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dog running with toy



Tony Atyeo

Practice Owner (BVSc)

Tony has been at Gawler Veterinary Services since he graduated in 1973. First employed as an associate Veterinarian, he now owns the business and has expanded it to include our Smithfield and Tanunda branches. Tony's particular interests are Dermatology and Surgery but over the many years he has developed a range of skills in most aspects of veterinary practice. His commitment to ongoing professional learning for the Vets and Nurses on the team ensures the practice continues to provide you and your pets with the best care and service available.

Michelle Starr

Veterinarian (BVSc (hons 1st class))

Michelle started at Gawler Veterinary Services straight after graduating from the University of Melbourne in 2007. She has since developed a keen interest in Ultrasonography as a non-invasive diagnostic tool. She also has a particular interest in the more ‘unusual’ pets – rabbits, ferrets, mice, rats, and guinea pigs; and native Australian mammals including kangaroos and possums. Combining good listening skills with a considerate attitude, she is sensitive to the needs of both you and your pet, and does all that she can to ensure your animals are well cared for. Michelle has recently adopted a lovely little terrier, Billy, from the Animal Welfare League as her four-legged friend.

Chalette Brown

(Veterinary Behaviour)

Originally from South Africa, Chalette has lived in Australia for more than a decade now.  Chalette is a graduate of The University of Adelaide, graduating in the first ever class of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in 2013. Chalette has attained her Membership by examination with the Australia New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in Veterinary Behaviour. This means she works as our behaviour veterinarian at Gawler Veterinary Services. She is passionate about helping our pets with behaviour problems, including anxiety and aggression problems. Chalette has significant experience in the veterinary behaviour field. In 2017, when she was awarded her Membership by examination (MANZCVS), she was also awarded the Robert Holmes Award for the highest marks achieved in the veterinary behaviour membership examination of that year. In addition, Chalette has traveled internationally to pursue further education in the field, Chalette has worked for Dr Kersti Seksel (Registered Specialist in Veterinary Behaviour Medicine) in Sydney in 2016, she has worked in behaviour referral practice, she serves as a guest lecturer at the University of Adelaide in dog behaviour medicine and she has presented at national veterinary conferences from 2016 - 2018.


Chalette loves being a general practice veterinarian as well, treating pets with both fur and feathers. She enjoys making consults as low stress as possible for her patients to make their visits to the veterinary clinic as pleasant as she can. Chalette enjoys challenging medical cases and is delving into ultrasonography with fantastic mentorship by our very own Dr Starr.


Chalette is married to a veterinarian and they are the proud parents of a beautiful little girl. They share their home with two lovable Labrador retrievers, two playful cats and a few graceful gold fish.

Connie Barker


Connie is the receptionist at our Willaston clinic where she performs a wide variety of tasks and helps keep the day working smoothly. She joined the team in 2008 with a background in retail and hospitality and has adapted to the position with her many talents. She loves her job and enjoys talking to clients and getting to know them.


Since the birth of her second daughter, Connie has settled back into the team seamlessly and is very happy to be back at Gawler and seeing all our clients again.  Outside of work, she is enjoying being a mother to 2 lively young girls.

Jen McKinlay

Head Nurse (Certificate 4 in Veterinary Nursing)

Jen first joined the team at our Willaston clinic in a reception role, before returning to her vet nursing role.  She has now taken on the role of Head Nurse, and is enjoying the responsibility that comes with this position.

After 12 years of working for a UK charity, including 7 years in Sri Lanka (where she met her husband George!) and India, Jen decided to have a career change and returned to study to follow her true passion and became a qualified vet nurse in 2009. During her time living in Asia, she fostered and re-homed many stray animals, volunteered with street dog desexing programs and also helped out in an Indian vet clinic.

