Welcome to Northpark Dental! Dr. Phan and Dr. Babor designed their dental practice with your comfort in mind, so you'll enjoy many amenities as well as state-of-the-art technology. Our focus is on your well-being, and our patients appreciate the personalized attention they receive when they choose Northpark Dental for their care.
Our entire team is excited to meet you! You can get to know a little more about each of us by reading our stories below. We proudly service Johnston, Urbandale, Grimes, Des Moines, and the surrounding areas. We look forward to seeing you at Northpark Dental soon!
Dr. Ellen Babor, D.D.S.
I grew up in Marengo, Iowa. Dentistry has always been a part of my life, as I spent many summer days at my father's dental practice watching him work on patients and helping out around the office.
After high school, I attended the University of Iowa where I received a bachelor's degree in psychology and chemistry and a master's degree in epidemiology. I attended dental school at the University of Iowa College of Dentistry and Dental Clinics where I received my Doctor of Dental Surgery degree.
My friends and family would say that I am an adventurous person who loves to travel, meet new people, and learn new things.
Dentistry is my passion because I am a people person. I am very gentle and caring and love to establish great relationships with my patients. I also have an eye for detail, esthetics, and an artistic and creative side; being a dentist allows me to utilize these skills in a way that can change lives and I cannot think of a more rewarding career than that.
I am a member of the American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, and American Academy of Facial Esthetics.
I want to establish trusting relationships with patients and get them excited about going to the dentist. I want to play a role in helping people change not only the appearance of their teeth but also the quality of their life.
In my free time, I enjoy doing just about anything outdoors including running, biking, swimming, traveling, and spending time with my husband, our two daughters Emery and Kennedy, and our three dogs.
Dr. Trung Phan, D.D.S.
I enjoy getting to know my patients, and I hope you spend a little time to read about me. I was born and raised in Hue, Vietnam. My father fought in the Vietnam War as a South Vietnamese Army Captain and alongside the United States of America. The North Vietnamese Army captured and imprisoned my father for eight years, and his release came when the Vietnam War ended on April 30, 1975, when the North Vietnamese Army overtook Saigon. Although my father had his freedom, life after the war was a difficult adjustment for him and my mother.
Soon after the Vietnam War, Vietnamese refugees began to flee their homeland. The first wave consisted of South Vietnamese, United States government officials, and selected Vietnamese families. My family was not part of this group; instead, after the fall of Saigon, the new Socialist Republic of Vietnam sent millions of former South Vietnamese military officers to re-education camps, including my father. Luck began to turn in our favor in the early 1990s; because my father was a former political refugee and prisoner, under the United States Humanitarian Operation Program, our family was able to leave Vietnam. In 1991, my family and I immigrated to Denver, Colorado through the sponsorship of an elderly American couple.
My life was difficult in Vietnam, and I thought coming into the US would be a lot better; however, living in the United States possessed its own hardships and challenges. Adjusting to American culture was difficult; I could not speak a word of English and kids gave me funny looks as I talked to them in Vietnamese. I realized that life was different and challenging but certain people in my community lent their hands and helped us with our transition. Before separating from my parents, they taught me to be honest, hard-working, and considerate of others.
At the age of 16, I began the Casey Foundation Independent Living Program and by my junior year in high school I was living in an apartment, paying my own bills, working an average of 35 hours a week as a waiter. I was also still able to graduate high school with honors while taking Advanced Placement classes such as AP Chemistry and College Calculus. I sacrificed my high school graduation to graduate early so I could enlist into the Marines. There they fortified my discipline for hard work, perseverance, leadership, teamwork, and integrity.
While at the University of Iowa working towards my B.S. in Biology, I received orders to deploy to Iraq. My heart sank as the thought of dying young went through my mind; however, in hindsight, being in Iraq has been the best experience in my life. I interacted with the locals, and I noticed they did not have much left in their war-torn country, yet, I never once heard them complain about their lives. I had the opportunity to teach the Iraqis people proper hygiene, including oral hygiene. I taught kids and adults how to use toothbrushes and toothpaste to brush their teeth. I could tell they were grateful for my help. These interactions were gratifying and influenced my decision to pursue dentistry. Dentistry, to me, is a profession that brings me joy by helping others. I love meeting my patients, getting to know them throughout their treatment process, but more importantly, it fulfills my duty as a human being to help others who are in need.
My treatment philosophy when it comes to treating and managing my patients; treat them how I would my own family.
I love to spend my free time with my wife, Ellen, my daughters, Emery and Kennedy, and our Cavachon puppies, Rylee, Lucy, and Willie Mays. My idea of a fun time is being with family and friends. I enjoy home projects and reading. I also enjoy working on cars and motorcycles. I stay active by riding my bicycle, running, and enjoying many other outdoor activities.
If you would allow me, I would love to be your dentist!
-Dr. Trung Phan