About Us

More than a Dozen Years of Healthcare Service in Bend

Our History

Fall Creek Internal Medicine, LLP is private practice that was established in Bend Oregon in February 2003. The founding Physicians, Brenda Johnson, Kathryn Kocurek, Patricia Nibler and Gerda Tapelband, all came together with a goal to offer personalized, compassionate care to the Central Oregon Community. In February 2016 Dr. Brenda Johnson left Fall Creek to pursue her passion for lifestyle medicine, please click on the link to find out more about her new practice at: http://brendajohnsonmd.com. Dr. Kristin VanDomelen joined Fall Creek in February of 2016 and assumed care of Dr. Johnson’s panel. We have been grateful to our Central Oregon community for supporting our wonderful practice! Dr. Gerda Tapelband retired from Fall Creek Internal Medicine at the end of 2016 after many years of dedicated practice in Central Oregon. She will be missed. Dr. Laura Nicholson joined Fall Creek in February 2017 and will assume care of Dr. Tapelband’s patients.

The Mission & Purpose of Fall Creek Internal Medicine

Fall Creek Internal Medicine, LLP provides comprehensive preventive care and management of complex health challenges for adult patients, with an emphasis on compassion, respect, and empowering the patient to be a partner in their health.  We emphasize healthy lifestyle, prevention, and use state of the art medical care with a strong foundation in evidence-based medicine.  We provide the cornerstone primary care relationship from which we coordinate a patient’s referrals and interactions with the health care community at large.

Meet Our Staff

Billing Supervisor

Patti has been the billing supervisor at Fall Creek Internal Medicine since November 2015.  She has over 30 years’ experience in the medical field.  She enjoys the new experience of learning Internal Medicine and the challenge of the ever changing medical billing field.  She is a native Oregonian and has lived in Central Oregon for 35 years.  She enjoys going on long day hikes and the challenges of long multi-day backpacking on the Pacific Crest Trail and international traveling/hiking.  She also is an avid mountain biker, enjoys cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. 

Billing Specialist/Front Desk Receptionist

Tillie has been a part of the Fall Creek team since October 2013. She has an Associates Degree in Health Information Technology. She enjoys medical administration because it is ever changing, which allows her to learn and apply new skills. She was raised in Central Oregon and loves being a part of her community. When she is not at Fall Creek Internal Medicine, she is spending time with her family and friends taking advantage of everything Bend has to offer.

Front Desk Supervisor

Kervin Villalobos recently joined the Fall Creek Internal Medicine team.  He has been working in the medical field for over 3 years and enjoys helping others and taking on new challenges.  He has been living in Central Oregon since the age of 7 and enjoys the outdoors where he loves to spend time with his wife and son.  He enjoys mountain biking, snowboarding, hiking, traveling, and everything Oregon has to offer!  Kervin is also bilingual and brings his Spanish language skill set to Fall Creek.


Front Desk Receptionist

Gale joined the Fall Creek front desk team in December of 2016 and has served the Central Oregon Community for many years, working with patients and advocating for them in the health care system. She brings experience and dedication to her work, and in her free time she enjoys hiking, biking, motor sports, cooking, photography, and all that beautiful Central Oregon has to offer, and she is passionate about keeping in touch with her family.

MA for Dr. Nibler

Emily is a Certified Medical Assistant and has worked alongside Dr. Nibler since 2008. She has worked in the Bend medical community since 2001. She loves to connect with her patients and support them in all aspects of their care. She enjoys the challenging intricacies of internal medicine and continues her education in this area. She has lived in Bend since childhood. She is married and has a sweet but sassy son and a dog that is full of energy. Together with her family she enjoys biking, camping, hiking and traveling. She loves a great book that she can get lost in. As music and her faith are a big part of her life, she is also involved in the music ministry at her church.

Celia MA

Care Coordinator CPC+

Celia has been working at Fall Creek Internal Medicine since October of 2013. She completed her Medical Assistant Certification at COCC. She has always been interested in the medical field and started pursuing in high school. She has lived in Central Oregon since she was 3 years old. Outside of work she enjoys being at the lake and hanging out with her friends and her pet cat named Odin.

Clinic Administrator

Carolyn joined Fall Creek Internal Medicine as the Clinic Administrator in May of 2018. With over 20 years of administrative experience in the medical field, she leads with a hands-on approach to the daily operations of the organization and is developing strategies in the management of personnel, budgeting, contracting, accounts payable, accounts receivable and strategic planning. Carolyn is committed to the mission of Fall Creek Internal Medicine to provide the best care in Central Oregon.

Originally from San Diego, California, Carolyn and her husband took a leap of faith and moved to Central Oregon in 2007. Looking for that small town vibe, they settled in Redmond. “Friends and family told us we would move back after a couple of winters. After visiting, now they are looking for property in Central Oregon for themselves!” Carolyn enjoys all activities outdoors, quality time with her dog Beanie, DIY projects, reading and gardening. 


MA for Dr. Kocurek

Katrina, originally from Salem, has been a medical assistant since 2011. She has worked in a variety of specialties including podiatry, ophthalmology and family practice. She is hard working and will not stop until the job is done!  She has a big heart and is determined to advocate for her patient’s needs. She and her son live in Prineville and love Central Oregon. She loves to be outdoors, especially camping or fishing with her family.  Also, she loves her dog, Gypsy, and she has a bearded dragon, named Dragon! 



MA for Dr. Nicholson

Laurie joined Fall Creek Internal Medicine in 2018 after relocating from Washington State. She has been in the medical field since 1990 with experience in long term care, hospital, urgent-care and pain management settings. When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with her family, hiking, traveling and capturing what nature has to offer in pictures.


MA for Dr. VanDomelen

Throughout her career, Ellie has been in family practice, general surgery and OB/Gyn. She has enjoyed the many different facets of her career.  She has learned a lot over the years, but her specialty has been becoming a patient advocate. When it was time for her spouse to retire, Ellie and her husband relocated to Bend after living in Portland for many years. Ellie has grown children and several grandchildren who are the loves of her life.