Employee Spotlight: Caronline Barraza, Medical Assistant

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Carolina BarrazaName:  Carolina Barraza

Department: Medical

Title: Medical Assistant

Primary work location: Shawnee Mission

How long have you worked at HPC?  

It will be two years in July.

How did you get into your field of work?

Since I was a child, I’ve always wanted to take care of people.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?

I speak Spanish and English.

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?

“Anything is possible if you put your mind to it.”

What values are important to you?

Values that are important to me are honesty, loyalty and caring.

What is something about you that would surprise people?

I’m an artist. I love to draw.

What is on your “bucket” list?

Employee Spotlight: Caronline Barraza, Medical AssistantI would like to travel the world and see new places.

What is your favorite food?

My favorite food is Mexican and Italian.

What is your favorite movie?

I don’t have a favorite movie, I like them all.

What is your favorite hobby?

I like to read and spend time with my family.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?

I love dogs! I have a dog named Gizmo who is a Rottweiler mixed with Golden Retriever.

Employee Spotlight: Karina Diaz, Dental Coordinator

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Karina DiazName: Karina Diaz

Department: Dental

Title: Dental Coordinator

Primary work location: Olathe

How long have you worked at HPC? Five years

How did you get into your field of work?

I am very passionate about helping others, and my job at HPC allows me to connect with and help our patients and partners.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?

Yes, I speak Spanish.

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?

“Let your faith be bigger than your fear.”

What values are important to you?

Karina Diaz with her familyValues that are important to me are honesty, loyalty and respect.

What is something about you that would surprise people?

I played soccer, ran track and was a cheerleader in high school.

What is on your “bucket” list?

I want to go skydiving.

What is your favorite food?

My favorite foods are Mexican and Chinese.

What is your favorite movie?

“The Notebook”

What is your favorite hobby?

My favorite hobby is reading.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?

I’m not really an animal lover. I don’t have any animals, only kids!

Employee Spotlight: Daraya (Dara) Wilson, Medical Assistant

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Dara WilsonName:  Daraya (Dara) Wilson

Department: Medical

Title: Medical Assistant

Primary work locationOlathe

How long have you worked at HPC?  

I have worked at HPC since July 2020.

How did you get into your field of work?

I interned at a KU research lab looking at HIV and monkeys. The virus and scientific process captivated me. At the same time, each night I looked forward to waitressing because I got to work with people. Working in a clinical setting brings the best of these two worlds.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?

Yes, I am fluent in Indonesian. I would like to improve my Spanish, and I know some basics of my husband’s languages (Tajik and Russian).

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?

Yes, it is “Ad astra per aspera.”
Translation: “To the stars through difficulties.”

What values are important to you?

Dara Wilson PersonalValues that are important to me include family, religion and education.

What is something about you that would surprise people?

I was raised to be proud of my Indonesian heritage. One way to demonstrate this is through dance. I began performing traditional Indonesian dances when I was six years old. Since then, I have performed across the United States and taught others along the way. Through teaching I learned more about my culture and values.

What is on your “bucket” list?

I would like to eat the lamb that was baked in the ground in Turkey, I believe it is known as tandir kebab.

What is your favorite food?

Anything homemade! They have the flavor of love, especially family recipes.

What is your favorite movie?

Dara Wilson PersonalI am a bit of an oddball in this matter because I do not like movies.

What is your favorite hobby?

I enjoy cooking! It’s my form of self-expression and creativity. Plus, preparing and sharing a meal with others is my favorite way to bond with family and friends.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?

I’m a huge dog person! I was volunteering at local rescues, taking dogs out on walks or playing with them. In January, my family fell in love with a newly arrived dog and we gave her a forever home. She is probably an Australian Kelpie mixed with a shepherd. One thing we know for sure is that she is super smart and sweet.

