Our Story

A Long History

Just as cancer care has evolved over the past four decades, so has our practice.

Our story begins in the late 1970s when Dr. Edward Orlowski, Dr. Peter Rasmussen, Dr. Robert Granatir and Dr. Paul Jacquin began a partnership to help patients diagnosed with cancer and blood disorders. Dr. Bud Pierce joined them in 1994.

Five years later, Drs. Orlowski, Rasmussen and Pierce launched Hematology Oncology of Salem. Soon, we began bringing on new partners to better serve Salem and Willamette Valley.

Today, as Oregon Oncology Specialists, we’re one of the last physician-owned oncology practices in the Pacific Northwest. We pride ourselves on providing compassionate, individualized care to all.

Growth of Our Practice

  • 1994 – Dr. Bud Pierce begins practicing in McMinnville at the Physician Medical Clinic.
  • 2002 – Dr. Pierce moves the McMinnville practice to the Willamette Valley Medical Center as a part of HR Hoover Cancer Center.
  • 2002 — Dr. Chuck Petrunin joins the practice
  • 2005 — Dr. Natasha Tiffany joins the practice.
  • 2006 — Dr. Catherine O’Brien joins, practicing full time in McMinnville.
  • 2008 — Dr. John Strother joins the practice.
  • 2013 — Dr. Strother begins treating patients in Silverton as well as Salem.
  • 2013 — Our Woodburn office opens.
  • 2013 — Dr. Renee Prins joins the practice.
  • 2014 — Dr. Orlowski retires after more than 30 years of caring for patients.
  • 2015 — General surgeon Dr. Beth Dayton joins the practice, bringing surgical skills with a specialty in breast cancer.
  • 2015 — In office dispensary for oral chemotherapy opens.
  • 2016 — Dr. Janelle Meyer joins the practice.
  • 2017 — We change our name from Hematology Oncology of Salem to Oregon Oncology Specialists, reflecting our broader geographic scope. Click here to read more.
  • 2020 —
    • Dr. Barber joins the practice in January as our 8th Medical Oncologist.
    • Our research program opens our first clinical trial, giving our patients access to new and innovative options that would not otherwise be available.
    • In May, Dr. Gona and Dr. Mendez join Oregon Rheumatology Specialists – our new Rheumatology practice to make rheumatology services more accessible to mid-Willamette Valley patients.
  • 2021 – Our practice has grown to 8 Oncologists and 11 Advanced Practice Providers (Physician’s Assistants and Nurse Practitioners) to ensure our patients always have access to quality care.