Meet Our Team
Thoshnee G. Office Manager
Originally from sunny South Africa, Thoshnee holds a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, a Master’s Degree in Education from Arkansas State University, and diplomas in International Trade and Export Management from the Institute of Export, South Africa. Before joining the Santa Monica Esthetic Dentistry team, Thoshnee taught high school mathematics for over 11 years. Thoshnee has years of experience in business management, education, and patient care. She has brightened our office for years with her incredible dedication and compassion for others. Thoshnee loves working with children and is passionate about providing our patients and team with a comfortable and caring environment. She currently lives in Santa Monica with her husband, and is the mother of two sons. In her free time, Thoshnee enjoys hiking, traveling, ordering Thai food, and supporting local shops in Santa Monica.
Kiju Lee, Executive Dental Assistant, Back Office Manager
Kiju resides in Los Angeles and recently graduated with departmental honors from UCLA. Upon realizing her passion for creating art with her hands, as well as caring for others, she decided that dentistry was the perfect career for her. She plans to apply to dental school in the summer of 2017, and in the meantime works as a dental assistant to build up her experience and knowledge. When she is not in the office, she loves exploring different restaurants in Santa Monica, hiking, going to the gym, reading sci-fi novels, painting watercolor, watching Netflix, and spending time with her friends and family. However, what overshadows all her other interests is the desire to become a competent and compassionate dentist who can serve her community.
Tuyet (Tee) Ha, Dental Assistant
Born in Pomona and continually residing in Southern California, it is no surprise as to why there is always a shine with Tee's smile. She is a recent graduate of UCLA's Class of 2016 with a Bachelors of Science in Biological Sciences. Tee plans to apply for Dental School in 2017. Her hard work and perseverance has pushed her thus far in hopes of becoming a dentist. Before joining SMED, Tee volunteered at other dental offices in Pomona, Westwood, and Virginia. Her most unforgettable dental experience was at an event called 'Give Kids a Smile Day', where she got the opportunity to provide oral health services to under-served children. When she's not pursuing her career, Tee enjoys hiking, traveling, and sampling new restaurants all over California.
Jong-Soo Choi, Dental Assistant
Jong was born in Seoul, South Korea and moved to Maui, Hawaii when he was five years old. He moved to Los Angeles to study Biochemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles. Jong was involved in many extracurricular activities, holding previous positions as Treasurer and Fundraising Chair for the service organization, Circle K International, as well as being part of the chemistry fraternity, Alpha Chi Sigma. To prepare himself for the field of dentistry, he took up a research assistant position at UCLA's Dental School Orthodontics Division. In his free time Jong loves to play games such as League of Legends, try new boba places, and attend music concerts. He is planning to apply to dental school in 2019, and until then hopes to make a difference in the field of dentistry one step at a time. Jong-soo looks up to his senpai.
Jason Yu, Dental & Front Office Assistant
Raised in Orange County, Southern California, Jason lives his life to the tune of "My Shiny Teeth and Me". He graduated from the University of California, Irvine, where he devoted his studies to Public Health and Business Management. Prior to joining the SMED team, Jason worked for early childhood education and health nonprofit organizations, where he gained exceptional organizational skills and the ability to combat bureaucratic red tape. Jason always wishes to help those around him, no matter what field he may find himself in, and he holds a late-life dream of opening an all-you-can-eat dumpling restaurant. If you ever encounter Jason in tall grass, just know that it is a rare occurrence to not see him smiling.
Silvia Rigote, Dental Assistant
Silvia was born and raised in beautiful Brazil where she graduated dental school from Paulista University in Sao Paulo in 2002. Before moving to LA in 2008, she worked for four years as a general dentist at her own clinic. Now, Silvia is currently working on getting licensed to be able to practice in America. Her own orthodontist sparked her interest in dentistry, inspiring her to change the world, one smile at a time. Through her experience as a dentist, Silvia has gained the ability and passion to best provide for her patients. Silvia is a concert-lover, and likes the travel the world to follow her favorite bands, U2 and Pearl Jam. An avid handball player throughout college, Silvia also is a sports fanatic, going to Brazil every year to visit her family and to watch her favorite soccer team, Corinthians, play. Ever since Silvia started working at SMED, she has been teaching her coworkers how to speak Portuguese.
Andrew Cabrera, Executive Dental Assistant
Andrew was born and raised in Sacramento, the home of the legendary Sacramento Kings. He graduated from UCLA's class of 2014 with a Bachelors of Science in Physiological Sciences and is currently a 2nd year dental student at UCLA. He previously was a research assistant at UCLA's Dental School in the Oral Biology and Medicine Division, and a Building Supervisor at UCLA's Pauley Pavilion. Andrew loves to be active and works hard both at work and at the gym. He spends his free time outdoors playing soccer, skiing, camping, and exploring the world. His dedication to work is only trumped by his desire to become a dentist. He has volunteered under many private dental practices as well as UCLA's Dental School, learning as much about the field as possible and even traveling abroad to Chiang Mai, Thailand as a dental assistant. Andrew loves working with all people and is passionate about forming strong relationships with new individuals. Andrew is currently attending UCLA Dental School.