Regions Direct – Burn CenterHome > Regions Direct > Regions Direct – Burn Center > Our staff
We have a highly skilled team of burn surgeons, nurses, therapists and medical staff who are dedicated to advancing burn care, research and rehabilitation. Many staff members have more than 20 years of experience caring for patients with burn injuries.
Lynn D. Solem, MD
Lynn D. Solem, MD, has served as a burn and trauma staff surgeon at the hospital since 1977. In 1980, he was promoted to director of The Burn Center, a position he held until 2004. He is a nationally recognized burn physician, involved in burn care and active in research, publishing and speaking. Dr. Solem is a member of the American Burn Association, the Minnesota Surgical Society, the American College of Surgeons, the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma and the Wound Healing Society. He has been active in the American Burn Center and is currently Program Committee Chair for the American Burn Association.
David H. Ahrenholz, MD
Dr. Ahrenholz is the associate director of The Burn Center at Regions Hospital. He graduated from the University of Iowa Medical School in 1974 (AOA, 1973). From 1974 to 1982, he completed his general surgical residency at the University of Minnesota Hospital and Clinics, including three years studying surgical infections with Dr. Richard Simmons. He joined Dr. Solem at The Burn Center in 1982. Dr. Ahrenholz is board-certified in general surgery and is a member of numerous professional organizations including the American Burn Association, Surgical Infection Society, American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Central Surgical Society and is past president of the Minnesota Surgical Society. He has co-authored three dozen book chapters and scientific papers, mostly related to burns and surgical infections. His current interests include understanding the mechanisms of thermal and electrical injuries and their prevention.
William J. Mohr III, MD
Dr. Mohr, the medical director of Regions Hospital Burn Center, has been involved in caring for burn patients since 1996. He attended medical school and completed a surgical residency at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He has also completed fellowships in trauma surgery at Regions Hospital and burn surgery at the University of Nebraska Medical Center–Clarkson Burn Center in Omaha. Prior to joining the Regions Hospital Burn Center in 2001, Dr. Mohr was the Assistant Director of burn centers in Colorado and Nebraska. He is board-certified in general surgery and is a member of the American Burn Association. His academic interests include using computers in patient care and resident education. His personal interests are his family and sports.
Candyce Kuehn, RN, BAN
Candyce Kuehn is The Burn Center nurse manager. She is responsible for day-to-day patient care including operations, budgeting and staffing of inpatient and outpatient care. She graduated from Mounds–Midway School of Nursing and received her bachelor’s degree from Metropolitan State University. Candyce has been with The Burn Center since 1976. She was a staff nurse and clinical educator prior to her promotion to nurse manger in 1982. She has been active in fire prevention and education, including educating first responders, emergency and inpatient personnel. Candyce is a certified ABLS instructor and helps develop these educational programs.
Candyce, a member of the American Burn Association (ABA), has authored and co-authored many scientific abstracts, moderated continuing education sessions and has been active on several ABA committees. Candyce has also authored papers in the Journal of Burn Care and Rehabilitation and Critical Care Nursing Clinics of North America and in Trauma Quarterly. Currently, Ms. Kuehn is associate program chair for the ABA.
Robert Nelson, PhD
Dr. Robert Nelson is a biomedical scientist in the Surgical Research Laboratory. Before joining Regions Hospital, he spent 25 years in the Departments of Surgery and Dermatology at the University of Minnesota where he conducted research related to physiological and drug-related mechanisms that suppress functions of white blood cells. His research is focused on solving two problems related to the healing of burn wounds: itch that is not fully controlled by antihistamine drugs and hypertrophic scarring. His working hypothesis is that both of these problems can be traced to cells that migrate into the healing wound tissue where they are activated to release agents that stimulate nerve and skin cells. His research tools include a confocal microscope that produces a three-dimensional image of cells in biopsy tissue that have been stained with fluorescent dyes and a flow cytometer that allows him to measure numbers of molecules on the surface of individual cells grown in tissue culture. Learning which cells contribute to itching and scarring will allow him to test novel therapies to eliminate these problems for the burn patient.
Chris Gilyard, MA
Chris Gilyard is the Burn Survivor Peer Support representative for The Burn Center. She supports burn survivors in the adjustment and recovery process they go through after experiencing a severe burn injury.
Chris was a burn patient in the Burn Center 22 years ago, as the result of a car collision explosion. She spent two months in The Burn Center. As part of her recovery, Chris was required to wear a transparent face mask to minimize facial scarring. She wore the mask for a total of two years.
