Radiation Oncology

Ernest Hymel,MD,PhD,MBA
Board Certified
Radiation Oncology

Danny Chow, MD
Board Certified
Radiation Oncology

Chisa Echendu, MD,PhD
Radiation Oncology

Medical Oncology

Harry Smith, MD
Board Certified
Medical Oncology

Sohail Akbani, MD
Board Certified
Medical Oncology

Tahir Naqvi,MD,MBA
Board Certified
Hematology/Oncology

Muhammad Asim Khalil, MD
Board Certified
Hematology/Oncology

Nurse Practicioners

Ashley Humphreys, AGACNP-BC
Board Certified
Adult Gerontology Acute Care

Amanda Huang, APRN, FNP-BC
Board Certified
Family Nurse Practitioner

Falon Richard, NP-C
Board Certified
Family Nurse Practitioner

Brooke Manuel, FNP-C
Board Certified
Family Nurse Practitioner

Get in Touch With Us

We're ready to help with any questions you might have.

Our dedicated team works together to develop individualized treatment plans
designed to address each patient’s specific healthcare needs. Baptist Cancer 
Network is able to provide the most comprehensive treatment program for
patients because of its diverse team of professionals.

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Our Locations

Cancer Center of Southeast Texas​​

Cancer Center of Southeast Texas​

8333 9th Avenue
Port Arthur
409-729-8088

Altus Cancer Center

Altus Cancer Center

310 N. 11 Street
Beaumont
409-981-5510

Julie & Ben Rogers Cancer Institute

Julie & Ben Rogers Cancer Institute

3555 Stagg Drive
Beaumont
409-212-5922

Dauphin Women's Center

740 Hospital Drive, Suite 140
Beaumont 77701
(409) 212-7950

Cancer Center of Southeast Texas

Altus Cancer Center

Julie & Ben Rogers Cancer Institute

Ernest Hymel, MD,PhD,MBA​

Ernest Hymel, MD, PhD, MBA

Board Certified
Radiation Oncology

Dr. Ernest Hymel is a Radiation Oncologist with the Baptist Cancer Network at Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas. He serves as the Chief Medical Officer for the Oncology Program as well as the President of the Medical Staff at Baptist Hospital.

Dr. Hymel completed his Radiation Oncology training at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill in 2005 before moving to Beaumont with his wife, Amy. Despite his administrative duties, Dr. Hymel’s favorite place to be is in the clinic where he has the privilege of working with patients during a difficult time in their lives. His approach to patient care is simple… for every patient he asks himself, “what would I recommend to my wife, or my dad, or my best friend?” As part of his commitment to maintaining high quality care to the community, Dr. Hymel has led the Baptist Cancer Network to maintain accreditation with the Commission On Cancer (COC) and National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC), and has recently added accreditation of the Radiation Oncology Program with ASTRO Accreditation Program for Excellence (APEx).

When not in clinic, Dr. Hymel and his wife work in animal rescue, from dogs to cats and even donkeys!

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Andrew Goolsby

Staff Chaplain

Andrew Goolsby is a staff Chaplain at Baptist Hospital, where he helps patients and their families to connect with the spiritual resources they need while undergoing tests, treatment, and follow-up care within the Baptist Cancer Network. He actively engages patients and family members by providing a listening ear as they express their challenges, uncertainties and concerns. He also helps patients to execute advanced directives.

Andrew met the requirements to become a healthcare chaplain before working at Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas. After completing his Undergraduate degree at Lamar University and his Master’s degree at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, he continued his training by finishing a year of residency in Clinical Pastoral Education in Austin, Texas. As a resident Chaplain, he served in the Ascension Seton system of hospitals. While there, he provided pastoral care for the patients on the COVID, Medical-Surgical and Oncology floors of the hospital, along with seeing patients in the outpatient Cardiac Rehabilitation Clinic.  Within the Baptist Cancer Network, Andrew journeys with patients as they cope with the spiritual and emotional milestones that come up along the way. He is there daily to provide a loving presence as they endure the rigors of cancer treatments.

