“I liked the [military] life,” Tracey said. “They pay for your school and we got to live for three years in Germany. My son was born in Germany. He even has an unofficial German birth certificate from the hospital.”
Now, Tracey is a registered dental hygienist in Dental Depot’s Norman office. She started her career with Dental Depot in 2009, after getting her start as a dental assistant while serving in the Air Force.
“I wanted to be a veterinarian,” Tracey recalled. “I used to have horses and show them. I showed racking horses and I had an appaloosa that I showed jumping. I was a horse nut. But I’m too soft hearted to put animals to sleep. I don’t think I could do it.”
“The military got me into dentistry,” Tracey said. “There was no thought about it until the military.”
Although Tracey may have been assigned a career in dentistry, the choice to pursue a higher level of dentistry education and practice was certainly in line with her goal-getter personality.
“One of my goals for before I got out of the military was to get my master’s degree in public health, epidemiology [the study of disease in a population],” Tracey explained. “The body and infectious disease is so interesting to me.”
“I got it [master’s degree], but I’m not sure what I want to do with it. It was just a goal to get it,” Tracey said. “For a while, I thought about teaching or doing cancer research, but I’m just still not sure. I love what I do and I don’t have any plans to change that.”
“When I left the Air Force I started working for Dental Depot on Saturdays and eased into civilian life,” Tracey said. “I used to bring my kids here before I started working here. I loved the office and the atmosphere. It was just a natural fit.”
“I like to stay busy and meet new people,” Tracey said. “Here, I’m always busy and there’s always something to do. And there are more opportunities [compared to a small private practice] to move up if you want to.” (There she goes, thinking about those goals again!)
Today, Tracey and her husband of some 30 years, Ricky, are both civilians with a grown family of four. And, although you would never know it by looking at her, Tracey is also the proud grandmother of a two-year-old grandson. Both full of life, with a love of animals and being outdoors, Tracey spends her days off with her grandson, going for walks and taking him to the park, among other adventures.
No stranger to traveling, Tracey plans to continue racking up miles on the road and in the air.
A Prince fan, her son took her to see Prince’s home after he passed away in 2016. And soon, she’ll be celebrating her 50th birthday with a Puerto Rican getaway that was gifted to her by her children, one of whom has the inside hook-up as an airline employee. (And believe us when we say we’re all a bit jealous, too!)
“It’s kinda nice to be able to fly somewhere for the weekend,” Tracey said. “I’ve never been to the Carolinas and I really want to go there. I love the beach! Also, Washington state, Oregon; I haven’t been on the East Coast or Northwest much, and I want to go to Canada – just about everywhere really!”
Whether her goals are related to her career, education, or her leisure time, one thing is for sure – this amazing lady will never stop pushing herself to new heights.
“I don’t think I’d want to work full time past 65 …” she said, hesitantly. “I’m hoping to live more simply when I get older.”
(There’s another goal!)
Tracey continues to challenge herself in new ways. An avid reader of mostly inspirational books, she set a goal for herself to finish reading the Bible this year. “I’m about a third of the way through it,” she said.
Tracey Domingue was nominated for Dental Depot Employee of the Month by Lothar Lai, manager of our Norman office, and four of her colleagues:
“Tracey is awesome! The word ‘no’ is not in Tracey’s vocabulary. Anything that is ever asked of her will get done. Whether it is being asked to help out fellow co-workers, or even help out at other offices,” said Lothar Lai, Norman office manager. “It’s always a pleasure to see her interaction with patients because it is always attentive, warm and sincere. As a manager, one of the best things to see is the glowing feedback that Tracey gets on a regular basis and patients requesting to see her again.”
The sentiment given by her colleagues is that Tracey is a hardworking, happy and fun person, who is always willing to help and never says no.
Dental Depot is a locally owned and operated family company. As such, we believe that the incredible group of doctors, hygienists, assistants and staff that make up Dental Depot are more than their job titles; they’re members of our extended family. In our family, we like to recognize when someone goes above and beyond, living the Dental Depot values. This May, we are proud to shine a spotlight on Employee of the Month Tracey Domingue.