Our Team

Dr.-Hayek-and-Dr.-Negvesky1The Tustin Legacy Animal Hospital team

is a kind and caring group of veterinary professionals that focuses on building a long-term, helpful, and meaningful relationship with you and your pet. We are attentive, responsive, and provide outstanding customer service. The team is led by Dr. Celine Hayek and Dr. Kristen Negvesky, talented and experienced veterinarians who spend their days going above and beyond to make sure animals under their care are healthy and happy. TLAH is also very proud to have two technicians trained as Registered Veterinary Technicians (RVTs), Katie and Yitzi, taking excellent care of your pets; they will be taking their licensing exams soon to obtain that prestigious title. RVTs go through additional schooling and must pass a rigorous set of national and state licensing exams to obtain their certification, delineating them as highly experienced and knowledgeable pet nurses. We’re so excited to have them on our team!

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Dr. Hayek and Dr. Negvesky’s passion is education and helping pet owners understand how to best care for their furry family members. Not only are the doctors passionate about practicing high-quality, modern veterinary medicine, but they are also involved in the community. They eagerly participate in local events where they can share their knowledge and serve as a trusted source of information about pets.

Drs. Hayek and Negvesky met in 2015 while working at another hospital together, and they were instantly great friends. In 2017 they decided to get together to create their own hospital, a place where they can practice progressive medicine in a friendly fun environment. They’re very supportive of each other and work together to ensure they have plenty of work-life balance and time to enjoy their personal lives and families. They also spend a lot of time together outside of work and like to try new foodie restaurants and go shopping, as well as double dates with their husbands.

The Tustin Legacy Animal Hospital team

is a kind and caring group of veterinary professionals that focuses on building a long-term, helpful, and meaningful relationship with you and your pet. We are attentive, responsive, and provide outstanding customer service. The team is led by Dr. Celine Hayek and Dr. Kristen Negvesky, talented and experienced veterinarians who spend their days going above and beyond to make sure animals under their care are healthy and happy. TLAH is also very proud to have two Registered Veterinary Technicians (RVTs), Bethany and Sarah, taking excellent care of your pets. RVTs go through additional schooling and must pass a rigorous set of national and state licensing exams to obtain their certification, delineating them as highly experienced and knowledgeable pet nurses. We’re so excited to have them on our team!

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Dr. Hayek and Dr. Negvesky’s passion is education and helping pet owners understand how to best care for their furry family members. Not only are the doctors passionate about practicing high-quality, modern veterinary medicine, but they are also involved in the community. They eagerly participate in local events where they can share their knowledge and serve as a trusted source of information about pets.

Drs. Hayek and Negvesky met in 2015 while working at another hospital together, and they were instantly great friends. In 2017 they decided to get together to create their own hospital, a place where they can practice progressive medicine in a friendly fun environment. They’re very supportive of each other and work together to ensure they have plenty of work-life balance and time to enjoy their personal lives and families. They also spend a lot of time together outside of work and like to try new foodie restaurants and go shopping, as well as double dates with their husbands.

Dr. Kristen Negvesky

Dr. Celine Hayek

Likes

Anything to do with the beach and ocean; traveling with Alex, her amazing supportive husband; riding her beach cruiser anywhere and everywhere; baking and eating pastries; watching movies & TV with aforementioned amazing husband; learning new things; and doing Pilates and yoga to help feel strong and balanced.

You may find her...

Esoterically quoting her favorite movies; entranced by petting kitties; staying up late for no good reason; and enjoying long conversations with friends and clients about anything and everything.

Personal Stats

An Air Force brat, has lived all over the country but always came home in the summers to visit family in SoCal; mom Sherry is a dental hygienist and dad James is a hospital administrator; husband Alex (did she mention how amazing he is?) is a computer systems engineer who manages a technology team for a financial firm; cats Fiona (rescued at 8 weeks old & is now 15 years old) is a super sweet gray domestic shorthair who’s always by her side, and Morgan (rescued at 1 year old after spaying her in veterinary school for the local humane society & is now 7 years old) is a crazy loving ball of fur tortie/calico mix. She and her husband excitedly welcomed their first child, Calvin, in November 2019.

