Jon E. Hollister, DDS – President / Chairman
When Dr. Jac Pedersen asked if I would consider serving on the Partnership for the Children board some 10 or so years ago, it didn’t take long for me to say yes. Partly because Jac doesn’t really “ask”, he’s more like, “you need to do this”, but mostly because it was something that I truly believed was important. As someone who grew up in San Luis Obispo, and practiced dentistry here for many years, I knew there existed a great unmet need for children’s dental care in our community. Specifically, children from families with no insurance and few resources other than the State’s Medi-Cal program to help them. Plus, many of these children, some under the age of two, required the specialized care that only a trained pediatric dentist could provide. La Clinica de Tolosa, the forerunner to the Tolosa Children’s Dental Center, provided that need ; a dental office staffed by pediatric dentists, accepting Medi-Cal, and providing quality, compassionate care to literally thousands of our communities’ children.
The primary task of the TCDC board is to provide support and funding to allow our
dental center to continue its mission of providing care to this population. Unfortunately,
Medi-Cal reimbursements are not sufficient to pay all the bills, requiring us to
consistently host fundraising events, grant write and ask for donations. Through the
dedication of our board and staff and the generosity of so many in our community, we’ve
been able to expand our office in Paso Robles, and then open up one day a week in San
Luis Obispo. We are currently looking to expand our care in SLO as we look for a new
location and we are working to develop novel, cutting edge approaches to provide care
more efficiently to even more children.
It is a great pleasure to serve on this board with so many wonderful, caring members of
our community. Equally rewarding is to observe the enthusiasm and professionalism of
our staff while providing this essential service.
James Tedford, MD (retired) – Vice President
Dr Jim Tedford is a retired general pediatrician who has lived and practiced in San Luis Obispo County since 1975. Born and raised in So California, he received his medical degree from UCLA in 1969, and completed his residency training in pediatrics at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles 3 years later. After moving to San Luis Obispo, he had the pleasure of working at the French Clinic, then as one of the Pediatric Associates, and finally, over the last 20+ years, at Patterson and Tedford Pediatrics. He’s the husband of Claudia (for 51 years), the father of 3 wonderful children and the grandfather of 8 special, successful grandchildren. He was drawn to volunteer for the Board of TCDC based on a career dedicated to the health and well-being of our children, recognizing the importance and the need for quality dental care for each of them.
Chuck Braun – State Farm Insurance – Secretary / Treasurer
My wife and I and our one year old daughter arrived in San Luis Obispo 43 years ago when I was offered a job on the Central Coast. In subsequent years we added three more daughters to our family. All of my daughters grew up in San Luis Obispo and enjoyed all the wonderful things that the central coast has to offer. For the first six years I was in SLO, I managed two businesses with up to 250 employees. Finally in 1982 I started my own State Farm insurance agency in Atascadero and during that time have had the great pleasure of meeting and getting acquainted with many people throughout SLO county. I’ve served on the boards of several local non-profit organizations. I was president of Kiwanis de Tolosa and also served as a director and board chairman of the Atascadero Chamber of Commerce. I’m an avid golfer and enjoy sports of just about any kind. I’ve been a member of the board of directors of Tolosa Children’s Dental for six years, the last five as secretary treasurer. I’ve found serving in this position to be a great honor that enables me to give back to the community that has enriched our lives and given so much to me and my family.
Laurie Torgerson is Executive Director for the Central Coast Dental Society. My husband, Steve, and I have had the blessing to have lived in San Luis Obispo since 1980 and have raised our 2 children in this wonderful community. I chose to serve on the Board of Directors of Tolosa Children’s Dental Foundation 5 years ago as I believed in the inception of a non-profit dental care facility to treat the under privileged children of our county. I understood the need to provide quality dental care for children who had limited access to providers. Quality dental treatment and education are imperative for the overall health of all children. It has been a heartwarming pleasure to serve on the board to further grow the services of Tolosa Children’s Dental Center and engage with our passionate staff who devote themselves to the well-being of their young patients and families.
Scott Milstead (familiarly known as Scotty) joined the board following 18 years of Restaurant ownership in Pismo Beach. With a wife and two children, Scotty has always been interested in the health and well being of youth. “To play a role in an organization as valuable as Tolosa Children’s Dental Center to the physical and emotional health of children is why I happily participate on the board” says Scotty.
I began my career in dentistry as a dental assistant for the UCSD Free Dental Clinics. I continued on and chose a dental school with an emphasis on public health and working in underserved communities. After graduation, I worked at Community Health Centers of the Central Coast for five years and then joined my husband in private practice. As a dentist, Central Coast native, and child who grew up with Medi-cal/Denti-Cal, I have a deep-rooted personal interest in serving this population of children on the Central Coast. I hope to bring my experiences from both the public and private sectors to the board and help Tolosa Children’s Dental Center flourish in the community
Suzanne Russell – Executive Director
Ms. Russell has an extensive background and proven track record in dental practice administration and management having worked for several prominent dental practices in San Luis Obispo County since 1987. As Clinic Director since May of 2007, Ms. Russell effectively manages all aspects of the clinic’s financial and human resources, ensures adherence to policies and standard operating procedures while assuring quality, efficiency, productivity, patient satisfaction and compliance with State and Federal regulations. In addition, Ms. Russell is competent in public relations, representing TCDC at numerous public speaking opportunities and building partnerships with our collaborating agencies.
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Alexandra Chamberlain – Development Director
My family chose to return to the Central Coast 15 years ago. Raising our two children and a growing “farm”, it doesn’t get much better than SLO County. I am so fortunate to do what I love, champion and advocate for local kids with a first rate non-profit. I joined TCDC in 2017 with hefty goals. The patients, staff, board and community support make TCDC a special place to work and connect the needs of our community with necessary pediatric oral health care.
I look forward to meeting more community members at our events and helping our most important residents- kids in our community.
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