Dr. Matthew Ptaszkiewicz has been a physician since 1999. He attended medical school at Michigan State University. Because of the abundance of consonants in his last name, he goes by "Dr. Matt". Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Dr. Matt moved to Fort Collins, Colorado in 2010 for the sunshine and the mountains. He has a beautiful son and daughter with whom he spends most of his free time. He likes to hike, bike, go to 80's hair band concerts and loves his Detroit sports teams.
Dr. Rita Barry grew up in Redmond, Oregon, and attended the University of Oregon for undergraduate and Oregon Health and Sciences for medical school, followed by rural, full-scope family medicine residency training. She moved to Wyoming for the beautiful outdoors and for her husband, who is stationed at FE Warren AFB. In her free time, she enjoys sewing, hiking, spending time with family, and doting upon her cat.
Dr. Knierim ("K" pronounced) was born in Germany. Her family moved here when she was young so that her father, an international scholar, could develop a PhD program. She attended Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, NE after receiving a BS in Microbiology and an MS in Biology undergoing Influenza research. She has been a rural family practitioner over two decades. She enjoys hiking, kayaking and reading. Her ongoing fascination with medicine is how science can best serve each person who has their own individuality.
"Dr. Patty" grew up in Colorado and attended Colorado State University for undergraduate and University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver for medical school. Dr. Patty has residency training in Emergency Medicine and Public Health and has practiced urgent care medicine for over 30 years. She has additional training in wilderness medicine and travel medicine. In her free time, Dr. Patty enjoys traveling, hiking, Nordic skiing and training her border collie dogs.
Joe Ballent graduated PA school from the University of Utah. During his time at the University he rode for the cycling team. He also holds a degree in Business Administration from Bradley University. In the summer months he would guide whitewater trips. He obtained his Wilderness First Responder certification in 2010. This led to a Wilderness EMT certification and opportunities in residential treatment and same-day surgery. He loves exploring the great outdoors of the western US with his fiancé Brianna, and building/playing guitars.
Melissa graduated from Midwestern University Glendale in 2015 with a Master of Medical Science in Physician Assistant Studies. She received her Bachelor of Science in Physiology from the University of Wyoming in 2011. She was born and raised in Laramie, Wyoming. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, and spending time with family and friends.
Chris started his experience in the medical field over ten years ago in medical imaging. Before going to PA school, he primarily worked as a radiology technician preforming X-ray, CT, and MRI scans. Chris graduated PA school from the University of Washington. Chris worked with a private urgent care center for 1 year prior to joining the HealthReach team. Chris is excited to bring his training and education to HealthReach. Outside of work, Chris enjoys hiking, exploring, cooking, and spending time with his family.
Julian graduated from the University of Wyoming in 2002 with a Master of Science in Nursing/Family Nurse Practitioner. He worked in his hometown of Rolla, ND and has been at the University of Wyoming Family Medicine Residence Program. In 2016, Julian received the Excellence in Advanced Practice Nursing award for his outstanding contributions in the areas of clinical practice and leadership. Lastly, he completed a post masters program as a Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. Julian is married with two daughters and loves to fish, hunt, and hike.
After spending six years as an RN in the emergency room, Jen decided to further her education and graduated from the University of Northern Colorado in 2017 with her Doctorate in Nursing Practice as a family nurse practitioner. Jen strongly believes in collaborating with patients to develop an individualized plan of care that best suits her patient's needs. If she ever has free time, Jen enjoys trail rides and enjoying the outdoors.
Nikki Armstrong is a board-certified family nurse practitioner. She was born in Greenville, OH and grew up working on her uncle's hog farm. She spent 10 years in the United States Army Nurse Corps. In 2012, she graduated from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, MD. Now, she enjoys spending time with her handsome husband and three amazing children.