From Pilot to Dentist – Dr. Cross’s Story
Dr. Cross did not follow a traditional path into endodontics. When he was in high school he wanted to become a pilot. He studied aviation at The Ohio State University and then worked as an airline pilot for several years. So what happened?
During the years after high school, through college, and even while he was flying professionally, he did volunteer work with a nonprofit organization called the Truck of Love. For ten years he helped run a summer camp for youth on the Tohono O’odham Native American reservation in southwestern Arizona.
One year a friend was teaching a science class about healthy eating and gave an example of how instead of eating a candy bar you could eat an apple. One of the kids responded, “I can’t eat an apple, it hurts my teeth too much.”
Dr. Cross recalls, “It opened my eyes to how the lack of good oral health can have negative systemic effects on the rest of the body. It was a seed that began a process which brought me to where I am today. I went back and talked to my dentist and started spending time with him. It just developed. I started taking classes and decided to apply to dental school.
I graduated from the University of the Pacific in 2010. We moved to Tucson where I practiced general dentistry for seven years. I discovered I really loved endodontics, more than anything else I was doing. No two teeth are the same. Similar to flying, it’s mixing art and science in a purely three-dimensional environment.
In endodontics, we’re not rebuilding peoples’ mouths with implants and complex prosthetics. It’s more front lines, more in the trenches. We’re able to get people out of pain, which is what I love most about dentistry.”
When Dr. Cross isn’t treating patients, he loves to spend time with his wife, who is also a dentist, and their daughter. He also enjoys hobbies such as skiing, hiking, and traveling.
Endodontist Dr. Tim Cross
OREGON HEALTH AND SCIENCE UNIVERSITY
2019 Certificate in Endodontics, Portland, OR
UNIVERSITY OF THE PACIFIC
2010 Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry San Francisco, CA
Doctor of Dental Surgery
THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY
2002 Bachelor of Arts Degree in Aviation Columbus, OH
American Association of Endodontists (AAE)
American Dental Association (ADA)
Arizona Dental Association (AzDA)
Southern Arizona Dental Society (SADS)
Spear Advanced Education Study Club
Pima Dental Study Club
- Flying Samaritans –Tucson Chapter – provide services to underserved areas in Mexico 2010-Present
- Hopefest-Tucson, Az; provide annual free dental care to the community; 2010-2016
- UOP Student Community Outreach for Public Education SCOPE – Member; 2007- 2010
- Truck of Love, a non-profit organization in which we ran a summer camp for the youth on the Tohono O’odham Nation, Pisinemo, Az; Leadership Counselor; 1997- 2007
- Ohio State University Flight Team- Captain, Regional Top Pilot, Assistant Coach; 1997-2007