LUSK – Richard Jones, D.D.S., and Judy Jones celebrated 39 years of marriage on June 19. Fittingly, they celebrated the milestone in their Lusk dental practice, where Judy works as the office manager and their daughter, Emily, is the dental assistant.
Before moving their practice to Lusk in January, the family lived and worked in Laramie. After putting three daughters through the University of Wyoming, Richard and Judy were ready to settle down somewhere outside of the “college atmosphere.”
Richard said he downscaled his practice from five operatory chairs to two in an effort to “slow down.
“Our goal is to interact with patients,” Richard said. “When you’re in a fast-paced conveyor-belt dentistry where you need to hit a certain amount of income, you don’t have time to sit and chat, and we like that here.”
The story of how the Jones family moved to Lusk is a funny one, Judy said. Driving from Laramie to Minnesota to see her family, Judy would drive through the Black Hills and “the coolest little town” called Lusk. Talking with a patient in Laramie, she learned there were no dental practices in, of all places, Lusk.
“Something clicked, it just worked,” Judy said. “We’re very happy and hopefully the Luskites are just as pleased as we are.”
Richard, who used to be a geologist and geophysicist in the oil industry, said he is glad he no longer works in solitude for a big corporation. He prefers being a dentist, working independently and around patients each day. Before moving further west, he went to dental school in Chicago and Indianapolis.
Moving from city to city, the Jones family has always worked in the office together. But this is the first time it’s been just the three of them.
At times, it’s difficult to separate the roles of family members and coworkers, but Emily said she “wouldn’t have it any other way.
“Under a good doctor and a good front desk who can answer any insurance question, every patient that leaves his place leaves happy as a clam,” Emily said. “Seeing that is a motivator. This is a network that works, this family business works.”
“I enjoy having them around because they’re people I can count on,” Richard added.
Richard Jones, D.D.S., is located on South Ballancee Avenue in Lusk.