Graduated with an Associate in Applied Science degree in Dental Hygiene in 1976 from Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, Tx.; a Bachelor ‘s degree in Occupational Education in 1979 from Corpus Christi State University in Corpus Christi, Tx. and a Master’s of Science degree in Educational Technology in 2008 from Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi, Tx.
Worked as a clinical hygienist in private general practices and periodontic practices from 1976 – 2006. Adjunct Dental Hygiene instructor from 1996 – 2006 at Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, Tx. Full-time tenure track Dental Hygiene instructor from 2006 – 2019 at Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, Tx. Retired as Associate Professor of Dental Hygiene in Dec. 2019. Served from 2010- 2012 as the Texas Dental Hygiene Educators’ Association or TDHEA (now the Dental Hygiene Educators of Texas or DHET) secretary and as TDHEA president from 2012 – 2013.
Active member of ADHA and served on the TDHA Board from 2003 to present as 1st and 2nd Vice-president, President- elect and now current TDHA President and on various committees. Served as TDHA delegate to ADHA in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Also, served in all component officer positions and various committees chair and as component delegate to the TDHA board from 2003 – 2017.
I have been very active throughout the years in my church as Director of Religious Education, Facilitator of Safe Environment Classes with the Diocese of Corpus Christi, as well as served, in various capacities in the diocese and in my local church. Have also participated in various community events including dental throughout the years.
I have been married to Dan for 43 years; have two daughters, Mary Lyn and Elizabeth; a son-in-law, Matt, Mary Lynn’s husband who together have two sons, Noah and Isaac; and my only son, John. All the loves of my life! I love my faith, all things dental hygiene, gardening and historical romance novels.
Janessa Bock, RDH
Janessa was born and raised in a small Kansas town. She graduated in 2007 from Amarillo College with an Associate of Science degree in Dental Hygiene, as well as in 2005 from Cottey College with an Associate of Science degree in Biology.
Janessa is a Past President of the Greater Houston Dental Hygienists' Association and has held many positions in her local component. Janessa is on serving her third term as an ADHA District IX Delegate. She was honored to be included in the ADHA Unleashing Your Potential class of 2017.
Janessa resides currently in Sugar Land with her husband, Nathan of 10 years and their 2 daughters, Olivia and Cora. Janessa enjoys volunteering, watching baseball, football and spending time with her family. She is a huge fan of the Kansas City Chiefs and Kansas City Royals!
Connie Groves, RDH, BS
Immediate Past President
I attended The Ohio State University where I received my Bachelor of Science degree in Education along with my Dental Hygiene degree. I remained in Columbus after graduating, met my husband Jonathan Witt (at a Varuca Salt Concert) and we married in the fall of 2000. We still love live music and enjoy going to small venue concerts and attend Austin City Limits Festival every year.
We are also avid outdoors people. We do a great deal of long-distance cycling and our vacations are usually center around hiking. One of our goals is to visit and hike in every national park in the country.
To be a part of the hygiene association is to feel a part of something larger. It calls on a different part of yourself. It’s about touching the lives of others, making an impact on changing the status quo. There is no stronger force than a group of people with a common goal. By ourselves we may not be able to accomplish that goal. As a group, there is no limit to what we can do together.
Mercedes Mendoza, RDH, BA
Mercedes graduated with her Associate’s degree in dental hygiene from Concorde Career College in 2013. She also graduated from St. Mary’s University in 2009 with a Bachelor’ in English & Communication Arts. Mercedes’ past positions for her component have included Secretary, Trustee, Probe & Explorer Editor, and IOH Bowl-A-Thon Chair.
Mercedes works full time at a community health clinic. She also moonlights an occasional Saturday in a private practice office.
She loves to travel to places she has not been before, live music, and is an avid foodie. Mercedes is a San Antonio Spurs season ticket holder, she is a die hard fan.
Cathy Nobles, RDH, OM
Cathy recently retired from being a clinical hygienist. She loves to work out at the gym, ride bikes on the beautiful trails in Plano and work in her native yard. Her and her husband, Dave, volunteer with Central Texas Dachshund Rescue and have just found a new furever home for their 20th foster dog. Cathy has been a member of ADHA since 1999, and feels as though it is very important to belong to your professional organization in order to keep informed what is happening with licensure in dental hygiene and have a voice for change in the public health and education of patients.
Carli Smith, RDH, BS
Carli Smith, the new 2019-2020 TDHA Secretary lives and works in North Dallas. She is an active member of the Greater Collin Dental Hygienists’ Association. She works 5 days a week- 4 days in a general family private practice, and one day in a mobile public health job. Carli has been serving on the TDHA board for the last two years as Trustee for Greater Collin. Carli has been married to her high school sweetheart Jason for almost 15 years, and they have a 13 year old daughter Ashlynn. She is also a doting mother to her two canine fur babies- Scooby (5) and Daisy (14.5). Carli describes herself as a “wealth of useless knowledge” being a self-professed pop culture junkie. Some of her varied loves and interests (aside from her career in Dental Hygiene and her family) are: horror movies, black coffee, avocado toast, collecting Fiestaware china, classic rock music, PBS, and Podcasts.
