Hygiene Highlights


Summer 2023


Greetings from SDDHA!


Hello, my name is Hailey Bruggeman. I received my dental hygiene license in 2018 at the University of South Dakota. In 2020, I finished my Master of Public Health degree. I have worked at Elwood Family Dental Care in Yankton since graduating. I recently began teaching multiple courses in the Dental Hygiene and Health Sciences Departments at USD in 2022. I have a one year old, Henry, and my husband Kody and I have been together for 7 years. 

This will be my 6th year serving on the SDDHA board. I started as the membership chair in 2018, moved to the secretary position, and I have gotten the pleasure of serving as the president elect and membership chair for the past two years. I am grateful to serve as your President this year. My theme for this year is “progress over perfection”. I believe that change can be hard, and it is never perfect, but this year I want to focus more on the progression of dental hygienists in all settings. 

The 5 goals I have for my presidency are: 

-To support dental hygienists in a variety of roles and pursue opportunities to advance the profession. 

-To collaborate more with the South Dakota Dental Association. 

-To promote the recognition, awareness and importance of dental hygienists. 

-To provide an engaging, inviting, and supportive space for dental hygienists and to increase membership and participation in SDDHA. 

-To be a leader in developing and delivering dynamic, high quality learning opportunities. We know there are many options out there available for CE, but we hope to provide you with some enriching learning opportunities. 

We were fortunate enough to put forth legislation last year. Together with our lobbyists in Pierre and the support of the South Dakota Dental Association, we passed House Bill 1155. While we are planning to put forth more legislation in the coming years, it is an expensive feat. Your membership and support is crucial to expanding our profession to allow dental hygienists to expand their functions. For example, administering botox and the opportunity to be dental therapists. I ask that whether you are a member or not, please let us know what we can do to make the dental hygiene profession better. Your feedback is important for our success. I look forward to working with you all. Thank you.

 Past President

Tasha Wendel graduated from the University of South Dakota with her degree in dental hygiene in 2009 and later with her Masters of Public Health in 2017. She has worked in private practice, public health, and in education. She has given CE presentations at the local, state, national, and international level. She is currently the Immediate Past-President of the South Dakota Dental Hygienists’ Association and serves as the Dental Hygiene Liaison for South Dakota through the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors. She is passionate about education and oral health.

IOH Liaison 
My name is Tia Meyer and I began my career in dental back in 2007. I started through the Southeast Dental Assistant program in which I had to find an office to sponsor me as well as attending class once a week in the evenings. After this 13 month program, I graduated and applied for my license through the South Dakota State Board. I worked as a dental assistant until 2012. I decided I would like to further my career and passion for dentistry by applying for the dental hygiene program at the University of South Dakota. I graduated with my Bachelor's degree in May of 2014 and have been practicing clinically since. However, in the past years my role has been more focused on administrative tasks in leading a group of 11 different locations. 
I have had the opportunity to serve as the SDDHA president-elect, president, and past president over the course of the past 5 years. I am currently serving in the role as the state's IOH Liaison.  In addition to this, I am also serving as Vice Chair of the ADHA Awards Committee. I am actively part of the South Dakota Oral Health Coalition and serve on the advisory board at the University of South Dakota (Dental Hygiene) and at Southeast Technical Institute (Dental Assistant).  The field of dental has always been a passion of mine and I am proud to be representing this field along with each of you!


My name is Braxton Trowbridge. I graduated from The Univeristy of SD Dental Hygiene Program in 2023 and am working at Neighborhood Dental in Harrisburg. I am originally from Canton SD and have a younger sister. In my free time I enjoy playing disc golf with my friends, going on trips with my girlfriend, and just relaxing at home. As the President Elect, I hope to just learn as much as I can this year and help out wherever help is needed. I hope this year of learning will help me step into a bigger role next year prepared and ready to represent dental hygiene in South Dakota.

Vice President

Hi! My name is Jackie Potts. I graduated from the University of South Dakota in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene and in 2021 with a Master of Business Administration. I currently work full-time at a private practice dental office in Yankton, SD. My SDDHA goals for the upcoming year include continuing to build on the foundation set in place by others who have given their time and energy so we, as dental hygienists, can continue to move forward, expanding the knowledge and proficiency that makes us indispensable assets to the dental profession. I look forward to serving as your 2023 SDDHA Vice President!



Legislative Chair

Krysta Novak is serving as our legislative chair and is a great advocate and a hard worker. She plans Lobby Day and has helped on many different committees. 

Eastern CE Coordinator

Jenny DeJong graduated from the University of South Dakota in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene. I currently practice as a Registered Dental Hygienist and Clinical Coordinator at Willow Creek Dental in Sioux Falls. My favorite part of my job is helping patients boost their self-confidence by improving their oral care. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my husband Tyler and taking our dog Boone for walks. 

 Western CE Coordinator

My name is Cassidy and I am the Western CE Coordinator. I am eager to learn more about what SDDHA does and get my foot in the door to meeting more hygienists who are pushing our careers further! Aside from hygiene, I am a new mom to a perfect baby boy! My husband and I are enjoying parenthood to the fullest! 


Abby Schiley 

I am pleased to introduce myself as the SDDHA treasurer. I have served the association in the past as
the Black Hills Component Trustee and as Vice President. My goals for the association are to plan and
evaluate with a budget, prepare timely financial reports, and serve as your financial lesion between the
SDDHA and our members. Through the budget, I hope to assist in growing our membership, providing
exciting and timely continuing education, leadership development and time to bond as fellow hygienists.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions or suggestion.



My name is Katie Williams and I have been a dental hygienist since 2009. I've worked in a variety of different clinical and educational settings, and have served SDDHA in a few different roles. I'm excited what we have in store for advocacy in our state and look forward to the future. 


Hello, my name is Kellyn Jackson. I graduated from the University of South Dakota with my Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene in May of 2022. Currently I am a hygienist at Huron Smiles, in Huron SD. I am also back in school working toward my Master of Public Health. The next year will be very exciting, and I am looking forward to documenting all the achievements and memories made within our organization. 

Membership Chair

My name is Caitlyn Lint and I am so excited to serve in my third year with the SDDHA. I received my bachelor’s in dental hygiene from the University of South Dakota in 2018 and since then, have served a multitude of offices in the Sioux Falls area through my work as a temp hygienist. I recently completed my graduate studies, earning a master’s in public health from the University of South Dakota in 2021. Serving on the board for SDDHA has provided me with the opportunity to learn and grow in the profession and I look forward to what this year has in store! 

Best wishes to our current board for a successful year. If any members would like to get involved or join a committee, please reach out!