On Being an Orthodontist
It is very humbling to be asked to provide care for so many patients. Allowing me to improve people’s health, function, and appearance, and therefore their quality of life, is incredibly fulfilling. I have always considered providing orthodontic care to be a “special invitation” to participate in people’s lives for a short period, as we work together on the shared goal of a healthier, more attractive smile.
I find it rewarding to help people resolve their orthodontic issues. Treatment can be life-changing for many. Whether working with an adult who has reached a point where they can address something that has bothered them for years, or seeing a child come out of their shell and transform into a mature, confident young adult, I find joy in being part of the process.
It is an honor to be invited into individual’s lives for a short time and asked to improve their oral health and increase their confidence.
Education and Experience
- Bachelor of Arts, State University of New York at Stony Brook
- Doctorate of Dental Surgery, School of Dental Medicine, State University of New York at Stony Brook
- Certificate of Orthodontics Specialty, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Division of Orthodontics
My initial professional interest was in treating complex Craniofacial Anomalies and birth defects through a combination of orthodontics and surgery. This interest was confirmed during a summer fellowship at Southwestern Medical Center/Children’s Hospital in Dallas, after my third year of dental school.
I desired an orthodontic residency based in a large medical center, where I would have the opportunity to be part of life-changing treatments. In 1993, I arrived at Vanderbilt Medical Center, where the Orthodontics Division was within the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Section of Surgical Sciences. Vanderbilt had a very active Craniofacial Team which treated the most complex syndromes to the simpler cases of Cleft Lip and Palate.
After completing my residency, I was generously offered a full-time faculty position, which allowed me to continue this work. Concurrently, I was teaching orthodontic biomechanics, diagnosis, and treatment planning to the training residents and fellows.
I have exclusively practiced orthodontics for 27 years and have operated my own practice, Hillsboro Orthodontics, since 1998. At some point, I would like to return to teaching the next generation of orthodontists.
Continuing Education and Professional Affiliations
The ongoing technology revolution in orthodontics is fascinating and keeps me engaged and excited to keep current on the newest innovations. By staying abreast of the latest developments, I can incorporate proven new options into the practice and patient care.
Being able to treat people quicker and more comfortably, and to offer more patient-friendly treatment options, is important. Today, orthodontics is more of a digital platform than at any time in the past. With intraoral scanning, digital radiography, and clear aligner therapy, my team and I are at the forefront of these technologies.
I am an active member of the:
- American Association of Orthodontists
- Southern Association of Orthodontists
- Tennessee Association of Orthodontists
- American Dental Association
- Tennessee Dental Association
- Nashville Dental Society
These organizations provide many avenues for continuing education: lectures, seminars, meetings, and numerous journals, to name but a few. I actively seek out ways to learn from the leading practitioners and researchers, as well as my peers.
Beyond the Office
Raised in Williston Park, Long Island, New York, I have lived with my family in Franklin, Tennessee for over 27 years. My high school sweetheart, Dina, has been my wife for over 25 years and we have two sweet, kind daughters, Ava and Mia. We also have a great running companion in Cody, a German Shorthaired Pointer. Frankie, our Mini Dachshund, decidedly does not run and definitely does rule the house!
My time with family and loved ones is prized above all else. I can often be found on the sideline of a soccer field, watching my daughter Mia play.
I love cycling in Middle Tennessee and running the trails in Percy Warner Park, too. And I absolutely love saltwater fishing: the beach and ocean have always been a part of my life.