About Our Practice
Dr. Nathan Lukes has been providing family dental care in Anchorage since assuming the established practice of Dr. Ralph Feriani in 2003. Dr. Ellen Donohue joined the practice in 2018 after completion of her military service. The doctors and their staff strive to provide modern, high quality dentistry in an unhurried manner, just as we would like to have our own family treated.
Dr. Donohue and Dr. Lukes attend several continuing education courses annually to remain abreast of current developments in dentistry and judiciously apply advances in the field to their daily practice of dentistry. Our office utilizes state of the art electronic records and digital x-rays, which provide clear information and significantly reduced x-ray exposure to our patients. Many of our patients comment on the larger x-ray images visible on our monitors which can be easier for them to understand.
Our office focuses on general family dentistry and utilizes a network of excellent specialists available in our community to provide specialized treatments when needed, again, just as we would want a member of our family treated. Our staff is knowledgeable, professional, and most importantly, kind. We look forward to helping you and your family obtain and maintain the smile you desire.
Dr. Ellen Donohue
Dr. Ellen Donohue grew up right here in Anchorage. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. After graduation, Dr. Donohue worked as a Surveyor and Engineer in Prudhoe Bay, Fairbanks, Dillingham and other remote locations throughout Alaska. She earned her Professional Engineering license, but left the excitement of engineering for the fun of fixing teeth.
Dr. Donohue moved east to attend dental school at the University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine. During dental school, she was awarded the Tucker scholarship for academic achievement and a Health Professions Scholarship from the US Air Force. She excelled in her studies and graduated summa cum laude with a ranking of 4th in her class. After graduation, Dr. Donohue went on to pursue an Advanced Education in General Dentistry Residency at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.
Dr. Donohue was thrilled to get stationed back home here in Anchorage at Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson (JBER). An active duty dental officer for 5 years, she continues her service now as a Reservist on JBER. The opportunity to serve her country has been both an honor and a privilege.
Dr. Donohue enjoys getting to know her patients while providing excellent customer service. She prides herself on high-quality, long-lasting dentistry.
Aside from her passion for dentistry, Dr. Donohue enjoys spending time with her husband and raising their two children in the Last Frontier. Together they ski, camp, boat, fish, hike, ice skate and explore Alaska.
Dr. Nathan Lukes
Originally from the community of Lynden, Washington, Dr. Lukes graduated from nearby Western Washington University with a degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology. Following graduation, he was offered a position with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Seattle, where he had the good fortune to become acquainted with the University of Washington Dental School. He soon became a full-time dental student and graduated from the University of Washington in 1998. Dr. Lukes, his wife and two young daughters then moved to Bethel, Alaska for “a two year adventure” working in Bush Alaska with the Indian Health Service. As Dr. Lukes grew to enjoy the people and unique challenges of Bush Alaska, his two year trip to the Bush, quickly became five years, and their family’s Alaskan adventure continues to this day.
In 2003, Dr. Lukes relocated his growing family to Anchorage and assumed the longstanding general dental practice of Dr. Ralph Feriani. In addition to his private practice, Dr. Lukes maintains hospital privileges at the Alaska Native Medical Center where he also sees patients part-time. This hospital affiliation remains an interesting part of his professional life and it also allows for occasional travel to Bush Alaska to provide dental care in field settings. In that same vein, Dr. Lukes has traveled as a volunteer to Vietnam on multiple occasions to provide care to the underserved. Although the third-world field clinic conditions are quite modest, this has proven to be a very fulfilling part of his dental practice.
When not practicing dentistry, Dr. Lukes, his wife and four daughters can be found skiing near their home in Girdwood. The family enjoys hiking, fishing, and generally exploring the outdoors. Dr. Lukes is always interested in meeting new Alaskans and hearing of new and interesting things to see and do in our great state.
