Our Care Team

Your breast reconstruction team at the Friedman Center includes your surgeon, a physician assistant or nurse practitioner, and a clinical coordinator. This team will care for you from your initial consult

Our team also works with your other providers, such as your oncologist and breast surgeon, to offer you comprehensive support. From patient advocacy to resource coordination to billing assistance, we’re here to help you to your final postsurgical appointment.

Administrative Staff

Program Director

Janet Gerlach

Janet is first and foremost a patient advocate. In her role as Program Director, she connects patients to the full complement of resources available at the Friedman Center. She is passionate about helping women feel empowered and supported on their breast reconstruction journey. Janet also coordinates the team at the Friedman Center, builds relationships with healthcare partners, and leads many of our community events.

Office Manager

Jenna Shimmons

As Administrative Manager, Jenna is responsible for facilitating daily operations, business functions, and- most importantly- patient relations at the Friedman Center. She focuses on creating a warm, professional environment for both patients and staff, and continually works to increase patient satisfaction. When she’s not at work, Jenna cherishes spending quality time with her son and family.

Advanced Care Providers and Nursing Staff

Pashmena Ahmadhi


Pashmena ends every patient conversation by asking, “Is there anything else I can do for you?” A member of Dr. Smith’s team since 2012, she finds caring for patients both intellectually and emotionally fulfilling. Pashmena assists with pre-operative and post-operative assessments, creating treatment plans, and coordinating care. She enjoys traveling, spending time outdoors, and being with her family.

Maria Ametrano


Maria has been assisting Dr. Kasabian with preoperative and postoperative patient care since 2015. Although she finds working in the operating room very rewarding, she also loves speaking with and listening to patients and their families. Maria is the Friedman Center’s resident specialist in 3-D nipple areola tattooing for breast reconstruction. She enjoys cooking, traveling, and quality time with her family.

Katherine Beam


Katherine (Katie) has been working with Dr. Tanna since 2017, caring for patients before, during, and after surgery. She is an excellent patient resource and strives to provide patients with optimal experiences as well as excellent outcomes. Katie believes strong relationships are based on communication and makes herself available to speak with patients whenever possible. She is an avid runner and yogi.

Emily Kalberer

Senior Nurse Practitioner

Emily is a Senior Nurse Practitioner working with Dr. Tanna. Emily has extensive clinical experience caring for patients before, during, and after surgery. She believes that true patient centered care should been individualized and tailored to each individual to ensure best possible outcomes. Emily is known for her warm demeanor and compassionate care and enjoys getting to know her patients. Emily has a lot of nieces and nephews and enjoys spending time with them. She also loves to travel and is an avid fisher!

Bogum “Lena” Kwon


Lena’s primary role is to help Dr. Moon during surgery, but she also conducts new patient and post-operative appointments and is an expert in reconstructive nipple tattooing. She likes having a “hint of spontaneity” at work, and she strives to increase practice efficiency and build relationships with her patients. In her free time, Lena enjoys reading books, watching films, and visiting the beach.

Joan O’Shea


Joan is a registered nurse and a key member of Dr. Leipziger’s surgical team. She works with patients to ensure seamless, coordinated care from initial diagnosis to final follow-up appointments. Joan is proud to do her part in continually improving the patient experience. When not at work, Joan is spending time with her family.

Jessica Schenfeld


Jessica is a Physician’s Assistant (PA) for Dr. Denis Knobel at the Friedman Center. She loves working with breast cancer patients and supporting the rewarding results of restoring patient’s self-confidence. She creates and maintains an open line of communication with patients and is proactive in their care. Jessica enjoys working out, activities outdoors in nature, and spending time with family.

Kelly Whalen


Kelly enjoys building relationships with her patients, from the time of initial diagnosis until their reconstruction is complete. She works to help patients feel comfortable and informed during each and every visit—whether taking them through a stressful situation or listening to their concerns. Outside of work, Kelly enjoys running, spending time with her family and her dog, and singing at her church.

Clinical Administrators

Dea Busti-Burglia


Dea is Surgical Coordinator “extraordinaire” to Dr. Kasabian, whom she has worked with since 2014. She strives to make each patient’s experience positive by providing them with personal attention from their first appointment to their last. When she’s not at work making patients’ lives a little better, she’s putting the same level of care and attention into her farm to table cooking and spending time with her family.

