Kaci Cerka Vela, DDS, MS
Dr. Kaci C. Vela was raised in Amarillo, Texas where she earned her BS with a double major in Biology and Chemistry from West Texas A&M University magna cum laude. Following graduation, Dr. Kaci was awarded her DDS from the University of Texas at San Antonio Dental School graduating summa cum laude as salutatorian of her class. During her training she received the Memorial Award of Excellence and the Service Achievement Award from the Omicron Kappa Upsilon Dental Honor Society as well as the Vernetti Award for Excellence in Operative Dentistry, the Orofacial Pain Excellence Award, the Excellence in Prosthodontics Award, the Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and Radiology Awards and numerous leadership awards from both the International and American College of Dentists and the Women’s Faculty Association. Dr. Kaci practiced general dentistry in Waterloo, taught at the UI College of Dentistry and also received a T-32 research grant from the NIH prior to completing her MS degree and Certificate in Orthodontics from the University of Iowa. Her extensive research has been published in 3 peer-reviewed scientific journals: “Trigeminal Nociceptors Express Prostaglandin Receptors” in the Journal of Dental Research, “Patient Preferences Regarding 1-Visit versus 2-Visit Root Canal Therapy” in the Journal of Endodontics as well as “Phenotypic Characterization of Class III Malocclusion” in the American Journal of Orthodontics and Dental Orthopedics. Dr. Vela is board certified by the American Board of Orthodontics, a voluntary commitment to orthodontic excellence, achieved by only 1 in 3 orthodontists. She currently practices orthodontics at Dental Specialists of Iowa in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.