THE LUCY HOBBS PROJECT isn’t just for the dental industry. At Benco Dental, we celebrate those associates who have gone above and beyond to drive change and deliver results in their territory, region and community. Each year, we select one female and one male associate who have blazed a path for others and made a difference.

BENCO DENTAL’S Lucy Hobbs Project turns 4 years old this summer, but by Threasa Liddell’s standards, that’s barely out of the crib. For the past decade, Liddell, Territory Representative for the Midwest Region, has partnered with a dental laboratory near her Novi, Michigan, headquarters for an annual Women in Dentistry symposium that attracts some 300 attendees. More recently, she has coordinated with a local dental society to host events at which female doctors celebrate the life and achievements of Lucy Hobbs.

“I know a lot of female doctors who have gotten out of school in the last five or 10 years who want to become business owners,” says Liddell, who this July will have been with Benco Dental for 16 years. “In the past, a lot wanted to be associates, but more and more, women are wanting to take on leadership roles.”

To that end, she urges Benco staff and practitioners across the country to take up Hobbs’s mantle. “Regular events in every region are the only way we’re going to spread the word and make everyone understand the importance of networking to female doctors,” she says. “Pull in people not in dentistry as well — successful women in leadership roles. If more regions get involved, that’ll make it more of a national thing than just in pockets.”

It’ll be worth it, Liddell adds, to honor the sheer scope of what Hobbs accomplished. “I can’t even imagine,” she says. “It’d be like being a territory rep starting with zero in sales and 100 percent commission, where no is not an option. You’d fight to not let anything get in your way. It just blows my mind that she was able to do what she did.” A century and a half later, Liddell is doing her part, and then some, to keep that proud tradition alive.