Since her return to Adelaide, she has been working in small animal practices and jumped at the chance to join the Gawler Veterinary Services team and is loving every minute! Jen has several furry kids, including Penny, a senior Kelpie, and four mischievous cats named Cassy, Marvin and Basil. In her spare time, Jen loves to go camping, travel anywhere in the world and eat spicy food.

Bindee Davis

Veterinary Nurse (Certificate 4 in Veterinary Nursing)

Bindee calls Darwin home, but is enjoying living in Adelaide while she works her way through university study to become a veterinarian.  Working with us at Tanunda when her university demands allow, Bindee brings several years of nursing experience with her, and particularly enjoys nursing any wildlife that is seen through our clinic.  She also has an interest in working with education and dog health programs in the more remote rural communities around Australia.

A true animal-lover, Bindee currently looks after 2 chickens, 2 cats, 1 dog and a snake.  Outside of work, Bindee also enjoys playing the guitar and card making, and when she gets the chance she tries to travel around the world, especially to 3rd world countries, experiencing different cultures and ways of life.

Kerry Tomlinson

Veterinary Nurse (Certificate 4 in Veterinary Nursing)

Coming to Gawler Veterinary Services with 20 years nursing experience, Kerry has proved herself a valuable addition to our nursing team.  She has a particular interest in nursing your pets through surgery, and has completed her certificate 4 in surgical nursing on top of her general nursing training.

Kerry has adopted a cat called Luna, which her son loves to play with.  Outside of work, Kerry enjoys keeping fit at the gym, gardening, and spending time with her family.

Kerry is currently on maternity leave for the birth of her second son.

Kat McDonald

Veterinary Nurse

Kat’s incredibly compassionate nature coupled with exceptional animal handling and surgical nursing skills has seen her become a vital part of our Vet Nursing Team.

Her impressive head of dreadlocks makes her easily recognisable to clients at both our Smithfield and Willaston Clinics.

Kat enjoys all aspects of nursing, but her passion in the job lies in learning low stress handling techniques, and strives to make veterinary visits enjoyable for both patients and clients. 

A love of all species of animals inspired her to travel all the way to 

Moholoholo Rehab Centre in South Africa, where she spent time volunteering with sick and orphaned lions cubs, birds of prey, tamarins, servals, rhino and jaguars.

When Kat isn’t working, she can be found enjoying snuggles from her two cats, Fizz and Floki, and catching up on her favourite TV shows

Chris Coad

Practice Manager

Chris started at Gawler Veterinary Services in June 2004 and she has found this role to be a rewarding and fun change from an education background.  She loves working with the team here - they are a lovely, professional, caring group of people, making it a pleasure for her to come to work. When not at the clinic she loves to play with her two dogs, watch movies, garden and enjoy the company of her grandchildren. Life is good!

Sarah Hill

Veterinarian (BVetMed)

Since graduating from the Royal Veterinary College, London, in 1999, Sarah has been in Small Animal Practice.  She loves all aspects of her job, but has a particular fondness for her feline friends.  She is currently studying Feline Internal Medicine through a distance education course, so you may be referred to Sarah with your cat so you get the best care. Sarah lives in the Barossa with her husband and two boys, a very cute rescue terrier and various farmyard animals including alpaca and sheep.  She is often found running or cycling around the hills.  Always up for a challenge, she even competed in the New York Marathon in 2015.

Nikki Price

Veterinarian (BVMS MVS)

Dr Nikki graduated from Glasgow University in 1979, then up skilled with a master's degree from Murdoch University in 2002. After working in London for 5 years, Nikki migrated to Australia. She has working in the Barossa Valley since 1986 as a small animal veterinarian. During this time Nikki has completed a Masters degree, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and an AMusA (singing). Teaching is a passion and so on one day of the week she heads down to Adelaide to train veterinary nurses at TAFE and another day heads to Roseworthy to help with the surgical training of future veterinarians. In her spare time music, in particular singing, is her hobby and she is Musical Director of the Kapunda and Districts Choir known as KaDenCe and is a trained classical singer and vocal soloist.