Employee Spotlight: Billie Reese-Turner, Director of Billing and Patient Services

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Name: Billie Reese-Turner

Department: Billing

Title: Director of Billing and Patient Services

Primary work locationOlathe

How long have you worked at HPC?
I originally consulted in March of 2017 until hired full time in July 2017.

How did you get into your field of work?
I have been in health care insurance and provider billing since I was a senior in high school. I took my best friend to a job interview for a billing position and she wasn’t willing to work Saturdays, so they asked me if I was interested in the job. I said yes! I worked nights until I graduated and was offered full time employment. I have been working in the field since then.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?
Yes! I speak Pig Latin fluently with my sisters. (ha ha)

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?
“Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength.” -Saint Francis de Sales

What values are important to you?
Values that are important to me are God first, family, loyalty, humility, mindfulness and making a difference.

What is something about you that would surprise people?
At eight years old I began playing the tenor saxophone. Later I moved on to flute and piccolo. I can play every woodwind instrument. I placed first in district and state competition playing the flute.

What is on your “bucket” list?
I want to stay healthy and here long enough to enjoy having grand-babies someday and watching them have babies. And I’d like to go to Ireland and Tuscany.

What is your favorite food?
Billie Reece-Turner with DaughtersMy favorite foods are Mexican and Italian… it’s the cheese!

What is your favorite movie?
“Planes, Trains, and Automobiles” and “Singing in the Rain”

What is your favorite hobby?
My favorite hobbies include playing games with my family and reading.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?
YES! I currently only have two dogs and two cats. I have a Yorkie named Daisy and a Chihuahua named Luciana. Grace and Tigger are my cats. At one point I had six cats and four dogs, my two girls and six other family members living with me for a few years – I know family are not “animals” but it felt like a zoo sometimes.

During the month of March, we have much to celebrate at HPC!

By Debbie Sparks, Development and Marketing Manager

HPC: So much to celebrate in March!

National Social Work Month

March 2021 marks national Social Work Month. This year the National Association of Social Workers have adopted the theme “Social Workers are Essential”.

Social Work is the only profession that requires social justice advocacy. This means Social Workers are called to action to serve as a catalyst in social change. Throughout the COVID 19 Pandemic, Social Workers across the country gained access to care, resources, support, comforted survivors and helped manage grief. Many Social Workers quickly regrouped and revamped services tailored toward virtual and online access.

Social Workers also advocated for individuals and families struggling financially during the pandemic and the economic downturn that followed.

There are more than 700, 000 professional Social Workers employed in the United States and more than 3,000,000 worldwide. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, Social Work continues to be one of the fastest growing professions. We are seeing more clinically trained Social Workers than ever before, and this makes sense as they tend to help their clients through difficult situations and are required to build upon their competency and continue their education.

Take a moment this March to Thank a Social Worker.

We salute our social workers, Cecilia Ponce, LSCSW and Amy Gray, LSCSW!


National Dental Assistant Week, March 7-13

“Dental Assistants – Our Heart Goes into Every Smile” is the theme for 2021 and acknowledges the growing importance of dentistry’s role in health care and the responsibilities of dental assistants.

There are more than 300,000 dental assistants in the United States. In Kansas, there are approximately 2,600 dental assistants.

Dental assistants wear many hats in a dental clinic! They greet patients, review medical histories, take X-rays, perform dental charting during the dentist exam, assist the dentist chairside during procedures, polish teeth, review post-operative instructions and schedule patients.

In Kansas, dental assistants are not required to be certified. However, The Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) is the nationally recognized certification organization for dental assistants. Certification is a source of pride for dental assistants and provides professional advantage and potentially greater earning power.

Thank you to our HPC dental assistants Katie Hickman, Stephanie Rojas and Diana Ortiz Vargas!


National Dentist Day, March 6

CelebrateNational Dentist Day was created as a day to say thank you and show your appreciation for your dentist. It is celebrated annually on March 6.

Do you know?

