664e23f345fedf7e2b7918e2 James Wanamaker Dds 3

DE Rising Star Award Recipient: Travis Bell, DDS

May 22, 2024
Travis Bell, DDS, is the May 2024 DE Rising Star.

Where did you go to school?

I obtained my doctor of dental surgery degree from the Adams School of Dentistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in May of 2015. 

Can you share some career highlights?

Upon graduation, I had the privilege of returning to my hometown of Greensboro, North Carolina, where I started my career working with my childhood dentist and mentor, Dr. Mark Hyman. Dr. Hyman is a renowned dentist, public speaker and adjunct full professor and special assistant to the office of the dean at the UNC Adams School of Dentistry in Chapel Hill. I worked with him for one and a half years and consider it the best decision I could have possibly made upon graduating from dental school. During my first year in private practice, I had access to many advanced technologies and had an expert on-site in Dr. Hyman who was working day-in, day-out right next to me.

What are some wins and challenges associated with building your own practice?

While building my own practice, I have experienced many wins and challenges along the way. Some of the wins include identifying and acquiring dental practices with very sound business models run by ethical dentists with significant room for growth and gains in efficiency through improved systems. Challenges included finding team members who would allow me to create the practice I always envisioned. Hiring new team members slowly and firing poor team members quickly is one of the most powerful things I have learned as head of human resources in my private practice.

What CE has made an impact on your patient care?

I am a member of the Spear Education organization, and am a local Spear study club leader. Through Spear, I am able to follow an organized path for continuing education on topics I’m interested in. I have found that being a part of a local Spear Study Club with a diverse members including general dentists and specialists has had the greatest impact on my patient care.

What are your current goals?

Clinically, I am focusing on advanced bone grafting and guided bone regeneration with full-mouth dental implant supported restorations. 

How do you maintain work-life balance?

When I leave the office, I try not to take any work home with me and focus on my family. I spend most Fridays in the office completing all the administrative tasks of owning a small business while my children are in school so that once the weekend arrives, I am 100% focused on my personal life and leave the business to Monday morning.

What advice would you give dental students/new grads?

Pour yourself into quality CE the moment you graduate and don’t stop. Get involved in your local dental community, join a local dental society if you have access to one. If you don’t, consider starting one. Get to know your local specialist and get involved in CE with them. Find a mentor.

Are you ready to shine the spotlight on the brilliant young dentists who are revolutionizing the world of dental care? Submit your nomination today!

About the Author

Pamela Maragliano-Muniz, DMD | Chief Editor

Pamela Maragliano-Muniz, DMD, is the chief editor of Dental Economics. Based in Salem, Massachusetts, Dr. Maragliano-Muniz began her clinical career as a dental hygienist. She went on to attend Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, where she earned her doctorate in dental medicine. She then attended the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Dental Medicine, where she became board-certified in prosthodontics. Dr. Maragliano-Muniz owns a private practice, Salem Dental Arts, and lectures on a variety of clinical topics. You may contact her at [email protected]

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