Albany clinics add psychologist

Psychologist Vanessa Welch-Pemberton recently joined Samaritan Health Services, providing behavioral health care to patients of Samaritan Internal Medicine–Albany and Calapooia Family Medicine.

Welch-Pemberton earned a bachelor’s degree from Gonzaga University, and master’s and doctoral degrees from the School of Professional Psychology at Forest Institute. Her practicum experience includes work at community mental health centers, medical clinics and a domestic violence center.

Welch-Pemberton most recently operated a private practice in Poulsbo, Washington. She has been trained in several kinds of therapy, including acceptance and commitment therapy, motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy.

Corvallis Clinic up for award

The Corvallis Clinic was among organizations nationwide who were nominated for the 2017 Secretary of Defense Employer Freedom Award.

Nominations must come from Guard or Reserve members who are employed by the organization they are nominating, or from a family member. The award was created in 1996 to recognize employers who provide exceptional support to their Guard and Reserve employees. It is the highest in a series of employer recognition awards given by the Department of Defense.

WesternU lauded as workplace

Western University of Health Sciences has been named a “Great College to Work For” by the Chronicle of Higher Education for the sixth consecutive year, and also made the Honor Roll for the fourth consecutive year.

WesternU, which has campuses in Lebanon, Oregon, and Pomona, California, was recognized in seven categories: Collaborative Governance, Compensation and Benefits, Job Satisfaction, Professional/Career Development Programs, Respect and Appreciation, Teaching Environment (Faculty Only) and Tenure Clarity and Process (Faculty Only/Four-Year Only).

WesternU was one of 79 colleges and universities deemed a Great College to Work For, drawing from 232 participating institutions in 2017, including 155 four-year colleges and universities and 77 two-year colleges.

WesternU is one of only 10 institutions on the Honor Roll in the “Medium” category of enrollment between 3,000 and 9,999 students. WesternU’s enrollment is about 3,800 students.

The assessment had two components: a questionnaire about institutional characteristics and a faculty/staff questionnaire about individuals’ evaluations of their institutions. The assessment also included an analysis of demographic data and workplace policies.

Broker joins RE/MAX office

RE/MAX Integrity recently announced that Michele Smith, licensed Broker, has joined the firm’s Albany office at 2910 Santiam Highway SE.

Smith knows the region well, having lived in the Albany and Corvallis areas for more than 25 years. She earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and previously worked in the insurance industry for many years.

Smith can be reached at 541-918-4007 or

Strawberry Plaza wins award

Oregon Main Street announced its 2017 Excellence in Downtown Revitalization award winners Oct. 4 at the Evening of Excellence Celebration in Oregon City.

Lebanon's Strawberry Plaza Revitalization won the award for Best Downtown Public Improvement. The Strawberry Plaza Revitalization project converted a dilapidated downtown park into a centerpiece for the city of Lebanon. Previously, the site was a magnet for drug activity and certainly not attractive to downtown shoppers and visitors.

The revitalization project established a far more attractive and family-friendly public place, providing space for outdoor art, music, historical information, and, for children of all ages, a strawberry-shaped water fountain. In addition to the visual improvements, the plaza will become the focal point of downtown events. The total cost of improvements was approximately $346,000.

Oregon Main Street is part of Heritage Programs, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. For additional information, visit