The Value of a Man

by Ursula Amerine  |  photos by Moira Photography

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Looking back on his memories as a child, Dr. Tony Pacheco’s life was anything but easy. “I don’t think people knew how poor I was growing up. We grew up on the wrong side of a town of 3,000 people.” Living in a one bedroom house with six people in Spearman, Texas, Dr. Pacheco did not have a lot of expensive things, but the values he was taught during that time were priceless.

He was taught to work hard, respect people, to be honest and, most of all, to live with integrity. “I want to stay true to the small town values that were instilled in me from back in the day. When I practice dentistry, I have to be able to look my patients in the eye and feel good about the service I am providing them. I can’t lie to people. I won’t do it. I will just shoot straight with them.”

Dentistry from a Child’s Perspective
Dr. Pacheco’s interest in dentistry started as a young child. His mom worked her way up from housekeeper to dental assistant, and this provided his first exposure to dentistry. “They would let me empty the trash as a child and, as I got older, I was able to observe more. When I would come back from college, I really got to observe and do some hands-on things like making molds.”

When asked what about dentistry was most appealing, Dr. Pacheco laughed. “The dentist my mom worked for was in the office four days a week, made good money, was well-respected in the community and seemed to have an easy life. As a dentist, I now know it’s a difficult career that is both physically and mentally taxing, but at the time, he made it look very easy.”

Quality Over Quantity
Dr. Pacheco believes that quality dentistry is more important than the quantity of patients he can see in a day. That small town charm is the essence of his office. When a patient makes an appointment, no matter how quick the procedure, Dr. Pacheco schedules him or her for an hour. He takes his time and answers questions to make his patients feel more comfortable with the procedures he is going to perform. From a simple filling to an implant, he takes the time to educate each patient about his or her dental health. “Patient education is important, showing the patient the value of getting it done right the first time.”

Quality Dentistry that Lasts
In addition to quality patient time, Dr. Pacheco is obsessive about his precision as a dentist. “My goal is to provide quality dentistry that is going to be around forever.” As a dental craftsman, he refuses to take short cuts in his procedures or with the products he uses. “We do not cut back (moneywise) on our materials…every short cut you take gives your patients a product that is not good.”

That is where Dr. Pacheco gives his accolades to his Burkhart Account Manager Sam Thompson. “If there is a problem with my materials or equipment, I talk to Sam. Burkhart stands behind all their products…that’s what I like. Sam has done everything he can do for my practice to make it successful…he always steps up to the plate.”

Volunteering with Manos de Cristo
Giving his best in his office is not Dr. Pacheco’s only passion. He is also passionate about giving to his community—which he does through his volunteer efforts at Manos de Cristo. Manos de Cristo (www.manosdecristo.org) promotes dignity and self-reliance of low-income individuals by meeting basic needs with food and clothing, providing essential oral care, and furthering educational development.

Dr. Pacheco started volunteering his dental services for their dental clinic in 2007. Throughout the years, he has made his mark with Manos de Cristo by organizing the gala that helps fund Manos, helping them reduce their supply cost by connecting them with Burkhart, and as of 2013, he has served on the board and is now board president. When asked why he decided to volunteer with Manos de Cristo, Dr. Pacheco explains, “Growing up, I started at the bottom, and now I am here, so how can I not appreciate everything I have and want to do something good for everyone else?”

The Value of a Man Resides in What He Gives
Albert Einstein said, “The value of a man resides in what he gives and not what he is capable of receiving.” Dr. Pacheco gives through hard work by being the best at his craft. He gives respect to his patients by giving them the quality dentistry they deserve not only with his time, but with the products he uses. He gives through the honesty and integrity of his work by not cutting corners and making sure each treatment plan is the best it can be. “How you live your life is how you will run your practice,” he says.

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