Favorite Parts of Her Job

Building relationships with pets and their people; the fact that medicine is like putting together puzzle pieces to devise a specific treatment plan for each patient; the satisfaction that comes from fixing things; and the satisfaction that comes from fixing things (castrations are her favorite!).

Dislikes

Mayonnaise (with the fiery passion of a thousand suns!); rude people; and waking up early.

Superpowers

Detecting heart murmurs in pets that others can’t hear; making friends easily; and a wickedly sarcastic sense of humor.

Professional Stats

DVM from University of Guelph (Ontario, Canada); MS from UCLA (Physiological Science); BS from UC Irvine (Neurobiology – zot zot zot!).

Favorite Medicine Topics

Preventive care, neurology, rehabilitation and therapeutic laser, radiology, and surgery. She also hopes to get more in-depth ultrasound training and to learn how to perform stem cell therapy in the near future.

 

Likes

Milk or dark chocolate, creating fun flyers online for the hospital, traveling abroad, hiking, walking her dogs, jewelry making, trying new foods with her husband.

You may find her...

Relaxing in her backyard with her dogs, drinking tea, and soaking up the sun.

Personal Stats

Got married in 2017 to the love of her life, Jeff. He immediately got along with her dogs (made her love him even more), a Chihuahua named, Dulce (De Leche) and a Jack Russell terrier mix, Pace. Dulce has been with her since her internship in Ventura, California, and Pace has been with her since her first year of working at a general practice in Orange, California. Our new hobby is hanging with our son, Leo

Favorite Parts of Her Job

Meeting people with their own pets and learning about them. Making sure that the people around her are happy and go home happy. Finishing up with a day that is filled with helping animals and their human friends.

Dislikes

Marzipan, coconut flakes (except for the real fruit), driving slow, people who dislike dogs and cats.

Superpowers

Taking photos of things in a different perspective and having them turn out awesome! Also great at working the microscope!

Professional Stats

DVM from St. George’s University, West Indies with clinical year at University of Pennsylvania (2010). Two years of internships in Ventura, California, one year for multiple specialties and the second year for Radiology and Oncology (2010-2012). Working as a DVM since 2010, 8 years of being certified in fear-free, but multiple years of animal experience.

Favorite Medicine Topics

Radiology, clinical pathology, surgery, senior animal therapies, exotics eventually will learn all about acupuncture, as well as, stem cell therapies.

What Dr. Hayek Loves About Her:
Dr. Negvesky knows how to give her undivided attention to whomever she speaks with and really cares about you. She brings with her an exciting atmosphere that resonates to everyone in the room. In addition, she is a lovely friend and partner and I am so excited to be working with her!

What Dr. Negvesky Loves About Her:
Dr. Hayek is very loving and kind, and has a way of instantly putting people at ease. She always has a positive attitude and an infectious smile, spreading happiness wherever she goes. She is a wonderful supportive friend in every way, and I’m so excited to share this journey with her!

Dr. Kristen Negvesky

Likes

Anything to do with the beach and ocean; traveling with Alex, her amazing supportive husband of 11 years; riding her beach cruiser anywhere and everywhere; baking and eating pastries; watching movies & TV with aforementioned amazing husband; learning new things; and doing Pilates and yoga to help feel strong and balanced.

You may find her...

Esoterically quoting her favorite movies; entranced by petting kitties; staying up late for no good reason; and enjoying long conversations with friends and clients about anything and everything.

Personal Stats

An Air Force brat, has lived all over the country but always came home in the summers to visit family in SoCal; mom Sherry is a dental hygienist and dad James is a hospital administrator; husband Alex (did she mention how amazing he is?) is a computer systems engineer who manages a technology team for a financial firm; cats Fiona (rescued at 8 weeks old & is now 15 years old) is a super sweet gray domestic shorthair who’s always by her side, and Morgan (rescued at 1 year old after spaying her in veterinary school for the local humane society & is now 7 years old) is a crazy loving ball of fur tortie/calico mix.

