Meet the Extivita RTP Team

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Edward di Girolamo, PE
Chief Executive Officer

Mr. di Girolamo has 40 years of experience in building design, manufacturing, construction, demolition and structural analysis software development. His broad experience with structures includes nuclear plants, navy ships, bridges, and commercial and residential structures. To date, he is a named inventor on over twenty construction product patents. di Girolamo founded The Steel Network, Inc. (TSN), in 1994 and for the past 23 years has served as CEO. TSN designs and manufactures light gauge steel connections and structural products. In 2004, he formed Applied Science International, LLC (ASI) and serves as CEO. ASI provides protective design services and develops advanced software for the design and analysis of structures.   In 2016 di Girolamo founded Extivita, LLC a company focused on industrializing the hyperbaric oxygen industry to allow its widespread use by the public at large. In 2018, he served as the Executive Director of the International hyperbaric Medical Foundation (IHMF) and currently serves as a Board Member for Hyperbaric Medical International (HMI).

DR. JAMES STEVENS
Medical Director
MD, CAQSM, ABAARM, FAAFP

Dr. James “Jay” Stevens earned a Bachelor of Arts in Zoology from UNC-Chapel Hill and a Doctor of Medicine from East Carolina University School of Medicine. He completed a Family Practice Residency at the Fairfax Family Practice Program at the Medical College of Virginia and the first Sports Medicine Fellowship at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 1991. He is Board Certified in both Family Practice and Anti-aging Medicine. He also as a Certificate of Added Qualification in Sports Medicine. In 2003 he founded Carolina Family Practice & Sports Medicine with locations in Cary, Raleigh, and Holly Springs, NC. He has served as the Team Physician for the National Hockey League’s 2006 Stanley Cup Champion Carolina Hurricanes since their arrival in 1997. He serves as Company Physician for the Carolina Ballet as well.

In 2009, his commitment to helping his patients create healthy lifestyles for long-term wellness, along with his desire to provide the highest quality health care services, motivated Dr. Stevens to establish Essential Health & Wellness (EHW). EHW offers its patients a comprehensive health care service tailored around their busy schedules with the goal of optimizing their performance and longevity.

In 2018, he continued this commitment to long-term wellness of his patients by becoming the Medical Director at Extivita RTP, a hyperbaric oxygen therapy facility with two, twelve seat treatment chambers in the Research Triangle Park, Durham, NC.

Dr. Stevens is also a Fellow in both the American Academy of Anti-Aging and Regenerative Medicine and the American Academy of Family Practice. He is a member of the American Medical Society of Sports Medicine and Hyperbaric Medicine International.

Dr. Stevens lives in Cary, NC with his wife, Dr. Patience Stevens. They have three sons Eric, James, and Timothy. He is passionate about surfing, triathlon and almost any form of exercise.

DR. CARSON SHEARER
Medical Director
DO, FAAMFM

Dr. Shearer is originally from Martinsville, VA. He attained a bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences from James Madison University and received his medical education from Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

He completed an Internal Medicine Residency with University Hospitals Richmond Medical Center in Richmond Heights, OH followed by a Fellowship in Addiction Medicine through Larkin Community Hospital in South Miami, FL. Upon completion of his fellowship training, he served as a hospitalist for Mercy Hospital in Ardmore, OK and then as the Medical Director at the Good Shephard Community Clinic in Ardmore, OK.

He has completed a fellowship in Metabolic and Nutritional Medicine as well as a Weight Loss Certification through the Metabolic Medical Institute. He has also completed a certification in Peptide Therapy via the International Peptide Society headed by Dr. William Seeds. Dr. Shearer currently holds active board certifications with the American College of Osteopathic Internist, Obesity Medical Association, and American Board of Anti-Aging and Regenerative Medicine.

ELENA SCHERTZ, NP
Clinic Manager

Elena is from Southfield, MI but has lived in the Chapel Hill/Durham area for over 20 years. Elena attained her Bachelors of Science in Nursing from Michigan State University and received her Masters of Science in Nursing from Simmons University in Boston, MA. She also received a diploma in energy medicine from the Barbara Brennan School of Healing. She has been practicing integrative medicine since 2010 and is certified as a mindfulness practitioner. Elena is currently working on her certification in functional medicine from the Institute of Functional Medicine.

Elena worked as a nurse in the pediatric oncology, cardiac, and surgical units at UNC hospitals for 15 years before deciding to work in integrative medicine. After years of working as a nurse, she decided to pursue her graduate degree, completing her masters with honors. She is board certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Elena’s passion for integrative medicine comes from her knowledge that the mind, body and psych/social/spiritual systems are not separate. The focus of Elena’s practice is to approach each of her patient’s healing process from the perspective of the whole, supported and grounded in safety and evidence-based medicine. She also maintains close consultative relationships with experts in the field to promote and enhance wellness for her patients. Elena joined the wonderful Extivita team in March 2019 and is thrilled to be a part of advancing health and wellness through hyperbaric medicine.

Elena currently lives in Durham with her 3 teenage children and her dog. She loves to be active, bikes, runs, does yoga and spends as much time outdoors when she can.

JACKIE ROMERO, LPN
Assistant Clinic Manager

Jackie is originally from Westchester, NY, she has lived in the Raleigh/Durham area for over 5 years. Jackie received her nursing license from ECPI University in Greenville, SC. She has over 15 years of experience in medical/surgical units, labor and delivery, emergency room, phlebotomy, geriatrics, rehabilitation units, pediatric department and home health. In addition, Jackie also served as a combat medic in the Army for over 13 years.

Jackie joined the Extivita team in September 2018 as the Assistant Nurse Manager. She loves working in the health care field and plans to return to school in the future to earn her degree as a registered nurse.

She currently lives in Knightdale with here 3 kids and her dog, Rouge. She loves music of all genres and spending time outdoors. You will find her swinging in her hammock during her lunch breaks!

PAMELA WHITE
Medical Administrative Assistant

Pamela was born in Chapel Hill, NC but lived in New York for many years before landing back in the triangle area.  She received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Elizabeth City State University in Elizabeth City, NC.  She has more than 20+ years of medical, administrative, and customer service experience ranging from technical support inquiries to patients with serious and critical health issues.

Outside of working at Extivita, Pam is committed to the church and serves as moderator for the Comfort Zone Committee – ministry to assist women, children, and communities.  Pam also loves to go shopping with family and friends.

Pamela’s passion for helping others goes back to her pre-professional days, whether a volunteer member for Red Cross or a team member for the homeless shelter communities in New York and North Carolina.  Caring for others has been the core driving force of her life.

HUDSON SCHERTZ
Intern

Hudson Schertz is currently a senior at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC. He is majoring in Health and Exercise Science and minoring in Neuroscience, with the ultimate goal of getting a doctorate in physical therapy.

Hudson has always been interested in modern and innovative approaches to healing and wellness and has a strong passion for working hands-on with patients. In the past, he has worked as a wellness coach for pre-diabetic and diabetic individuals. Recently, Hudson interned at NextStep Paralysis Recovery Center, where he assisted lead trainers with the paralyzed patients’ rehabilitation programs.

As a resident intern at Extivita, Hudson wears several hats. He primarily reviews current research on the effects of HBOT on various diseases and partners with our nurse practitioner to create the website pages for each indication. Hudson also assists in marketing and assists with daily operations of our hyperbaric chambers. In his free time, Hudson enjoys playing sports such as basketball and soccer, painting, and also spends much of his time playing the piano and guitar.