My name is Tanya Stere. I am Greek-Macedonian and was born and raised in Romania while the country was under Ceausescu dictatorship. 45 years under a communist political regime. I have spent my first 20 years of my life under this regime with no communication or rights to visit any other neighboring country so I didn’t know any better. However, growing up I started to believe there should be a better life outside that.
My parents, my brother and I immigrated to Los Angeles 30 years ago and left behind a country full of oppression and corruption to join my mother’s side of the family in USA, in search for a better life. The day we left Romania was the best day of our lives. There was nothing that was going to stop us once we left Romania. I knew our lives were already better heading to United States of America. I realized how amazing this country is. I have never imagined the endless opportunities that I now had, stepping into such a welcoming country. It is so amazing to experience and live the American Dream, something that my family and I would not been able to experience under a communist regime.
Shortly after moving to LA, I began my undergraduate studies at UCLA and graduated with a BS in Biology in 1998. I selected this major as the steppingstone to a profession in health care. During my last year of my undergraduate education I was privileged and trusted with a research in periodontal disease at UCLA Dental School. There, I realized that I desired to become a dentist, learn more about treating human diseases and most importantly to me, help others.
Four years later, in 2002 I graduated with a Doctorate in Dental Surgery degree from University of Southern California (USC).
I was then accepted to an Advanced Education in General Dentistry Residency Program at USC and further my studies there.
Post residency, at 33 years old I moved to Las Vegas. Away from my family and friends I started my career and practiced dentistry at a large corporation called SmileCare, widely spread in CA, NV and TX. I was promoted to be their Regional Dental Director for NV and TX offices, managing and mentoring 17 general and specialist doctors.
A few years later, in 2008, I’ve decided to follow my dream and open my own dental practice. I started building Advanced Dental from scratch, while the economy took a turn for the worst and many other practices were closing their doors. My philosophy was: I now live in America, I feel safe and empowered and I can do anything that I desire with integrity and good work ethics. I felt the sky’s the limit.
Building my practice while undergoing treatment for breast cancer was definitely challenging but I knew I was going to come back stronger form this experience. I was grateful to have the medical advances and resources available in this country and I knew I was going to be healthy again.
I’ve been very blessed to call USA my home. My fiancée, Mark Stevens and I travel internationally quite often, but no matter where we are and what we see, when I set foot back on to USA soil, a sense of safety, security and love for this country overcomes me. I wish I can put it all in words, but I really hope every American feels at least a fraction of the gratitude and love that I have for this country. USA is indeed the land of opportunities, the land of freedom, and I couldn’t be more proud to call myself an American. It is THE BEST COUNTRY in the world and WE ARE PRIVILEGED to live here.