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UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center

UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center

Our Pediatric Cancer Team

Our Pediatric Cancer Team

    Pediatric Nursing

  • Kathryn Wells, M.S., C.P.N.P., C.P.O.N.
  • Brian K. Stuepfert, M.S.N., R.N., N.P., C.P.O.N.
  • Kristine Ahlberg, R.N., B.S.N., O.C.N., C.H.T.C.
  • Katie Haertle, R.N., B.S.N., C.P.H.O.N.
  • Yvonne Roach, R.N., B.S.N., C.P.H.O.N.
  • Amber Svardal, R.N., B.S.N., M.S.N.

Related Resources

Dr. Anjali Pawar with patient, Elijah © UC RegentsThe UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center believes in a team approach to your healthcare. We offer a collaborative team of pediatric specialists, allowing your child to receive the highest quality care available.





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Pediatric clinicians

Dr. Marcio H. Malogolowkin © UC RegentsMarcio H. Malogolowkin, M.D.
Professor, Department of Pediatrics
Chief, Division of Hematology Oncology

Treating children with cancer for more than 29 years, Malogolowkin is passionate about developing new therapeutic approaches to improving outcomes and quality of life for his patients. An international leader in the treatment of pediatric liver tumors, Malogolowkin leads the pediatric hematology-oncology program to enhance the care of pediatric and young adult patients with cancer and blood disorders, to advance education of these diseases and to develop the next generation of health providers and researchers. Malogolowkin served as division head for clinical affairs and clinical research at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and led the hematology, oncology and bone marrow transplant program at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin before coming to UC Davis. He believes all children should be cared for as family and have local access to top cancer experts and leading-edge treatments.


Dr. Anjali Pawar © UC RegentsAnjali Pawar, M.D.
Medical Director of the Pediatric Infusion Center
Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics

Prior to joining UC Davis in March 2012, Pawar trained and held a faculty position at University of Michigan. In addition to oncology and hematology, Pawar is especially interested in young women with bleeding disorders and clotting problems, and plans to continue clinical research in this area at UC Davis. Pawar is a big fan of healthy eating habits and getting a lot of exercise, and is interested in the problems of childhood obesity as it relates to cancer therapy complications. Pawar is Board Certified in Pediatrics as well as Pediatric Hematology Oncology, and is a member of several professional pediatric and pediatric hematology and oncology organizations.


Jong H. Chung, M.D.
Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, Hematology and Oncology

Jong Hee Chung is an assistant clinical professor in pediatric hematology and oncology. Dr. Chung earned her medical degree at New York University, completed her residency at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and a fellowship at Children’s Hospital and Research Center in Oakland. Her research focuses on improving the quality of care for patients with hemoglobinopathies, complex inherited abnormalities in hemoglobin production. She approaches her work with the philosophy that every child should be treated with the dedication and compassion she would give her own family. She is inspired by the children and families she works with and their amazing strength of spirit. “Children are so unpredictable, funny, adaptable sweet and, in the end, just lovely even when they’re being contrary,” she says. “The most rewarding thing about my job is seeing a child who starts out tearful, or in pain, blossom into a happy, healthy child who sees our oncology team as their friends.”


Dr. Jonathan Ducore © UC RegentsJonathan M. Ducore, M.D., M.P.H.
Professor of Clinical Pediatrics
Co-Director of the Hemophilia Treatment Center

Jonathan Ducore, professor of clinical pediatrics, has been with the UC Davis Health System for nearly 25 years. He is co-director of the Hemophilia Treatment Center and has expertise in pediatric malignancies, bleeding disorders, cancer epidemiology and clinical trials. Dr. Ducore is looking forward to the integration of the pediatric with the adult cancer programs and the potential for cooperation and collaboration among clinicians and researchers.


Dr. Hirose © UC RegentsShinjiro Hirose, M.D.
Professor of Pediatrics
Chief, Division of Pediatric General, Thoracic and Fetal Surgery

A nationally recognized fetal and children's cancer surgeon and an expert in the development and use of surgical robotics in children, Hirose leads the pediatric surgery division to provide general and thoracic surgical care for infants, children and adolescents, and is working with colleagues to create the first comprehensive fetal diagnosis and therapy center in the Sacramento region. Before joining UC Davis, Hirose was the lead pediatric surgeon at the UC San Francisco Benioff Children's Hospital and its Fetal Treatment Center, specializing in minimally invasive surgery for gastro-intestinal, biliary, liver and thoracic disorders in fetuses in utero and children. Hirose is one of the creators of the University of California Fetal Therapy Consortium, and has a joint appointment as director of pediatric surgery at Shriners Hospitals for Children - Northern California, where he is developing a surgical program to serve children with complex colorectal and pelvic floor anomalies and a bowel-management program.


Dr. Noriko Satake © UC RegentsNoriko Satake, M.D.
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Satake joined the UC Davis pediatric oncology team in 2007 after completing a three-year pediatric oncology fellowship at UCLA’s Mattel Children’s Hospital. A pioneer of innovative treatments for pediatric cancers, Satake’s research focuses on the development of targeted therapies for leukemia and neuroblastoma, the most common cancers affecting children. She has been the recipient of numerous honors, including the 2011 Hartwell Individual Biomedical Research Award from The Hartwell Foundation, a philanthropy that funds innovative and leading-edge biomedical research with the potential to benefit children of the United States, and the 2015 Hartwell Biomedical Research Collaboration Award, a first for a Hartwell investigator from UC Davis. Inspired by the courage she sees in the children, Satake hopes to develop novel drugs that will directly improve treatments and outcomes for her patients. She believes exercise is key to good health, and enjoys unwinding from work with Zumba and kickboxing sessions.


