Ric Shepherd, DDS. & Leon Hermanides, CDT.

Expert Insight and Comprehensive Strategies


Ric and Leon’s commitment to continuing education in dentistry is what connected them over fifteen years ago. Both are Clinical Instructors at the Kois Center, a continuing education center that trains dentists in advanced restorative dentistry. They grew to deeply value each other’s input and expertise at the Center as well as with their ongoing involvement in a Kois Study Club based in the Seattle area. Throughout the years, a friendship grew out of Leon and Ric’s professional relationship. They bonded over their shared experiences as soccer coaches and Seattle Sounders fans.

Clients benefit from the two unique perspectives and professional backgrounds that Leon and Ric bring to the table. This creates a very comprehensive approach to helping clients improve their dental practices and their lives.

Meet Your Dental Consultants

Richard “Ric” Shepherd, DDS

Born and raised in Seattle, WA, Ric received his undergraduate training at the University of Washington. He went on to complete his dental education in 1970 at the University of Washington Dental School. Ric spent his next five years as a commissioned officer in the US Public Health Service.

After moving to Winlock, Washington in 1975, Ric built a new practice from scratch and successfully grew the practice over four decades.

During the 1980s, Ric brought in John Kois, DDS, MSD and Frank Spear, DDS, MSD as speakers for a dental study club he administered. He was immensely impressed and started studying under the two. In the late 1990s, Ric was honored by Dr. Kois by being designated as a mentor at the then named Creating Restorative Excellence Teaching Center. In 2004, Ric was again recognized by Dr. Kois when he was selected in the first group of mentors to be elevated to the highest level as a Clinical Instructor for the renamed Kois Center. Soon afterward, Ric became the first chairman of the prestigious Curriculum Committee. After transitioning off of that Committee, Ric became a Special Projects Director for the Center. Ric continues to be active at the Center in his role as a Clinical Instructor.

After 45 years of clinical practice, Ric retired as a dentist in 2015, selling his practice in order to focus full-time on dental practice management consulting, As a consultant, Ric has built a happy clientele that have seen their personal and financial visions fulfilled. Ric is also active as a mentor and participating member of three dental study clubs.

Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, Ric was a soccer coach for the Olympic Development Program, a program from which a United States National Team is selected for international competition. Ric has also led four soccer teams to state finals (winning twice), reaching the championships as recently as 2019. He applies his inspiring coaching mindset to dental consulting.

When he’s not consulting and coaching, Ric enjoys spending time with Linda, his wife of forty-six years, as well as his two grown daughters, and his granddaughter. Ric also possesses an undying love for motorcycles and restores classic bikes in his free time.

 Leon Hermanides, CDT

Born and raised in South Africa, Leon earned a National Higher Diploma (BA equivalent) in Dental Technology before moving on to London and, eventually, Seattle, where he founded Protea Dental Studio. Leon guides every aspect of the services at Protea Dental Studio, establishing the standard of care, the performance protocols, and customer service values.

Leon is dedicated to keeping Protea Dental Studio at the forefront of technological advancements. Thus, he continues to educate himself beyond the role of a traditional dental technician with his involvement in a variety of continuing education programs and dental associations.

As a Clinical Instructor and Scientific Advisor at the world-renowned Kois Center, Leon works closely with dentists who strive for excellence and precision in their delivery of care. He leads a recurring Kois Center Study Club at the Protea Dental Lab aimed at building better practice philosophies and a supportive community. Leon has also served as President and member of the Board of Directors of the Washington State Dental Laboratory Association as well as holding office in the National Association of Dental Laboratories and Chairing the Foundation for Dental Technology. Leon currently serves on the Advisory Board for Dental Technology at Bates Technical College in Tacoma, WA.

Leon has published major articles on implants and comprehensive restorative rehabilitation in both clinical and technical journals. In addition, he has lectured throughout the US and internationally on implant restorations, esthetics, business management, and restorative failures.

In his free time Leon enjoys spending time and staying active with his wife Sue and two teenaged sons. He is a competitive youth soccer coach and an avid woodworker.

Podcast featuring Leon: CONTRARY TO ORDINARY – Incremental Change with Leon Hermanides

Client Testimonial

“I believe that Ric Shepherd and Leon Hermanides are true masters at the business of practicing excellent dentistry and thriving. Their business acumen is not easy to acquire nor to apply practically in today’s challenging times, as you need to also be at the very top in life skills as well as your profession. I have to say that no one has helped me more at the business of dentistry than Ric and Leon. To have a sense of independence and freedom to practice at the level that I was taught cannot be described, because it is beyond words. Ric and Leon have allowed me to be free and that feeling at this point in my life is priceless.”
– Gary T. Umeda, DDS

Skip to content