Get to Know Your Caring Guides in Austin, TX

Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team photo with Dr. Fisher and Dr. Ehanire

At Austin Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, our team of compassionate professionals will help guide you through your journey. Our staff includes breast cancer survivors who are also former patients of Dr. Christine Fisher. They serve our patients as navigators and care coordinators, having been through breast cancer treatment and reconstruction themselves. Our staff also includes three skilled physician assistants with specialized knowledge in caring for patients who have undergone cosmetic and/or breast reconstruction surgery, as well as aesthetic skincare procedures such as  BOTOX®, dermal fillers, and lasers for improving skin quality. We also have numerous nurses and medical assistants on staff specializing in surgical and non-surgical aesthetic and reconstructive medicine. As a women-run team we strive to provide high-quality, compassionate care to every patient.

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Contact Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in Austin, TX to set up a consultation to learn more. Call (512) 815-0123 to or send a message online

Sandy Lanier, PA-C

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Sandy Lanier

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Sandy has a master of science in physician assistant studies from Rosalind Franklin University in Chicago, Illinois, and has worked in aesthetic medicine for more than 10 years. She is certified through the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants and is licensed through the Texas Medical Board. She joined our practice in 2017. Her focus is on giving patients a natural, rejuvenated appearance through comprehensive treatment plans to improve facial contours, reduce fine lines, and improve skin quality. She specializes in BOTOX®, fillers, resurfacing lasers, sclerotherapy, diVa® vaginal rejuvenation, minimally invasive body contouring procedures such as BodyTite and FaceTite, and medical-grade skincare.

Follow her on the Austin Cosmetic MedSpa Facebook and Instagram accounts to see “before and after” photos, get educational information, and be among the first to learn about product and treatment specials and giveaways.

When not at the office, Sandy enjoys spending time with friends, exploring all Austin and the Texas Hill Country have to offer. She likes hiking trails, kayaking, and trying new restaurants.

Rebecca Risher, PA-C

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Rebecca Risher

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Rebecca is a native Austinite. She attended the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, graduating in 2000 with high honors from the physician assistant program. She then completed her master of science in physician assistant studies in 2002. She first began working with Dr. Christine Fisher in 2014. Prior to plastics and reconstructive surgery, she worked in cardiovascular surgery, gaining extensive surgical training and patient care experience. Rebecca works alongside Dr. Fisher, assisting in the operating room and providing post-operative care and education to their patients. She is an experienced practitioner specially trained in reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries, as well as non-invasive procedures, such as dermal fillers, BOTOX®, and skin resurfacing lasers. Rebecca is certified through the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants and is licensed through the Texas Medical Board.

Rebecca found a passion for taking care of breast cancer patients after her mother was diagnosed and underwent breast cancer treatment. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, exercise, playing with her dog, and spending time with her family.

Elizabeth Janson, PA-C

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Elizabeth Janson

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Elizabeth is a certified physician assistant whose experience spans cosmetology, cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery, and non-surgical medical aesthetics. She joined our practice in 2021 from New York City, where she specialized in plastic surgery. She is certified through the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants and is licensed through the Texas Medical Board. She is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgery, the Association of Plastic Surgery Physician Assistants and the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.

Elizabeth’s journey in aesthetics started in 2004 when she became a licensed cosmetologist. She then chose to pursue her bachelor of science at Colorado State University, where she studied nutrition, the health sciences and cardiac rehabilitation. A native New Yorker, Elizabeth returned to her home state for her medical training as a physician assistant and began her career in New York City in plastic and reconstructive surgery. Following a family move to Austin, she found her “home away from home” with the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team. She is proud and humbled to be part of such a knowledgeable team that puts compassion at the forefront of every patient interaction.  “We are all unique and diverse individuals, not carbon copies of one another,” says Elizabeth. “This makes every consultation an exciting challenge of collaboration to develop a treatment plan for a happier, healthier and more youthful you.”

