Through our Dental Spotlight Series we are taking the time to highlight successful professionals in the dental industry. If you’re an aspiring practice owner, or a current dentist looking for your next big move, we hope you gain some valuable advice from these successful individuals and their stories.
Jackie Stanfield, DDS
Where did you grow-up and what is special about your hometown?
I grew up in a suburb of St. Louis called Florissant. It was a special place, because kids were free to be kids. We rode our bikes, wandered the neighborhood, played games until dark, raised rabbits in homemade cages and were safe sleeping outside in a tent or on a trampoline.
Why did you decide to become a dentist?
I decided to become a dentist, because I love getting to meet and help so many different people. From the old to the very young, it is very rewarding seeing my patients in the community who benefit from our office!
Where did you go to dental school and when did you graduate?
I went to Baylor College of Dentistry and graduated in 1989.
Who was your mentor?
My mentor was Dr. Hooker in school. He helped keep me grounded and was always there to listen. I drove many miles every day with a young child and he understood my challenges.
What is your favorite dental instrument? Why?
My favorite dental instrument is my CEREC unit. Since 2002, I have been milling and seating same day crowns right in the office.
How do you like to relax?
My favorite way to relax is to travel. I love new places and experiences.
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?
My greatest achievement is the relationships I have with my family and friends. Most importantly is my relationship with Jesus, whose grace makes it all possible.
What is the biggest change in dentistry since you graduated?
The biggest change I see is the shift from private ownership to a corporate model of providing dentistry. Costs have gone up and we are seeing the erosion of the doctor/patient relationship.
What is the biggest challenge facing dentistry?
The biggest challenge facing dentistry is the change in who is paying for care. No longer is the patient the consumer. It is government, insurance and private equity firms all quietly taking their piece of the pie while publicly promoting how expensive dentistry is.
What is the best advice you’ve received for your career?
The best advice I have received was in purchasing my own building and no matter what always putting aside some money for the future.
How do you make practicing dentistry fun?
I make dentistry fun by not taking myself too seriously. We only have a finite amount of time on this earth so laugh often, slow down and plan well. Appreciate what your patients add to your life!
What advice would you share with someone looking to purchase their first practice?
My best advice to someone purchasing their own practice is to always stay informed of best business practices and what the future may hold for dentistry. Owning your own business is one of the most rewarding things you will ever do.