NMDA Executive Committee
President: Anne Scott, DDS,
began her dental career in 1990, and she has worked in the dental field in a variety of capacities and locations, including: assistant at Sembach Air Base, Germany; hygienist in Florida, California, and New Mexico; and now as a dentist in New Mexico since 2013. She found during her dental education and since that she enjoyed practicing many aspects of dentistry including general, sedation, root canals, extractions, and sleep medicine.
Dr. Scott, her husband, and two daughters love New Mexico. Dr. Scott has enjoyed volunteering in many international dental clinics in Honduras, Guatemala and Belize, and local dental community programs including Special Olympics and Mission of Mercy. Additionally, she loves volunteering in multiple capacities including spiritual and education endeavors. Some of her hobbies include family time, hiking, scuba diving, swimming, running, cross-stitching and working with stained glass.
President-elect: Joseph R. Gherardi, DDS,
was born and raised in Albuquerque. He attended Gonzaga University and the University of New Mexico. After graduating Suma Cum Laude from the UNM, he went on to receive his DDS from the University of Colorado, School of Dental Medicine.
A dental degree is not the only thing he found while at the University of Colorado in Denver. During his time in Colorado, he met and married his lovely wife. They are both avid sports fans, especially when it comes to football and Lobo basketball. And whether it is skiing, fishing, hiking, or photography they love to spend time in the mountains. He and his wife, Tiffany, have three amazing kids.
Vice President: Dr. Travis Watson
grew up in western Nebraska and attended dental school at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln where he graduated in 2008. He began his dental career in Farmington NM where he went into practice with his father in-law. He and his wife, Deidra, bought the practice in 2011 and continue to run it together. Before becoming involved with the NMDA's Executive board, he was the three-time president of the NMDA’s Northwest District. He loves organized dentistry and is proud to serve NM. He has had the opportunity to spend time in India and Nepal treating the dental needs of the underserved in these countries. In his free time, he loves to golf and travel with his family.
Secretary Treasurer: Julius Manz, DDS,
is currently the Director of the Dental Hygiene Program at San Juan College. He is a native New Mexican, and he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Physics and Mathematics from UNM. He spent the next 10 years as a Naval Submarine Officer and Nuclear Engineer in the US Navy. After resigning his commission as a Lieutenant Commander, he attended dental school at the University of Colorado.
Dr. Manz practices general dentistry in Farmington, NM, and he is a Professor and the Director of the San Juan College Dental Hygiene Program. He is very involved in organized dentistry, and he extensively writes and lectures on dental related matters.
Immediate Past President: Kelley Ryals, DDS, grew up in Santa Fe, NM. She attended Santa Fe High School, graduated Cum Laude from The University of New Mexico with a Bachelor of Science and graduated Cum Laude from Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska with a Doctor of Dental Surgery in 2011. She returned home to Santa Fe, NM in 2011 and opened Santa Fe Modern Dentistry and several other dental offices with Pacific Dental Services. Also in 2011, She joined the New Mexico National Guard as a Major where she is currently serving as the State Dental Officer. She recently returned from deployment with the Army for Operation Atlantic Resolve in Poland. Dr. Ryals is married to Marshall and has two young daughters, Rylynn and Raegan. Dr. Ryals was the president of the Santa Fe District Dental society in 2018. She is currently on the Board of Alpha Dental of New Mexico and Quality assurance for Delta Dental. Dr. Ryals is also on the COVID-19 Dental Advisory Team, Board of trustees and on the member service committee in the New Mexico Dental Association In 2016, Dr. Ryals was the Clinic Director for Mission of Mercy in Santa Fe. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, physical fitness and watching football.
Speaker of the House: Michael Law, DDS,
is a fourth generation Las Crucen. He attended Las Cruces High School and graduated from New Mexico State University with a bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering. Following graduation from NMSU, Dr. Law attended the University of Colorado, School of Dental Medicine where he received the degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery. Upon graduation, he received two honorary awards; the Dr. Miles Markley Delta Sigma Delta Award and the Quintessence Award for Clinical Achievements in Periodontics.
He is currently the NMDA's Speaker of the House. In the past, he has also served as President of the New Mexico Dental Association, the President for the Southwest District Dental Society, as well as an Alternate Delegate for the NMDA House of Delegates.
Dr. Law is also a member of the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), and he is the secretary for the New Mexico State University Alumni International Board of Directors. He has been involved in many dental community outreaches, including the NM Mission of Mercy and traveling to Guatemala on a dental mission to address dental needs for those in small Guatemalan villages. He has been involved in various community organizations and activities, and continues to support community activities throughout the city and state.
Editor: Dr. DezBaa Damon-Mallette, DMD, is a general dentist working with the Indian Health Service, Gallup Service Unit. She is originally from Aztec, NM and a member of the Navajo Nation. After graduating from Aztec High School, she attended Arizona State University where she majored in Biology and minored in Anthropology. In 2007, she graduated from Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health, a school of A.T. Still University, and was fortunate to be mentored by the first American Indian Dentist, Dr. George Blue Spruce. Dr. Damon-Mallette also earned a Certificate of Public Health from the University of North Carolina while in dental school. Her dental career started in Bethel, Alaska, which she thoroughly enjoyed since there was the opportunity to fly out to small villages to set up mobile dental equipment and provide dental services. After some time, she moved back to the Southwest and has since worked in Arizona and New Mexico, specifically Ganado, Shiprock, and Albuquerque, before making Gallup her home. She is very grateful for the opportunity to be the Editor of the NMDA Journal and continues to work closely with Dr. Shelly Fritz, who is the Editor Emeritus.