As talented as they are, our dentists can’t do it alone. They rely on assistance from a highly-qualified and compassionate team to provide dental treatment in Phoenix with a difference – the difference is a winning attitude.
Kelli, Registered Dental Hygienist
Kelli says she feels privileged to work with the highly-skilled doctors at Life Smiles Dental Care because she is part of a team that truly cares about their patients. Their integrity, passion for the craft, and level of personal attention are the inspiration for Kelli. She brings a wealth of experience and skill to the treatment room, as well. Kelli has been a practicing dental hygienist for more than a decade and she loves the profession. As a firm believer in preventive care and education, Kelli shares her knowledge to help patients enjoy healthy, attractive smiles.
When she is not caring for patients, Kelli is usually enjoying family time with her two daughters. She loves to laugh and enjoys the outdoors, road trips, swimming, baking, and treats.
Maryellen, Registered Dental Hygienist
Maryellen is a graduate of Rio Salado College, and has been a dental hygienist for over 14 years. She knows that many people are not aware of the mouth-body connection, influencing their oral health and overall wellness. She takes special interest in educating patients in the areas of prevention and oral diseases, and answering questions. Why? Because those patients are friends and neighbors and she wants to see them live long, happy, healthy lives.
If you ask Maryellen what she likes about Life Smiles Dental Care, she will tell you about being part of a unique team that genuinely enjoys serving others with enthusiasm and commitment to excellence.
Maryellen lives in Phoenix, but frequently travels to Florida and New York City to spend time with her family – many of whom are fire fighters. She cites swimming, snorkeling, and fishing in the Florida Keys as some of her favorite pastimes and treasured memories. She has two grown children and some wonderful close friends. Maryellen enjoys dining out, daily walks at Phoenix Mountain Preserve, yoga, and reading.
Jackie, Registered Dental Hygienist
Jackie’s career with Life Smiles Dental Care began when she was in high school! Shadowing the hygienists a few days a week and watching the dentists work stimulated her interest in the field, sparking a passion for dental hygiene. She earned a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene at Northern Arizona University, and was excited to fill an opening on the Life Smiles roster. Jackie says she absolutely loves her daily work, as well as opportunities to attend continuing education and dental conferences. Most of all, though, she enjoys getting to know patients to help them feel comfortable in the chair.
As an Arizona native, she is naturally into hiking with her husband and dog (with her two energetic dogs), rock climbing, skiing, yoga, and spending time with family.
Hilary, Registered Dental Hygienist
With a Bachelor of Science degree from Brigham Young University in Provo, UT and an RDH degree earned at Clark College in Vancouver, WA, Hilary was a natural addition to the Life Smiles Dental Care team. Hilary has been practicing dental hygiene for more than 15 years and enjoys the work immensely. She says, “The best part of my day is getting to be with a different person each hour.” She loves to learn about patient’s lives and families, knowing that they will see one another again soon. Her enthusiasm for being part of the Life Smiles team stems from confidence in the quality of care the dentists provide.
Outside the office, Hilary is a wife and a mother to four children. She has been a contestant on two televised game shows! She loves Neil Diamond and has seen him and the tribute band Super Diamond in concert many times. Her hobbies include running and international travel.
Mya, Registered Dental Hygienist
Originally from San Diego Mya’s dental career first started at Life Smiles Dental Care as a dental assistant over 7 years ago! She learned many skills working chairside with Dr. Nielson and Dr. Schmidt. She is passionate about dentistry, building relationships with patients and helping them achieve optimum oral health. In 2015 Mya enrolled in Fortis College’s Dental Hygiene program and graduated with a degree of Applied Sciences in Dental Hygiene. Mya is now one of our registered dental hygienists! No longer assisting the doctors chairside, but providing your dental cleanings.
Mya enjoys spending time with her family and friends, especially her young nephew. She is an amazing Auntie! She also enjoys traveling around our beautiful state and beyond seeing live music, hiking and going on adventures with her German Shepherd. Last but not least, Mya would like you to know she is a devoted Seahawks fan.
