Dental School to Practice Ownership in Under 2 Years: ADA Practice Transitions Makes Perfect Match


Today, we’re thrilled to update one of the very first success stories for ADA Practice TransitionsTM

Back in 2019, Dr. Joe Thibodeau was beginning to think about slowing down and selling his practice. But he wanted to ensure the patients in his Lincoln, Maine practice would be cared for long after he left. 

“As busy as this office is, slowing down meant putting a lot of patients off,” Dr. Thibodeau says. “I felt I couldn’t do that.”

After striking out with a practice management company, he turned to ADA Practice Transitions. He created a free profile that articulated his style of dentistry, his timeline, and his goals. 


Watch the video: Dr. Sciolino and Dr. Thibodeau

“The big companies, you pay a big chunk of money off the bat just to get the process started,” Dr. Thibodeau says. “That’s difficult to swallow. I don’t think I got my money’s worth – I did not get one hit, and I had to contact the company or else I did not hear from them.”

Meanwhile, Kristen Sciolino was beginning to job hunt during her D4 year at the University of New England. However, she wasn’t just looking for a first job; rather, she wanted to find a place where she could build a career and eventually buy out the owner. When she heard about ADA Practice Transitions through an on-campus event, she created a profile that showcased her goals and desire to live in a small town. 

ADA Practice Transitions matched the pair based on shared goals and a similar approach to dentistry. The two hit it off right away.

“We really meshed from the start, and it felt very easy,” Dr. Sciolino says, noting she could immediately see herself working in the practice. “Personalities vary significantly, as well as ideas on how to practice,” she explains. “ADAPT isn’t just matching you with an area. It’s matching you with a person, a practice, and a mindset, so you’re not going into a situation where you and your potential boss or coworker don’t mesh.”

The two came to an agreement: Dr. Sciolino would begin working for Dr. Thibodeau after her spring 2020 graduation, then buy out the practice after three years.

Things went so well that the two accelerated the timeline. Dr. Thibodeau says, “I came to her about a year and a half later and said to her, ‘You know, Kristen, you’re doing a super job. I’m ready any time.’ And she said, ‘So am I.’”

Dr. Sciolino adds with a laugh, “If I waited until it didn’t scare me, I wouldn’t do it.”

So as of April 2022, less than two years after graduation, Dr. Sciolino officially bought the Lincoln Smiles practice. 

Throughout the process, the ADA Practice Transitions team worked with both doctors to ensure a smooth transition. 

Dr. Sciolino explains, “ADAPT had a whole kind of manual on common questions, common problems. That really helped guide us through the transition. I felt very supported throughout the process.”

Today, Dr. Thibodeau is easing into retirement by working part time. Dr. Sciolino is thrilled to own her own practice so soon after graduating. “I was hopeful that I would own a practice soon after graduating,” she says, “but I never thought it would be within the first year and a half to two years.”

If you’ve ever considered buying, you can! ADA Practice Transitions can help you through the process just like we did for our Lincoln Smiles pair. Create your profile now to tell us your goals and preferences, then we’ll help you find the right practice for you. 

Create Your Free Profile

See also: 5 Financial Must-Dos Before Buying a Dental Practice 

Topics: transition tales, videos


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