Theresa McCarterTheresa’s desire to speak in front of people started at an early age. Being the youngest of eleven (11) children, she had something to say and wasn’t afraid to make her voice noticed by all. Theresa has had a life before entering the world of Dental Hygiene, and she feels that this has given her the wisdom, humor and practical approach to this career and her professional speaking career.

Theresa worked as a Pharmacy Technician for a number of years, and she was encouraged to go to pharmacy school, but she resisted because it didn’t offer enough variety. Theresa ventured into the medical field and began running the computer system of a large medical practice and learned the world of coding and medical transcription, but this also had its limitations on excitement and advancement. She then had the opportunity to go into business, where she ran a TPN and Enteral Feeding, Oxygen and Medical Equipment Company. This experience gave her the knowledge of human resources, accounting and all the headaches that go along with owning your own business. This venture was also not for her because it was painful to see so many people terminally ill whom she had to charge for services that were not covered by their insurance. It wasn’t for her, and she subsequently sold her portion of the business.

Theresa had been encouraged by her friend and dentist to go into Dental Hygiene, but she had resisted that idea for a number of years. She finally decided that she would give this career a try and entered the Dental Hygiene Program at Cabrillo College. It was a challenging and exciting experience, but most importantly, it was a career that “fit like a glove.” Theresa continued her education and attended Loma Linda University for her BS in Dental Hygiene. Theresa has her license in four states and continues to work as a clinical hygienist in California and Alaska. She is a part time clinical instructor at Carrington College in San Jose, California which is a good blend of education and hygiene.

Theresa has given presentations across the state of California about many topics related to Dental Hygiene and Practice Management. She is a community health speaker for the Monterey Bay Dental Society, and she is an active member of the National Speakers Association. Theresa also serves as a substitute teacher in the city of Salinas, which gives her the excitement, and variety that she seeks in her life. She believes that holding the attention of 28 Kindergartners for five hours is much more challenging than speaking to a group of 300 dental professionals. She can also squeeze in a little tooth-brushing lesson with the kiddos while she is there.

Theresa has been married to her husband Mark for 35 years and has two grown children Jake and Elise who reside in California and Alaska. When she is not working as a clinical hygienist or doing presentations across the country, she enjoys fishing, camping and visiting her family.