Meet Our Pediatric Surgical Team
At Alaska Pediatric Surgery we have a team to help your child and your family through the surgery process. This means that you may see one or many of us through the process of your visit to our clinic, the day of surgery, time in the hospital and follow up afterwards. That is a lot of opportunities to meet someone different! Please allow us to introduce ourselves and we look forward to meeting you along the journey.
J. Brent Roaten, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.C.S.
Dr. Brent Roaten is an experienced, board certified, Pediatric Surgeon. He specializes in general and thoracic surgery in neonates, infants, children and adolescents. Dr. Roaten is also available for prenatal consultation. He serves as the Primary Investigator for Surgery Children’s Oncology (COG) program.
Due to his commitment to Alaska and his leadership in the Pediatric Surgery community, his time is in very high demand. When he finds time away from children’s health, he is engaged in technical mountaineering and conservation efforts. He has logged many hours on some of Alaska’s greatest peaks. When at home, Dr. Roaten is spending time with family, friends, and Murphy, his Irish Wolfhound.
Jennifer Bruny, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Jennifer Bruny, MD is a board certified pediatric surgeon who relocated to Anchorage in 2021. She grew up in Ohio as a Cleveland Browns fan and attended medical school at Case Western Reserve University. She moved to Colorado in search of the great outdoors. There she completed her general surgery and pediatric surgery training at University of Colorado, and then stayed on at Children’s Hospital of Colorado as a University of Colorado faculty member for 13 years. She was an Associate Professor of Surgery, Pediatric Surgery Fellowship Program Director, Director of Surgical Oncology, and chair of the Peri-Operative Services Quality and Safety committee.
After gaining a wealth of experience in pediatric surgical oncology and complex pediatric surgery, she took the opportunity to take her experience to a smaller community while also continuing her quest for outdoor adventure.
Kristi Davis, Chief Operating Officer
Kristi Davis was born and raised in Alaska. She has an extensive background in business development and operations. Kristi has her Master’s in Business Administration from The University of Alaska Anchorage and is active in the Alaska Medical Group Management Association.
Kristi is passionate about bringing high-quality healthcare services to the children and families in her home state.
When Kristi is not working or volunteering, she enjoys running, camping, traveling and spending time with her family.
Elizabeth (Betsy) Taylor, PA-C
Betsy has a Masters in Physician Assistant Studies from A.T. Still University- Arizona School of Health Sciences. She has a professional background in Thoracic Surgery and Interventional Radiology. Betsy and Dr. Roaten have been working together since 2013.
When Betsy is not helping kids at work, she enjoys camping, hiking, curling and exploring Alaska with her husband, their two sons, two dogs and cat.
Sean Walsh, PA-C
Sean Walsh was born and raised in Alaska. He graduated from the University of Washington MEDEX Physician Assistant program in Anchorage, Alaska. Prior to PA school, he was a navy corpsman with 1st Battalion, 7th Marines.
He chose to work in pediatric surgery because of the unique challenges and rewards of working with children. While not at work, he enjoys hunting, fishing and spending time outdoors with friends, family and his two dogs.
Nate Smith, RN
Nate Smith was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona. He graduated from Northern Arizona University with a BSN in Nursing. Nate’s professional career in the medical field began at the age of 16 when he was working as a caregiver at an assisted living facility. Nate discovered he loved helping people and making a difference in their lives.
Nate’s nursing background includes pediatric and neonatal specialties. He chose pediatrics while in nursing school after getting to deliver a baby. His first nursing job was working in the NICU, but he often floated to pediatrics. He loved working pediatrics and landed a PICU fellowship in Alaska.
When Nate is not working, he enjoys fly fishing, rafting, golfing, and spending time with his wife and three wonderful children.
Shamaira Gray, MA
Shamaira Gray was born in Alaska and raised in Seattle. At the age of one, she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which is the most common childhood cancer. It occurs when a bone marrow cell develops errors in its DNA. After successfully going into remission over two decades ago, she graduated from Alaska Community College as a Medical Assistant in 2015. She has worked as an MA since then at a variety of clinics in Anchorage prior to joining Alaska Pediatric Surgery. She is continuing her degree at University of Alaska Anchorage to become an RN and plans to continue to work within the pediatric medical field.
When Shamaira is not working, she enjoys spending time with her son and her mother. She loves to shop, eat and enjoy life!
Jen Cudmore, Revenue Cycle Manager
Jen Cudmore grew up on the Columbia River Gorge in a tiny cabin in the woods – with no electricity. After earning a BA in Psychology, she started a family and left the Pacific Northwest for Alaska. She has been a resident of Anchorage for over 20 years and worked in various medical clinics. After 17 years in medical billing for orthopedics, she is thrilled to expand her knowledge with new specialties, and is currently working toward her CMPE certification.
Her hobbies include reading, writing, traveling, watching sunrises, and taking photos of family. She believes her greatest accomplishment (so far!) is her two adult children.
Shayna Syverson, Receptionist
Shayna Syverson was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska. When Shayna was 17, she moved to Texas, but within months she moved back home to Alaska because she missed the mountains and the landscapes. Shayna worked at a local, family-owned restaurant for over 10 years before deciding she wanted to pursue a career in the medical field. Prior to working in pediatrics, Shayna worked as a receptionist in pain management. She enjoys helping others and making someone’s day a little brighter.
When Shayna is not working, she enjoys spending time with her daughter, going on walks, listening to podcasts, reading, and watching movies.
- Dr. Roaten originally studied archaeology in college.
- In high school, Jen was ASB president and the mascot at sports events (cougar).
- Sean has ridden the World’s Longest Outdoor Escalator in Hong Kong. He did not get a t-shirt and regrets it to this day.
- When Nate was fishing in a river, a bear started walking towards him at the same time he hooked a fish. Nate panicked and broke the fishing line while trying to get to the other side of the river.
- Shayna has two cats, two snakes, and a fish.
- Shamaira fell on the treadmill in front of the whole gym.
- Betsy was once chased by a yearling moose in the Providence hospital parking lot.
- Sean had nine dogs growing up.
- Dr. Roaten attempted a climb of Denali, but was weathered out right before he reached the top.
- Betsy dropped calculus in high school. She promptly looked for something to do with her life unrelated to math.
- Nate broke his collarbone in high school attempting to be like Evel Knievel on a dirtbike.
- Shayna fell from her third-story balcony and did not break or fracture anything.
- Shamaira has only been fishing one time.
- Jen once visited Australia, where she fed kangaroos, pet a purring cheetah, walked with a Sumatra tiger, and cuddled a sweet koala.
- Sean played baseball as a kid and only got on base when struck with the ball.
- Betsy played rugby in college.
- Several years ago, Jen published a couple historical fiction novels and some short stories.
- Nate saved his father-in-law’s dog from being scooped up by an eagle on a frozen lake.
- Shayna doesn’t like mayonnaise.