I am finishing my first year of residency at Sage Cancer Care in Portland, OR. Sage Cancer Care is a holistic cancer clinic with three naturopathic doctors, a physical therapist, a massage therapist, and (soon!) an acupuncturist, all of whom specialize in oncology.

How did you get into Naturopathic Oncology?

Initially, I got into naturopathic oncology because of my interest in research and my desire to one day work in an integrative setting. Oncology as a naturopathic specialty seemed best positioned to satisfy both of those interests. When my dad’s melanoma came back after 7 years in 2016, my interest became much more personal as I spent the next two years helping my dad navigate through initial treatment decisions, subsequent clinical trials when those treatments failed, and the day-to-day of living and dying with cancer. This gave me a far greater understanding and appreciation of the patient experience and solidified my interest in oncology.

What do you do on your down time and/or what do you do for fun?

When I’m not at work, I enjoy taking my chihuahua Hank on long walks so that he can bark at skateboarders, laying in the hammock I bought my wife for her birthday, and doing a weekly NBA podcast with my friends back in Oklahoma.

What are you most grateful for in your practice of Naturopathic oncology?

As a resident, I’ve been most grateful for the days when we’re a little slow and I can take the time to sit and talk with patients while they’re getting an IV. I’ve met so many wonderful people in my first year who have brought a lot of joy into my life. Learning how different people approach life in the midst of a cancer diagnosis has been invaluable.