Director of Human Resources
The value of a positive standing in the community for any organization cannot be understated, and the commitment of Alicia Jones to personal and professional growth and discovery has been nothing short of an immense asset to the reputation of PracticeWater for the whole of her adult life. A lifelong local, she attended Glenwood High School, going on to earn her Bachelors of Science in Psychology from Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville. Her role as a front desk administrator at Renken Dentistry eventually progressed to all areas of the administrative team, where she served as check-in personnel, insurance coordinator, billing coordinator, auditing organizer, and default IT specialist. Wearing so many hats has allowed Alicia to learn all aspects of the dental office. During her time at Renken Dentistry, she has been pivotal in the revision and implementation of many new systems. This contribution has been a tremendous help in the development of the practice. Her loyalty to the company values, particularly partnering to serve others, meant that she was a favorite job coach to our team member with special needs, Hannah. Hannah relied on Alicia’s guidance as she grew her skills, gained confidence through meaningful employment, and became a treasured part of our team over the course of four years. Alicia’s knowledge, experience, and calm, professional demeanor have been invaluable as she has stepped into the role of Director of Human Resources. She is strongly motivated to help others, and offers support to our offices through recruitment, employee relations, compensation and benefits coordination, training and development practical application, and ensuring that all operational and and human resource policies are in place as an active member of Central Illinois Chapter Society for Human Resource Management . As a member of the executive team, Alicia strives to implement HR practices that benefit our organization through short-term goals and the long-term vision for development. Though her commitment and dedication to her work are exceptional, Alicia does make time to relax with her husband and young son. She enjoys spending their time together playing tennis, biking, traveling with family, and pleasant evenings perfectly accented by a well-deserved glass of wine.
There was no better choice for the Director of the Smile from Within Academy than Lauren Pryor, who was awarded the first Smile From Within Award in August of 2018 after an overwhelming majority election by her fellow team members. Lauren started with Renken Dentistry before she could even vote herself, job shadowing and learning helpful office tasks in her junior year of high school. She continued to participate on the team as she completed her Bachelor of Science at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, coming home during summer and winter breaks while she majored in biological sciences with a minor in chemistry. Lauren truly has an inner peace that makes her the exemplary dental assistant that she has been for nearly a decade. Her mastery of technical procedures, understanding of background processes, patience and creativity as a mentor and educator, and incredibly warm chairside manner all contribute to her irreplaceable value as a member of the practice. Lauren’s commitment to professional growth has continued as she has grown within the company, and she accomplished her long-term goal of becoming a Certified Dental Assistant in 2018. The completion of this certification demonstrates her knowledge-based competency of the national standard of Radiation Health and Safety, Infection Control, and General Chairside Assisting. Additionally, Lauren has been granted the opportunity to attend courses under the International Congress of Oral Implantologists (ICOI), and is an active member of the Association of Dental Implant Auxiliaries (ADIA). Her individual certifications also include special qualifications such as coronal polishing, dental sealant application, and nitrous oxide administration. Lauren has also served as the Implant Coordinator for the office for a number of years, assisting at every stage of the implant process- from scheduling and coordinating with other offices when necessary, to ordering supplies and assisting the dentists during the procedure, to post-operative care for hundreds of patients over the years. She is proficient in assisting the dentists in dozens of specific procedures and is well-versed in using many different equipment modules, from imaging mechanisms to delicate specialized instruments of treatment. These professional accomplishments, as well as Lauren’s personal commitment to encouraging others to be their best selves, are clear examples of why she also functions in the capacity of Dental Assistant Team Leader. Lauren also is passionate about our company values, learning, laughing and growing, which meant she was a favorite job coach to our team member with special needs, Hannah. Lauren encouraged Hannah as she grew her skills, gained confidence through meaningful employment, and became a treasured part of our team for over four years. Though she is clearly an excellent and loyal member of our team, Lauren’s inner smile is widest when she is spending time with her husband and their toddler daughter. They love to cook meals together, play outside, take walks around their charming neighborhood, and spend time with cherished members of their family.