Heide, Dental Assistant
Heide has nearly 25 years of experience in dentistry and joined the Life Smiles Dental Care team in 2007. Her duties include assisting the dentists, inventory control, and coordinating care with dental laboratories. At Life Smiles, she is known as the whitening expert – a role she embraces because of the joy patients feel when they see their smiles gleam. She likes to answer questions about products and services offered at the office, and to help anxious patients relax for treatment.
Born in Germany, Heide moved to the US in 1985. She is married, and the couple have an adult son and two dogs. Her spare time is spent watching mystery and game shows, and reading.
Mayra, Dental Assistant
Mayra takes her role seriously, in assisting the dentists with a broad range of procedures, and in overall organization and cleanliness of the office setting. What does Mayra enjoy most about the position? Learning about the lives of patients! Her workplace passion stems from seeing the impact that effective dental treatment has on the lives of patients. She is excited to be part of the Life Smiles Dental Care team.
Mayra has a daughter and says that the experience of raising a child has been life-changing in the best possible way. When motherhood duties allow time, Mayra likes to hike, go to the gym, and watch movies.
Tori, Dental Assistant
Tori joined Life Smiles Dental Care in 2015 and couldn’t be happier in this setting. She is part of a team unified in their passion for the wellbeing and overall health of patients. As a dental assistant, Tori works at the elbow of experienced, dedicated dentists, expanding her own knowledge of the science of dentistry, daily. What is Tori’s favorite aspect of the job? Helping patients feel better and achieve the beautiful smiles they’ve always wanted.
When she is not at the office, Tori enjoys spending time with her husband and two young children. She also enjoys working out, cooking, walking their dogs, and master of DIY projects.
Janet, Dental Assistant
Originally from California, Janet started her dental assisting career in Arizona in 2012 and became a Life Smiles Dental Care team member in 2017. We are so happy to have her as part of our team! She is also one of our fluent Spanish speaking team members (both of our doctors are bilingual too!). Janet works closely with both doctors, assisting them chairside. She feels lucky to work with the best doctors and team in the Valley using state-of-the-art equipment and technology. She is a busy mother of two young children and on the weekend enjoys spending quality time with them and her family.
Brianna, Dental Assistant
Mari, Treatment Coordinator
Mari has over 20 years of customer service experience in the dental industry. She truly loves meeting new people and helping our patients achieve optimal oral health and achieve the smiles of their dreams. Mari works closely with Dr. Nielson and Dr. Schmidt to customize each patient’s treatment options and to maximize insurance benefits. She really enjoys being a part of the Life Smiles Dental Team. Loving what you do and spending it with an amazing group of people, is a dream come true.
Originally from San Diego, Mari moved to Arizona in the late ’80s. She loves exploring all that this beautiful state has to offer by hiking, going on road trips, and taking full advantage of the amazing weather. Mari has been married for over 18 years and has two beautiful children. She is an animal lover too and shares her home with 2 cats and 2 dogs (all rescues).
Meg, Treatment Coordinator
Meg has over 20 years-experience working with dental patients and navigating dental insurance. She really enjoys meeting new people and is a bright, positive addition to our team! Among many other duties, Meg helps submit our patients’ insurance, presents treatment plans and coordinates financial options making it easier to fit needed dental care into your budget.
She is a proud Arizona native and graduate of Northern Arizona University. She is also the proud mother of twin girls! On her weekends she enjoys hiking, reading and everything baseball. Meg is so excited to be a part of the Life Smiles Dental Team and we are just as excited to have her too!
Keri, Hygiene Coordinator
Keri has been in the dental field for over 15 years. She started as a dental assistant and had the opportunity to move upfront and absolutely loves it! Helping people and making them smile and feel comfortable has always been a passion for Keri, so she is the perfect addition to our front desk team! She enjoys getting to know all of our patients and their families and helping them schedule their dental appointments.
Keri enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time with the love of her life and their large blended family of 7 teenagers and their sweet bulldog, Scarlet. She would really like you to know she is a big Ohio State fan! Go Bucks!!