  • There are approximately 180,000 dentists who are professionally active in the United States. There are 1,300 active dentists in Kansas, of which more than 200 are specialists.
  • The education and training of dentists typically includes four years of college, four years of dental school and two to three years of residency training if a specialty is chosen.
  • There are two different but equivalent degrees dentists may earn: Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD).
  • Dentists ranked number two out of the 100 best jobs according to the U.S. News & World Report. Two dental specialties also placed in the top 10: number four, orthodontist and number nine oral and maxillofacial surgeon.
  • In the United States, nine specialties are recognized by the American Dental Association.
    • Orthodontics
    • Dentofacial orthopedics
    • Pediatric dentistry
    • Periodontics
    • Prosthodontics
    • Oral and maxillofacial surgery
    • Oral and maxillofacial pathology
    • Endodontics
    • Public health dentistry
    • Oral and maxillofacial radiology

Special thanks to our dentists, Emily Day, DDS and Nader Rastgoftar, DDS, for providing top notch patient care!


National Doctor’s Day, March 30

National Doctor’s Day is celebrated on March 30 each year in the United States to honor physicians for the work they do for their patients, in their communities and for society.

  • There are over a million physicians in the United States.
  • The education and training of physicians typically includes four years of college, four years of medical school, three to five years of residency training in the chosen specialty and one to three years of additional training for sub-specialists.
  • There are two different but equivalent degrees doctors can earn: Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO).
  • The training years are difficult with long work hours of often 80 hours per week, low pay and many overnight shifts in the hospital. In addition, the highest levels of professionalism, conduct and ethics are expected of doctors.
  • Areas of practice include the primary care specialties such as family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. Other specialties include surgery, obstetrics and gynecology and psychiatry. There are well over 100 specialties and sub-specialties in the United States.
  • The specialty that sees the most patients during office visits is family medicine.

Thank you to our HPC physicians, Emily M. Bush, MD, Hibba A. Haider, MD, Kare Lyche, MD, Ahmed Maher, MD, Wael S. Mourad, MD, MHCM, FAAFP, and Noriko Okahara, DO, MPH, for their hard work and dedication to the clinic. We appreciate all that you do to support and serve our patients.

Employee Spotlight: Alicia Jiminez, Medical Assistant

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Employee Spotlight: Alicia JiminezName: Alicia Jimenez

Department: Medical

Title: Medical Assistant

Primary work location: Olathe

How long have you worked at HPC?  

It will be a year in February.

How did you get into your field of work?

I wanted to help guide people to better their health.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?

Yes, Spanish.

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?

“Life moves pretty fast, if you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” -Ferris Bueller

What values are important to you?

Alicia Jiminez with FamilyValues that are important to me are being considerate and trustworthy.

What is something about you that would surprise people?

I really dislike speaking in big groups of people. I did not like public speaking in college.

What is on your “bucket” list?

I would like to travel to Wales, United Kingdom.

What is your favorite food?

I like anything and everything. I’m always willing to try something new.

What is your favorite movie?

I don’t really have a favorite movie. I like comedies and action.

What is your favorite hobby?

I love to play soccer and do arts and crafts. I also love to spend time with my little family.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?

Yes, I am an animal lover. I have a six-year-old Pit named Cleo!

Employee Spotlight: Katie Hickman, Dental Assistant

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Katie HickmanName: Katie Hickman

Department: Dental

Title: Dental Assistant

Primary work location: Olathe

How long have you worked at HPC? Two years

How did you get into your field of work?

I have always been interested in teeth. It is a really rewarding job, and I get a chance to help people feel better about themselves.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?

Katie HickmanI unfortunately do not, but I know one word in Spanish, chicle which means gum!

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?

“When you focus on the good, the good increases.”

What values are important to you?

Values that are important to me are kindness, patience and empathy.

What is something about you that would surprise people?

My favorite gift in the world is an ice-cold Coca-Cola.

What is on your “bucket” list?