Christina Horton, RDH, BSDH
Student Affairs Director
Christina has practiced as a dental hygienist since graduating from Tyler Junior College in 2005. The first 4 years of her career she worked solely in private practice until 2008 when she began working additionally in public health. In 2011, Christina began teaching at her alma mater as adjunct clinical faculty. In 2014 her 3 passions were incorporated into one position as the dental hygienist for the University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler creating a program integrating oral health, medical practitioners and education. She earned a Bachelors of Science degree in Dental Hygiene from Texas Woman's University in 2015. Christina currently serves as the Chair of the East Texas component as well as the TDHA Community Chair. She has served as the SCADHA adviser for TJC since 2014. Christina has been married to her husband, Brian for 16 years and together they have a son, Lucas and a daughter, Tatum. She loves traveling, cooking, spending time at her kids' sporting events and volunteering in her community.
Monna Carpenter-Barin, RDH
Speaker of the House
Monna has always looked to support the TDHA in any way she can. She has recently taken on the task as Professional Development Director until a new director is elected in 2020. This is not a new position for Monna. She previously served in the Professional Development Director position before and is also a past TDHA President. She hopes to continue the program in the direction that Lynda has already begun.
Shawna Mendel, RDH, BSDH
Shawna graduated from The University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston in 2016, where she received her BSDH. She served as Vice President for her class her senior year as well as Vice President for Student’s with America’s Toothfairy club. She has served as served as a delegate with her component Greater Houston for the past three years and this year she will have the opportunity to serve as a District IX delegate and represent Texas at ADHA Annual Conference. Shawna is currently the 2nd Vice President and Newsletter chair for her component. Shawna has been with her husband for 11 years and has two teenage boys (17 and 19). She started playing the piano at 8 and the cello at 12. She continues to play the cello and is currently a member of the Kingwood Pops, where she also plays with her boys (who play the cello also). She teaches private cello lessons and loves being able to help new musicians grow!
LeeAnn Winkler, RDH, BSDH
LeeAnn Winkler, RDH, BSDH has been a practicing clinical dental hygienist since graduating from Baylor College of Dentistry's Caruth School of Dental Hygiene where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in dental hygiene. LeeAnn has volunteered in many capacities in her life, including various positions in PTA, with the Mesquite Citizen's Police Academy Alumni Association, and as President of the University of North Texas Parent Association. She is currently the President of the Texas Dental Hygienists' Association and the Immediate Past President of the Dallas Dental Hygienists' Society. She has held many positions in the association including serving as an ADHA delegate. LeeAnn contributes her professional growth to the support of her peers, friends, and family. She is married to her husband, Terry, and they have one daughter Shannon. LeeAnn is an avid reader and loves to do crafts. Many of her creations have helped to raise money for TDHA, IOH, and Tex HyPAC.
Amber Lovatos, RDH, BSDH
Amber is a 2013 graduate of the University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston. She is the Clinical Director at TOMAGWA. She was awarded the Texas Dental Hygienists Future Leader Award, the ADEA Crest Oral-B Scholarship for Dental Hygienist Students Pursuing Academic Careers, and the ADHA IOH Irene Woodall Graduate Scholarship. Amber Lovatos holds various leadership positions, including serving as a Texas Dental Hygienists' Association Membership Director and Greater Houston Dental Hygienists’ Association’s President.
Cindie Pierce, RDH
Professional Development Director
Cindie has been practicing dental hygiene for over twenty years. She has had the opportunity to work in private practice for 23 years in four offices: in McAllen, Dripping Springs, a great group practice in Austin, and Fort Worth.
Cindie has had the opportunity to serve on the state and local levels in several areas. With positions on many councils, as well as the president position, just to list a few: membership, student affairs council, annual sessions council, governmental affairs council.
An active member in her church, she enjoys reading scriptures on Sunday's, teaching children in 1st and 2nd grades, and assisting in vacation bible school. In her free time, Cindie enjoys reading, sewing, cross stitching, and spending time with my family and friends. Cindie has been married for over 28 years to Tim, a great husband who understands what it means to be involved in your profession. He supports Cindie's decisions to be active in her association. Together they have one daughter, Kaitlyn, who is in her senior year at Oklahoma State University, studying Animal Science.
Melissa Vetter, RDH
Melissa received her Associate of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene from Austin Community College in 2016. She also holds a Bachelors of Arts in English from the University of Southern California. Her passion lies in community outreach and recently started an adjunct faculty position at Austin Community College as lab faculty for their community courses. As an avid member of ADHA at both the local and state level, she hopes to provide resources for local components on how to organize community events while changing systemic issues in dental care in the US from a grassroots level. Her hobbies include playing viola in local chamber groups, walking her two dogs, knitting, attending film festivals, and playing board games with friends.