Since her burn experience, Chris received her Master’s degree and has done various work with The Burn Center. She has been a featured speaker for the Minnesota Burn Care Conference, appeared on television’s PM MAGAZINE promoting the transparent facemask, and represented the Burn Center at the Science Museum of Minnesota exhibit. Chris also does motivational and educational speaking, utilizing her burn experience to promote health and wellness and patient-centered health care.
Today Chris is married, raising two boys and spending her free time on their small farm in rural Minnesota. Her work in The Burn Center, supporting and encouraging patients and families, is a reflection of the quality care she received during her own recovery. It is her hope that her experience and investment will make a difference for others experiencing a burn trauma.
Beth Franzen, OTR/L
Beth Franzen is the Burn Rehabilitation manager. Her responsibilities include leadership and management of the Burn Rehabilitation team and she is also involved in direct patient treatment. Beth graduated from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks. She worked in rehabilitation and hand therapy for four years before joining The Burn Center in 1985.
Beth has presented lectures on many topics at the Regions Hospital annual burn seminar as well as at American Burn Association (ABA) meetings during the past 15 years. She has chaired the OT/PT Special Interest Group for the ABA. Beth is also involved in educating occupational and physical therapy students from the University of Minnesota in burn therapy.
Jody Rood, RN, BSN, PHN
Jody is a nurse clinician for The Burn Center. She implements patients’ plan of care during their entire hospital stay and continues to be a resource from the transition phase into the outpatient setting. She assists in coordinating discharge planning, home care referrals and tele-medicine follow-up visits. Jody serves as the nurse in the outpatient Burn and Wound Clinic four afternoons a week.
Jody graduated from Mounds–Midway School of Nursing in 1979 and later completed her Bachelor’s degree in nursing from Bethel College. She is a registered public health nurse. Jody is a member of the Sigma Theta Tau Nursing Society, Wound Ostomy Continence Nursing Association and the American Burn Association. She has special interest in the areas of burn, wound care, trauma and nephrology nursing.
Mary Hilgers, RN, BS
Mary Hilgers has been a burn nurse for 25 years. She has worked in a number of different capacities in The Burn Center and currently is The Burn Center’s Assistant Nurse Manager.
Mary graduated from St. Mary’s Junior College with an Associate degree in Nursing and from the College of St. Francis with a Bachelor’s degree in Health Arts. She is an Advanced Burn Life Support instructor and provides burn education to medical personnel.
Mary is responsible for coordinating orientation of new staff, ongoing staff development and burn prevention educational activities. Mary is interested in preventing burn injuries and is involved in the planning of community safety camps, juvenile fire-setter programs and other community safety events. She also assists families with questions or concerns about juvenile fire-setting.
Connie has been a clinical psychologist for 25 years, with professional experiences including teaching, research and private practice. She has worked as a psychologist on the burn unit for six years. Her expertise in acute stress disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder is helpful to our inpatient population and in our outpatient clinic follow-up. She is a developmental specialist, so she helps families understand how children, adolescents, adults and even the elderly deal differently with their burn injury. She also assesses post-trauma adjustment in the patients through our tele-medicine program. She is the psychologist on a hospital-based chronic pain team using biofeedback and hypnotherapy to help patients manage acute and chronic pain. She has recently been focusing on long-term psychological and physiological adjustment to low-voltage electrical injury.
Teresa Evans, LICSW
Teresa Evans is the clinical social worker at Regions Hospital Burn Center. She assists families and patients with everything from crisis counseling to discharge planning. She also helps families by providing information and resources available to them in their community. Ms. Evans is available at the outpatient burn clinic to follow up with patients and families on continuing psychosocial needs.
Ms. Evans has worked at Regions Hospital for nine years. She has been part of The Burn Center for the past four years. She holds a Master’s degree in social work and is licensed as a clinical social worker.
Nina Ames is The Burn Center service representative where she is a customer service advocate. Nina is the first person you will see when entering The Burn Center, welcoming and assisting all.
Nina graduated from the College of St. Catherine with a music degree and is an accomplished cellist who teaches and performs. Her main interests are doing domestic and foreign missionary work.
At Regions Hospital, Nina is involved with The Burn Foundation, Staff Link, ABOP (Administrative Professional Network) and the Student Job Shadowing Program.
Nina’s warm and caring attitude helps patients and families endure the trauma of a burn experience.