Smile for a Lifetime of Fresno/Clovis Receives $1,000.00 Donation 

 By Valerie Shelton, Editor of Clovis Roundup November 3rd, 2015

Braces are expensive, making it difficult for kids from underprivileged homes to get proper
orthodontia care and confidence that comes from having a camera-ready smile.

This is a fact Mischelle DiCicco, the marketing coordinator for DiCicco Orthodontics in Fresno, knows
too well, so when she won the a grand prize of $1,000 from Kona Ice’s Instagram contest she knew
she wanted to donate the funds to Smile for a Lifetime, a non-profit dedicated to giving braces to kids
whose families are unable to afford them. While DiCicco works for the orthodontist office, she also
wears a second hat as the president of the local chapter of Smile for a Lifetime. While the non-profit
is national, the local Fresno/Clovis chapter of Smile for a Lifetime started in 2011. Since then, 29
children between the ages of 11 and 17 have been given braces through the program. DiCicco
Orthodontics is highly involved with the organization, with all the braces and other orthodontic
appointments for Smile for a Lifetime going through their office.

DiCicco said the local Smile for a Lifetime chapter offers up to 12 scholarships for braces a year to
kids in need. Kids and their families wanting to benefit from the program go through an application
process and the Smile for a Lifetime Board of Directors selects which kids receive the scholarship
for free braces. DiCicco said the kids the board chooses are often very inspirational.
“These kids are treated just like any other patients,” DiCicco said. “They are exceptional kids with
high aspirations, but their teeth aren’t straight and need work so they lack confidence. That
confidence is what they need to help them reach their goals so giving them that better smile boosts
their confidence. That can be life-changing. Having a better smile will impact them for a lifetime.”

Alex King, 15, a freshman at Buchanan High School, is one of a handful of kids from Clovis who
received a braces scholarship through Smile for a Lifetime. King’s cousin’s son is a regular patient
at DiCicco Orthodontics and recommended him for the scholarship. In June, King was interviewed
and then selected for the scholarship and in July, the braces went on. King said he has wanted
braces for a long time but because of the hefty price tag associated with braces, he said he probably
would not have got them if it weren’t for Smile for a Lifetime. “The program is about giving kids a
better smile through braces and having these braces will help me my entire life,” King said.” Having
my teeth fixed will make a big impact on my life. I told my mom I wanted braces because her teeth
are perfect and I wanted that too. My teeth aren’t that bad, but my bottom row is crooked and the
top row is a little uneven. My mom and I have talked about my getting braces for a long time but I
don’t think I would have been able to get them because of the cost so this program has done a lot
for me. I’ve been to two appointments [at DiCicco Orthodontics] so far and the staff is great. It’s
one of my favorite places to go. When my mom says it’s time for my appointment I get excited.
They are so welcoming.”

King will likely have braces until his junior year and while most high school kids may cringe at the
thought of having braces, King embraces his new accessory with pride. “I’m going to love them
however long I have them,” King said. “People think braces are terrible but I love them.” In addition
to helping King with his braces, DiCicco Orthodontics also fitted King for a mouth-piece for 
basketball. His family will still have to pay something toward the mouth-piece, but at a discounted
rate. It’s the little extras like the mouth piece that DiCicco said her $1,000 donation can go toward
helping with, as it’s not enough to fully fund a braces scholarship. It could also go toward extractions
and other procedures that sometimes have to be done in order to facilitate braces.

DiCicco is happy to contribute what she can to Smile for a Lifetime. Winning the Kona Ice contest
gave her a perfect opportunity to give back, she said. “We had a patient appreciation event over
the summer where I took a photo of my granddaughter enjoying a snow cone and Kona Ice saw
and suggested I enter their Instagram giveaway,” DiCicco said.  “All I had to do was post the photo
on Instagram and use a hashtag for Kona Ice so I thought why not? It doesn’t hurt to add a
hashtag and I ended up winning a T-shirt. Then I was told if I took a picture of Sofia in the shirt I
could be entered in the grand prize drawing to win $1,000 for the charity of my choice so I did that
and when I found out I won and I knew I wanted to donate my winnings to Smile for a Lifetime
because it’s near and dear to my heart.”

The Kona Ice National Instagram contest (#CelebrateLife) is designed to highlight someone who is
making an impact in their community. In addition to winning $1,000, DiCicco also won a Kona Ice
community party, which was held outside the DiCicco Orthodontics office on Monday, Oct. 26.
Free Kona snow cones were given to families and friends in attendance.



Dr. Ronald Redmond Receives Prestigious Award




Congratulations to our Board President Dr. W. Ronald Redmond who was presented the Eugene and Pauline Blair AAOF Distinguished Service Award during this year’s AAO national conference by the AAO Foundation. Dr. Robert Bray, former AAOpresident/current S4L member, presented the award. Thank you, Dr. Redmond for all you do in serving others! S4L is proud to have you serve as our Board President. 

Special thanks to the AAO for use of the photo --- Dr. Redmond (left), Dr. Robert Bray (right).  



Nonprofit Gives Deserving Young People Smiles For A Lifetime

Fri July 10, 2015 05:09pm

From left to right: Brandy Lewis, Director of Product Management, Digital Platform at Ormco, Dr. Bart Boulton, Bree Smentkowski, Diana Smentkowski and Janna ParsonageScholarship recipient Bree Smentkowski admires her new smile in the mirror. After her braces were debonded, the Boulton Orthodontics staff presented her with a gift basket full of oral hygiene products and snacks like popcorn and caramel that she can eat now that her braces are off.


Smile for a Lifetime scholarship recipient Bree Smentkowski saw her new smile for the first time after two years of wearing braces at Boulton Orthodontics on Tuesday.

