Ferris Robinson: The Doster Family Dental Practice

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - by Ferris Robinson
Shown, from left to right, are Cross, Freeman, Corinne, Stuart and Reed Doster.
Shown, from left to right, are Cross, Freeman, Corinne, Stuart and Reed Doster.

If you've every watched a wrestling match with Freeman Doster, you know how excitable he is. A wrestler himself, he raised three stellar Baylor wrestlers, one being a four-time state champion.

He's excited now, but not about sports. He can barely contain himself about his new partner in his dental practice. His son, Cross, graduated from UT dental school this past spring after getting a BS from UGA, and joined his father this summer. "I am so excited Cross decided to join me in the practice of dentistry!" Freeman says. "I've been looking forward to this for the past four years while he was in dental school."

As a boy, Freeman always thought he'd join his father in the car business, Lawrence-Doster. But when he told this to Dr. Swanson, his chemistry teacher at Baylor, the teacher scoffed and said he doubted we would even be using cars that far in the future. This exchange occurred during the gas shortage of the mid seventies, when there was both panic and speculation about the gasoline supply. When his father agreed his teacher had a valid point, Freeman began to consider his options. "My brother Stokely was in dental school at the time, and I went for a long visit and decided dentistry was the field for me. And making the grades to get into dental school became my goal," he says.

Cross knew he wanted to be a dentist, but says his father didn't try to talk him into pursuing dentistry. "But he didn't try to talk him out of it either," Cross says.

In practice for himself for three decades, Freeman is grateful to have a partner, but especially glad to have that partner be his own son. "Having him there really takes a load off, and it's great to have someone to bounce ideas off of and corroborate with over patient treatment," Freeman says.

The main difference between the two of them seems to be that Freeman is right-handed, and Cross is left-handed. "The office is set up with right-handed equipment, so we had to do some pretty extensive remodeling to set up half of the office for Cross," Freeman says.

Clearly pleased with his new partner, Freeman credits his son with having a winning way with patients immediately. "He has such a nice way about him, and excellent people skills," Freeman says. "He's building a great rapport with the patients, and they are all very receptive to him." Freeman self-effacingly suggests Cross is able to explain things to patients in a way he is unable to, but truly both of them are as nice as they are approachable.

"My dad is the perfect dentist for me to learn from," Cross says. "He is a perfectionist and an outstanding dentist. He treats each patient with honesty and care, as if they were his own family member, ant there's not a better mentor for me to work alongside."

Corinne Doster, Freeman's wife and Cross's mother, is a regular at the practice as well. She's been filling in for absent employees for years, and welcomes everyone to the office in a warm, friendly way.

"Having Cross is proving to be a really good fit because we're combining his fresh knowledge and ideas and state-of-the art training with my thirty years of experience," Freeman says. "We intend on increasing our ability to give excellent service to our patients."

A dream come true for any dad, this father and son get to spend every day together. "I really enjoy having him there. It's great if we get a chance to go grab lunch together and talk," says Freeman.

As much as this family is immersed in wrestling, there is one thing they never struggle with: their commitment to their dental practice. And the excitement they exude is contagious.


“Communal Spirit: 3,000 Years Of Mexican Artistry” Opens Sept. 6 In University Archives

An upcoming exhibition in the Museum Gallery of University Archives and Special Collections explores the creativity and workmanship of artists working in Mexico beginning in 800 B.C.E. and concluding in the 1990s.  “Communal Spirit: 3,000 Years of Mexican Artistry” incorporates diverse Pre-Columbian artifacts from both western and eastern Mexico, representing eight different ... (click for more)

ShapeShifter Has Second Opening Ever During Gallery Hop

ShapeShifter Gallery will present a show on Saturday, Sept. 10 during the “Gallery Hop” at Estate of Confusion, located at 301 E Main. The show and reception will last from 2-10 p.m.  "Vibrant colors, patterns, texture and a bit of organized chaos are themes explored in our second show. Three artists will be featured including Brian Giwojna, Mark Leamon, and ... (click for more)

TBI Adds Jereme Little To Top 10 Most Wanted; Was Set Free By Judge Stern And Then Higher Court Overruled Her

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has added to its ‘Top 10 Most Wanted’ list Jereme Dannuel Little, who was freed by order of Criminal Court Judge Rebecca Stern, whose decision was recently reversed. Little is wanted by the Chattanooga Police Department and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation for especially aggravated kidnapping. The TBI said, "Little has a history of ... (click for more)

Gaines Charged In Assault On Ex-Wife, MLK Boulevard Barber

Eric Lee Gaines has been arrested for an assault on his ex-wife and a well-known MLK Boulevard barber. Gaines, 33, of 2803 Curtis St., was charged with disorderly conduct, domestic assault, assault, burglary of a business, public intoxication and retaliation against an officer. In the incident on Thursday, police were summoned to MLK Boulevard on an intoxicated individual. ... (click for more)

Proud To Be A Conservative Conservationist

I was born and raised in Chattanooga and was brought up to be a Tennessee conservative. That means that my family conserved our spending, our resources, and yes, even our environment.  I think we were inspired to do so because Tennessee is one of the most beautiful places in the entire United States. We have stunning mountains, wild rivers and quiet backcountry. And many of ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Georgia’s Weak Attacked

The United States Attorney’s Office and our nation’s Justice Department just thrust an unwelcomed spear into the heart of the state of Georgia. And while I am scared to death the same war party is now headed into Tennessee and other states, I wish the DOJ had stopped in Chattanooga for lunch and a quick visit at our Orange Grove Center before filing last Tuesday’s lawsuit against ... (click for more)