Changing Lives in Tucson with the Gift of a Smile

Dr. Toureno of Tucson, known by most as Dr. Leo, founded his Smile for a Lifetime chapter… to create self-confidence, inspire hope and change the lives of children in a dramatic way through the gift of a smile. Beginning this year,  the foundation will award six scholarships for free orthodontic braces treatment or 3 bi-annually to individuals 10-18 years old who would otherwise not be able to afford high quality orthodontics braces treatment.

Valeria Chavez was recently selected by the Greater Tucson Smile for a Lifetime Board of Directors to be their first scholarship recipient. Selection is based on need, letters of recommendation and motivation of the scholar. “Valeria is a sweet girl who would not show her teeth when ask to smile. She is highly motivated and has great aspirations to help other people and one day hopes to be a doctor” —-Dr. Leo.

Valeria shares, ”My life has been full of struggles but that hasn’t stopped me from doing good and moving forward, however the one thing that has held me back is my insecurity and my low self-esteem…having braces will help me overcome those insecurities that I’ve been facing throughout my life.”

Dr. Leo started his S4L chapter in hopes of touching the lives of deserving children and teens in Tucson through the gift of a smile. Having grown-up in a third world country, he has had plenty of opportunities to see first hand the poverty many children face everyday.  Dr. Leo shares “Today, I am blessed with a wonderful family and a great place to live Tucson, Arizona, United States of America! However, there are still many children and teens that need help here. I keep thinking, if only these deserving individuals could increase their self-confidence and outlook in life, they could make their world better and our community brighter! Please join me in making Tucson and Southern Arizona more beautiful with more smiling faces.”

Do you know a deserving child in Tucson or surrounding cities whose life could be changed through the gift of a smile? If so, please visit and click on the Smile for a Lifetime logo for more information or drop by Just Smile Orthodontics to pick up an application located at: 5121 S Calle Santa Cruz #105, Tucson, AZ 85706 or call (520) 889-1100.

Finally, a BIG thank you goes out to the Board of Directors for their commitment to serve children in Tucson through the Smile for a Lifetime program: The following community members will be serving with Greater Tucson S4L: Amanda Pinder-Hynes, DDS – Pediatric Dentist, El Rio Community Health Center (President); Rosemary Leon, BA, CDA – Pima County Health Education/Outreach Coordinator (Vice-President); Tamara Maki, BS, RDH – Dental Hygienist (Secretary); Dr Jerry Holbrook, DDS – Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon; Dr John (Jay) Schmidt, DMD – Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon; Leslie Leon, Chief of Staff – Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Naomi Proano, Marketing & Community Relations – Univision TV; Amy Martin – Canyon Ranch Institute; Linda Wilson – Long Realty.