Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics board chairman Stephen Hicks, left, philanthropist Lady Leslie Ridley-Tree and SBNC CEO Chuck Fenzi, M.D., at Friday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the newly remodeled and expanded Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic. (Rochelle Rose / Noozhawk photo)

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Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics tripled the size of its Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic and officially opened the remodeled and expanded facility with a ribbon-cutting and luncheon ceremony on Friday.

More than 150 donors, board members, community leaders, volunteers, SBNC staff, and local medical and dental providers turned out to celebrate the occasion and to tour the state-of-the-art $1.2 million facility.

Program speakers included Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics CEO and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Charles Fenzi, board chairman Steve Hicks, Congresswoman Lois Capps and Chief Dental Officer Dr. Domenic Caluori.

“It is a wonderful day for the Neighborhood Clinics, for the city of Goleta, and for the current and future individuals and families who will receive the much-needed dental care here in their neighborhood,” Dr. Fenzi said.

Dr. Caluori praised the Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic’s dentists, including Dr. Quynh Nguyen, who leads the Goleta clinic, the dental residents and dental assistants for the outstanding quality dental care they provide.

“The Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic has tripled in size from being a three-chair operatory to a nine-chair clinic, and added two additional dentists and dental residents,” he said. “The newly expanded clinic will serve the growing dental needs of our community in this modern facility. We offer affordable and comprehensive dental treatment from preventative education, exams and cleanings, to full scope restorative dentistry including implants.”

The Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic initially opened in 2014 as part of SBNC’s expansion into Goleta, which also includes a medical clinic at 5580 Calle Real.

The Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic accepts most private insurance coverage, as well as Denti-Cal, which is Medi-Cal’s fee-for-service dental program for the poor, elderly, disabled and children. The Goleta clinic is one of a limited number of local dental clinics to accept Denti-Cal. Services are also available on a sliding fee basis for those without insurance. The clinic sees patients of all ages and offers emergency dental services daily.

Dentist Pratik Patel proudly shows off the new dental equipment.

Dentist Pratik Patel proudly shows off the new dental equipment. (Rochelle Rose / Noozhawk photo)

The expansion was made possible by the dedication of the SBNC board members led by development chairman John Lewis, Ph.D., Hicks, vice chair Melinda Staveley, Jim Armstrong, Brian Knowles, Deborah Babineau, Gina Gonzales-Carbajal, Brian Gough, Norman Colavincenzo, Ken Farmer, Mary Ferris, M.D., Enriqueta Garcia, Paul Jaconette, Susan Lang, Jerry Menchaca and Nikki Rickard.

Major donors included Michael and Anne Towbes, the Mosher Foundation, the Alice Tweed Tuohy Foundation, Cottage Health, Direct Relief, Healthy Smiles, Healthy Children, the Health Resources & Services Administration, John Lewis and wife Carrie Towbes, and many others.

Among the other contributors to the Neighborhood Clinics who celebrated the ribbon-cutting were Lady Leslie Ridley-Tree, Tony Browne, Ilene Gutierrez, Susan Johnson representing the Cecilia Fund, representatives of the Cancer Foundation of Santa Barbara, Dr. Tom and Diane Weisenburger, representatives of the Santa Barbara Foundation, and Michael Towbes from Montecito Bank & Trust.

“It is a dream come true,” Nguyen told Noozhawk. “We [the Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics] have outgrown the Milpas dental clinic where we only had six chairs. We tried to make it happen, and it did! We are not only a clinic, we are a training institution. Dental residents spend a year here as part of their training. For the past seven years, we have had a GME grant and have had the top-notch dental students in the United States intern here. As an example, we had Ann Lee, DDS, who was the No. 1 graduate from UCLA at our dental clinic.”

The Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic is part of Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics, a 501(c)3, nonprofit health-care organization dedicated to providing quality, affordable, medical and dental care to those in need in Santa Barbara County, regardless of one’s ability to pay.

In 2015, the SBNC served more than 18,430 patients with 42,658 primary care medical visits and 20,442 dental care visits. Other services the SBNC provides include behavioral health, enrollment into health insurance, family planning and reproductive health, pediatrics, chronic disease care, and dental and medical health outreach and education. For more information, click here or call 805.617.7850.

Click here for more information, or visit the Goleta Neighborhood Dental Clinic at 164 Kinman Ave. Click here for more information about Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics, or contact director of development Anne Kratz at or 805.324.8319.

Noozhawk contributing writer Rochelle Rose can be reached at This article includes reportinf Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkSociety, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

From left, Greg Walsh, DDS, dental clinic employees Alejandra Opdyke and Salem Macintoch, and board vice chair Melinda Staveley.

From left, Greg Walsh, DDS, dental clinic employees Alejandra Opdyke and Salem Macintoch, and board vice chair Melinda Staveley. (Rochelle Rose / Noozhawk photo)