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dental careers and practice transitions dental careers and practice transitions

When you ask Dr. Killian how long he plans to work, he’ll only hint at forever.

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Dr. Greg Killian’s passion for dentistry comes from his dedication to science, art and working with his hands and mind.

Dr. Killian took that passion and applied it to a role where for the last 36 years he has led a team and ran a practice centered exclusively on helping people. “That’s dentistry to me,” said Dr. Killian. “Doing things to help people is a decision you will never regret. It is rewarding all day, every day.”

Born in Pennsylvania, a young Greg and his family eventually moved to Wisconsin, and then settled in Iowa.  It was in Iowa where Greg went on to receive his undergraduate degree from Iowa State University and his DDS from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry. It’s also where he met his wife Debra, a native of Wisconsin, and the two have been inseparable for the past 40 years.

As a young child in a large family, Greg developed into a strong, determined and independent person. “With so many brothers and sisters, you are kind of on your own,” joked Dr. Killian. “You learn to be independent and to do things for yourself.”

It was when he graduated in 1978, moved back to Wisconsin and started his practice that his self-reliance proved beneficial. The 1970s were a time when dentists took on a tremendous amount of individual responsibility. “We wore a lot of hats,” said Dr. Killian. “We were dentists, staff managers, accountants, and marketers. You name it. We were doing it all in those days.”

Although the Killians loved Iowa, the move back to Wisconsin was always a goal for them. “We enjoy living in Wisconsin,” says Dr. Killian. “I have always been drawn to the outdoors, and Wisconsin is a playground for outdoor types like us. We have it all here.”

And if anyone needs further proof of Dr. Killian’s dedication to Wisconsin, there is this, “I’m a lifelong fan and Green Bay Packers owner!” he says with a smile. Consider that matter settled.

For nearly 30 years, Dr. Killian led his successful solo practice, expanding his patient base while becoming a staple in the local community. And then in 2008, Dr. Killian brought in a partner, one he likes a lot actually. “That is when my son Brent joined me!” said Dr. Killian.

Since then, the two have continued to build the practice, and have enjoyed the opportunity to work together. “I love working with my son and I plan to continue doing so for a long time to come.”

When Dr. Killian was exploring the concept of transitioning from practice ownership he knew exactly what he needed. “We had several offers to buy our practice,” said Dr. Killian. “But I wanted to keep working with my son and managing our practice together, and I knew that Midwest Dental could help create that ideal situation.”

In 2014, the doctors combined with Midwest Dental. “I regret that I didn’t do this sooner,” said Dr. Killian. “I think it is because you hear stories about losing autonomy, about giving up the reigns to your practice. It doesn’t sound very appealing. But this was not the case with Midwest Dental. When it comes to day-to-day clinical decisions, we are given the latitude to run our practice in the manner we choose.”

Of course there are some changes that Dr. Killian does enjoy.

Doctor, we’ll take care of that for you.
“I love hearing those words! We used to have to do everything ourselves. Now Midwest Dental manages the non-clinical responsibilities for us, while adding support to the clinical side of the practice. It is a tremendous advantage over the way a practice may be traditionally run.”

After over a year with Midwest Dental, Dr. Killian says his staff appreciates partnering with an HR department, insurance gurus, payroll people, computer experts, and a marketing team focused on helping continue to grow the practice.

Previously, if he wanted to take time off it was always difficult. He now sees a future with more time to travel with his retired wife, visit his children and grandchildren, or just go to the cabin. “Personal time is extremely precious to all of us,” said Dr. Killian.

Over the years, Dr. Killian has built a practice dedicated to his patients and staff, and he cares deeply about both. “You won’t get a better deal than at Midwest Dental and it is more than the money. I am talking about what happens after the transition for my staff,” said Dr. Killian. “They now have growth opportunities and benefits that just didn’t exist in our two dentist office.”

Dr. Killian describes the Midwest Dental organization and support model as a big secret that is about to be revealed. “As more baby boomer dentists retire and seek someone to give them a fair and honest value for their business, Midwest Dental will be sought after,” said Dr. Killian. “And for those who want to work a short while or those who want to continue working for a long time before stepping away, Midwest Dental has an extremely desirable vision for their future.”

When you ask Dr. Killian how long he plans to work, he’ll only hint at forever. “It is the old cliché come true,” says Dr. Killian. “If you love what you do you’ll never work another day in your life.”

Dr. Killian continues to lead a life centered on helping his patients by relieving pain, restoring and maintaining their oral health, and creating smiles for patients from ages one to over 100.

As dentistry continues to change and evolve, a Midwest Dental practice allows Dr. Killian and his team to continue moving forward with comfort and security.

About Dr. Killian:
Dr. Killian has been involved in organized dentistry throughout his career. He has served on local and state levels in many capacities, including president of the Dane County Dental Society and at the local and state levels of the Wisconsin Dental Association (WDA) Foundation Relief Committee. Recently, he was recognized by the WDA for serving as the chair of the committee for the past 4 years. He also served on the WDA Public Relations Committee.

Dr. Killian is a member of the ADA, WDA, the Greater Dane Dental Society, the Academy of General Dentistry, the Seattle Study Club and the Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation.

He has been heavily involved in his local community, coaching the athletic teams of his sons and daughter, and supporting organizations dedicated to youth programs in Middleton.

Additionally, he served on the Middleton Baseball Commission, was twice president of the High School Gridiron Club, and a Booster Club Officer.

Many years have been dedicated to volunteering, including serving his church, the Jaycees, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Middleton Police and Fire Commission.

An avid runner, Dr. Killian runs every morning, and several years ago he rode his bike across Death Valley as a fundraiser for juvenile diabetes.

Dr. Killian runs every morning and peddles his road bike whenever possible. Expending energy at a high level keeps him feeling enthusiastic about life – an attitude he carries into his practice every day.