Alumnus Profile: Following a Family Tradition
Warren B. Branch, D.D.S., Class of 1981
By Salwa Choucair
Surrounded by family members with successful healthcare careers who often volunteered their professional skills and time to community and global outreach efforts, Warren B. Branch, D.D.S., Class of 1981, simply followed their lead.
“Honestly, I came from a family that gave back,” Dr. Branch said. “My dad was very generous and philanthropic and so was my grandfather. My brother and father founded a hospital in Nigeria and went on multiple mission trips to Haiti, building an orphanage there.
“At the end of the day, it’s fun and very satisfying to volunteer with community efforts such as the Texas Mission of Mercy or go on a CMDA (Christian Medical & Dental Associations) Mission trip. That’s your feel good. I don’t do it as much as I used to now that I’ve gotten older, but there was a time when I would travel on the weekends or spend two or three weeks on mission trips in Ghana and other places.”
Besides volunteering his skills both locally and globally, he also has been very involved in local, state and national professional organizations such as TDA, American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry and the San Antonio District Dental Society, serving as vice chair and chairman of DenPac from 2008 – 2011. In fact, he was named the 2011 Texas Dentist of the Year by the Texas Academy of General Dentistry.
With 35 years experience in general dentistry, Dr. Branch today runs a successful solo practice with about 2,000 active patients. He strongly encourages young dentists to get involved in both community outreach and in professional organizations for the feel good and the professional camaraderie that comes with them.
The final way to give back is monetarily. Dr. Branch said such an act is almost a leap of faith and a decision most people make based on how they feel about the organization to which they are contributing.
“I like the vision of our school (School of Dentistry at the UT Health Science Center San Antonio), and the fact that it is dynamic and changing. It reaches out and embraces new technology, so why wouldn’t we hold our heads up and why wouldn’t we support that when it keeps us at the forefront of dental rankings. It has become a model for other dental schools,” Dr. Branch said.
“It’s almost payback to give back to the school that has given you so much,” he said. “I also give back because I admire the school leadership.”
Dr. Branch and his wife funded the Warren B. Branch, D.D.S., and Melissa Branch Operatory in the predoctoral clinic in the new Center for Oral Health Care & Research.
While he has no plans to retire soon, Dr. Branch is hoping to find an associate within the next five years for his practice, and as an encore to his successful career, he would like to return to the School of Dentistry to teach—giving back one final time to the profession and community he loves.