Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists
Dr. Nicole Eckholm
Owner, Veterinary Dermatologist
Nicole Eckholm, DVM, MS, DACVD grew up outside of Philadelphia but has made northern California her home for the better part of 20 years. She is a 2006 graduate of the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and has a Master’s degree in Microbiology from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, PA. After completing veterinary school Dr. Eckholm worked in general practice and shelter medicine in the Washington DC area for three years. She completed her residency in veterinary dermatology at the University of California, Davis in 2011. Dr. Eckholm introduced animal dermatology to Marin county in 2013 and practiced in Marin from 2013 to 2016 followed by a short stint in Memphis, Tennessee. After returning to Northern California in June, 2017, Dr. Eckholm joined VCA Animal Care Center of Sonoma County, where she also served as the hospital medical director. She left VCA to form Golden Gate Vet Specialists in November, 2020.
Dr. Eckholm enjoys teaching, and she takes a special interest in infectious skin disease, allergy and autoimmune disease. When she is not at work she is home with her husband, two children, rescued dog, six cats, chickens, ducks, and horses! She also has a special interest in helping animals in need. She is a firm believer in making exceptional veterinary care available to all animals large and small and the people that love them.
Dr. James Farese
Owner, Veterinary Surgeon
Dr. James P. Farese, DVM, DACVS received his veterinary degree from the University of Florida in 1994. He completed an Internship and Surgical Residency at Cornell University in 1998 and a Fellowship in Surgical Oncology at the Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State University in 2006. He was on the Faculty at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine from 1998 to 2011 and since then has been in specialty practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. He was awarded Diplomate status in the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 1999 and in 2012 he was recognized by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) as a Founding Fellow of Surgical Oncology.
He is a past President of the Veterinary Society of Surgical Oncology (VSSO) and past President of the Marin County Veterinary Medical Association (MCVMA) and currently serves on the ACVS Surgical Oncology Fellowship Oversight Committee.
Dr. Stacey Holz
Stacey Holz, DVM grew up in the Bay Area and ventured to Washington State University to pursue an undergraduate degree in the Honors Program and run Cross country and Track. In keeping with her love of all things WSU, she remained in Pullman, WA and graduated in 1999 from the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. The lure of dermatology led her from general practice to pursue and complete a residency in veterinary dermatology in 2004. Since then, Dr. Holz has worked in private dermatology practice in the Bay Area for most of her career. She has a passion for teaching veterinary students, and she provides the didactic Dermatology lectures for the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, where she previously led the WSU Veterinary Dermatology Clinical Service.
At Golden Gate Vet Specialists, Dr. Holz continues to provide excellent veterinary dermatology care with a team approach, and in the process, she improves the quality of life for the animal patients and their families.
When Dr. Holz is not involved in veterinary dermatology, she enjoys time with her family and in the great outdoors mountain biking, swimming, chasing after her huskies, and cheering on her beloved WSU Cougars…GO COUGS!
Tiffani grew up in Petaluma. She has loved animals for as long as she can remember and has always had a passion for helping them. She started at a boarding facility but wanted to expand her knowledge, so she entered the emergency and specialty medicine field. She worked in this field for 12 years, rising to become a supervisor for speciality departments. She is a mom of two handsome boys and has three very spoiled dogs and two cats. She enjoys a good bottle of wine on the weekends and movie nights with the family.
Registered Veterinary Technician
Victoria Benson is a Marin County native who started her veterinary career in 2011. She became a registered veterinary technician in 2014. Victoria has a background in emergency and critical care as well as general practice. Victoria first became passionate about dermatology when she was 15 and started volunteering with the children’s skin disease foundation at their annual camp for children with genetic skin disorders. In her free time Victoria likes to garden and hang out with her three cats, Appa, Momo, and Lucy and her dog Trevor.
Originally from Central Coast California, Jamie grew up in Paso Robles, loving and taking care of many cats, rats, and a dog. After spending her junior year abroad in Catania, Sicily, Jamie began volunteering at the local shelter and working as a kennel assistant at a local vet clinic. Upon moving to Sonoma County to pursue her degree in cultural anthropology and Italian, she continued her veterinary path at an established animal hospital. Over the next 10 years, Jamie started out as a technician assistant, worked her way throughout the hospital, and eventually became the practice manager. She developed a great interest in emergency and specialty care, so she embarked on a seven year career with the local emergency and specialty hospital, gaining extensive knowledge in emergency care, surgery, neurology, dermatology, in addition to becoming the training coordinator. Jamie has a passion for CPR, disinfection protocol, and superb patient care. On her free time, Jamie can be found hiking local trails, fronting 4 local rock and cover bands, playing her ukulele, and sewing hammocks and accessories for her 3 rats Mars, Jupiter, and Nutty, her cat Rufio, and her senior pug Ripley.
Kathie Seavey came from Arizona to Northern California with her family in 2009, landing in Novato. After working in sales for her husband’s company for three years, she transitioned into the veterinary field in 2013. Shortly after, Kathie joined Dr. Eckholm and the dermatology team. Kathie enjoys meeting each patient and watching Dr. Eckholm help them, and she takes great pride in building positive relationships with every client and their pets!
Kathie has two dogs, Grendel and Carson—both patients of Dr. Eckholm. They bring joy to her life and happiness to the family. She would love to have more, but her husband Leo claims that five kids and two dogs give plenty of happiness!
Client Services Representative
Lupe and her husband, William adopted two fur babies in 2009, Mamacita and Baby. Through the unconditional love provided by the two adorable and sassy tuxedo kitties Lupe developed an interest in veterinary medicine. Lupe began volunteering at the local shelters in San Francisco and enjoying all cat cafes. That experience inspired Lupe to pursue a career in the veterinary field. She has become an exceptional liaison between the client and medical staff in general practice, ophthalmology, internal medicine, nutrition and dermatology. Lupe is especially interested in the dermatological condition of Alopecia in animals because she loves to see the progression of hair regrowth after successful treatment.
Lupe takes joy in spending time with her loved ones. She enjoys watching live music and sports, loves the holiday season… all the decorations and festivities, beach days bring happiness to her soul.
Lupe’s favorite quote:
“Your smile can change the world, but don’t let the world change your smile.” ~ Anonymous
Client Services Representative
Anne grew up on a dairy ranch in west Petaluma, and she has spent her entire life around animals, big and small. It was natural that when she wasn’t raising her kids she was working in the veterinary field in all positions. She and her husband have been married over 30 years and have two grown children. She lives on several acres with seven dogs, a cat, two horses and lots of chickens. In her off time she likes to garden (flowers and vegetables), go hiking, road/trail race running (half marathons) and watching movies. She has a zest for live, and hence lives by the motto: Get busy living, or get busy dying!
My dogs suffered from severe allergies for years until we were referred to Dr. Eckholm. They have been patients for 7 years and we are so happy with the results. Dr. Eckholm put together a treatment plan for us that has greatly improved the comfort and quality of life for my dogs. I am so grateful for the care and expertise we have received.
~Linda O. (“Ollie” and “Dakota”)