Meet the Freedom Dr.-Charlotte Team!
Dr. Randall Jones
Meet our Lead Dentist Dr.Jones. Dr. Randall Jones is a native of Columbia, SC and is a graduate of The Medical University of South Carolina's College of Dental Medicine Class of 1998 where he received his Doctor of Dental Medicine Degree. Dr.Jones has had an extensive history as a member of the United States Air Force Dental Corps and moved to Charlotte, NC in 2006. He became Lead Doctor for the Freedom Drive office in June 2008 and has interacted and cared for countless families over the years. Compassionate and comprehensive care in addition to thorough, coherent communication are the pillars for providing the highest level of care possible for patients that choose Smile Starters Freedom as their dental home. Dr. Randy, as he is referred to by patients, spends his free time traveling,enjoying the beach,spending time with family and enjoying almost all foods imaginable.
Meet Alexis, the Office Manager at our Smile Starters Freedom Drive location. Alexis completed the Dental Assisting Program at RCCC in 2006 and began her career as a DAII with Smile Starters in May 2007. During her time as a DAII and then Lead DA, Alexis loved taking care of patients and making sure that each patient had the best dental visit and experience possible. In August of 2019, Alexis became the Office Manager at Smile Starters Freedom Drive. Alexis enjoys interacting with patients and parents upon their arrival and before they leave the office. In her spare time, Alexis enjoys reading,cooking,spending time with family and friends and trips to Target(her favorite store).
Dr. Deidre Horton-Banner
Meet Dr. Deidre Horton-Banner aka "Dr. Deidre". Dr. Horton-Banner joined the Smiles Starters team in 2019. She graduated from North Carolina Central University with a BA in Biology in 1990 and went on to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received her Doctorate of Dental Surgery in 1995. Dr. Deidre spent the first 10 years of her dental career in public health treating children and adults, after which, she spent the next 13 years treating children exclusively. She loves helping patients conquer their fear of the dental office, while hoping to encourage a lifetime of good dental health. Dr. Deidre and her husband enjoy traveling, especially to the beach, watching movies and spending time with family and friends.
Dr. Larry Markel
Meet Dr. Markel. Dr. Larry Markel graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine in 1984 and then completed his General Practice Residency at Lutheran Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY. For over 30 years Dr. Larry took excellent care of both young adults and children in his practice Dentistry for Children/West Side Family Dental Group in NYC. The Foundation of his Dental Practice Philosophy has always been Prevention. Teaching children of all ages about the link between oral health and overall body (systemic) health is what really gets Dr. Larry going.
Dr.Larry studied Cosmetic Dentistry extensively with Dr. Ross Nash (Nash Institute) and is also credentialed to see patients in the OR at Valleygate, Charlotte. Dr. Larry has been with Smile Starters since 2018 applying all his many skills in order to help children achieve their oral health potential and a Lifetime of Healthy Smiles.
Dr. Larry has 3 children with his wife Amy of 27 years. They all love family ski vacations, love traveling, the beach, and fine and healthy dining. The Markel family likes to say though, "if we want to eat really really good food, we cook it ourselves". Dr. Larry is also an avid golfer playing competitively in amateur events around the world.
Lead Dental Assistant
Meet our Lead Dental Assistant Britnie. Britnie Johnson was born and raised in Charlotte,NC. She graduated from Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology High School with a focus on the Medical Program in 2005. Britnie the proud mother of Ja’Niyah who will be attending her alma mater.
Britnie studied and graduated from the Dental Academy of Charlotte in April 2016. She has been with Smile Starters since July 5, 2016. The field of dentistry is her passion and she loves her Smile Starters family. Britnie enjoys working with the children and families and helping to promote good oral hygiene while also allowing them to have a great positive experience with each visit. Britnie's goal is to further her education in order to acquire more knowledge and skills to add to her repertoire.
During her free time, Britnie likes to spend time with her family and friends. She also enjoys taking different trips with her family as well as traveling with her daughter as she is active in competition cheer and dance.