Doctors & Leadership Team
Click on the names below to find out what motivated Senara’s doctors and our leaders to follow their calling to help others in their quest for optimal health and well-being. You’ll also read about their education and experience, and get to know them a little better on a personal level as you work with them in our wellness center. They’ve all got a story to tell that we think you’ll find interesting.
Dr. Keith Kramer grew up on his family’s farm in Iowa. He learned early on that business success takes a lot of hard work, when at the tender age of four he started helping with the chores. Throughout his youth, he rose before dawn each day and took hard work seriously, and today he remains an early riser and tenacious in getting things done.
He also credits his independent spirit to growing up on the farm. He thrived on being held personally accountable for finishing his chores. It also made him understand how fulfilling owning a family business can be, so it was only a matter of time, education and a clear purpose before he set out on his own.
While attending Iowa State University, where he met his wife, Penny, Dr. Kramer saw firsthand how chiropractic care helped people to feel better. With that, he had discovered his career path and continued on to Palmer College of Chiropractic, earning his Doctor of Chiropractic degree.
Following his graduation, the Kramers moved to Peoria after Dr. Kramer received an offer to join a highly respected chiropractic group here. In 2002, he left the group to open his own practice, Kramer Chiropractic. (Penny also joined him in the family business.)
While growing the practice, Dr. Kramer continued to focus on what he could do to help others Live Life Well. He kept learning everything he could about the healing power of holistic and natural medicines and techniques, which led to adding health and healing guest services, from acupuncture and massage therapies to nutritional counseling and physical therapy. That meant further growth, including added staff and the need to build the spacious Senara facility in 2011, which is when the business transitioned from operating under the Kramer name to Senara.
Dr. Kramer is as passionate about living a healthy lifestyle as he is about spreading the message of how to Live Life Well to others. “Working out is my meditation, and eating right fuels my body, and I feel great,” he said. “I want that for everyone. That’s why it is so fulfilling for me to see that what we do at Senara makes a difference in the quality of our guests’ lives.”
Dr. Kramer is Certified in Functional Medicine through the Functional Medicine University. For over 12 years, he has been practicing functional medicine in the realm of adrenal stress, hormone balance, and food sensitivities. He is currently enrolled simultaneously in the prestigious Institute for Functional Medicine programs for: functional medicine, A4M antiaging, and AARM restorative medicine. These programs will deepen his knowledge in the production and utilization of hormones, toxin diagnosis and treatment, and how this affects both biochemistry and physiology. To date, Dr Kramer has completed over 1000 of study, training, and case study as part of his certification at Functional Medicine University and Institute for Functional Medicine.
In 2015, Dr Kramer expanded Senara’s health and healing services further with the addition of a dedicated Center for Functional Medicine, Weight Loss, and Anti-Aging treatments, Senara Medical Weight Loss and Anti-Aging Center.
The Kramers’ daughter, Grace, was born in 2002. The family spends their spare time together working out, reading and traveling. Dr. Kramer likes to golf, and he and Grace also enjoy learning to play guitar together.
Senara co-founder and CEO, Penny Kramer, is filled with energy that never stops. She also has an innate curiosity to learn new things and a strong will to take on tough challenges. The tougher the challenge, the more Penny thrives.
Penny brings every ounce of her endless energy and enthusiasm, and her extraordinary multi-tasking skills to her role as CEO of Senara. “Keith’s job is to take care of our guests’ health,” said Penny. “To focus on that, he needs to know that everything else is taken care of – and that’s my job.” Penny’s strengths are people and systems. She sees all the pieces of the puzzle, and then puts them together. That means she’s in charge of everything from human resources and training to marketing and the technology Senara uses.
She also understands how important it is to get out from behind the desk, and Penny can be seen literally everywhere at Senara. She especially enjoys greeting guests to make them feel at home, just as she did when the first Kramer Chiropractic office opened in 2002. Back then, when she joined Dr. Kramer in the family business, Penny said goodbye to a promising marketing career without any regrets.
“I’m here because I share Keith’s passion for spreading the message about how to live a healthy lifestyle,” said Penny, who also had primary responsibility for overseeing the Senara building’s construction. “It means so much to us both – knowing that what we do can make a difference in the quality of someone’s life. And that’s really why we built Senara. It gives us the space and the ideal environment to offer different services that help our guests “Live Life Well.”
The Kramers met at Iowa State University, their alma mater, and they married in 1995. After Dr. Kramer graduated from Palmer College of Chiropractic, the couple moved to embrace Peoria as their new home.