The Smile for a Lifetime Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides free orthodontic treatment to individuals aged 11-18 who demonstrate financial need.

“I was nervous that it would be a lot of work to take care of the braces and it would be difficult and unusual, but everything’s been better than I actually thought it would be,” said Bree Smentkowski, 15.

When the process was complete, Bree Smentkowski not only had a new smile but a new attitude.

“I feel definitely more confident now with my new teeth and more confident in myself with being able to talk to people about it,” Bree Smentkowski said.

Bree Smentkowski’s new smile yielded not only surprise from her but an emotional reaction from her mother.

“I wanted to cry,” said Diana Smentkowski, Bree Smentkowski’s mother. “There’s hope for people who can’t afford braces and they can actually go through the process to get braces for their children when it’s very expensive and long process.”

Scholarship recipients are selected by a panel of board members based on the strength of their application form, essay question answers, and letters of recommendation.

“Orthodontic treatment depends largely on patient compliance and so it’s a nice tool to help to see if we’re going to be helping these kids because if it goes bad, then we could be doing more harm than good,” said Dr. Bart R. Boulton of Boulton Orthodontics.

As a Cypress resident since childhood, Boulton feels that giving back to the community is important, and his office has been a part of Smile for a Lifetime for three years.

“A smile is how you greet the world and it’s not just the vanity or the aesthetics of it; it’s to see kids have confidence especially in your teenage years because it’s a rough go for any kid,” Boulton said. “Having an organization that facilitates the connection between patients who really need that treatment and connecting them with orthodontists. It provides a very valuable treatment and long term effect on these kids’ lives.”

Though Smile for a Lifetime has over 100 chapters all across North America, what’s unique about Orange County’s chapter is that it’s run through its corporate sponsor Ormco, an OC-based company that manufactures the brackets and wires the patients use.

With the help of Ormco, Smile for a Lifetime’s Orange County chapter can give young people with financial need more beautiful and healthier smiles.

“Having a healthy bite has long term effects like preventing migraines and headaches, improves facial structure so...your face is set for aging beyond treatment,” said Brandy Lewis, Director of Product Management, Digital Platform at Ormco. “Also with orthodontic treatment, there’s a self-esteem aspect. Our patients are in high school, college, even junior high. It can be a rough time for those who need to improve their smile a little bit.”

The foundation not only ensures that its patients smile for a lifetime but that they make their communities smile as well.

“Our philosophy is a pay it forward philosophy so often times those recipients of orthodontic treatment pay it forward by doing community service projects in their local community,” Lewis said.

For more information about the Smile for a Lifetime scholarship, visit

- See more at:


Dr. Parag Soni Awards A Smile Of A Lifetime

A new Smile for a Lifetime chapter opens in Dalton, GA! Dr. Soni awards his first of at least six scholarships per year to Daylon Smith!


Dalton, Georgia (PRWEB) September 15, 2014

Dr. Soni from Soni Orthodontics in Dalton, Georgia has a passion for his work and his community. Recently, when presented with the idea of awarding orthodontic scholarships (braces at no cost) through the Smile for a Lifetime (S4L) Foundation, he quickly started his own local chapter with a mission to change lives and empower youth through the gift of a smile. His local S4L board of directors selected Katy “Daylon” Smith as their first scholarship recipient on August 1st, 2014.

Daylon is fourteen years old and enjoys singing and playing the piano. Her father and four sisters love spending time together, especially outdoors. She also has a passion for agriculture and has been a part of Future Farmers of America since middle school. Her dream is to become an agricultural educator. When she applied her father knew that improving her smile would also improve her "self-esteem and success in the future."

As a condition of receiving the scholarship, Daylon will be volunteering in her community through FFA. Dr. Soni will be addressing issues with her gap, overcrowding and overbite but when the braces come off, the self-confidence created will remain and ultimately change her young life forever. No longer will the minor imperfections leave her embarrassed and reluctant to smile or afraid to participate in group settings.

Dr. Soni has committed to awarding six scholarships a year. The board will review and select candidates on a quarterly basis. For more information on how to apply please visit:



Local Orthodontists Offer Braces at No Cost to Children in Need

Hershey and Heymann Orthodontics starts new chapter of “Smile for a Lifetime” in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

(PRWEB) February 10, 2015

Dr. Barbara Hershey and Dr. Gavin Heymann are pleased to announce the initial application period for “Smile for a Lifetime” (S4L) scholarships through the new Smile for a Lifetime – Chapel Hill Chapter in North Carolina. The S4L – Chapel Hill Chapter is committed to offering 6 scholarships annually for comprehensive orthodontic care (free braces) to children in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and the surrounding communities (Orange & Chatham Counties) who otherwise might not be able to afford orthodontic care.

Smile for a Lifetime - Chapel Hill’s mission mirrors that of the National S4L Foundation: “…to create self-confidence, inspire hope and change the lives of children in our communities in a dramatic way. The gift of a smile can do all this for a deserving, underserved individual who, in turn, can use this gift to better themselves and their community.”

Details about the chapter & copies of the application and application process are available on Hershey & Heymann Orthodontics’ website:

Dr. Barbara Hershey and Dr. Gavin Heymann have agreed to be the orthodontic providers for this Chapter. Scholarship recipients are chosen by an independent Board of Directors (names included on the webpage).

Serving Durham, Chapel Hill and surrounding communities for over 30 years, Dr. Hershey & Dr. Heymann are proud to start this new chapter of Smile for a Lifetime in North Carolina to serve underprivileged children in their area. Please help them get the word out! They are seeking applicants to award these 6 scholarships to in 2015!

For more information, press only: 
Anne Heymann 
919-360-1501 cell 

For more information on the Chapel Hill chapter:

For more information on the National Smile for a Lifetime Foundation:


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