Leila Khamsei grew up with three brothers, which probably explains her competitive nature and love of sports. Born in Iran and growing up in Madrid, she was an active soccer player and remains an avid fan, rooting for Spain throughout the season and during the World Cup. And being tri-lingual means she can shout “GOALLLL!” in Spanish, Farsi and English.
Leila’s interest in dentistry started at an early age. At every dental appointment, she would ask her dentist for a mirror so she could watch what he was doing. She couldn’t resist learning as much as she could about teeth.
Leila moved to Canada with her family just before finishing high school. Always an inquisitive and bright student, she spent part of her last year of high school in Canada’s “co-op” program, working in a dental clinic. The clinic specialized in oral surgery, including complicated surgeries, and as a surgical assistant she gained a solid foundation in medical procedures as well as dental.
That experience convinced her that dentistry was her calling, and she spent the next five years taking on more responsibilities at the clinic while finishing high school and going on to complete an undergraduate degree, with the goal of becoming a dentist. She applied and was accepted to the University of Southern California Dental School, where she earned a degree in dentistry.
After graduation, Dr. Khamsei spent the next few years in a private dental practice, running an office on her own in Victorville, California. As a new dentist, it was an intimidating but growing experience, and she learned to wear many hats. She realized very quickly the challenge of running the business and operational aspects of a dental practice while providing quality care to her patients.
So when Western Dental offered her a position as a Managing Doctor in Southern California in 2008, she accepted on the spot and has stayed ever since. Besides having the support of a company that provides training, the latest equipment, and all the operational management of a dental office, Dr. Khamsei has developed a rich network of colleagues from different dental schools, different countries and different treatment philosophies. She frequently consults with them on difficult cases for second and third opinions. “At Western Dental, you’re not alone as a dentist running an office,” she says. “I’m a perfectionist, so I really value others’ opinions on how to make treatment exactly right for a patient. I’m constantly learning here.”
A true multi-national, Dr. Khamsei is comfortable interacting with people from all cultures and all walks of life. She has learned to welcome change and to adapt to any situation. Those skills come in handy on the soccer field as well as in a busy dental office.