Director of Marketing & Business Development
Business without growth can hardly be defined as business as all, but growth cannot exist in the absence of explosive energy and unwavering enthusiasm. Alexander Strubbe defines these qualities, and is the perfect complement to our team as we continue to grow, explore new ways to partner for dynamic teamwork, and reaffirm our commitment to our values in every community we serve. As a recent addition to PracticeWater, Alex has seamlessly connected to the team as he brings new and innovative objectives to implement in the practice. His education from the University of Texas focused on Business and American Studies majors, and he gained experience as a teaching assistant for the Department of Kinesiology during his time as an undergrad. Additionally, Alex is bilingual in English and Spanish, he holds a license as a Certified Nursing Assistant and is Bank certified through State Farm. His energetic approach to life also lends itself to a commitment to physical health; he holds a first degree black belt in Taekwondo, he has served as the senior instructor for DEFINE Body & Mind, and as lead spin instructor, he used his creativity to develop class structure curriculum for all instructors on an ongoing basis. Alex has certainly applied his educational background to his professional experiences, as his position as Marketing Director & Business Development with our organization is a natural extension of his previous work. Some of these skills include undertaking projects such as creating a set of processes for the optimization of SEO, Analytics, Brand Exposure and Sales that produced exponential growth with previous professional endeavors. His vision for upward trajectory is an asset that we are thrilled to incorporate into our existing commitment to our long-terms goals for development. Alex understands and exemplifies our values, particularly creating a healthy community, and as a lifetime member of the Honor Society, a member of the Austin, Texas Young Men’s Business League, and an involved participant in the non-profit animal rescue, Roman’s Rescue, he honors those values in word and deed. Alex follows his passion to live a life rich with experience by spending his time outside of his professional life enjoying travel, new activities, great friends, and good food and even better wine.
Dr. Joshua Renken
Dr. Joshua Renken, a central Illinois native, attended Eastern Illinois University and then the University of Illinois at Chicago where he received his DDS degree. Following associate work in Chicago, Dr. Renken moved to Springfield and opened his first practice, Renken Dentistry, in 2003.
In his commitment to organized dentistry, Dr. Renken just finished his tenure as 2014-2015 President of the GV Black Dental Society. At a state level, Dr Renken is a member of the communications committee of the Illinois State Dental Society. Dr Renken also holds professional memberships in the Academy of General Dentistry, a Fellow of the International College of Oral Implantologists, and as a member of the Chicago Dental Society and the American Dental Association.
Dr. Renken is deeply dedicated to our community, specifically the success of children and families facing the challenges of developmental and neurological differences. He has been a long time member of the board of The Hope Institute for Children and Families and currently serves the organization as chairman of the board of directors. Renken Dentistry has been a pilot site for Hope’s Vocational Program. This partnership has made it possible for the dental practice to meaningfully employ and support a team member with developmental differences. Dr. Renken is also a member of the Ambassadors of Hope, a volunteer group of business leaders who serve as advocates for The Hope Institute and the children and families it serves. Dr Renken is a member of the Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Chatham Chamber of Commerce, and Local First Springfield. He most recently joined the Young Philanthropists, a group organized by the Community Foundation of the Land of Lincoln.
Over the course of the last five years, Dr. Renken established and owns Renken Properties LLC — a properties company, PracticeWater — a practice management services company, and a second dental practice, schön dental. His web-based patient subscription management platform, Health Assurance Plan, is a member of the Springfield startup incubator “Innovate Springfield“. Dr. Renken most recently added author to his resume, with his first book, “Dr. Fries-With-That“. His goal is to help dental teams create greater health for their patients, team members, and practices.
Dr. Renken and his wife, Leigh, live in Springfield with their four children, Reilly, Miles, Oscar and Lorelai.