Andrew grew up in Southeast Texas, which provides him a connection to the people in the area. He is married to Lauren and they have a son named Theodore. Andrew enjoys watching his favorite sports teams: The University of Alabama athletics and the Manchester United Football Club (an English soccer team). He is also a movies enthusiast and loves to listen to a wide range of music, especially the films and songs that make him feel nostalgic.  Andrew also enjoys laughter and is a firm believer that you can’t take yourself too seriously.

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Telice Terro (RN)

Oncology Certified

Telice Terro is an Oncology Certified Registered Nurse. She has 21 years of experience in nursing with nearly all 21 years dedicated to oncology care and 8 of those years working in research. She is also certified in Chemotherapy/Biotherapy Administration. She is the Clinical Research Manager at the Baptist Cancer Center and on the main campus of Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas, which means that she is responsible for clinical research involving patients. In this role her job is to educate patients and staff on available research opportunities at our facility, as well as ensuring clinical research studies are carried out within regulatory compliance and advocating for the rights and welfare of patients interested and enrolled in studies at our facility. 

Telice is passionate about her role of connecting patients to research opportunities with the goal to improve healthcare outcomes. She feels this role is important and necessary to healthcare to gain necessary knowledge to help treat patients now and in the future. It is important for patients interested and enrolled in studies to know their decision to participate is their decision and 100% voluntary throughout the entire study. 

Telice entered nursing school with the desire to work in the field of oncology. Although she did not have a cancer diagnosis, she was a patient at MD Anderson for 10 years from the age of 8 to 18. This experience, along with having several family members having a cancer diagnosis, showed her what her purpose was. Immediately after graduating nursing school, she was able to work in inpatient in oncology, followed by outpatient cancer care, oncology screening, then research. Her current role in research was encouraged by the medical oncologists where she began her work as a research nurse/clinical research coordinator. She enjoys working in research – most importantly to make the patients feel comfortable with their decisions to participate in studies and to be able to offer data to research sponsors with the goal of improving healthcare. 

Outside of work Telice is the mother of a 10-year-old who keeps her busy with dance and basketball. She volunteers with her church, working as the church nurse for kid’s summer camp. She has always had a passion for running, but mostly recently her busy schedule has thwarted her efforts. However, she is looking forward to enjoying that hobby again, as she has joined her church’s running group, “Be Fit for Him”.

You can reach Telice at telice.terro@bhset.net.

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Charlotte Potter, BSN, RN

Medical Oncology Navigator

Charlotte Potter is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston.  She has 26 years of nursing experience, 20 of those in critical care.  She is currently the Medical Oncology Navigator at the Baptist Cancer Network.

Charlotte has always enjoyed nursing and helping people.  As a Medical Oncology Navigator, she is able to combine her experience with her passion, guiding and helping patients through the cancer treatment process. She also assesses patient needs such as transportation, financial obligations, and home care, and provides patients with education regarding diagnosis, treatment plan and survivorship.  She serves as a point of contact for patients, family members and other members of the health care team.  

Charlotte enjoys cooking and spending time with her family.  She has been happily married for 26 years, is a mother of 5, and grandmother to one precious baby – so far.  She is also a very active member of her church.

You can reach Charlotte at charlottee.potter@bhset.net.

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Bethany Siow, MS,
RDN, CSO, LD

Board Certified in
Oncology Nutrition

Bethany Siow is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist at the Baptist Cancer Network with a Board Certification in Oncology Nutrition.  As part of the care team, Bethany works empathetically with patients as they progress through the cancer diagnosis journey.  To help patients cope with treatment(s) and potential side-effects, she provides detailed medical nutrition therapy, which includes diet recommendations, management of enteral and parenteral nutrition, monitoring for dehydration, vitamin, and mineral deficiencies, and ordering nutrition-related labs when necessary.  Beyond the hospital visit, she equips her patients with education on appropriate supplements, along with resources on healing nutrition.  

