Our veterinary assistants and veterinary technicians are a vital part of our community here at Highland Pet Hospital. Our assistants are the first friendly face to greet you when you walk in the door. They will help you weigh your pet and take an accurate medical history when they bring you into an exam room as well as assist our veterinarians during your pets examination.
Our Certified Veterinary Technicians all hold degrees in Veterinary Technology from schools approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association. Our technicians are your pet’s nurse when they visit our hospital. They help coordinate case management, participate in patient diagnosis, carry out patient treatment plans, and oversee patient care and surgery, as well as staff and client education, client management and the direction of veterinary assistants.
Dr. Kimberly Burks
Dr. Kim Burks grew up in small towns surrounding the Bloomington-Normal area. She received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Ross University in 2003. Dr. Burks completed a small animal medical and surgical internship at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine. She furthers her veterinary education by attending seminars, taking on-line classes, and reading veterinary journals. She has obtained certification in veterinary acupuncture from the Colorado State Veterinary Medical Association. She is also pursuing advanced training in integrative veterinary medicine. Dr. Burks is currently enrolled in a botanical medicine class to help understand the role of herbal and nutritional supplements in domestic pets.
Dr. Burks loves a challenging medical case! She is particularly interested in the long term management of chronic illness and embraces a multi-faceted approach to pain management. She very much enjoys the relationships she has made over the years with people and their furry family members. Dr. Burks is very excited to rejoin the Highland team, as she worked with Dr. Ekdale and Niehm prior to entering veterinary school.
Dr. Burks shares her home with her husband James and their daughter. They have an American Bulldog named Nikko and cat named Sam. When she is not working, Dr. Burks enjoys her bootcamp classes, volleyball, and vacationing anywhere she can find a beach and palm trees.
Dr. Joshua Li
Dr. Joshua Li joined Highland Pet Hospital & Wellness Center as a veterinarian on June 1, 2015. He is a native of central New Jersey and received his bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from Rutgers University and Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 2015 from University of Illinois.
Dr. Li has interests in both large and small animal medicine, as well as surgery and diagnostic imaging. He enjoys the diversity of veterinary medicine, and his past experience includes working with veterinarians in Germany, Switzerland, Honduras, and Haiti. Dr. Li is always up for the next adventure and looks forward to the challenges of emergency veterinary work.
Dr. Li will be providing services part-time at Highland Pet Hospital, as well as at Animal Emergency Clinic.
Dr. Li is a member of AVMA, ISVMA, and AAHA. He is also an active member of Christian Veterinary Missions organization. When he is not at work, he enjoys hanging out with his wife, Laura, and their cat and dog. Dr. Li loves cooking, eating crazy foods, and playing basketball.
Dr. Laura Li
Dr. Laura Li grew up in beautiful Byron, IL. She received her undergraduate degree in Biology from Augustana College, and her veterinary medicine degree from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in 2015. She met her husband, Dr. Joshua Li, during their first year of veterinary school.
Dr. Laura was fortunate enough to grow up with a variety of animals including sheep, rabbits, cats, and border collies. She loves pets of all shapes and sizes, and enjoys witnessing the special companionship between people and their animals. Her primary interest is in companion animal medicine and community outreach and education. Dr. Laura is owned by a Papillion named Jovi and a naughty orange cat named Huckle.
In her free time, Dr. Laura loves camping, biking, hiking, and walking the dog. She has been to Honduras twice with Christian Veterinary Missions, and continues to be involved with this organization. Her other involvements include 4-H, in which she is a regular volunteer. She and Dr. Josh are very excited for the opportunity to join the Bloomington Normal community and to serve the community through veterinary medicine.
Dr. Patti Niehm
Dr. Patti Niehm joined Highland Pet Hospital and Wellness Center as a veterinarian on June 1, 1991. Originally from Ohio, she is a graduate of North Carolina State College of Veterinary Medicine. Before coming to Highland, Dr. Niehm was associated with Calumet Emergency Veterinary Clinic in Hammond, Indiana.
Dr. Niehm lists interactions with people and their pets in a family relationship as a favorite part of her job. Other areas of interest include disorders of the nervous system, dermatology and pharmacology. Dr. Niehm appreciates the diversity of owner and patient needs and enjoys practicing medicine in a way that meets those diverse needs. Especially important to Dr. Niehm are the special needs of the feline patients.
Dr. Niehm is a member of the Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association, American Veterinary Medical Association, Eastern Illinois Veterinary Medical Association, the American Animal Hospital Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Animal Emergency Clinic of McLean County and for the national organization, Christian Veterinary Mission.
In her free time, Dr. Niehm enjoys the outdoors, biking, and camping. She shares her free time with her husband Matt, their three sons and an exceptionally cute Dachshund mix named Dancer.
Dr. Torry Steffen
Dr. Torry Steffen joined the Highland family in 2005. Dr. Steffen received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Illinois in 1993, and graduated from the University of Illinois- College of Veterinary Medicine in 1997. After graduation, he joined a nine doctor team at a 24-hour emergency and specialty hospital in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Dr. Steffen has special professional interest in emergency medicine, surgery, dentistry and internal medicine. He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
In his free time, Dr. Steffen enjoys reading, running, and spending time with his wife, Kelli, and their daughter and two sons. He also attends ClearView Church in Normal, IL.