Dr. Neil Torvik all smiles after career as dentist

Long-time dentist retires at the end of the month.

“POULSBO – Okay, open your mouth and say, ‘ah.’ It’s a phrase that Dr. Neil Torvik has said countless times over his lengthy career as a dentist. It’s also a phrase he won’t be using come December. After more than 30 years at the Poulsbo Dental Center, Torvik has decided to retire. I’ve been here since 1969, he explained. That’s a lot of teeth. The final decision didn’t come easy. I’ve been thinking about it for the past year or so. I didn’t really have a definite date in mind, but everything just came together, Torvik said, noting that he didn’t want to pass the practice on to just anyone. He was waiting for the perfect fit. Torvik found that in Dr. Jeromy Peterson. Peterson spent the past three years as a Navy dentist after graduating in the top 10 of his class at the University of Washington in 1997. Did Dr. Peterson’s being a Dawg have anything to do with his taking over at the 8th Avenue business? Well, with Torvik being a 1966 UW grad himself who has put three kids through the Seattle university and had a fourth attending classes there, the odds are pretty good. Dr. Torvik was also impressed by the fact that Peterson is a community-oriented person as well, having grown up in the small eastern Washington town of Wilbur. I feel fortunate to have found someone I feel will carry on the tradition of excellence that we have tried to maintain. He fits in really well here, he said, taking a look around the office. The building at 19170 8th Ave. has sentimental value for Torvik – he helped design it in 1974 when his practice here was still just getting off the ground. Torvik, who sold half of the structure to Dr. Eldon Larson in 1984, is proud of the environment he created in the well-laid-out office. When asked whether he had any plans to move out of the area, Torvik quickly answered no. I’ve done well here, he said, adding that he is active is the Poulsbo Noon Lions and the Masonic Lodge. This is where I live and where I know everyone. I plan on continuing the type of practice that Dr. Torvik created here, Dr. Peterson remarked. While he expressed hopes to eventually expand the business and take on new patients, Dr. Peterson said he would definitely keep the hometown flavor of the practice intact. Hygienist Kathryn Jones, bookkeeper Jeannie Cheyne, receptionist Julie Stroot and dental assistants Brenda Elkins and Lynn Florent will all be staying on at the Poulsbo Dental Center. “