Doctors & Staff

Dr Balta

Dr. Ofelia Balta, MD

Dr. Balta is a double board certified physician in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics.  Dr. Balta earned her medical degree from the UMF Iassy, Romania.  She completed her training in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at Yale University – Bridgeport Hospital, Bridgeport, CT, after earning her Internal Medicine certificate in Romania. She worked as an assistant clinical professor in Romania before she decided to achieve the highest medical training in Internal Medicine in the United States.  Dr. Balta is an active member of the American Medical Association and American Academy of Pediatrics since 2000.  Dr. Balta lives in Sylva with her daughter Ana Maria, her husband Martin, and her father Leon.  She considers herself privileged to practice medicine in a small community and able to offer high quality medical care.


Dr WolfDr. Thomas Wolf, MD

Board Certified, Dr. Wolf did his undergraduate training at University of California at Riverside where he received a Bachelor of Science in Biology.  Afterwards he had the opportunity to go to medical school at St. George’s University which allowed him to do rotations in diverse places such as New York City and even the UK.  His medical training was completed at State University of New York, Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY.  After finishing in upstate New York, Dr. Wolf decided to move south to escape the long, snowy winters.  While visiting Sylva during an interview, he noticed a sense of community and friendliness and chose to make Sylva his home.  He has been practicing here since 2002.  Travelling has always been a passion of Dr. Wolf’s.  Recently he went to Panama on a medical mission trip.  He also enjoys the outdoors and takes opportunities to hike.


emily-fncEmily H. Shuler FNP-C

In 2003, Emily graduated from Western Carolina University with her Bachelors in Nursing Degree. She then worked at a local skilled nursing facility as the Director of Nursing before returning back to Western Carolina University in 2004 to pursue her MSN, FNP degree completed in 2007. While in her masters program of study, Emily worked as a registered nurse at now MedWest Harris hospital and completed many of her clinical training hours for her masters program here at WNC Internal Medicine. Emily has special interest and enjoys caring for the people of this community and surrounding communities as she is a native of Jackson County. She currently is also providing primary care to many of the local skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities in the Western North Carolina area with a focus on compassionate adult and geriatric care. Emily currently lives in Webster with her twin sons and her husband Dustin.


cheryl-2014Cheryl Owen, FNP

I graduated from WCU in 2004 with a MSN, FNP-BC degree. My nursing career began in 1982, working at CJ Harris Hospital/Harris Regional/Medwest Harris in the ER.

I am a native of Jackson County, and am committed to providing primary care services to my community
and the surrounding counties.

I live in Cashiers with my husband, Donnie. We enjoy camping, just sitting by the fire and listening to the sounds of outdoors. I love the beach and visit any time I can.


Margaret Tolley, FNP

Margaret Tolley, family nurse practitioner, has joined the practice of WNC Internal Medicine in Sylva, North Carolina. She has forty-five years of nursing experience in which twenty have been as a nurse practitioner. She received her nursing degree from Watts Hospital School of Nursing. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Western Carolina University with a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing. She received her Master’s degree in Nursing and Nurse Practitioner degree from the University of Tennessee Knoxville. She has over twenty years experience in emergency and urgent care. She has had her own private practice, providing primary care for all ages. She has had several years experience in women’s health, gastroenterology, and community care. She is nationally certified to do commercial driver’s license exams. She lives near Cherokee with her cats and husband of forty-four years. She enjoys reading, hiking and spending time with family and friends. She is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call (828) 586-7798.