Bethany ventured into oncology nutrition after completing her master’s degree and dietetic internship and has served in the field for over 3 years.  She witnessed firsthand how nutrition positively influences a patient’s tolerance to treatment, betterment of the quality of life, and recovery.  “I call nutrition the side-kick to any cancer therapy.  Without proper nutrition, the superhero cannot effectively do its job,” Bethany said.

Bethany wants to make people know and feel that they are loved.  She finds enjoyment in cooking and sharing meals with people at her home, encouraging others to pursue a healthy and active lifestyle, leading and participating in church small groups, and is in the process of learning Mandarin to communicate better with her husband’s Malaysian Chinese family.

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Aimee Smith

Patient Enrichment Coordinator

Aimee Smith is the Patient Enrichment Coordinator and founder of the “Being Beautiful” program located in the Reflections Room at the BCN Julie and Ben Rogers Cancer Institute. Aimee has created a warm, loving place for patients to receive resources they will need to help guide them through their journey with cancer. 

Aimee has dedicated 16 years to creating a colorful, happy, and unique experience for our patients and staff. From displaying beautiful holiday décor and seasonal window art to creating holiday parties, special treats, crafting activities and a Sacred Circle Support Group, Aimee puts our patients’ comfort and emotional support at the heart of all we do. She is an active participant in the annual American Cancer Society “Relay For Life”, where she has served as a committee member and as Team Captain. She is actively involved with the American Cancer Society Cattle Baron’s Ball and participates in a variety of education and fundraising events for cancer. She is a recipient of the Baptist Way Award and enjoys spending quality time getting to know her patients, as she considers them an extension of her own family. 

“I want all patients and their loved ones to feel like family. My goal is to help guide them through their cancer journey and to help them overcome their fears and anxieties whether big or small. I try always to lift them with hope and prayer, and to show them true compassion and love,” Aimee said.   

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Loreal Irvine, RN

Breast Nurse Navigator/
Genetics Coordinator

Loreal Irvine is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing and a certificate in Surgical Technology. She has been working toward her Masters Degree in Nursing Education and certification as a Breast Patient Navigator. Loreal has 18 years of experience in nursing, primarily as an Emergency Room nurse, and has recently transitioned to Dauphin Women’s Imaging Center as the Nurse Navigator and Genetics Coordinator. 

There she provides individualized assistance to patients, families, and caregivers to help them overcome health care system barriers and facilitates timely access to quality health and psychosocial care throughout all phases of the breast cancer experience. She will welcome you with a smile and ensure you are comfortable during your visits as well as provide education about the care process at the Baptist Cancer Network. 

Outside of work, Loreal loves the outdoors: traveling, scuba diving, and collecting sea glass off beaches. She loves spending time with her two grandbabies and children as well. 

Michele Chaisson, RN, OCN​

Michele Chaisson, RN, OCN

Clinical Manager

Michele Chaisson, RN, OCN is the Clinical Manager at the Baptist Cancer Network, where she leads, develops and coordinates clinical staff. Together with the clinical management team, Michele manages an educated, dedicated and compassionate staff who care for cancer patients and patients with blood disorders. She also serves on the Cancer Committee as the Quality Coordinator, where she and the team conduct studies to improve the quality of care provided to BCN patients. 

Michele has been an Oncology Certified Nurse since 1999 and has used her knowledge to work in many areas of Oncology including chemotherapy administration, patient and community education, clinic nursing and quality nursing. She maintains her Chemotherapy/Biotherapy provider card which enables her to administer chemotherapy and biotherapy drugs. She has attended and worked many health fairs in the community in effort to promote Oncology screenings and patient awareness of cancer prevention. She has educated youth on tobacco awareness with Ben’s Kids summer youth camp 2 years in a row, among other distinctions in the field. Michele helps guide oncology patients through their cancer journey by providing an environment of care that is safe and efficient, while exhibiting a commitment to caring for the patients in our facilities. 