Dominique Perdue


Dominique is our Surgical & Patient Coordinator and an integral part of the team that strives to provide an exceptional patient experience. Having previously worked as a medical assistant, Dominique’s healthcare experience has prepared her to support women as they navigate through various aspects of their surgical journeys. Her compassion, positive attitude, and optimism make her an indispensable member of Dr. Tanna’s team. Dominique works tirelessly to provide patients with personalized attention to make sure all of their needs are met. From scheduling appointments to coordination of surgeries, Dominique goes above and beyond to find creative ways to accommodate all patients. She works closely with Dr. Tanna and the entire clinical team to ensure patients and their families feel connected at all times. Her commitment to each patient makes her an invaluable asset to the team.

Jessica Bovee


Jessica helps patients to have a positive experience by coordinating surgeries with multiple hospitals and surgery centers, obtaining prior authorizations, confirming and scheduling post-operative appointments. She is available for patients to reach out to her with any questions or concerns. Jessica loves taking care of her plants and spending time with her dog, family, and friends and loves to travel.

Coming Soon!


Marilyn Sic


When Marilyn comes to work each day, her primary focus is meeting patients’ needs. From confirming insurance authorizations to organizing care plans, Marilyn helps coordinate all aspects of surgical preparation. The best part of her job is supporting women through the difficult journey of breast reconstruction. Outside of work, Marilyn enjoys camping and spending time in the great outdoors.

Donna Wetter


Donna has been working with Dr. Leipziger for over a decade. She brings a positive attitude to work each day, and she loves collaborating with her fellow teammates to provide an exceptional patient experience. From scheduling to charting, Donna handles administrative details so that the reconstruction journey can be just a bit smoother. She loves baking, photography, and needlepoint.

Renata Walicka Zeh


Renata welcomes patients to the Friedman Center by listening to their needs and addressing their concerns. She smooths the way for reconstruction surgery by coordinating appointments, communicating with patients, and obtaining all the necessary authorizations and clearances. Renata has lived all over the world: Warsaw, Poland; Cape Town, South Africa, London, UK, and now New York!

Marie Montulli


Monica Pineda


Monica has been working with Dr. Denis Knobel since 2018. She loves helping women through the entire patient journey. Monica knows that even small acts can make a difference in a patient’s day. She helps schedule patient surgeries and appointments, coordinate external resources, and answer any questions. When she’s not at the office, Monica enjoys nature walks, cooking, and spending time with her family.

Nicolette Thompson

Lead Surgical Coordinator

Nicolette has been working in various positions for Northwell Health for several years. She is a lead surgical coordinator who helps schedule procedures for Dr. Palleschi, Dr. Tanna, and Dr. Smith. Nicolette loves helping her patients through the process to ensure a smooth experience and strives to make a positive and long- lasting impression on each and every patient encounter. Nicolette makes it a priority to give back and dedicates her spare time to serving the community. She also enjoys traveling with her family, learning about other cultures, art and most of all….karaoke!

Brianna Harris

Surgical Coordinator

Brianna loves interacting with patients and people in her workspace who are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of others. She spends much of her time coordinating with the many clinical specialties involved in breast cancer care. She takes pride in ensuring that patients are well taken care of and helps navigate their needs. When not at work, Brianna enjoys listening to music, journaling, and painting.

Support Staff

Every staff member at the Friedman Center is part of your Care Team, even if you never meet them! The receptionist who greets you upon arrival, the medical assistant who takes your blood pressure, the insurance coordinator busily working behind the scenes—each employee is committed to helping you have an excellent experience.

Pictured from left to right: Trisha Thompson, Elisa Uwurugo, Stephanie Kilduff, Alix Giannasco, Raywattie “Davi” Ramkumar, Emily Zapata, Stephanie Hansraj, Ashly Quizhpi, Jasmit Kaur, Latonya Stamp (Director of Clinical Administration)

Supplementary Resources

At the Friedman Center, we’re committed to helping you feel whole again. That means addressing your needs as a whole woman. We offer many resources in-house, and we partner with Northwell Health for ancillary services to help you recover physically, mentally, and emotionally.


The resources you have available include physical therapy, genetic counseling, mastectomy fitters, nipple tattooing, patient navigators, community support groups. We strive to meet your every need, so please let us know what else we can do to support you through your reconstruction journey.

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