Elizabeth enjoys being active by practicing daily yoga, playing volleyball and tennis, sailing, and walking her miniature bernedoodle, Truffles. Volunteerism is important to Elizabeth; she has served as a volunteer in New York and Texas with food pantries, Emergency Medical Services and the Fire Department, and internationally with humanitarian medical clinics.

Lara Montfort, BSN, RN

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Lara Montfort

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Lara is a surgical nurse and provider in our medspa who specializes in a variety of non-surgical aesthetic treatments, including Botox, dermal fillers, laser resurfacing, dermaplaning, microneedling, and medical-grade skincare. She studied arts and humanities at Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis before pursuing nursing at Indiana State University. She has been a registered nurse since 2009 and absolutely loves what she does. Her nursing background includes caring for patients in cardiac, oncology, women’s health, and surgical settings. She has taken care of cosmetic plastic surgery patients since 2017, and joined our practice in 2018. Lara is known by our patients for her specialized surgical and aesthetic expertise, warm sensibility, and empathetic demeanor.

Follow her on the Austin Cosmetic MedSpa Facebook and Instagram accounts to see “before and after” photos, get educational information, and be among the first to learn about product and treatment specials and giveaways.

Lara and her husband have lived in Austin since 2011. They have three children (a boy and two girls), plus a fur baby — a Boxer from Austin Boxer Rescue. Lara says Austin is the perfect place for her and her family to call home: Lara is a half-marathon runner who enjoys the outdoors, her husband is a musician, and the family volunteers by fostering dogs through Austin Boxer Rescue.

Jeremy Porche, CRNA, MSNA, BSN

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Jeremy Porche

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A southwest Louisiana native with over 25 years of experience in healthcare, Jeremy joined the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in 2019 as a BOTOX®, dermal fillers and laser skincare specialist. After earning his bachelor of science in nursing in 1996, Jeremy worked as a critical care nurse before going on to earn his master of science in nurse anesthesia in 2004 from Texas Wesleyan University. He practiced as a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA) in Los Angeles before moving to Austin in 2007, serving as Chief CRNA at Austin Anesthesiology Group for 10 years. Jeremy continues to practice anesthesiology at St. David’s Medical Center and for our patients having surgery at our onsite cosmetic surgery center. He is licensed by the Texas Board of Nursing and certified by the National Board of Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists. As an adjunct to his anesthesia practice, Jeremy chose to pursue aesthetic specialization in neurotoxin modulators (BOTOX® and Dysport®) as well as cosmetic dermal fillers. He is focused on enhancing patients’ natural appearance with the key goals of providing treatments that are proven to be medically safe while also innovative. Jeremy is known among our patients and staff for his enthusiastic demeanor, genuine passion for improving one’s aesthetic appeal, and participation in collaborative approaches to quality patient care.

Follow him on the Austin Cosmetic MedSpa Facebook and Instagram accounts to see “before and after” photos, get educational information, and be among the first to learn about product and treatment specials and giveaways.

In his free time, Jeremy enjoys traveling, landscaping and spending time with his husband, Huston, and their fur-child goldendoodle, Bentley.

Kathleen Miller, Certified Restorative & Cosmetic Tattooist, Medical Assistant

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Kathleen Miller

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A California native, Kathleen completed her certification in surgical technology in 2008 and subsequently found her niche in plastic and reconstructive surgery as part of the clinical staff. She serves as medical assistant for our breast reconstruction patients, and is a certified restorative and cosmetic tattooist specializing in nipple-areolar tattooing and permanent makeup. She always knew she wanted to have a career in the medical field, as she feels her best when being helpful to others. She moved to Austin in 2014 and now over 12 years of experience as a medical assistant for both cosmetic surgery and breast reconstruction patients. She joined the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in 2017 and is known for her sweet demeanor, specialized clinical knowledge, and passion for compassionate care.

Follow her on the Austin Cosmetic MedSpa Facebook and Instagram accounts to see “before and after” photos, get educational information, and be among the first to learn about product and treatment specials and giveaways.