Dr. Peter Pedalino
Dr. Peter Pedalino is a Board-Certified Periodontist who was thrilled to move to Alaska with his family when the Air Force offered him an assignment at Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson, where he is the Chief of Periodontics. Dr. Pedalino earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Columbia University in New York City, which is where he grew up. He earned his dental degree from the University of Southern California and then completed his Specialty Training in Periodontics at the Air Force Postgraduate Dental School Periodontics Residency Program and his Master of Science Degree at The University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas. He has practiced full time in the Air Force for over 15 years, where he was responsible for the periodontal health of over 30,000 patients. Dr. Pedalino has performed over 20,000 surgical procedures, has published research in the Journal of Periodontology, and was selected as a Chief of Periodontology General Dentistry Residency Instructor for the United States Air Force. He has been widely recognized for his skills that span a comprehensive repertoire of periodontal procedures.
When not in the office, Peter loves spending time with his wife, a retired USAF Colonel and Board-Certified Comprehensive Dentist, and their 5 daughters. Peter and his wife enjoy hiking, tennis, playing guitar, and watching their daughters play ice hockey.
Lisa Wells, RDH
I joined this office in 2005 shortly after graduating from UAA’s Dental Hygiene program. I grew up in the Seattle area and, like many Alaskans, came up here “just for a year,” fell in love with the state, and stayed. Prior to my dental hygiene career I earned a BA in Psychology from UAF in 1997, then volunteered with the Peace Corps in Thailand for two years. I am active in the Alaska State Dental Hygienists’ Association, serving on the executive board of directors and continually working to make high quality oral health care accessible to all Alaskans. As an enthusiastic advocate for oral health and wellness, I believe that the best outcomes occur through a collaborative effort between the patient and the dental team in a non-judgmental environment. When I’m not at the office you can find me gardening, reading, crafting, or camping and hiking around the state with my husband and three kids.
Adrienne Gardner, RDH
Born and raised in Soldotna, my introduction to the dental field was a funny one. When working across Cook Inlet as a housekeeper at a remote lodge, I called my dad to ask him to sign me up for college. Little did I know he signed me up for the Dental Assisting program at UAA because he “heard it was a good career.” After completing the program, I was hired by Dr. Nathan Lukes and knew I had found a career field I loved. After the birth of my first child, my colleagues Dr. Lukes and Lisa Wells encouraged me to pursue a hygiene career. A few short years later I came back to work at the office as a proud graduate of the University of Alaska Anchorage Dental Hygiene program.
I absolutely love the environment our office has to offer. I’m proud that we give individualized treatment and strive to build positive rapport with our patients. I do enjoy seeing patients every 3-6 months not only to help improve their oral health, but to build lasting connections and swap stories. I’m here to grow with you and treat you like family.
When not at work, in the summer you can find me with my hubby Neil and our three energetic kids camping in this great state with our wonderful, amazing, crazy extended family. In the winter, well, I am inside with an extra large sweater, a good book, and a glass of wine, dreaming of being on a beach listening to the sound of the crashing waves.
Nikki Bills, RDH
I was born and raised in Utah and attended dental hygiene school at Fortis College in Salt Lake City, graduating in 2014. I moved to Alaska in 2015 for the adventure and to enjoy the great outdoors. I love snowboarding, hiking, biking, and rafting. I love to travel, and in 2019 I spent five days with the children at a boarding school in Vietnam giving dental care, but receiving so much more. We were surrounded by kindness, joy, acceptance and love. They reminded us how simple life can be and to enjoy each moment. I am grateful for my time there and for the school allowing our team to be a part of their culture. Life is too short to be anything but happy.
Kiri Stilwell, Office Manager
I started working here in 2006, and love the close-knit family atmosphere. I’m here to help you successfully navigate the ins and outs of scheduling, insurance claims, and coordination with specialists. I am passionate about health and fitness. When I’m not busy running around town attending my three kids’ sports activities, I enjoy relaxing at our cabin in Trapper Creek with my husband and 3 dogs.