How many people can actually say they knew at the young age of 5 years old what they wanted to be when they grew up? Not many, right? Call it an intuitive sense or heightened connection at a young age but I actually “knew” I wanted to be a Dentist way back then EVEN when I didn’t know what a Dentist was! It was a defining moment then when I pulled out my first tooth and said “I want to be a Dentist.” Go figure!
But I am grateful beyond words that I followed that path to help change lives. Growing up in a very altruistic, philanthropic household where my parents were always modeling the behavior and mindset that giving back and serving others was important; that became a mainstay in the fabric of our family’s values.
My father, an accountant by trade, was very active in his religious and social communities for decades. He was a man of integrity and always led by example. The legacy continues with all of his children contributing back to their communities on many levels. My mother kept herself busy with her needlepoint store in the neighborhood. So you can imagine how that value system fed my intuitive interest in helping people lead healthy lives.
It turned out that Dentistry became that catalyst for change helping me demonstrate my passion for serving people. I have always felt the mouth was more important to the body then we knew. Through the years of education, experience and being mentored – today’s science and innovation proves this all the time. This is the core belief that set the tone for my 30 year career in Oral Systemic Health (the holistic connection linking the mouth with the wellness of the body). My personal life is congruent with this platform where I lead an active life and sustain a healthy diet and lifestyle. Making a difference in the lives of those I touch is a legacy I also set for my children (two young men I am deeply proud of) to carry on the Engel torch.
My family legacy carries over into my team. As an office we are proud to give back to the community. Every year we participate in the Halloween Candy buyback program and we raise funds locally and nationally through the annual Smiles for Life program hosted by the national Crown Council organization. The YMCA after school programs is the beneficiary of those local efforts. I also enjoy volunteering education and dental care for the women at the Brighter Future program hosted by the Hollywood YMCA. And, I am a proud member of the Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce where I sit on the Board of Directors, an active member of the West Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and I serve on the Board of Directors for the Hollywood YMCA.
A native of Southern California, Dr. Engel graduated from the University of the Pacific School of Dentistry in San Francisco in 1982. He has also completed a mini residency in Esthetic Dentistry from Esthetic Professionals as well as many other areas of dentistry. Besides being a member of the American Dental Association, the California Dental Association and the Los Angeles Dental Society, Dr. Engel is a proud member of the World Congress of Minimally Invasive Dentistry, an organization that promotes a style of dentistry that respects the health, function and aesthetics of oral tissue by preventing disease from occurring or intercepting its progress with minimal tissue loss. In 2012 Dr. Engel was awarded the Clinician of the Year by the WCMID. Dr. Engel is also a member of the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health and the International Association of Ozone in Health.