New dentist takes the helm at Rabbit Ears Dental

Rabbit Ears Dental is now under the ownership of Dr. Joy Troxel. (Photo by John F. Russell)

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Dr. Joy Troxel has taken over as the new owner of Rabbit Ears Dental, and patients can expect to be greeted by the same friendly staff as before.

“We’ve taken care of a lot of people over the years and helped out a lot of folks and just treat people right,” said Dr. Neil Ganz, who owned the Steamboat Springs dental practice and is retiring after more than 21 years. “I hope they (the patients) keep continuing to go to Rabbit Ears Dental, because I think Dr. Joy will take good care of them.”

Troxel purchased Rabbit Ears Dental at the end of 2020 and started seeing patients in January.

“I was practicing at Pine Grove Dental Arts before I purchased Rabbit Ears,” Troxel said. “I’ve been a dentist for over six years now, but I always worked as an associate. This is the first time that I’ve owned the practice, and it’s really exciting.”

Troxel said Rabbit Ears Dental is one of the oldest practices in Steamboat and she is looking forward to carrying on the tradition.

“I’m really just trying to pick up where Dr. Ganz left off,” Troxel said. “We’re not really making a lot of changes. … I definitely feel honored to be part of this legacy in Steamboat.”

The entire dental staff is planning to stay on board, Troxel said.

Rabbit Ears Dental owner Joy Troxel and former owner Neil Ganz. (Photo courtesy of Rabbit Ears Dental)

Ganz had owned the dental practice since 1999 when he purchased it from Dr. Gene Dennis.

“It’s time to move on,” Ganz said. “It’s been outstanding, and I’ve really enjoyed taking care of people over the past 21 years, especially my Horizons patients. It’s been very fulfilling, and I’ve met a lot of wonderful people over the years.”

He believes Troxel is a good fit for the office and will do a great job of caring for patients.

Troxel attended Indiana University earning a Bachelor of Science degrees in biology, chemistry and psychology. She went on to earn a Master of Science degree in biology as well as her doctor of dental surgery degree from Indiana University’s School of Dentistry.

She is a member of the American Dental Association, Society of American Indian Dentists, American Association of Women Dentists, Colorado Dental Association and the Western Colorado Dental Society.

She practiced dentistry for several years in Indiana before moving to Colorado where she worked as an associate for a couple of years on the Front Range before coming to Steamboat Springs in 2019 after her husband, Alex, took a position with Pine Grove Dental Arts.

She said COVID-19 has made it a challenging year to be in dental care. The staff at Rabbit Ears has implemented strict safety protocols and is outfitted in protective personal equipment to avoid contact with the virus. She said a study by The New York Times ranks dentists, dental hygienists and dental assistants in the top five professions at risk for contracting COVID-19.

She is grateful the entire staff at Rabbit Ears Dental was able to be vaccinated in December, but her office continues to follow public health orders to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the community.

But not even the threat of COVID-19 can dampen her excitement as she begins a new chapter as owner of Rabbit Ears Dental.

“My husband and I are both dentists. We were just looking for a smaller town with a great sense of community, and we were just felt really lucky to find an opportunity here,” Troxel said. “I’m pretty lucky to find an existing practice, because they don’t change hands very often. …The timing was just right, and it was a good fit.”

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