Kathleen is a mom to her baby boy, River, and enjoys working on crafting projects on the weekends. Her self-made ugly Christmas sweaters that make their appearance at our office holiday party have earned her the title of Crafting Queen among our staff.

Africa Maldonado, Certified Laser Hair Removal Technician, Certified Restorative & Cosmetic Tattooist, Medical Assistant

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Africa Maldonado

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Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, Africa has lived in Austin for over 30 years. She started her career as a medical assistant for a family practice before moving to orthopedics and podiatry. For 13 years, she served as medical assistant, surgery scheduler, and limited X-ray technician for a busy orthopedics practice. She joined the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in May 2019. Africa serves as a medical assistant for our cosmetic and reconstructive surgery patients, and also provides services in our medspa that include laser hair removal, nipple-areolar tattooing for our breast reconstruction patients, and permanent makeup. For Africa, plastics is very different from orthopedics — although patients are glad to be moving without casts or braces, many have impaired mobility going forward. She made the switch from orthopedics because she enjoys seeing the all-encompassing physical, mental and emotional transformations of our patients. It brings her joy to experience our patients’ excitement and renewed confidence, whether from them getting the body they always wanted, or from regaining the body they had before pregnancy or breast cancer.

Follow her on the Austin Cosmetic MedSpa Facebook and Instagram accounts to see “before and after” photos, get educational information, and be among the first to learn about product and treatment specials and giveaways.

Africa is the proud mother of two girls. In the evenings and on weekends, you’ll most likely find Africa supporting her kids at band practice, gymnastics, and various sports activities — she even spent five years coaching her children’s cheerleading team! The trio also enjoys amusement parks, concerts, and traveling. Africa is also a fluent Spanish speaker.

Katie Bertling, RN, LE

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Katie Bertling

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Katie is a registered nurse and licensed aesthetician with over 10 years of experience in medical aesthetics. She is certified in multiple skin rejuvenation techniques, including advanced chemical exfoliation, microneedling, and dermaplaning. She has also trained with renowned physicians, nurses, aestheticians, and physicists specializing in cosmetic light and laser-based therapies. Katie holds true to the belief that healthy skin is beautiful skin. Her focus is on educating patients on modern, scientifically proven therapies to achieve optimal skin health. At Austin Cosmetic MedSpa, she specializes in Botox, dermal fillers, facials, chemical peels, dermaplaning, laser hair removal, and medical-grade skincare.

Follow her on the Austin Cosmetic MedSpa Facebook and Instagram accounts to see “before and after” photos, get educational information, and be among the first to learn about product and treatment specials and giveaways.

Katie relocated to Austin in 2010 from Kansas City after falling in love with the Texas Hill Country. When not at work or school, Katie enjoys spending time outdoors with her family, especially anywhere near water, as well as exploring new local restaurants and wineries.

Alissa Harlow, RN

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Alissa Harlow

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A Liberty Hill, Texas native, Alissa began her career in 2014 as a medical assistant in the fields of microsurgery, dermatology, and aesthetics. After completing her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Texas at Tyler, she pursued nursing, receiving her registered nurse certification in 2020 shortly after joining the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team. Alissa cares for our cosmetic and reconstructive surgery patients, and is an integral member of the practice’s cosmetic surgery center operating room staff. She is passionate about patient education and loves that she gets to be a part of patients’ transformations, whether they be after elective procedures or reconstruction due to breast cancer. She always looks forward to patients’ longer-term follow-up appointments when she gets to hear about their overall quality of life improvement and high-five them.

Alissa often spends weekends on her family’s farm where she gets to hang out with her little nephew and fiancé. She loves being outdoors and being active, including camping, traveling, yoga, and playing with Mufasa, her 13-year-old kitty.