Kay Wells © UC RegentsKathryn Wells, M.S., C.P.N.P., C.P.O.N.
Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Nurse Practitioner

Kathryn Wells practices predominately in the outpatient clinics. She sees patients for routine evaluations while receiving treatment and after the conclusion of therapy.  Kathryn has spent 30 years taking care of children with cancer at the UC Davis Medical Center as a pediatric hematology-oncology nurse. Over time, she has worked as a Nurse Practitioner, a care coordinator for the Division of Hematology and Oncology and as a bedside nurse in the pediatric infusion center.  With the Cancer Center expansion, Wells will collaborate with colleagues in the adult infusion center to start a survivorship clinic. “I am hoping we will be more visible in the general cancer community,” she says.


Brian K. Stuepfert © UC RegentsBrian K. Stuepfert, M.S.N., R.N., N.P., C.P.O.N.
Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Nurse Practitioner

A nurse practitioner certified in acute care, Brian has been caring for patients in the pediatric oncology outpatient clinic since July 2014. He earned his master's degree in nursing from UCSF, and comes to UC Davis from Doernbehcer Children's Hospital in Portland, OR, where he cared for young bone marrow transplant patients and children diagnosed with blood disorders and cancer. As a nurse practitioner, Brian plays a key role in providing personalized care to patients at the time of diagnosis, during treatment and through survivorship. In addition to children with cancer, Brian helps treat pediatric patients with sickle-cell disease as well as bone marrow transplant recipients. He says the resilience of children and their families makes his job rewarding, and believes the ability to carefully listen to a patient is one of the most important parts of his job.


Kristine Ahlberg © UC RegentsKristine Ahlberg, R.N., B.S.N., O.C.N., C.H.T.C.
Pediatric Oncology Nurse Care Coordinator

An oncology nurse her entire career, Kristine has been at UC Davis for nearly 25 years. Prior to working with pediatric cancer patients, she helped coordinate care for adult stem cell transplant recipients, helping to establish the cancer center’s stem cell transplant program, which facilitated the region’s first bone marrow transplant and is considered one of Northern California’s most experienced and comprehensive programs today. Working in pediatric oncology since 2014, Kristine seeks to empower patients and parents. She provides crucial support during treatment and helps patients strive toward best health possible through education. Certified in oncology nursing, as well as in pediatric chemotherapy and biotherapy, Kristine is a professional member of the Association of Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurses and the Oncology Nursing Society. She enjoys providing tools to help parents care for their children, and believes prioritizing self-care is key to good health.


Katie Haertle © UC RegentsKatie Haertle, R.N., B.S.N., C.P.H.O.N.
Pediatric Oncology Nurse Care Coordinator

A veteran nursing professional with more than 20 years of experience, Katie spent most of her career caring for patients at UC Davis, and has worked in pediatric oncology for more than a decade. As a nurse care coordinator, she helps guide patients and their families through the cancer journey by providing education, coordinating complex care and serving as a crucial bridge of communication between families and oncologists. She is continually amazed by her patients’ strength and bravery, and says “seeing kids in recovery when they come back for follow-up visits makes the difficult times all worthwhile.” Recognized for her commitment to pediatric cancer care, Katie was honored with an Aflac Duckprints Award in 2014, which celebrates individuals who have left their own personal footprint in the fight against childhood cancer. Her philosophy for good health is to focus on one day at a time, eat well and exercise--and make sure to laugh a lot.


Yvonne Roach © UC RegentsYvonne Roach, R.N., B.S.N., C.P.H.O.N.
Pediatric Oncology Nurse Care Coordinator

At UC Davis for nearly 30 years, and a nurse care coordinator in pediatric oncology for more than two decades, Yvonne thinks of herself as an “interpreter of medical care,” always on a mission to provide timely information. “Cancer treatment can be very confusing, so we try to make it as clear as possible, doing whatever it takes to make sure patients and their caregivers get questions answered,” she says. Constantly going over treatment calendars, providing regular updates, and always just a phone call away, Yvonne sees patients through their entire cancer journeys. The relationships she builds with patients and their families along the way is the best part of her job, she says. “You really get to become part of their lives, and that’s something you only get to do as a nurse care coordinator.”


Amber Svardal © UC RegentsAmber Svardal, R.N., B.S.N., M.S.N.
Pediatric Oncology Nurse Care Coordinator

Drawn to a career in which she could help others, Amber studied nursing at Sacramento State University earning a bachelor’s and a master’s, and has served in the Army Reserve Nurse Corps since 2009. At UC Davis, she works in the pediatric outpatient clinic. From helping patients and families understand the disease and cope with the cancer experience to addressing side effects and making sure laboratory tests and scans are up-to-date, Amber always collaborates with a patient’s oncologist and infusion nurse to coordinate care. She loves working with kids who are always inspiring her by “living in the moment,” she says. A CrossFit enthusiast, Amber believes regular exercise is key to good health, and recently ran her first Olympic distance triathlon sponsored by Team in Training for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.


Dr. Joy Graf © UC RegentsJoy Graf, M.D.
Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery





Dr. Stephen Greenholz © UC RegentsStephen Greenholz, M.D.
Clinical Professor of Surgery