Nikki's other favourite challenge is bushwalking, and she has completed all 1,200 km of the Heysen Trail twice!

Stacey Ellway


Stacey joined our Tanunda clinic in 2016 to serve as a receptionist. Having previously worked with Apple as a computer technician and sales manager, this is her first time working in the animal industry, but she is enjoying the challenges this presents. 

Stacey has found our clients and staff in the Barossa very welcoming and friendly, and is enjoying learning how to best look after your pets. She has discovered that the diversity of animals and conditions seen makes coming to work full of interest. With a family that includes 2 young children, a naughty young beagle and a bearded dragon, Stacey doesn’t have much time to herself, but enjoys reading or cooking when she can relax at home.

Kylie Armitt

Veterinary Nurse (Certificate 4 in veterinary nursing)

Kylie came to Gawler Veterinary Services after leaving an Aged Care career to pursue her true passion - veterinary nursing.

Having completed her studies she joined the Smithfield team in May 2010, and has since transfered to our Gawler clinic.

Kylie is particularly keen on hands-on surgical nursing, and is enjoying the larger surgery load at our Gawler practice. She is keen to pursue further study in wildlife care and rehabilitation.

Kristy Taylor

Veterinary Nurse (Certificate 2 in Veterinary Nursing)

After initially studying business and international studies, Kristy soon realised that her love of animals needed to take a more pivotal position in her career.  Kristy has been in the animal industry now for over 10 years, most of that time working as a veterinary nurse in both general practice and emergency centres.  She has also spent 2 years working with Guide Dogs on the breeding and puppy development program.

Kristy has been working casually on and off at Gawler Veterinary Services since 2014.  In September 2015, she jumped at the opportunity to take a permanent position, and is now based at our Tanunda clinic.  Kristy loves the interaction with clients and their pets, and has a particular interest in emergency nursing as well as assisting with all species of animals.  Kristy has also hand-reared and cared for many orphaned kittens, puppies, rabbits and birds in her career.

Kristy balances part-time work with spending time with her husband Chris, their two young daughters Charlee and Billie, and their dog Chilli and cat Aurora.  They are often found on family day-trips, watching movies or doing arts & crafts together.

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David Ward

Bachelor of Arts - Communication & Media Management (hons)

Our newest addition to the GVS family is David, who has taken on the role of our in-house marketer and communications expert.

David has had a mixed career over the years, having worked in hospitality, spent time as a door to door salesman before deciding he didn't like annoying people in their homes, been a sports coach, and spent nearly 10 years working in administration and project coordination (mainly in the defence industry) before he threw it all in to go back to university and follow his passion for writing and communication.

These days David splits his time between GVS and the office of Tony Piccolo, Member for Light, where he also provides media management and communications support.

David hasn't got a pet at the moment, but has his heart set on getting a fluffy cat to keep his feet warm in winter.

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Clare Kibble

Bachelor of Science Veterinary Bioscience and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine

Clare has always loved animals but only decided to study veterinary science after completing Year 12 when, on a trip to Taronga Zoo, she saw a baby elephant frolicking around and was inspired to work with animals.

Clare’s lived in Gawler since 2003, and in 2017 she graduated from the University of Adelaide with a Bachelor of Science: Veterinary Bioscience, and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine.

In 2018 Clare worked at a small animal clinic in Port Pirie, where she gained valuable general surgery experience, but when the opportunity came up to join the GVS team and move back close to her family, Clare quickly made the move home to Gawler.

Clare is really enjoying the experience she gets from doing general practice veterinary consults, but she is especially interested in soft tissue surgeries and is passionate about promoting animal dentistry, knowing what a huge difference proper dental care can make to an animal’s quality of life.

Outside work Clare enjoys swimming in summer, hockey in winter, reading novels, going to the movies, going to quiz nights, attending musicals and playing with Rosie her playful black Labrador.

© 2019 Gawler Veterinary Services