40 UNDER 40 HONOREES

Rita Y. Chuang

  • Torrance, California
  • Specialty

Age:

38

Name of Practice:

Breeze Orthodontics

Specialty:

Orthodontics and Invisalign

Education:

University of Southern California School of Dentistry


Why They Were Nominated

Dr. Chuang is a passionate mentor, college admissions counselor and youth life coach in her community. (She also won the 2018 Woman to Watch Lucy Hobbs Award.) She has partnered with the anti-bullying nonprofit group Smiles Change Lives, and is working to develop a program with the Freedom Writers Foundation to help students in impoverished neighborhoods get the dental care they need.

Why They Became a Dentist

“To help adolescents who are embarrassed by their smiles discover their true smiles and, in the process, become their biggest empowerment coach and cheerleader.”

Inspiration

“My father, who grew up in a poor village in Taiwan with limited resources. He was the first person in his village to graduate from high school and attend college and graduate school.”

Tool They Can’t Live Without

“My Vatech Green CT with low radiation, which allows me to visualize and be able to [offer] comprehensive treatment plans.”

Most Memorable Patient

A 64-year-old woman suffering from snoring and sleep apnea. “Her physician referred her to me to make her an oral sleep appliance, which helped her snoring to subside. She was so grateful that the next time she came into my office, she gave me the biggest hug and shared with me that not only did I save her life, I also saved her relationship with her boyfriend.”

Something People Don’t Know

“I’m a first-generation immigrant who moved to the U.S. from Taiwan at age 10. Through hard work,
I mastered the language and was admitted to top institutions, including two Ivy league schools, as well as medical and dental schools.”