DCI was founded by John and Janelle Spencer in their living room in 1982. Born innovators and designers, this couple talked about slowing down and even retiring years later after many successes. But their entrepreneurial spirit took over instead! In 2015, with their children, Jason and Amy, they launched their next business—a new Equipment line called DCI Edge. Read about this family’s incredible legacy of invention and philanthropy.
Sometimes all it takes is an idea and a passion to change the course of your life and career.
If you ask John Spencer, CEO of DCI, he will add that the overwhelming support of your spouse certainly doesn’t hurt. His wife, Janelle, was working as a hygienist for a clinic that served low-income patients in Portland, Oregon, when they met. Together they knew that they had the discipline, drive, and ability to create a successful business and give back to their community. As two young parents in 1982, John and Janelle took a chance and risked it all to create Dental Components Incorporated or DCI as it is known to most.
What began with a small home loan, an idea for a syringe, and a makeshift office in their living room slowly grew into a global parts giant. Over the years, DCI purchased a struggling equipment company and with the help of their children, Jason and Amy, the Spencer’s grew that equipment line into a flourishing success story.
Then in 2005, John made the decision to sell the equipment side of the business and focus on parts. He and Janelle spoke about retiring. Slowing down. Maybe finding some new hobbies. But anyone who knew John could tell you that this wouldn’t last. He was born to create, innovate and build. In 2015, the idea for the DCI Edge Equipment Line was born.
With the ability to create an equipment line from scratch, the Spencer team pulled in their ‘A players’ to formulate the line they wanted to develop. Their ultimate goal was to create equipment with the highest quality. They also focused on price point because they wanted a line that was affordable. From their experience in the parts business, they also wanted to make it simple to install, to use, and to repair. Today, they boast a full catalog of cabinetry, chairs, units, and lights that fit within that mold. In 2018, they plan to expand their brand into specialty dental markets.
Through the years, the Spencer family never lost their sense of altruism and commitment to the community. They partnered with the Virginia Garcia Clinics to provide equipment donations so they can serve more than 5,000 patients each year in their home state of Oregon. DCI also provides Mission of Mercy with dental replacement parts that keep their 19 mobile medical clinics in service. As the company has grown, so has their reach globally. The Spencer’s purchased homes for an orphanage in El Salvador when the existing building was no longer suitable for the children. The family remains actively involved in the lives of the children and those running the facilities. And their biggest equipment donation yet, over 40 rooms of operatory equipment, went to the MUHAS Dental School in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s only school of dentistry. The Spencer’s were on hand for the installation, and as Amy put it, “There is nothing more incredible than being a part of a project like that. We were surrounded by people that want to help one another. It doesn’t get better than that.”
Even now, John shows no signs of slowing down. He is driven by a need to improve the lives of dentists, patients, and everyone around him. It is a drive that he has clearly passed down to Jason and Amy. Together, the three of them inspire a team that prides themselves on quality, innovation, and success.
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