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A Place to Call Home

Explore how Aspen Dental is helping patients in North Dakota and South Dakota get the care they need, today. If you’re looking to join a community that thrives on collaboration and has fun while doing it, this is where you belong. Discover all that the historic Dakotas has to offer and why these practice owners said yes to a career with Aspen Dental.

Dr. Austin Schmalz

“Joining Aspen Dental was the best decision to kick-start my career and my path to becoming a practice owner. As a clinician, I love working with oral surgery and denture patients and Aspen Dental is a great fit for my passions.”

Dr. Austin Schmalz
Owner, Aspen Dental, Rapid City, SD

About Dr. Schmalz:

  • Graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry in 2015
  • Joined Aspen Dental as a lead dentist in Aberdeen, SD in June 2016
  • Became the Aspen Dental practice owner in Rapid City, SD in February 2018!

His South Dakota Favs:

  • Winters are very mild so you get to enjoy all four seasons
  • Tons of outdoor recreational paradise activities: fishing, biking, hunting, camping, hiking, skiing
  • Delicious restaurants and entertaining nightlife options

Dr. Krista Johnson

“As an Aspen Dental practice owner, I am supported in all areas of the business, allowing me to better focus on my patients. Together with Aspen Dental Management, Inc., we’re able to accomplish so much more than if I was on my own, worrying about all the administrative minutiae throughout the day.”

Dr. Krista Johnson
Owner, Aspen Dental, Fargo, ND

About Dr. Johnson:

  • Graduated from Midwestern University (AZ) College of Dental Medicine in 2015
  • Joined Aspen Dental as an associate dentist in Fargo, ND in 2015
  • Became the owner of the Aspen Dental practice in Fargo in April 2017

Her North Dakota Favs:

  • Originally from Bismarck, ND and with young children, loves raising her family in her home state with great school systems
  • It’s a safe and comfortable place to call home
  • The people! An area built on strong traditions and culture, she is proud to offer compassionate, comprehensive dental care to the communities throughout North Dakota

Cost of Living

Piggy bank with stacks of coins

The cost of living throughout North Dakota and South Dakota hovers around the national average, meaning your income can cover all of your bills while still leaving you with disposable income to enjoy life outside of work. 

Real Estate

House keychain

  • Rapid City—Rapid City offers a variety of styles: cottages, single-family, unique individual, and downtown where you can experience a small city feel with condos and lofts. The average cost for a home is $192,000, with 64% of residents owning their home.

  • Aberdeen—Aberdeen's median average for a home is $165,000. Many of the homes are older and with several builders in the area, remodeling would be a viable solution.

  • Minot—In Minot, the median average for a home is $227,000. According to, Minot is the 15th best town/city in which to buy a home.

School Systems

School supplies

  • Rapid City—Rapid City has numerous schools with an 8-10 rating according to, with their public high school scoring a 9 out of 10 and southwest Middle School receiving a 10 out of 10. There are 16 students to every teacher throughout the entire school system.

  • Aberdeen—Roncalli is a large K-12 private school in Aberdeen with an elementary and middle school in the public sector rating a 9 out of 10.

  • Minot—As reported by, Minot State University's out-of-state tuition rate makes it the third most affordable university in the U.S.

Opportunities for Ownership

A group photo of Aspen Dental dentists

Across North and South Dakota, there are three Aspen Dental practice owners – Dr. Schmalz, Dr. Johnson and Dr. Woodhull – who are great mentors, clinicians and leaders, and are open to partnership opportunities with the right person. There are also four offices that are classified as a Large Group Practice (LGP) meaning they aren’t currently owned by a practice owner. With more than 700 offices across 38 states, there are plenty of ownership opportunities for dentists in the Dakotas as well as across the Aspen network.

Mentorship & Student Loan Reimbursement Opportunities

Two doctors

Rapid City—You’ll have a wonderful mentor with Dr. Schmalz who has been extremely successful in Rapid City. Dr. Schmalz is open to a student loan reimbursement package for the right candidate.

Aberdeen, SD; Minot, ND—Both are LGPs so the doctors in the practice will go through Aspen Dental’s Doctor Development Program and receive mentorship from dedicated, experienced clinical directors who are some of the top dentists in the country. Since these offices are classified as LGPs, the opportunity for a student loan reimbursement package is extremely likely for dentists who provide quality patient care and satisfaction. 

Let's go 1-on-1

Make an appointment to talk to an Aspen Dental Career Guide, and we'll help you find the fit that's right for you.