Meet the Team
Lani Skiff, R.D.H.
Lani is a 1986 Covington High School graduate. She attended DSLCC and in 1990 she graduated Suma Cum Laude from Virginia Western Community College with an associates in Applied Science Degree in Dental Hygiene. She has been a loyal employee in our office for over twenty seven years. She loves seeing patients smile and feels privileged to call many of them her friends. She strives to be a friendly familiar face and to put patients at ease with gentle care. Lani graduated from Good News School of Ministry in June 2007, and enjoys serving the Lord in various capacities. She resides in Covington with her children, Ian and Logan, and her dogs Lulu, Molley and her grand dog Teddie. She enjoys singing, reading, spending time on her side porch, watching her Yankees play, and spending time with her friends and family.
Melissa Kodger, R.D.H.
Melissa completed her undergraduate education through James Madison University, Blue Ridge Community College, and Old Dominion University. Melissa acquired her Associates in Arts and Sciences from Blue Ridge Community College in December of 2009. She transferred to Old Dominion University in 2010 and acquired her Bachelors of Science in Dental Hygiene in 2013. Melissa emphasizes the importance of patient oral health education in a fun environment.
Emily Loving, R.D.H.
Emily attended Wytheville Community College where she graduated with an associates in Dental Hygiene in 2016. She currently lives in Clifton Forge with her family. She joined the team October 2017. In her free time she enjoys, kayaking on the river, reading, and watching college basketball. She looks forward to seeing you at your next cleaning appointment!
Tammy Persinger, Office Manager
Tammy has been with the practice since June 1, 1989. Not long after that her and her husband Mike moved to Buena Vista where he had been working at Dana, INC. Tammy started out as the scheduling coordinator, but has been our office manager since 1994. Tammy grew up in the Alleghany Highlands where she attended Alleghany High School. With her children’s participating in sports for Parry McCluer Schools she quickly became a true “Blue” fan. When Tammy is not working she LOVES spending time with her Grandson Ian, clogging with the Rebels of Rhythm Cloggers and spending as much time as possible with family and friends
Lisa Ferguson, Financial Coordinator
Lisa would like to welcome everyone to the office. She is one of the friendly faces at the front desk. She loves to find ways to make people smile. She is happy to answer your questions, plan for appointments, help your resolve your concerns, discuss your financial options and make your visits a positive one. She has been with Buena Vista Family Dentistry for almost 3 decades, currently as Financial Coordinator and she appreciates how positive the environment is here. She appreciates the attentive care our doctors and team strive to provide to each patient. When she isn’t working, she enjoys cooking, shopping and spending time with her husband, children and their three beautiful grandchildren.
Ashley Smith, Scheduling Coordinator
Ashley started her career as scheduling coordinator here at Buena Vista Family Dentistry in May 2015. She had previously been in the financial field and now she can’t imagine life without dentistry. Uniquely with the help of her bubbly personality she has landed her in the customer service field for over 12 years. She is a 2007 graduate of James River High School in Buchanan. She now resides in Buena Vista with her husband and son. Her favorite activities are photography, painting, shopping, being outdoors, and spending time with family and friends. She will greet you with a smile as soon as the door opens here at Buena Vista Family Dentistry!
Kristy Martin, Clinical Manager
Kristy is a 93 graduate of PMHS. She has been with the practice since June 1993. She is currently holding position as Clinical Manager and assistant. She enjoys working with the doctors and staff helping with patient education and treatment to better their lives. When she isn’t working, she enjoys clogging as a member of the Rebels of Rhythm Cloggers. As well as spending time with friends, family and her loving pets Maggie Mae and Prissy.
Brenda Wheeler, Assistant
Brenda has over four decades of dental assisting experience. She makes patients comfortable and relaxed with her sweet demeanor. Brenda is a member of the Buena Vista Presbyterian Church, member of the choir and the circle. She resides in Buena Vista with her husband Johnny and has two sons, Jeff and Derrick. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her family, especially her grandsons Hayden and Jacob. And her dog Zoey.
Bridgett Hemmings, Lab Case Manager and Assistant
Bridgett is our lab case manager and assistant. She has been with the practice since 2007. When she’s not busy here assisting, she’s spending as much time as possible with her sweet kiddos and husband. They love being outdoors, going for adventurous walks and snuggling up for movie nights.
Tanda Smith, Assistant
Tanda has been an asset to our office for over ten years. She is a hygiene assistant and enjoys brightening her patients day with her infectious smile. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her family, cat Sassy, cleaning, and watching her son Josh race. Come in to see Tanda today!
Marcie Vest, Assistant
Marcie was born and raised in Buena Vista, where she attended Parry McCluer High School. In 2003 she was certified in nursing assisting. In 2012, she worked and trained under a dentist as a dental assistant and became a team member at Buena Vista Family Dentistry in May of 2014. Marcie resides in Buena Vista with her husband, four children and two step daughters. Marcie is a member of Rebels of Rhythm Cloggers which she enjoys in her free time. Along with walking, crafts, dancing, and spending time with family and friends. She is looking forward to seeing your smile on Magnolia!
Hillary Austin, Implant Coordinator and Assistant
Hillary is the Dental Implant Coordinator, as well as, one of the assistants at Buena Vista Family Dentistry; she has been with the practice since fall of 2014. She is 26-years-old and spends all of her home time with her family, she is married and has a rambunctious 2-year-old little boy. Her hobbies also include: doing volunteer work for the Buena Vista Pentecostal Holiness Church as a youth leader, baking, and going to sporting events (she is a die-hard Tarheels fan). Hillary loves to meet new people and help patients out in any way possible; she cares for them as if they are family.
Bonita Cash, Assistant
Bonita joined Buena Vista Family Dentistry in May 2015. She has over four decades of experience in the dental field. In her free time she enjoys feeding and caring for stray animals. Also she loves cuddling up with her kitten Romper and other special kitties Riley, Sprinkles, Miss. Black, Wilma, Gray Cat, Pooley Cat, and Spot. She even cares for special guests; the opossum family. She looks forward to seeing you at your next visit!
MacKenzie Bowles, Assistant
MacKenzie attended Valley Career and Technical Center where she completed the Dental Assistant program in 2016. She joined the Buena Vista Family Dentistry team in 2017. She lives in Greenville with her family. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family, shopping and watching Major League Baseball. She looks forward to seeing you at Buena Vista Family Dentistry!