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iConnect News


Daddy’s girls

January 25, 2011
Posted In: Headlines, Profiles

Twins emulate their father’s passion for providing dental care for the poor “Everything we know about anything we learned from our dad,” say the Pattersons. “Honestly.” The twins give their father full credit for leading them to a career in which they can help those in need. Allen Patterson, CPA, FACMPE, M.H.A., chief financial and operating officer for McLennan County’s Family Health Center in the girls’ hometown of Waco, Texas, has spent the last 10 years on a mission to provide oral healthcare services to the poor. Allen Patterson says he was blindsided by a 2000 report by the U.S. attorney general, which painted a bleak picture of oral healthcare for low-income Americans. He then volunteered to help start a dental care program at Family Health, which runs local medical clinics for the poor. The center now employs 12 dentists — including two ATSU graduates — and provides more than 35,000 dental exams annually. “He is an incredible, humble, and honest man who sincerely cares for others,” Lacy and Kristi say of their father. “His heart, work ethic, and values truly make him one in a million and a real inspiration.” It was because ATSU’s Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health trains its students to care for underserved populations at community health centers that Lacy and Kristi decided to attend. “We were fortunate to be given the opportunity to go to dental school, and we hope to one day be able to really help those who are suffering,” they say. The girls are especially interested in helping prevent and treat tooth decay – the No. 1 childhood disease among the poor and uninsured. And, as owners of two Maltese puppies, who still live in Texas, and foster parents to two Golden Retrievers, Lacy and Kristi are similarly concerned for the oral health of the pet population as dental disease is also the most common disease among dogs and cats. “No one thinks of a cavity as being a disease because they don’t realize how dental caries is connected with other systemic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease,” Kristi says. When the twins daydream about graduating from ASDOH, they envision themselves at a community health center back in Texas with their family – or on the East coast, beachside. “It’s possible we will do both,” they insist. “Dentistry offers so many options, so we try to keep an open mind about the future.” Whichever they choose, Lacy and Kristi will have their father’s support. “The girls truly have the hearts of servants; they always have,” says Allen Patterson. “It doesn’t get much better for a dad.”

One response to “Daddy’s girls”

  1. Jesse Hake says:

    That’s pretty amazing, and it’s something that any parent would be proud of. Indeed, a cavity is more or less a disease. The bacteria from tooth decay spreads to your body, which can be damaging if you do not take action.

  2. Jesse Hake says:

    That’s pretty amazing, and it’s something that any parent would be proud of. Indeed, a cavity is more or less a disease. The bacteria from tooth decay spreads to your body, which can be damaging if you do not take action.

  3. Jesse Hake says:

    That’s pretty amazing, and it’s something that any parent would be proud of. Indeed, a cavity is more or less a disease. The bacteria from tooth decay spreads to your body, which can be damaging if you do not take action.

  4. Jesse Hake says:

    That’s pretty amazing, and it’s something that any parent would be proud of. Indeed, a cavity is more or less a disease. The bacteria from tooth decay spreads to your body, which can be damaging if you do not take action.

  5. Jesse Hake says:

    That’s pretty amazing, and it’s something that any parent would be proud of. Indeed, a cavity is more or less a disease. The bacteria from tooth decay spreads to your body, which can be damaging if you do not take action.

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