Julie Culin, Cosmetic Patient Care Coordinator

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Julie Culin

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Julie is a breast cancer survivor and former patient of Dr. Christine Fisher's who joined Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in 2016. Her personal experience with breast cancer set the stage for her to volunteer with the Breast Cancer Resource Center's AsSisters program, as well as be involved in several of BCRC's fundraising events, including Art Bra® Austin. Julie has a B.S. in kinesiology from the University of Texas and an M.S. in allied health resources from Texas State University. Working with Dr. Fisher and the patients who come through the office has brought Julie full circle back to her roots and love of the healthcare world. She is the go-to person for our cosmetic surgery patients, coordinating their care from the initial consultation through the post-operative period, and can speak from personal experience with our breast reconstruction patients.

Outside of the office, Julie is busy with her husband and two active kids, as well as playing tennis in leagues around the city. Her favorite tagline is, "Choose to be amazing!"

Claire Spera, Director of Communications & Reconstructive Patient Care Coordinator

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Claire Spera

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A native of Santa Barbara, California and Austin resident since 2010, Claire is a breast cancer survivor and former patient of Dr. Christine Fisher's. She has personal experience with bilateral DIEP flap breast reconstruction and treatment for breast cancer, including chemotherapy and radiation. She joined the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in 2016 after completing treatment. Claire is very active in the breast cancer community, particularly as a volunteer for Austin's Breast Cancer Resource Center, as a member of the Susan G. Komen Young Professionals Council, and as a trained Young Advocate with Living Beyond Breast Cancer. As our reconstructive patient navigator, Claire enjoys connecting the practice's breast cancer patients with helpful resources, from financial and insurance assistance to support groups and help with everyday tasks. She is a staunch believer that no one should face breast cancer alone. In her role as communications director, Claire leads the practice's community outreach efforts and manages our website and social media presence. She has a B.A. in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and an M.A. in journalism from the University of Southern California.

When she's not at the office, Claire spends her time teaching and performing flamenco dance, which she has done for more than 25 years, practices yoga, and writes about the arts for publications including the Austin American-Statesman and Arts+Culture Texas. Claire is also a fluent Spanish speaker.

Cathie Chairenza, Patient Care & Surgery Coordinator

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Cathie Chairenza

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Cathie has over 15 years of experience as a patient care coordinator, advocate and surgery scheduler. She began her healthcare career in Colorado where she raised her two children before relocating to Austin in 2019 to join the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team. She is known for her great compassion and empathy for our patients, and strives to be as supportive as possible to our breast cancer and cosmetic surgery patients along their restorative journeys. She is also passionate about the benefits of plastic surgery and the positive effect it can have on patients’ self-esteem. She aims to assist each patient in clarifying their goals and provide continual support along the way.

A California native, Cathie has had a lifelong passion for animals. Her move to the Austin area was in part precipitated by her desire to own a property where she could house her rescue horses. She is a true animal lover at heart and has several other pets, all rescues. She enjoys the outdoors, and especially likes hiking and horseback riding.  She also enjoys live music, home remodeling and exploring the Austin scene.

Jonathan Perez, CST

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Jonathan Perez

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Native Austinite Jonathan is the director of operations for our onsite surgery center, Austin Cosmetic Surgery Center. He received his associates of science degree from Austin Community College and has been a certified surgical technologist (CST) since 2016. He has worked with Dr. Christine Fisher since then, initially at Seton Medical Center where he became the lead plastic surgery technologist. At Seton, Jonathan ensured Dr. Fisher’s DIEP flap breast reconstruction cases went smoothly by coordinating operating room staff and performing operating room preparation, equipment arrangement and intraoperative assistance. Impressed with Jonathan’s can-do attitude, Dr. Fisher asked him to join the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in 2020 to manage our own onsite operating rooms. Jonathan says his team’s energy, eagerness and passion for outstanding patient care inspire him every day. As our surgery center director, Jonathan primarily manages staff training, equipment and supplies ordering, and staff operating room scheduling.