Favorite Parts of Her Job

Building relationships with pets and their people; the fact that medicine is like putting together puzzle pieces to devise a specific treatment plan for each patient; the satisfaction that comes from fixing things; and the satisfaction that comes from fixing things (castrations are her favorite!).

Dislikes

Mayonnaise (with the fiery passion of a thousand suns!); rude people; and waking up early.

Superpowers

Detecting heart murmurs in pets that others can’t hear; making friends easily; and a wickedly sarcastic sense of humor.

Professional Stats

DVM from University of Guelph (Ontario, Canada); MS from UCLA (Physiological Science); BS from UC Irvine (Neurobiology – zot zot zot!); Certified in Fear-Free Medicine.

Favorite Medicine Topics

Preventive care, neurology, rehabilitation and therapeutic laser, radiology, and surgery. She also hopes to get more in-depth ultrasound training and to learn how to perform stem cell therapy in the near future.

What Dr. Hayek Loves About Her:
Dr. Negvesky knows how to give her undivided attention to whomever she speaks with and really cares about you. She brings with her an exciting atmosphere that resonates to everyone in the room. In addition, she is a lovely friend and partner and I am so excited to be working with her!

Dr. Celine Hayek

Likes

Milk or dark chocolate, creating fun flyers online for the hospital, traveling abroad, hiking, walking my dogs, jewelry making, trying new foods with my husband.

You may find her...

Relaxing in her backyard with her dogs, drinking tea, and soaking up the sun.

Personal Stats

Got married in 2017 to the love of my life, Jeff. He immediately got along with my dogs (made me love him even more), a Chihuahua named, Dulce (De Leche) and a Jack Russell terrier mix, Pace. Dulce has been with me since my internship in Ventura, California and Pace has been with me since my first year of working at a general practice in Orange, California. Jeff and I are currently pregnant and impatiently waiting to meet him!

Favorite Parts of Her Job

Meeting people with their own pets and learning about them. Making sure that the people around me are happy and go home happy. Finishing up with a day that is filled with helping animals and their human friends.

Dislikes

Marzipan, coconut flakes (except for the real fruit), driving slow, people who dislike dogs and cats.

Superpowers

Taking photos of things in a different perspective and having them turn out awesome! Also great at working the microscope!

Professional Stats

DVM from St. George’s University, West Indies with clinical year at University of Pennsylvania (2010). Two years of internships in Ventura, California, one year for multiple specialties and the second year for Radiology and Oncology (2010-2012). Been working as a DVM since 2010 (8 years of certified experience, but multiple years of animal experience). Certified in Fear-Free Medicine.

Favorite Medicine Topics

Radiology, clinical pathology, surgery, senior animal therapies, eventually will learn all about acupuncture, as well as, stem cell therapies.

What Dr. Negvesky Loves About Her:
Dr. Hayek is very loving and kind, and has a way of instantly putting people at ease. She always has a positive attitude and an infectious smile, spreading happiness wherever she goes. She is a wonderful supportive friend in every way, and I’m so excited to share this journey with her!

Katie Whittemore, Veterinary Technician

My name is Katie and I’m so excited to be working at TLAH! I graduated with my AA in Environmental Science in 2011 and worked with a couple local nonprofit environmental groups before deciding that veterinary nursing was my true calling. I have loved and wanted to work with animals since I was very young so becoming a veterinary technician was the right choice for me! I went to Heritage College and OCVAS to get my vet tech certifications, and I am hoping to have my RVT license by the end of the year! I have worked as a veterinary assistant since 2015 and have loved every minute! When I’m not at work, my favorite activities are: spending time with my boyfriend Dylan and our pets Annie and Perla, hiking/camping/enjoying nature, watching new shows and movies on Netflix, or reading.

