Debra S. Blaker's journey to becoming a nurse practitioner began when she was a child, watching and listening to her father, an X-Ray technician in a hospital. She became trained in first aid and rescue as a young adult. She went on to work as a respiratory therapy technician before becoming a nurse and moving to New York to work for a free ambulance service project in the South Bronx. She decided to become a family nurse practitioner and completed her studies at Columbia University School of Nursing, receiving the Margaret Eliot Award for Performance and Leadership as well as multiple scholarship awards.
Debra went on to earn her Master of Science Degree in family primary care at Pace University before moving to Oregon, where she became interested in pain care while working with a pain management specialist in Eugene. She then became one of the first nurse practitioners in the area to open an independent practice, Two Rivers Optimal Health Center, where she still practices part-time.
Debra gained a deeper appreciation for the importance of helping patients learn about and get relief from their pain when her husband developed severe cancer-related pain. She joined Pain Consultants of Oregon in 2016 and is passionate about creating partnerships with patients to provide holistic treatment plans that address their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health.
Debra volunteers on the boards of the Pain Society of Oregon and the Lane County Nurse Practitioner's Association. In her free time, she loves gardening, hiking, dancing and is an avid Duck fan – following basketball, football and track. A mother to two grown children, her greatest joy is spending time with her grandchildren.