When not at work, you’ll find Jonathan hanging out with his fur babies and fiancé, working on his car, looking for new international foods to try, or working on a DIY project he’s convinced himself he’s going to finish. 

Marissa Arras, CST

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Marissa Arras

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Native Texan Marissa has been a certified surgical technologist (CST) for 25 years and works primarily in our onsite surgery center, Austin Cosmetic Surgery Center. She received her certification from Odessa College in 1996 and her associate’s degree in applied science for surgical technology in 2005. She began her career at Community Hospital in San Angelo before making her way to Austin. Her operating room experience spans the full spectrum of surgical specialties, making her a particularly knowledgeable staff trainer for our technologists and nurses. In addition to scrubbing into the operating room to assist our surgeons and train staff, Marissa is responsible for maintaining our surgical equipment and supplies inventory, sterile processing, instrument decontamination, operating room environmental processes, and policy and procedure implementation.  Marissa first began working with Dr. Fisher in 2018 at Central Park Surgery Center with HCA Healthcare and was recruited to the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in 2020. Marissa loves what she does and feels fortunate to be a part of the APRS team.

On her days off, Marissa enjoys unwinding from her week by going bowling and hiking. She also loves to go to concerts, gaming centers, and farmer’s markets, and relishes spending quality time with her sons and grandson.

Monique Colbert, Front Desk Coordinator

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Monique Colbert

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Native Texan Monique is the friendly face who greets you at check in. She has worked in healthcare since 2005, and joined our practice in 2019. Monique got her start in the medical field as an Emergency Room admissions specialist where she cross trained in outpatient registration and as a switchboard operator for seven years. She then spent five years as the receptionist for a busy pain management practice. Monique prides herself on maintaining her smile, no matter what comes her way, and in making every patient who comes to our practice feel special.

Monique is a mother of four who loves spending time with her children and husband. She describes herself as a “total football and cheer mom” who is at every game, rain or shine. On the weekends, she enjoys baking and working on craft projects.

Vangie Hemphill, Clinic Coordinator

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Vangie Hemphill

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Native Texan Vangie has been in the medical field for over 20 years. After earning her associate’s degree at El Paso Community College, she got her start in healthcare in family medicine before finding her way to plastic surgery. She joined the Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery team in early 2021 after relocating from Dallas. Vangie is the helpful voice our patients hear over the phone and the friendly face they see at our checkout desk. She also helps coordinate our clinic from every angle of our practice, from the surgical side to the medspa. Vangie admires the strength of our breast reconstruction patients, and enjoys getting to know every patient who walks through our doors, whether they are coming to us for reconstructive, cosmetic or medspa procedures.

Outside of work, Vangie enjoys staying active with spin classes, weight lifting, yoga, golf and volleyball. She has two four-legged children, Fergie and Peppercorn, who also keep her busy, and is currently working on her green thumb by learning to landscape.

Katrina Whitehair, Practice Administrator

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Katrina Whitehair

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Katrina was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, and lived in New York City for six years before relocating to her forever home in Austin. She has a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master of business administration from Bellarmine University. Katrina's professional background spans corporate human resources, human service work, and six years in the field of healthcare. She has worked in ophthalmology and dentistry, and was a consultant for private healthcare practices before joining our practice in 2017.

Katrina enjoys spending time with her family, including her niece and nephew, as well as her friends, and exploring Austin and the surrounding communities' food, brewery, and outdoor adventure offerings.

Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

  • Known for natural-looking aesthetic results in breast reconstruction and cosmetic surgery.
  • Elected by peers for inclusion in Texas Monthly's Texas Super Doctors®: Rising Stars listing.
  • Reconstructed over 6,000 patients, including more than 2,500 DIEP flap reconstructions.
  • 4.9-star average rating over hundreds of reviews for reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.
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Learn more about Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. Set up a consultation by calling (512) 815-0123 or sending a message online.

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2905 San Gabriel Street
Suite 100
Austin, TX 78705
(512) 815-0123

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