What the doctors love about her:
Katie’s genuine love of animals truly shines through. Not only does she love helping animals in need, but she is a very understanding and patient person to work with. She continues to grow in her technical skills. Our clients love her and ask for her when they need questions answered.  We could not have asked for a better person to work here and we love her!

Yitzi Balderas, Veterinary Technician

Yitzi has been in the animal health care field for 7 years. She was born and raised in Southern California. She graduated from Stanbridge University in 2018 with an Associates of Science in Veterinary Technology, and will be taking her RVT licensing exam soon. During her time there she was honored with receiving the president’s volunteer service award in gold after completing over 250 hours of community service, many of which included fostering the most vulnerable of felines. During her free time she likes to perfect her circus art skills, and spend time with her boyfriend Kyle and her 7 cats and 2 dogs.

What the doctors love about her:
Yitzi is very dedicated to her work and strives to learn more and better herself on a daily basis. She loves to pet sit, and most of all, loves fostering animals. We’ve seen first hand that she takes pride in making sure they go to the right homes. She’s always ready and willing to lend a helping hand, and is a wonderful addition to the TLAH Team!

Yitzi Balderas, Veterinary Technician

Alyssa Sanchez, Client Service Representative

My name is Alyssa. I am currently a Client Service Representative here at TLAH. I have 4 yeas of experience in animal hospital service and love every minute! My partner and I have two cats; Mickey Jackson and Saki Mae and one dog named Pikachu Lamont. I believe that how animals are treated says a lot about us as people and that it should be done in a way that makes us and them feel comfortable. I hope to grow in service of our patients and clients and gain knowledge along the way. My hobbies include, hiking, spending lots of money at the pet stores, and painting everything possible!

What the doctors love about her:
Alyssa is the first Client Service Representative TLAH has ever had; she’s amazing and is already helping to streamline our hospital. She is a natural at speaking with clients and taking care of their needs. If there is something she can’t help with right away, she will do some research and get back to someone promptly. We love that she makes no judgements upon anyone and treats everyone with respect. She is very audacious, friendly, efficient, and a very lovely human being.

Shelby Burnett, Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT)

Hello TLAH Clients! My name is Shelby and I am SO thrilled to have the opportunity to meet you and care for your precious pets! My journey to become an RVT first began at the OC Zoo when I was 16. This is where I learned how to care for many animals such as mountain lions, bears, bobcats and even bald eagles. Soon after working at the zoo, I started my first job as a veterinary assistant at Bristol Memory Animal Clinic. This is where I had the pleasure of meeting Yitzi who is currently a technician at TLAH! Yitzi then introduced me to Stanbridge University which is where I achieved my AA degree in Veterinary Science as well as my license as a Registered Veterinary Technician. During my free time I enjoy hiking, camping, playing the violin, and learning more about veterinary science!

What the doctors love about her:
Shelby is an enterprising young woman. She recently became an RVT (Registered Veterinary Technician) and she is so eager to learn everything about veterinary medicine and the veterinary field. Her smart nature will take her far and she is already doing great with us at TLAH in such a short time. Shelby gets along well with everyone and has the sweetest character.

Shelby Burnett, Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT)

Balle Flynn, Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT)

Hi! My name is Balle (pronounced Bailey). I graduated from Platt College in 2019 and became an RVT in 2020. I have experience in both emergency and general practice hospitals. I have had a lifelong passion in helping our fur friends, starting with rescuing stray kittens as a young girl. I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, and hanging out with my boyfriend, Steven, and our (not so furry) kitty, Bruce.

What the doctors love about her:
Balle is one of our newest staff members and we love working with her already! She handles tasks quickly and efficiently, and is always ready to jump in to help her coworkers; they’ve said “she’s the missing puzzle piece we didn’t know we needed!”. She’s an RVT (Registered Veterinary Technician) and is great with gentle patient handling and technical skills. Balle always has a positive attitude and gets along well with everyone.