Local Business Spotlight: Garfinkle Orthodontics
Updated: May 21
We spoke with Dr. Judah Garfinkle, Owner of Garfinkle Orthodontics, Director of Craniofacial Orthodontics OHSU, and co-founder of Smile Oregon.
Phil: The Garfinkle family has been serving our SouthWest Portland community for a long time, what's the background of the practice?
Judah: I'm actually a 3rd generation dentist. My grandfather was an oral surgeon in CA. My father started his practice in 1974 in Oregon City. In 1990 he moved it to Hillsdale and we have been here ever since. I joined the practice in 2007 and bought it in 2009.
Phil: Your office doesn't seem like a typical orthodontics office. There are a lot of fun events and activities to take part in right?
Judah: For us it's about the honor and privilege of being in service to our community. Our vision is to elevate the spirit by crafting smiles. We like to have fun and usually plan a lot of fun events and contests everyone can participate in. We have obviously moved that online now. Next month we are having activities in honor of Anti-Bullying month. We would love everyone to follow us on social media.
Phil: After studying Craniofacial Orthodontics at NYU Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, you co-founded Smile Oregon in 2008?
Judah: Yes, our mission at Smile Oregon is to ensure every family affected by a cleft or craniofacial condition living in Oregon has access to the coordinated care they deserve by providing support, awareness, and education. Smile Oregon is different from other international cleft organizations by keeping our focus local and supporting each patient/family from birth to adulthood. We cover any and all of the treatment steps including speech therapy, counseling, baby bottles, and community buidling events.
Phil: Cleft Lip and other conditions weren't on my radar when my kids were born. How many Oregon families go through this?
Judah: It's actually much more common than people think. 1 in 700 children are born with Cleft Lip or palate conditions, so in Oregon about 100 kids per year are born with a cleft or other craniofacial conditions.
Phil: How can we support Smile Oregon?
Judah: We are always looking for volunteers and donors who are willing to contribute their passion, time, and money to support these families. In July we have a walk and family picnic at Gabriel Park. It's my favorite day of the year! We also have a board with different committees. We just formed a Diversity and Inclusion Committee. If anyone is interested in getting involved with Smile Oregon they can email me at Judah@Garfinkleortho.com.
Phil: How is Garfinkle Orthodontics doing in these times as a small business?
Judah: It has been a wild ride! The office had to close for two months which was mind blowing. I focused on supporting my family, my team, and my patients in every way I could. We developed virtual care options which have worked great and we still offer them. For safety concerns or from just being busy, many of our patients choose to start the journey with a complimentary virtual consultation that you can find on our website. I have the best team in the world and we have strong safety protocols in place to keep us all safe. We are open for business for clients of all ages.
Garfinkle Orthodontics is at 1820 SW Vermont St. STE O, Portland. More info at Garfinkleortho.com and Smileoregon.org