A CO-FOUNDER OF Cedar Walk Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Charlotte, North Carolina, and a mem-ber of the Incisal Edge 40 Under 40 in 2013, Dr. Yelena Brikina passed away on Christmas Day while vacationing in Costa Rica. She is survived by her husband, Dr. Prashant Rao, with whom she opened Cedar Walk in 2008—and who appeared alongside her in the

40 Under 40 package in our pages eight years ago—and their two daughters, Jacqueline and Maya Rao.

Since its founding, Cedar Walk has grown into a practice with one other associate dentist, an endodontist, four hygienists, three administrators and five assistants.

Dentistry was her profession, but Dr. Brikina’s true love was the outdoors. Nothing gave her more joy than hikes, bike rides, camping in nature or tending to her garden. Her husband and their practice will continue to honor Dr. Brikina’s commitment to excellence and compassion for all their patients.