This year has been a challenge like no other. Yet our 40 Under 40 class is better than ever— and they all help point the way forward.

TEN YEARS OF HONORING America’s best and brightest young dentists in our annual 40 Under 40 issue of Incisal Edge have taught us a lot not only about the future of dentistry, but also about Benco Dental’s reason for being as a company.

For starters, about the only thing our honorees have in common—aside from being dentists, of course—is a strong desire to challenge the status quo. Their passions, dreams and visions of success are unique, ever-changing and often ignited by forces far afield from dentistry. Trailblazers like these tend to defy labels and take little for granted except scientific fact. As a result, they challenge all of us at Benco Dental to continually provide innovative new solutions for all aspects of oral health care, and it makes us a better, more engaged and inspired company every day.

While we’re delighted to present the most diverse 40 Under 40 class ever, our judges agree that it’s still not quite enough. Like most problems, lack of diversity in dentistry offers no simple answers. That’s why we’re committing to doing something about it. Right now, our Benco Family Foundation is strategizing scholarship opportunities for underrepresented students and designing research we believe will make a measurable difference. It’s not just the right thing to do; it’s part of who we are, and central to our mission of Driving Dentistry Forward.

Despite dentistry’s diversity problem, though—to say nothing of the rising cost of education and, now, a pandemic—our class of 2020 honorees is larger than ever. The number of entries we receive each year has ballooned to the point where, in 2019, we split the list into two categories. We now recognize 80 luminaries in all: 40 outstanding general dentists and 40 remarkable specialists. Once again, their relentless optimism, coupled with a steady determination to unlock opportunity in difficult times, is perhaps the most compelling proof that dentistry will always face problems head-on and come out stronger. We need that now more than ever.

As you can see, Incisal Edge is changing as a magazine to help you get an edge—and keep it. We still believe dentistry isn’t just a profession, it’s a lifestyle. But in a world where drastic change is becoming the rule rather than the occasional exception, we want Incisal Edge to play a pivotal role in helping you respond decisively to dentistry’s fast-changing landscape with smart advice, unique insights and journalism you won’t find anywhere else.

Congratulations to 2020’s 40 Under 40 class. Amid all the difficulties and dark tragedies of this year none of us will ever be able to forget, your accomplishments shine even brighter.


P.S.: Do you have big career plans this year? Please make the acquaintance of Incisal Edge columnist Dr. Jim Clark. As Benco Dental’s Head of Practice Transitions, he’s here to help personally guide you through practice sales or acquisitions, hiring, partnership formation and other important moves in which successful outcomes are critical.