Michele also loves to spend time with her husband and 5 children. She enjoys participating in church functions, reading, shopping, and decorating in her spare time. She loves nature and traveling to the beach or mountains to appreciate the beauty of life. 

To reach Michele, please send email to Michele.chaisson@bhset.net.

Matthew Knowles, RT(R)(T)​

Matthew Knowles, RT(R)(T)

Director Radiation Therapy

My name is Matthew Knowles, and I am the Regional Director of Radiation Therapy with the Baptist Cancer Network. I started my career in healthcare in 1999 when I attended the Baptist Hospital School of Radiological Sciences program. After graduating, I gained interest in Radiation Therapy and attended The University of Texas MD Anderson Radiation therapy program. Upon completion of my studies there, I stayed and worked at MD Anderson for a year before returning to Baptist Hospital in 2003. Baptist has always been a home to me, and I have enjoyed being able to serve patients right here in my community.

Patient care is my number one priority, and the most effective way I can do that is to ensure our patients have the best possible experience while undergoing radiation therapy. I try to instill empathy and compassion into all of my employees, who in turn touch the lives of our patients every day.

When not working, I enjoy wood working, fishing and hunting and of course, family time. 

Please email me at matthew.knowles@bhset.net or reach me by phone at 409-981-5510. 

Michelle Esclovon, MS, RN, OCN​

Michelle Esclovon, MS, RN, OCN

Oncology Informatics
Nurse Specialist

Michelle Esclovon is a Registered Nurse with a Masters Degree and an Oncology Certification. She has 14 years of experience in nursing, 13 of those in Oncology, where she is also certified in Chemotherapy/Biotherapy Administration. She is the Informatics Nurse at the Baptist Cancer Network, which means that she incorporates nursing, computer, and information sciences to maintain and develop medical data and systems to support the practice of nursing and to improve patient care outcomes. 

Michelle is passionate about her role in delivering crucial information that helps the nursing team care for patients safely. She feels that the contribution of nurse informaticists in developing and improving technology such as electronic medical records and computerized provider ordering has been critical in reducing medical errors, delays in patient care, and health care costs. She happened upon this field when it was a new concept, and she had the most experience with the applications at the time. Now she enjoys using data analytics to see how we can improve our program, as well as the care our patients receive. 

Outside of work, Michelle has turned a photography pastime into an award-winning hobby. She received Best in Show at the Silsbee Ice House Museum for her photographic entry, and she was commissioned by the Sabine County Hospital to supply her photographs, which now hang the walls of the entire facility. Her favorite subject is the Big Thicket with its great biodiversity. 

You can reach Michelle at Michelle.Esclovon@bhset.net.

Gay-Lynne Jones, RN​

Gay-Lynne Jones, RN

Regional Director
Baptist Cancer Network
Beaumont ● Port Arthur

Gay-Lynne Jones is the Regional Director of the Baptist Cancer Network. The Baptist Cancer Network (BCN) is comprised of three campuses – the BCN Julie and Ben Rogers campus (Beaumont), BCN Altus Cancer Center (Beaumont) and the BCN Cancer Center of Southeast Texas (Port Arthur). Gay-Lynne has more than 30 years of experience in oncology services and an outstanding reputation among local and national cancer organizations. Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, she moved to Beaumont at the age of 20 to pursue a career in nursing and has since developed an exceptional career in healthcare. Her volunteerism and leadership efforts in Southeast Texas have been recognized as exemplary, and she has been the recipient of the following awards:

  • American Cancer Society Lane W. Adams National Quality of Life Award
  • Inaugural Inductee into the American Cancer Society High Plains Division Relay For Life Hall of Fame
  • American Cancer Society St. George National Award Medal
  • Julie Rogers Gift of Life Volunteer of the Year Award
  • American Cancer Society Volunteer Lifetime Achievement Award

Gay-Lynne continues to volunteer for the American Cancer Society locally and regionally. She participates with Relay For Life, Making Strides Against Breast Cancer and the Cattle Baron’s Ball events.

