “Sarge”, “Ziggy”, and “Rita”, and a kitty named “Leo”.
Molly Yazwinski, DVM
Dr. Yazwinski is proud to call Fairbanks home and to be a part of the veterinary team at Aurora Animal Hospital. She grew up in western Massachusetts, attended Middlebury College, Vermont for her Bachelor’s Degree and spent 4 years living in interior Alaska before returning to the east coast for veterinary school.
Dr. Yazwinski graduated from Cornell University College with her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in May 2012. Dr. Yazwinski has a variety of veterinary interests including preventative medicine, sports medicine, rehabilitation and nutrition.
Outside of work she enjoys spending time with 4 retired Sled Dogs. She loves to spend as much time as possible enjoying Alaska’s outdoors including running, camping, gardening, skiing, and mushing.
Becky Childs, DVM
Dr. Childs was raised in Philadelphia, PA and completed her undergraduate degree and Middlebury College in Middlebury, VT. She graduated from Cornell University in 2017 with her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Childs moved to Alaska to join the veterinary team in July of 2017. Her special interests include soft tissue and orthopedic surgery, as well as sled dog and sports medicine.
When Dr. Childs isn’t busy saving lives, she enjoys baking sourdough breads, pies, and other sweets. In the summers you’ll find her hiking, running, and packrafting. In the winter she spends her time skiing, skijoring, or hanging out with lots of sled dogs.
Terry Wighs, DVM
Dr. Terry Wighs joined our veterinary team in October 2016. Dr. Wighs graduated from the University of California, Davis, with a B.S. degree in Animal Science. He initially came to Fairbanks in 1974 to work for the Institute of Arctic Biology, at the Reindeer Research Station in Cantwell, Alaska. This adventure turned into a permanent position that lasted until the spring of 1978 working as a herdsman for the UAF Agricultural Experimentation Station, Animal Science Department.
Aviation had always been a passion, and before long, Terry became an Instrument Rated Commercial Pilot. As years passed, he was blessed with three children and 10 grandchildren. Terry left the experimental farm in August 1989, after being accepted into Veterinary School at Kansas State University, and graduated four years later, with a DVM degree in 1993. After working for a small animal clinic in Salina, Kansas for 18 years and after all the children had finished school and left the “nest”, the longing to return home to the Golden Heartland has brought him back.
Nikki Preston, DVM
Dr. Preston completed her Bachelor of Science degree in biology at Illinois Wesleyan University before graduating from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in May 2015. She’s worked as a small animal general practitioner in Elkhorn, Wisconsin for the last 5 years. However, her love for sled dog medicine brought her north to be a veterinarian on the Iditarod Trail for the past several years. Since then, she’s fallen in love with Alaska and moved here to help race/train sled dogs.
Dr. Preston has a four-legged family member of her own, a Lab mix named “Chance”. When not working, she enjoys traveling abroad, running, biking, boating, and hiking.
Billyann Monrean, DVM
Dr. Monrean grew up in Tanana, Alaska and was part of the second class to complete the UAF/CSU 2+2 DVM program. After graduation in 2020, she moved to Show Low, AZ to work in a mixed animal GP/Urgent Care hospital. However, she couldn’t resist moving back to her home state after 3 years away. So, her husband and her packed up their stuff, their dog, and 3 guinea pigs and drove north, back to Fairbanks.
Dr. Monrean is very happy to be back home! She enjoys hiking and camping and he is looking forward to a proper winter where she can go skiing. Her little Dachshund mix, Rollo, makes a good hiking companion as short as he is.
Dr. Monrean is excited to be working at Aurora Animal Hospital with dogs, cats, small mammals and reptiles!!