Volunteer Spotlight

volunteer-spotlight-joeseph-sheaVolunteer Hero Salute!

Dr. Joseph Shea – A DDS Hero!

Donated Dental Services (DDS) volunteer Dr. Joseph Shea truly knows the value of volunteering. Here’s why:

Seventeen-year-old Katie suffered from Oculodentodigital Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder that affects the teeth, eyes and fingers. Despite deep cleanings every six months, Katie’s teeth began crumbling to pieces. Her many surgeries, including the repair of a cleft palate and a hole in the roof of her mouth, began when Katie was six months old. Her parents couldn’t afford the care she needed and struggled to find a dentist who understood her condition and was willing to help.

Enter Dr. Joseph Shea, a St. Louis prosthodontist who seated Katie’s 28 temporary crowns the day before a smiling Katie went to prom. Seating the permanent crowns took three dental professionals nearly five hours to complete – and Katie did it all without anesthetic.

We salute Dr. Shea! Since 2008, he has donated more than $101,000 in prosthodontic treatment to people in desperate need of care. Thank you, Dr. Shea!


Now I smile all the time. Dr. Shea is an incredible guy. I don’t know what I would have done without him.

– Katie, DDS Patient


Thanks to the other heroes who helped Katie:

  • Valley Dental Arts, Stillwater, Minnesota, fabricated Katie’s 28 crowns at no charge
  • 3M ESPE donated the material to make the crowns
  • Philips Sonicare contributed a free Sonicare toothrbrush

This page features some of the outstanding donations of DDS volunteers who represent the lifeline in Dental Lifeline Network by rescuing people who desperately need their help.