I want to go skydiving!

What is your favorite food?

Katie HickmanMy favorite food is salt and vinegar chips, but only the Miss Vickie’s brand.

What is your favorite movie?

“She’s the Man”

What is your favorite hobby?

I enjoy anything that involves me being able to hang out with my fiancé!

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?  

I am one of the biggest animal lovers! I have a five-pound Chihuahua Poodle named Jet. He is my whole world!

Employee Spotlight: Susan Wallace, Executive Assistant

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Susan Wallace FeaturedName:  Susan Wallace

Department: Administration

Title: Executive Assistant

Primary work locationOlathe

How long have you worked at HPC?  

I have been at HPC for four months.

How did you get into your field of work?

I have had a variety of administrative responsibilities since high school when I worked in a dental office. After that, I worked in manufacturing and at a chamber of commerce.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?

I don’t speak any other languages very well.

What values are important to you?

I think it is important to volunteer your time and talents. I’ve enjoyed mentoring students in the Olathe School District for the past five years.

What is something about you that would surprise people?

I’m a green belt in Tae Kwon Do.

What is on your “bucket” list?

I want to take my husband Kevin to the UK and show him the sights.

What is your favorite food?

My favorite food is Mexican food.

What is your favorite movie?

“Christmas Vacation” Chevy Chase is so funny!

Susan Wallace - Sporting KCWhat is your favorite hobby?

I enjoy watching professional soccer matches, especially Sporting KC. I am also a huge Mahomes fan, so I like to watch the Chiefs now too.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?

Yes! We are empty-nesters so my husband and I rescued two small fuzzy dogs. Bailey is about six years old and Max is about two years old.

Employee Spotlight: Mayra Bocanegra, PSR Lead

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Mayra BocanegraName:  Mayra Bocanegra

Department: Patient Services

Title: PSR Lead

Primary work location: Olathe

How long have you worked at HPC?
I have worked at HPC for one year and three months.

How did you get into your field of work?
I wanted to be a nurse when I was young, but I decided to stay in administrative health care.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?
Yes, I speak Spanish.

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?
“Live life to the fullest and make a difference along the way.”

What values are important to you?
Values that are important to me are God, family, respect, kindness and gratitude.

What is something about you that would surprise people?
Nothing!

Mayra BocanegraWhat is on your “bucket” list?
I don’t have one.

What is your favorite food?
My favorite food is Chinese.

What is your favorite movie?
“The Notebook”

What is your favorite hobby?
My favorite hobby is cooking. I truly enjoy it.

Are you an animal lover?  If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?
No, I am not an animal lover.

Employee Spotlight: Diana Zamora, Financial Aid Coordinator

Employee Spotlight

We are very excited to highlight one of our most valuable assets, our employees! Each month, get to know the HPC team in a fun new way.

Diana ZamoraName: Diana Zamora

Department: Billing

Title: Financial Aid Coordinator

Primary work location: Olathe

How long have you worked at HPC?
One year.

How did you get into your field of work?
I always wanted to work in the medical field and change peoples lives in a positive way.

Do you speak any other languages? If yes, which ones?
Yes, I speak Spanish.

Do you have a favorite quote? If yes, what is it?
“Make your life a masterpiece; imagine no limitations on what you can be, have or do.” -Brian Tracy

What values are important to you?
Values that are important to me include family, honesty and personal growth.

Diana Zamora with her FamilyWhat is something about you that would surprise people?
I don’t know how to swim.

What is on your “bucket” list?
I would like to travel to Europe.

What is your favorite food?
My favorite foods are Mexican and Italian.

What is your favorite movie?
I don’t have a favorite movie, but I like action, romance and comedies.

What is your favorite hobby?
My favorite hobby is spending time with my daughters.

Are you an animal lover? If yes, how many pets do you have and what kind are they?
Yes, I am an animal lover. I have a Yorkie and four parakeets.