Gay-Lynne is excited about the services that the Baptist Cancer Network can provide locally to the Southeast Texas community, hoping to keep cancer care closest to patients’ family and friends. She is very passionate about the care provided being patient centric. She believes that having a cancer diagnosis is life-altering and that the patient journey should be a positive experience.  Being the only local accredited facility by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer means that cancer care is taken to another level and the care is delivered is through a holistic approach that looks after the mind, body and spirit.

What is a Clinical Trial?

Current trials open at Baptist Cancer Network:

A191901 (GET SET)-Optimizing Endocrine Therapy Through Motivational Interviewing and Text Interventions (GET SET stands for Guiding Endocrine Therapy Success through Empowerment and Technology): Research opportunity for women who take medicine to help keep breast cancer from coming back. The medicines are endocrine therapies and include Tamoxifen or Arimidex. Women enrolled in this study will receive either text message motivation, counselor motivation, text and counselor motivation, or standard of care.

SER-ISD1-001-A Phase 1b Study of Serabelisib in Combination With an Insulin Suppressing Diet (Study ISD) and With or Without Nab-paclitaxel in Adult Subjects With Advanced Solid Tumors With PIK3CA Mutations With or Without PTEN Loss. This study will evaluate the feasibility of optimizing the safety and tolerability of serabelisib (an investigational PI3K inhibitor) when combined with an ISD and with or without nab-paclitaxel with a goal of reducing side effects and enhancing anticancer activity.

NEAAR-001-Prospective, Single Arm Medical Food Study to Evaluate a Standardized Nonessential Amino Acid Restriction (NEAAR) Medical Food for the Dietary Management of Advanced/Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer. This is a single arm study evaluating the tolerability and markers of pancreatic cancer with a specially designed medical food restricted in specific amino acids for the dietary management of subjects with locally advanced and unresectable or metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Subjects who are eligible to receive two FDA approved first line drug therapies, gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel (gem+nabP), routinely prescribed in combination for pancreatic cancer may be included in this study.

Boston II Study-Diagnostic performance of small RNA blood test in patients undergoing follow-up imaging after positive low dose CT screening for cancer of the lung “Early Detection of Lung Cancer based on small RNA signatures – Boston II”. The study is a prospective, longitudinal, observational study to evaluate the performance of a novel diagnostic test for early-stage lung cancer. Study duration: Expected patient enrollment to be completed within 12 months after study initiation. Patients will be followed for a minimum of 12 months from the date of enrollment. The study duration is approximately 2 years. Participant duration: The day of blood collection. Participants will follow their regular standard of care schedule as recommended by existing guidelines; no extra visits are planned. Follow up data will be obtained from the electronic medical record within at least 12 months of follow-up period.

ICARE-Registry-Inherited CAncer REgistry (ICARE) Initiative: Registry opportunity through Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center for individuals with a personal and/or family history of cancer.

To learn more about these studies, you can find the protocols at https://clinicaltrials.gov/ or you may contact Research Coordinator Telice Terro at 409-212-5979 or telice.terro@bhset.net

Research Team

Investigators:

  • Ernest Hymel, MD, PhD, MBA (Radiation Oncology)
  • Sohail Akbani, MD (Medical Oncology/Hematology)
  • Tahir Naqvi, MD, MBA (Medical Oncology/Hematology)
  • Harry Smith, MD (Medical Oncology/Hematology)

Research Staff:

  • Telice Terro, RN, OCN (Clinical Research Manager)
  • Dr. Salah Tumsah (Clinical Research Specialist)
  • Samantha Blevins, RN (Clinical Research Coordinator)
  • Eisha Killian (Clinical Research Assistant)