The Winding Road to DES Dental
Shoe shine boy
Al Irey started his first business at age 7. His father was a dentist serving as a missionary at Rider Hospital in Puerto Rico, and young Al realized there was money to be found in shining nurses’ shoes. He negotiated with a local business owner for the contents of his first shoe shine kit – and Al paid him back the very same day. Nurses happily paid the personable lad 10c for black or brown shoes and 25c for gleaming whites. But the true value of his skills were revealed at Navy boot camp, when he was able to provide perfectly shiny shoes in exchange for a tightly made bed and neatly pressed uniform!
Almost a Navy dentist
Al attended college as a pre-dental student, but in Fall 1967 he received his draft notice from the Army. Always one to follow his heart, he enlisted in the Navy, where he received training in dental assisting and hygiene, as well as dental equipment repair.
After leaving the Navy in ‘72, he spent the next three years with two different dental companies, until he became frustrated that so little attention was paid to service. Not satisfied with the status quo – push the customer to the most profitable piece of equipment rather than the right piece of equipment for their business – Al founded Dental Equipment Specialists in 1975.
Decades of Learning and Proud Service
Al is a lifelong learner, and after the Navy trained in several factory schools, including Tuttnauer, Gendex, Sciscan, and Panoramic Corp. His expertise includes new and reconditioned equipment sales, office planning, office moves, equipment customizing, preventive maintenance, equipment repairs, Maryland state X-ray inspection and equipment appraisals.
He has always been committed to enlightened business ownership, sales management and leadership, and has trained with Joe Vitale, Pedram Shojai, Loral Langemeier, Tony Robbins and more.
During his 50 years in the dental field, Al has been honored to volunteer with the Maryland State Dental Association, assessing donated equipment to determine its value. DES Dental has also done repair and reconditioning on equipment destined for dental clinic missions in Haiti, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.
Traci came to DES in 2006 as a temporary employee and became a valuable part of our team. She handles everything from banking and bookkeeping to procurement, shipping, clerical and customer service. Traci is always happy to assist clients with any questions or concerns.
Equipment and Installation Specialist
Steve has more than 20 years experience in the dental repair industry. His factory certifications include Adec technical training; Sirona Xray; CEREC II and III training; Air techniques compressor; vacuum and digital imaging training; and, most recently, Panoramic Corporation digital Panoramic, cephalometric and 3-D imaging. He also has extensive training with Tuttnauer autoclave and RamVac compressor and vacuum training. Steve can also provide our Maryland customers with the Maryland state x-ray inspections that are required by the state. He’s also an excellent resource for office layout and is always happy to give you a complimentary evaluation.
Autoclave Specialist and Shop Repairs
Josh has been in the dental field for 15 years. He learned his craft as a repair technician at SciCan’s national US facility in Pittsburgh. Josh honed his skills on the bench for SciCan, and was then promoted to National Service Manager and Technical Trainer where he served for 8 years. Josh remains widely considered one of the world’s leading experts on SciCan equipment including autoclaves, washers, handpieces and all other products from their line. Since joining D.E.S. in 2017, Josh has been factory trained by the Tuttnauer Corporation at their national facility on Long Island, and has expanded his skillset to all makes and models of autoclave, as well as many other types of equipment in the dental office.
Service, Sales and Installation Specialist
John has 26 years’ experience with industrial equipment installation, repair and preventative maintenance programs as a lead Foreman in the photographic industry. He’s been with DES Dental two decades ago, transferring and expanding his knowledge base, which included training through Kodak and on many specialized pieces of photographic machinery. He then gained supporting education in electrical, electronic, plumbing, welding and many classes in business leadership and administration and expanded his knowledge of dental manufacturers such as Takara Belmont and Tuttunauer USA. He is proud to keep customers’ equipment needs fulfilled in a timely fashion and brings a positive attitude and willingness to “get the job done” for our customers.