Their daughter, Grace, has been the center and light in their life since her birth in 2002. The Kramer family spends their spare time together and enjoys working out, reading and traveling. Penny and Grace also love to bake, do art projects and decorate together. In addition, Penny offers her time and expertise to several professional organizations, including holding various leadership positions with the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) and Central Illinois Tee It Up For the Troops.
A born athlete, Dr. Stephanie Griffitts has always maintained an active lifestyle. With an energetic personality to match, she puts her passion for healthy living in to everything she does.
Dr. Griffitts childhood was spent participating in sports and ballet (her mother is a dance instructor) in Jacksonville, Illinois. Her passion for health led her to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Master’s of Public Health from the University of Illinois Springfield, with the goal to become a dentist. Plans changed when she began to experience chronic migraines, however. “Chiropractic fixed me,” she says, and that was the catalyst to complete her doctorate in chiropractic at the Palmer College of Chiropractic.
“I like to see people get well. I want people to be responsible for their own health, help them with making better lifestyle choices.”
Joining the team at Senara was an easy decision for Dr. Griffitts. She was drawn to the integrative approach to health, much in line with her own. Prior to coming to Peoria, Dr. Griffitts owned her own practice in Springfield, Illinois, for six years, and also worked with other local chiropractic and wellness offices. Her decision to come to Peoria was to enjoy “the big city life” and all of the opportunities that come with that for her and her son, Beau.
A lifelong wellness enthusiast, Dr. Griffitts enjoys participating in CrossFit and competitive running during her free time. She is also an animal lover, like many at Senara, an avid reader, and shares her love of biking with her son Beau as much as possible.
Doctor David Dean grew up in Central Illinois and spent much of his adult life in California, before returning to IL to pursue a career in medicine. He Graduated Magna Cum Laud from Bradley University with a degree in molecular cell biology, then attended SIU School of Medicine in Springfield where he graduated in 2008.
After completing medical school, he completed a three year residency in emergency and trauma medicine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha Nebraska. Following his residency, he worked as a board certified emergency department attending physician, taking care of and treating critical patients. He also specialized in post residency training in aesthetic medicine with the American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine and is certified in aesthetic medicine as well as board certified in emergency medicine.
Dr. Dean belongs to the American Medical Association, the American College of Emergency Physicians and the American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine and Peoria Medical Society. He is also certified in advanced cardiac life support, pediatric advanced life support and Advanced trauma life support. He is credentialed and has staff privileges at both Methodist Hospital in Peoria and Cottage Hospital in Galesburg IL.
Dr. Dean chose to join the Senara team because he saw first hand how effective the treatment and services they provide are and was impressed that it was done in such a professional yet comfortable and inviting environment. He believes in the complete well being of patients from the inside out defining health by terms, that health means much more than just the absence of symptoms or disease.
Dr. Dean and his wife Jozette have 3 active young girls. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with family, working out, going on family bike rides and traveling as often as possible… anywhere and everywhere!
It was a book report in second grade that solidified Laura Murphy’s dream of becoming a nurse. Since that young age, Laura has held on to that book report; saved as a memento of living her life’s dream. Laura is a Central Illinois native, born in Peoria, and living in Morton for the majority of her life. Her childhood summer’s spent traveling, and camping.
In 1997, Laura graduated with a Bachelors of Science degree in Nursing (RN, BSN) from Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing. She went on to work as a nurse at OSF St Francis Medical Center, specializing in Cardiology. After 18 years in hospital, she decided she wanted to do more with her career, focusing on preventative care.
In 2010, Laura completed her MSN and began to focus on teaching. Soon after, she realized she missed taking care of patients, and returned to school. She received the Master of Science in Nursing for Family Nurse Practitioner from Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing in Peoria, Illinois in May 2014. Since completing training, graduation, and successfully passed the board certified exam, Laura has become a Certified Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP-C).
Laura enjoys practicing physical and functional medicine, as well as medical aesthetics. Prior to her arrival at Senara she spent several years practicing both physical and functional medicine and medical weight loss.
“I want everyone to be healthy and be able to function at their 100% potential,” she says. “I drove by Senara one day and said what an amazing place; I would love to work there. I knew that I did not to work at a traditional medical office and wanted to focus on promotion of health and prevention of illness, so everyone can be healthy from the inside out. This is Senara’s primary focus and mission- “Live life well” as is mine.”
Laura is a member of several professional organizations including the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and Illinois Society of Advance Practice Nurses. She is certified in Advance Cardiac Life support.
In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family- husband Shane, two daughters Natalie and Isabelle, step son Braden, and labradoodle Charlie. Shane has worked for the Village of Peoria Heights/ Peoria Heights Police department for the past 23 years as is the Communications Supervisor. Their children are active in the Morton marching bands and volley ball. Laura is also fond of traveling, cooking, and DIY projects.