Oral Health Group

Stepping Down, But Not Out

April 1, 2006
by Jordan Soll, DDS

On September 18, 1998 my daughter, Hunter Arden was born. Two months later, the first Cosmetic Issue of Oral Health appeared. Hunter is now seven and a half and there have been nine Cosmetic Issues produced. Bringing together any issue of Oral Health requires a tremendous amount of time and commitment from each editorial board member and support staff.

With each passing year, the quality of each issue increases. For this and for its outstanding dedication, the editorial board is to be commended. Because of the increasing commitment, and not wanting to miss Hunter’s “wonder years,” and after tremendous soul searching, I felt it was time to hand the reins of the cosmetic issue over to a new editorial cosmetic board member, Dr. Elliot Mechanic.


Dr. Mechanic, who has a thriving practice in Montreal, Quebec, is an extremely capable cosmetic dentist and a creative individual. Aside from being an accomplished musician (he has had jamming sessions with G.E. Smith of the Saturday Night Live band, and Stevie Ray Vaughn), Elliot is involved with the board of the CAED, has recently completed a smile guide book for patients, and is always in the middle of the cosmetic scene, both nationally and internationally. In short, he is connected.

To assist Dr. Mechanic with the tremendous amount of work to put together this issue, he is joined by Drs. Robert Margeas from Des Moines, Iowa and newly appointed Dr. Domenic Belcastro. I have had the pleasure of attending lectures given by Drs. Mechanic, Margeas and Belcastro, and I am confident that this enriched cosmetic editorial team will not only maintain the prior quality that you, the reader have come to expect, but will excel in creativity and content. In addition, it is as a contributing consultant that I will remain with Oral Health to support Elliot and offer my two cents when requested.

As I hand the reins over to Dr. Mechanic I would like to extend some sincere thank-yous.

First I would like to thank Ms. Erla Kay for her foresight in creating the Cosmetic Issue and her support for me as the first cosmetic editor. As the issue continued to grow and my confidence increased, Melissa Summerfield, the current publisher of Oral Health and the one I would refer to as “my boss”, allowed me the creative freedom to put the issue together, including cover designs, in a way that I felt would best reflect the issue. I thank her for the opportunities she has afforded me.

Drs. Jim Kerr and Randy Lang, the chairman and co chairman of the board, always ran meaningful meetings and made themselves available to assist in any way needed. Their support for the Cosmetic Issue was unwavering and their encouragement appreciated.

In addition, I have enjoyed the friendships that have emerged from working with each board member, watching them produce their respective issues year after year.

They are to be commended for a tireless effort that contributed to creating the fine journal Oral Health has become.

The old saying, “behind every great man is a woman,” truly applies to Catherine Wilson, Editorial Director, and Andrea (Anderson) Smith, Art Director. Without these ladies, quite simply, Oral Health would not arrive in your office each month. These two professionals are responsible for keeping each respective editorial consultant on track, ensuring deadlines are met, and arranging the layout and production of each issue.

I thank them both for the back-up in seeing my issue through.

At this time I would be remiss if I did not thank my classmate, fellow board member and friend, Dr. Gary Glassman. It was through Dr. Glassman’s mentoring that I got motivated to write articles, take up the lecture circuit, and join the editorial board. I thank him for his support and friendship.

Throughout my editorials I have tried to encourage you to take the high road, see beyond the horizon, and pursue your practice with an entrepreneurial spirit. As our profession becomes increasingly commoditized this will certainly be a time where “the best get better.” Strive for excellence; take pride in your professionalism and maintain your dignity.

Finally I want to thank you, my colleagues. You took the time to read the Cosmetic Issue, provide me with feedback, both positive and negative, and inspire me to produce an issue that was better than the previous.

Life is not a dress rehearsal. Lead, follow, or get out of the way.

Jordan Soll is Oral Health’s editorial board member for Cosmetic Dentistry.

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