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Local orthodontist gives back

Signal Mountain orthodontist Dr. Keith Dressler is causing brighter smiles both inside and outside the office thanks to two new initiatives he recently began in order to give back to the community he serves.

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Signal Mountain orthodontist Dr. Keith Dressler is offering two new programs aimed at giving back to the community. For each individual who visits his Facebook page and makes a positive comment about a Signal Mountain school, he will make a donation to that school, and all new patients receiving comprehensive care are being given a free iPad 2.

Each Signal Mountain school could potentially receive up to $2,500 through a unique program he started in mid-November. Dressler will make a donation for every Facebook fan of Thrasher Elementary, Nolan Elementary and Signal Mountain Middle/High School who visits and “likes” his own Facebook page and posts a positive comment about their school before Dec. 21.

“I thought it was a unique way to give back and a unique way to put my name in front of people,” said Dressler, adding that people are not intended to mention him or his services in their Facebook comments. “It’s not about me. I think education is so, so important and there’s just not enough money being put into it.”

He said if a Facebook user chooses to make a positive comment on all three schools he will make a donation to each, but only one donation per school will be made for each individual.

The specific amount donated for each comment is based on a formula involving the number of students at the school and the predetermined limit he has set for donations to each school. For example, Nolan Elementary will receive $2.42 per comment posted about the school.

Dressler also has an office in South Pittsburg, where he first offered the program to 10 local schools. He said he plans to continue the program until the middle of next year and offer funds to 50-60 local schools, focusing on those located close to his offices and limiting the number to 10 per month.

Dressler will announce 10 new schools in January, and fans of the selected schools will have a month from the date that school is announced as a participant to post comments in order to collect the amount allotted to them.

“It’s OK to give to schools, but to me what’s even more important is to put technology in the hands of students,” said Dressler.

Anyone who undergoes comprehensive treatment (at a cost of $4,500 or more) with Dressler will receive a free iPad 2 the day they get their braces on.

“The kids are absolutely floored that they’re getting it,” he said. “I know who exactly is getting the donation — my patient — and I know I’m helping that specific person.”

Those who do not want an iPad can choose to receive another device of equal or lesser value. Dressler said a recent patient who already owned an iPad picked out a laptop computer at a comparable price and he footed the bill.

He said the iPad giveaway allows him to share a portion of his profits with the community and contribute to a cause he cares deeply about, which is supplying students with the technology necessary to give them the best possible education.

Dressler said technology has enabled his son, who has special needs and cannot write well, to receive an education.

“He was able to reach his educational potential, which wouldn’t have been possible without technology,” he said.

Dressler said he began the program Nov. 1 and has given away 10 iPads to date.

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