My name is Jack and I’m the official mascot for Toothbrushers and Balaam’s Donkey; that’s my photo on our logo!
Before I came to live with Mike, and Anita I was in bad shape. I was hundreds of pounds under weight, my skin was covered with sores and my feet were so misshapen that I walked funny. Mike and Anita gave me love, cooked me lots of warm food that they fed me by hand.
At first, I didn’t feel good and was sad. They knew how to help me and took care of me. They brought me to the vet and to the dentist and I got healthy and stronger.
Now we get to take trail rides with my mule buddies together and I go visit nice people while Mike tells great stories and makes people laugh and Anita talks about how important it is to take good care of your teeth. I love my life!!!
Stefanie Reaktenwalt RDH, COO and co-founder of Toothbrusher’s and Balaam’s Donkey.
Stef has been caring for people and mouths as a dental hygienist for 20 years. She has worked in both general dentistry and periodontal practices.
Stef has a passion for helping others and making people smile.
Carol Berchenbriter MSN, RN is a registered nurse and health education liaison for Toothbrushers and Balaam’s Donkey.
She has her masters degree in nursing with a focus in health advocacy.
Carol has a passion for helping people understand the connection between promotion of health and wellness to prevent illness and disease.
Full time farrier and our mule and donkey “wrangler”, Mike is a current day cowboy that doesn’t own a cow!
Training and caring for the equipment, tack and animals keeps Mike plenty busy as he still works full time serving horse owners with their horse shoeing needs.
Mike is the main man in the donkey events and enjoys visiting with all the great people we get to meet in our travels.
I’m Heidi Houts. I’m proud to be the first full time employee of Toothbrushers and Balaam’s Donkey (Balaam’s Donkey). My past experiences in retail, 24 years of dental assisting, patient care, administrative, and office management were the ideal training ground for the many roles I currently fill at Balaam’s Donkey.
Balaam’s Donkey, is a startup company, whose vision is nationwide service to people who need assistance in self-care. My role is providing our services to our current, local, members, as well as creating systems to allow for nation wide growth. But my duties do not end there! I’m also responsible for gathering data, submitting grant applications, fund raising, training volunteers and general systems development. Add to my duties, wife and mom of a teenager.
My passion for spreading joy has found a home in this company who makes spreading joy their primary focus! The opportunity to be the hands and feet that make this great vision a reality is an answered prayer, and a perfect fit for me!
Anita Siddall is CEO and founder of Toothbrushers and Balaam’s Donkey. Having worked as both a CNA in long term care centers and also a Dental Hygienist, Anita experienced firsthand the difficulty of providing adequate daily oral care to people who are unable care for their own mouth, in the busy environment of long-term care centers. Another obstacle to adequate daily oral care is the fact that removing oral plaque in the presence of oral disease requires special tools, training and a lot of time.
With current research uncovering more and more dire connections between oral disease and declining systemic health it was impossible for Anita not to take action. Understanding that the trouble did not lie with a lack of concern from care givers but a lack of time, supplies, PPE and training in advanced Oral disease care.
Anita loves teaching and finds her role as an oral health educator a fun fit. Traveling to public events with her husband and their big donkey is a huge bonus to a wonderful job!
Tara Beem, secretary and treasurer of Toothbrushers and Balaam’s Donkey.
Tara has worked in the dental field for over 40 years as both a dental assistant and business manager.
She is excited to be a part of this effort to more readily bring this type of care to at risk populations.