Meet Our Team
Kristin Pristavec-Hunter, RDH, BS
Kristin Pristavec-Hunter was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. Her first job was working for her childhood dentist as a dental assistant. After earning her degree in dental hygiene from Rio Salado College in Phoenix, Kristin navigated the dental industry. She worked with various doctors and gained insight and experience with cutting-edge tools and processes along the way.
Recognizing a need for both personal and professional growth, Kristin returned to school to earn her bachelor’s degree in Communication. She also served on the board of the Northern Nevada Hygiene Association for six years, including a stint as president.
Kristin was introduced to the Biolase laser at her first dental hygiene position over ten years ago. At the time, Kristin recognized the impact of laser technology in the dental practice, and she decided to become part of the movement promoting laser implementation. She began her serious study of lasers in 2016, following her second standard proficiency course in Reno, Nevada, with the Academy of Laser Dentistry. Today, Kristin provides high-quality CE courses to the dental community, including one specific to lasers and laser training.
In order to provide second-to-none continuing education courses, Kristin completed her Academy of General Dentistry PACE provider approval for accreditation. She has also completed her advanced proficiency from the Academy of Laser Dentistry, a designation awarded after rigorous testing in clinical applications, which involves treating patients and following their periodontal progress.
Kristin is also part of the Academy of Laser Dentistry Speakers bureau, and serves as an active member on both the American Dental Hygiene Association and the Academy of Laser Dentistry.
In addition to her professional pursuits, Kristin enjoys spending time with her family, hiking and being active at her home in Texas.
Maira Velasco, RDH, BS
Maira Velasco, was born and raised in rural Nevada on an alfalfa farm. She grew up in a Spanish speaking household. By the time she was in high school she was well versed in providing translations. One of these translating opportunities took her to the local dentist office, where she became intrigued by the dental vocabulary. That day was the start of Maira’s journey into the dental field. She attended Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno, NV where she obtained her Associate of Science in Dental Hygiene.
While working as a clinical hygienist she felt the need to further her education. She graduated with high honors from the College of Southern Nevada with a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene with an emphasis in Education. Her studies allowed her to return to Truckee Meadows Community College, this time working along her professors from years past. Maira has been an active member of the American Dental Hygienist Association her whole career. She has served on both the local and state levels as a Board of Trustees in varied roles. Maira has also volunteered her skills to national organizations such as Los Medicos Voladores (The Flying Doctors) and more local organizations.
Maira has worked in both single and multi-dentist practices. She has had the opportunity to work alongside dental specialties, further expanding her knowledge. Maira took her first Laser course in 2016 together with her then colleague Kristin Pristavec-Hunter through the Academy of Laser Dentistry. That same year she obtained her National Standard Level Proficiency certification also through the Academy of Laser Dentistry. She has continued her laser training since then. As lead hygienist for her office, she was influential in initiating and implementing lasers into their hygiene department.
Currently, Maira is delighted to once again work with Kristin Pristavec-Hunter, this time as an instructor for her company Dedicated Dental Hygiene. When not working you can find Maira traveling the world and enjoying time with her pets, friends and family.
Working in a variety of settings, Shari Gantz has been a dedicated dental hygiene professional for over 20 years. After graduating from Collin County Community College in 1999 she began her career in a Pediatric Dental office where she currently practices part-time. Her many titles include OSHA Compliance Officer and Marketing Director at this highly successful office. Shari developed an Oral Hygiene Educational curriculum to present at pre-schools and Mothers’ Day Out programs. Over the course of her career, she participated in two dental mission trips to Mexico and practiced as a long-term temp hygienist in general dentistry. In addition, Shari is a Clinical Professor of Dental Hygiene at Dallas College. Beginning her tenure in 2017 she has instructed in the first- and second-year clinics, with specialization in the Perio Clinic.
While training for Laser Certification through Dedicated Dental Hygiene with Kristin, Shari cultivated a keen interest in lasers and in 2022 earned the standard level certification through the Academy of Laser Dentistry.
Shari resides in Birmingham, Alabama with her husband and two large fur babies. She has three adult children and enjoys traveling, meeting weekly with her book club, walking outdoors, and eating out with friends.
Karen Egan, RDH
As a Dedicated Dental Hygiene instructor, Karen will guide you through the educational process of laser therapies, both in lecture and a clinical setting.
Karen began her career in dentistry in 1994 when she received her dental assistant certification and immediately landed a job with a periodontist. The doctor incorporated various lasers into his practice, igniting Karen’s curiosity about their full potential and applications.
Karen graduated from Texas Women’s University in 2003 with a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene and began using Diode lasers on her patients in 2012. Presently, she works for a periodontist and continues to use the laser to aid in healing and promote health.
Karen resides in Frisco, TX with her dog “Gypsy” and teenage daughter, Brooke, that is her “Mini- Me.” She enjoys yoga, reading books on wellness, live music, and going to wineries and draft beer. Karen has been a sponsor of World Vision since 2004 and has volunteered her time to mentor hygiene students.