Vincent Nguyen, RDH BSDH
Vincent has practiced as a dental hygienist since graduating at the end of 2017 and is currently practicing in the Dallas area. During this time, he attended Texas Woman’s University where he has completed his Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene. Vincent was given the opportunity to serve as trustee for the Greater Collin Dental Hygienists’ Association. His hobbies include fishing and playing with his two shibas Yuki and Tobi.
Kayla Golden, RDH, BSDH
I grew up in Dayton, Tex but moved to East Texas in 2001. I graduated from Tyler Junior College in 2005 with my Associate of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene, then again in 2018 with my BSDH. I love working in clinical hygiene. I’ve been with my dentist since his day 1 in private practice. The relationships I have made with my patients over the past years is priceless! Speaking of relationships, my dentist introduced me to my husband! We have been married since 2009 & live in Elysian Fields with our 2 wonderful daughters! I can’t wait to serve East Texas as their Trustee.
Sarabeth Ballard, RDH
Sarabeth Ballard, RDH is the Greater Fort Worth Trustee. This is her second year serving on the board as trustee and is currently on the Annual Session Planning committee. She has previously served as a delegate for Greater Fort Worth and has a passion for legislation and open communication with Dentists about the future of dental hygiene in Texas.
Sarabeth has been in the dental field for 14 years and lives on a ranch near Fort Worth with her husband of 11 years.
Alisha Bell, RDH, BSDH
I am the trustee for the North Texas Dental Hygienist's Association. I have been a practicing hygienist for 13 years, and have practiced in general and pediatric dentistry. I have been an active member in our ADHA my entire career. I have held several positions in my local component from board member to President. I am thrilled to serve as our Trustee and keep my local component informed on all the important on-goings at the state level. I additionally love that being active in our organization has allowed me to meet some the best hygienists across the state that I now call friends.
Helene Picard-Sanchez, RDH
I have been practicing hygiene for over 30 years- also am a CPR instructor, massage therapist and I am an independent professional educator for Waterpik!
Marque Mathis, RDH, MS
Marque’ B. Mathis, RDH, MS, is a fulltime professor in the Dental Hygiene Department at Blinn College, Bryan, Texas. Marque’ teaches oral, embryology, head and neck anatomy, general and dental nutrition, pre-clinic, first- and second-year clinic, and dental materials. She is a SCADHA Advisor (Student Chapter of the American Dental Hygienist Association). She is treasurer and trustee for the Brazos Valley Dental Hygienist Association, as well as a board member the Texas Dental Hygienist Association. She is a CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) instructor. She is also very involved in her church and community. She loves and spoils her grandchildren.
Angela Do, RDH, MEd
Angela Do graduated in 2015 from the University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston with a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene. She believes education is the core of the profession so she went on to get her Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction for Health Science Educators from the University of Houston in 2019. She currently practices and is an assistant office manager at a private pediatric office. She served as secretary of the Greater Houston Dental Hygienists’ for three years and is currently President-Elect and Trustee for the component. Angela lives in Houston, TX with her husband, 20 month old son, and Stitch, her Pomeranian shadow.
Brittany Johnson, RDH, BS
Brittany Johnson, a Laredo native, earned a Bachelor of Science: Biology from Texas A&M International University in 2012. She obtained an Associate in Applied Science from Coastal Bend College, Beeville, Texas in 2016. Brittany served as, not only SCADHA student delegate, but was chosen to represent ADHA 2015 Student Delegate for District IX. Currently, in addition to her full-time dental hygiene position at Sabal Dental, Brittany is serving as Vice President of Corpus Christi Dental Hygienists Association. Brittany believes dental hygiene is a dynamic profession, which allows for life-long learning. She looks forward to working with members to grow the Dental Hygiene profession and expand scope of practice. Brittany enjoys traveling, spending time with her Mother, puppy, boyfriend and family. During her time off she enjoys working out and practicing yoga.
Kassandra Bowie graduated from Tyler Junior College with an Associates of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene in 2002. She later received her Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene from Northern Arizona University in 2013. She has served as secretary and a delegate for the Dallas Dental Hygienists’ Association since 2018. She currently works in a private dental office in Crandall, Texas. When she is not helping people improve their smiles, she enjoys reading and spending time with her husband and three children.
Melissa Terry, RDH
Melissa lives in Copperas Cove and has been a clinical dental hygienist for over fourteen years. She currently works three days a week in a pediatric dental office and fills in as a guest hygienist at other offices several days a month. She graduated from Lamar Institute of Technology with an Associates of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene in 2005 and is currently completing the University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston online BSDH program. Melissa has served as Trustee for Central Texas component since January 2020. She enjoys bringing information from the state level to the local level and meeting local members. She has been married for 22 years to her high school sweetheart, Jeremy and has three children, two boys and one girl, two dogs, a cat and chinchilla. In addition to spending free time with her family, she enjoys traveling, listening to podcasts, home improvement projects and attending her kid’s sport events.