A word from the newest member of the Board, Dr. E. LaRee Johnson

Posted: 6/14/2016

It is with excitement that I write my first ABPD blog! I have dreamt to someday have the honor of serving our pediatric dentistry specialty as a director of the ABPD since 1996. 
I was in Chapel Hill 20 years ago during my spring break from UT-Memphis as a fourth year dental student to find an apartment before beginning my residency at UNC.  Dr. Michael W. Roberts had just returned from a site visit in Japan and during our visit he not only taught me the mission of the ABPD, he taught me the importance of stewardship to our amazing profession.  By the time I got back to Memphis I knew I would be dedicated to support all aspects of our profession, especially board certification.

I had the privilege of completing my board certification in 2001 via a site visit from one
of our most loved and respected colleagues who was taken from us far too soon, Dr. Ron Bell.  Preparation, examination and debriefing with Dr. Bell was one of the most growth inspiring experiences of my life.  At that time, less than 25% of pediatric dentists were board certified and I knew my personal mission would be to encourage our colleagues to become board certified through mentorship, involvement in the OCE (starting in 2006), and frankly, some prodding!  I genuinely believe that even if you only learned, improved or added one aspect to your practice during the pursuit of board certification that helped one child, it was all worth it.

Since my instructions were to get you acquainted with me, your new ABPD Director, I will wrap up with a short description.  For 17 years, I have been adjunct faculty at UNC and in full-time private practice.  I built a practice from the ground up. My husband and I have a 15-year-old daughter and a 12-year-old son.  Our family loves to do anything outdoors together and travel. For “date” time, my husband and I enjoy endurance sports. Together, we have completed 3 Ironmans, a 100 Mile Run, 30 marathons in 50 states and multiple CrossFit Competitions.  There is not a day that goes by in my life that I do not give thanks for my family, our profession, my health and my mentors and colleagues that collectively have been an important part of the blessed life I live.  May we all conduct ourselves ethically to reflect the purity of the pediatric dentistry specialty and always ensure our advocacy for children steers our professional life.



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