Dr. Dane Smith is a nationally recognized business leader in the field of health care and is the CEO of The Work of Life. The Work of Life represents the culmination of his efforts to create peace in the world.
Dr. Smith began his career as an oral surgeon in North Bend, Oregon. He used innovative techniques to build his successful practice into an extraordinary one. He then crafted and executed an original plan to sell the business by age 55 and solidify its future success under a new owner.
After leaving fulltime surgery, Dane turned his attention to finding innovative ways of addressing needs he had observed over the years. In 1995, he headed a management committee that founded South Coast Dental Services, making dental insurance available to a broad spectrum of Oregonians on the South Coast. Between 1995 and 2014 South Coast Dental Services became Advantage Dental. In 2009, he and his colleagues sold the commercial dental insurance business and then built a chain of 32 dental practices throughout Oregon to provide services to an underserved population while generating a sustainable profit. Integral to the new business was the provision of affordable financing for expensive dental work. His efforts have enabled thousands of Oregonians to obtain quality dental care, in many cases, for the first time.
In 2013, Dr. Smith and the leadership of Advantage Dental successfully lobbied state government to get dental care included in health care for low income residents. They co-wrote legislation incorporating dental care into the Oregon Health Plan as part of the Affordable Care Act.
Dane has volunteered with Medical Teams International, serving on their medical van in rural Oregon. He volunteered his oral surgery skills in Bosnia from 2001 to 2007 and La Paz Mexico from 2001 to 2011.
In 2012, Dane created Cavity-Free Kids in Coos and Curry Counties, with a long-term goal that no one had thought possible: that in 12 years, 100% of seniors in the two counties would graduate without evidence of decay. His program includes the education and treatment of women and mothers of pre-schoolers and the provision of dental care to children in elementary schools. He has successfully enrolled medical professionals and citizens throughout the Southwest Oregon community in this ongoing effort. His goal has been to replace the commonly held belief that cavities are a natural part of childhood, with an understanding that we know how to prevent cavities, we just need to DO IT.
In 2001, Dane organized events for the Season for Non-Violence in Southwest Oregon. He brought Arun Ghandi, grandson of Mahatma Ghandi, to the area to speak and undertook his own Walk for Peace, walking from Brookings to Coos Bay over a one week period.
Dr. Smith currently serves as vice president of Rotary International’s Coos Bay-North Bend chapter. He is also on the board of Western Oregon Advanced Health or WOAH, and continues to serve on the Advantage Dental board of directors.
Dane is a writer and poet and has written ten books (Products Link). He has been a contributor to Jack Canfield’s “Chicken Soup for the Soul” series.
Dr. Smith is now committed to teaching others what has taken him decades to learn; his every endeavor is grounded in his mission to serve his community as a Peacemaker.