All professionals at Next Step Pediatrics maintain the highest levels of accreditation and pursue ongoing education to stay abreast of the latest trends in the medical field. Read on to learn more about our staff's experience and training.

About Dr. Bucci

Dr. Jeffries L. G. Bucci is a native of Maryland and an alumnus of University of Maryland, including the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore. Upon graduating in 1996, Dr. Bucci entered his pediatric residency at the University of Maryland Medical System. He began practicing in the Towson and Bel Air locations in 1999. Dr. Bucci took a one and a half year hiatus from practicing in Maryland to practice in East Greenwich, Rhode Island, and then returned to Maryland in 2004 to begin assuming the practice of Dr. J. Douglas Pinney, the same practice which he now operates.

Happily married with two daughters, Dr. Bucci loves to hike, bike, and travel with his family. His other hobbies include salt and fresh water aquariums, gardening, and home improvement. He was born in Rome, Italy, and while an infant, his family moved to the United States so his parents could further their careers in biochemical research and academia. Dr. Bucci is conversant in Italian, but English is his primary language.

About Dr. Lancer (formerly Dr. Emerson)

Dr. Melissa E. Lancer hails from the state of Kansas where she completed her undergraduate education as well as medical school through the University of Kansas. She completed her pediatric residency training at the University of Nevada School of Medicine in Las Vegas.

Dr. Lancer joined Dr. Bucci in primary care pediatrics (as Dr. Emerson) in 2012 while working as a Pediatric Hospitalist at the UM- St. Joseph's Medical Center, where she cared for a wide variety of pediatric patients including urgent care, emergency medicine and newborn & in-patient hospitalized patients. Here she gained a broad knowledge base as well as a firm footing in the surrounding community.

Dr. Lancer is married and welcomed her first child, Liliana Kaye, into the family on July 6, 2015. She enjoys travel, trying world cuisines and spending time with her family.

About Dr. Britton

Dr. Britton was born and raised in New Jersey. She obtained her medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey - School of Osteopathic Medicine and completed her Pediatric Residency Program at Morristown Memorial Hospital. Dr. Britton subsequently spent additional time training and completed a Fellowship in Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. It was this field which brought her to Maryland.

She worked for almost 8 years caring for children with cancer and hematologic diagnoses at The Children's Hospital at Sinai. Dr. Britton has since gone on to work in multiple settings and has taken care of children in several inpatient and outpatient centers. She has been practicing for 20 years and is excited about meeting her new family at Next Step Pediatrics.

She lives in Towson with her son, Jack, and their golden retiever, Lola. She is an avid fan of tennis and the New York Football Giants!

About Kathleen (Kat) Tewey-Mahoney, CRNP

Kat is a Baltimore native and, after finishing high school at Maryvale Preparatory School, pursued Nursing at the University of South Carolina. She graduated with a degree in Nursing and began working at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in East Baltimore.

Kat worked at Johns Hopkins for 5 years, 4 of which were on the Pediatric Burn and Medical Surgical Unit. During her time at Hopkins, she also pursued a Masters Degree from the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing and graduated as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. She joined our Practice in August of 2017.

Kat and her husband Tom were married in September of 2017. She enjoys traveling, trying new restaurants, practicing yoga and spending time with her family.

About Samantha Gerding, CRNP

Sam grew up in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, of the Pocono Mountains. She obtained her degree in Biology from DeSales University where she ran cross country and track and field. She then completed her Nursing degree at Thomas Jefferson University.

Sam worked as a Registered Nurse in a pediatric emergency department in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania while completing her Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Degree from Thomas Jefferson University. She joined our practice in November, 2019 after relocating to Baltimore, Maryland.

In her free time, Sam loves going to the beach, running, and spending time with her family, friends and new puppy, Stanley.

She is looking forward to the opportunity of taking care of your child!







About Allison Groff DNP, CRNP


Alli grew up in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She obtained her degree in Nursing from York College where she also enjoyed performing in musicals.  She then completed her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree at University of Maryland, Baltimore.  Alli worked as a Registered Nurse in pediatric acute care at Penn State Children's Medical Center, in Hershey, PA. When she moved to Baltimore to work towards her DNP, she also worked at St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson, MD in the Pediatric After Hours as a Registered Nurse.  In her free time, Alli loves going to the beach, hiking, doing Peloton, and spending time with her family, cat Penne, and new puppy, Stella.  She is extremely excited about the opportunity to be a part of your child's growth and development!