Bay Area Smiles

Clearwater 727-441-8963
New Port Richey 727-845-0933

The Thooh Caboose

Plant City 813-752-3555

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Meet the Team

Parents trust us!

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry suggests that your child’s dental care should begin at age 1. In order to care for your child using the best techniques and equipment available, our pediatric dentistry practitioners spend a great deal of time attending continuing-education courses every year. Our extensive education in dentistry for children and orthodontics has made us the practice of choice in the area. Here, you can trust our care for the most precious smiles in your family. Including your own.

To learn more about your dental specialists, please use the links below:

Howard L. Howell, DDS

B. Gene Whitehead, DMD

Michael I. Stewart, DDS

Lisa M. LaPresti, DMD

Steven R. Slavkin, DDS

Howard L. Howell, DDS

Howard L. Howell, DDS - Clearwater, FL - Plant City, FL - New Port Richey, FL “The most compelling aspect of orthodontics is that you have an opportunity to change lives through your treatment and interaction with young patients and their parents. Of course, the majority of my patients are children, which gives me an opportunity, with my treatment and patient skills, to influence the growth and development of so many young people. There is great joy in seeing your patients grow and evolve physically and personally throughout their orthodontic treatment. Solving their dental, social, psychological and physical challenges is extremely gratifying.”
Undergraduate Degree: University of Florida
Doctorate & Orthodontic Residency: Medical College of Virginia
Postdoctorate: TMJ Dysfunction
Licensure: Florida and Virginia
Hospital Staff: South Florida Baptist Hospital
Certified: CPR Emergency Care
Membership: American Association of Orthodontists, American Society of Dentistry for Children, American Dental Association, Southern Association of Orthodontics, Florida Association of Orthodontists, Florida Dental Association, West Coast Dental Association, Upper Pinellas County Dental Association

In his spare time, Dr. Howell enjoys sports, watching high-school and college football, golf, scuba and fishing. He has coordinated an expedition to the South Pacific islands to search for Amelia Earhart’s airplane, and he has dived 12,875 feet deep in a three-man Russian submarine on the wreckage of the Titanic. He also discovered and helped salvage the bronze base to the Cherub on the Grand Ballroom Staircase. The artifact is currently touring museums worldwide.

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B. Gene Whitehead, DMD

B. Gene Whitehead, DMD - Clearwater, FL - Plant City, FL - New Port Richey, FL “I love the interaction with children and dealing with all the different behaviors and personalities. I’m fascinated by all the different approaches and methods we use to address the behaviors we encounter to create a pleasant dental experience for each child and parent. I am very compassionate and caring. I always give the children some control and options during dental treatment. I hope to give all my patients a lifetime of not being anxious about dental care.”
Undergraduate Degree: Auburn University
Doctorate: University of Alabama School of Dentistry
Residency: Pediatric Dentistry, Eastman Dental Center, New York, NY
Licensure: Florida and Alabama
Board-Certified: American Board of Pediatric Dentistry
Hospital Staff: Morton Plant Hospital
Certified: CPR Emergency Care, Advanced Cardiac Life Support
Membership: American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, American Dental Association, Tampa Bay Pediatric Dental Association, (Past President) Southeastern Society of Pediatric Dentistry, Florida Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, Florida Dental Association, West Coast Dental Association, Upper Pinellas County Dental Association
In his free time, Dr. Whitehead enjoys golf, boating, traveling and watching his Auburn Tigers.

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Michael I. Stewart, DDS

Michael I. Stewart, DDS - Clearwater, FL - Plant City, FL - New Port Richey, FL “I developed an interest in the medical arts at a very early age. I also enjoy working with my hands and helping people on a personal, individual level. Dentistry is an art based on science, and orthodontics is even more so. It was a perfect fit for me. Orthodontic problems have many possible solutions, and my goal is finding the right solution for the individual patient. I enjoy the personal interactions with the patients and their families. Frequently, some small action on our part can make a major difference in their lives. Empathy and humor are my best qualities. I try to identify with my patients and use humor to create a nonthreatening atmosphere that facilitates our relationships.”
Undergraduate Degree: BA, American Studies (cum laude),University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
Doctorate: Emory University School of Dentistry
Postdoctorate: Craniofacial Disorders, Orthognathic Surgery and TMJ Dysfunction
Residency: Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics, Montefiore Medical Center / Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York, NY
Licensure: Florida
Certified: CPR Emergency Care, Advanced Cardiac Life Support
Member: American Association of Orthodontists, American Dental Association, Southern Association of Orthodontists, Florida Association of Orthodontists, Florida Dental Association, West Coast Dental Association, Central Florida Orthodontic Study Group, Upper Pinellas County Dental Association
In his spare time, Dr. Stewart likes restoring automobiles, reading, bicycling, sailing, landscape architecture and studying US history.

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Lisa M. LaPresti, DMD

Lisa M. LaPresti, DMD - Clearwater, FL - Plant City, FL - New Port Richey, FL “I got into pediatric dentistry because I wanted the opportunity to teach parents and children about prevention and living a disease-free lifestyle. I have a very relaxed style and I enjoy talking to parents and children. My goal is to make their dental experience as pleasant and positive as possible. From their perspective, visiting the dentist should never be scary and always be fun. I love putting everyone at ease.”
Undergraduate Degree: West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV
Doctorate: University of Pittsburgh School of Dentistry
Residency: Pediatric Dentistry, Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
Licensure: Florida
Certified: CPR Emergency Care, Advanced Cardiac Life Support
Member: American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, American Dental Association, Southeastern Society of Pediatric Dentistry, Florida Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, Florida Dental Association, West Coast Dental Association
In her spare time, Dr. LaPresti enjoys spending time with her husband and son, Tyler, boating, going to the beach, exercise and visiting with friends.

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Steven R. Slavkin, DDS

Steven R. Slavkin, DDS - Clearwater, FL - Plant City, FL - New Port Richey, FL “I always had a strong desire to help people. Especially to help them maintain good oral health. I greatly admired the dentists and physicians I knew as a child, and I wanted to help people like they did. With kids, I realize the importance of creating a friendly, comfortable atmosphere so their early experiences in the dental office will be positive. With parents, I share my observations about their children’s oral health and treatment needs, but I also discuss teaching their kids effective oral health strategies at home. I want good oral health and a comfortable relationship with their dental home for my patients. I also have great compassion for the kids. If ever I’m in doubt about how best to take care of a child, I pause and think, ‘If this were my son or daughter, what would I want for them?’ That usually clarifies what I should recommend.”
Undergraduate Degree: Washington and Jefferson College
Doctorate: Case-Western Reserve University
Residency: General Dentistry, Lancaster Cleft Palate Clinic
Licensure: Florida
Certified: Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Pediatric Life Support, Basic Life Support
Appointments: Acting State Dental Officer, Florida Army National Guard; Chief Dental Officer, Multinational Task Force (4,000 members strong), Kabul, Afghanistan
Member: American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, American Dental Association, Florida Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, Florida Dental Association, Florida Public Health Association, West Coast Dental Association, Hillsborough County Dental Association, Polk County Dental Association, Public Health Leadership Institute of Florida Alumni Association, Tampa Bay Academy of Pediatric Dentistry
In his spare time, Dr. Slavkin enjoys sailing, maintaining his aquarium, gardening and growing most of the salad greens and vegetables his family eats.

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To schedule an appointment, please call our office nearest you: in Clearwater at 727-441-8963; in Plant City at 813-752-3555; and in New Port Richey at 727-845-0933. Or use our online Request an Appointment form. For additional information on any condition, treatment or procedure, please visit our Dental Library.