About Dr. Zerita C. Buchanan

Dr. Zerita C. Buchanan is a fourth-generation dentist and a proud HBCU graduate. Her commitment to health equity led her to be recognized as a “Healthcare Hero” by her alma mater Spelman College. A beneficiary of many mentorships, Dr. Buchanan, is hoping to ensure the future of healthcare looks more inclusive. She specializes in transforming the under-represented minority student experience and is passionate about HBCU pipeline development, workforce diversity, and healthcare innovation.

Dr. Buchanan received her Doctorate of Dental Surgery from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Dentistry and her MPH in Health Policy from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her public health research is focused on the enduring impact racism has on the American healthcare system and how it relates to current-day oral health disparities.

Her private practice, Dental Dreams, LLC, serves as an innovation hub for HBCU students interested in the STEM sciences. In 2022 Dr. Buchanan was awarded the Tory Burch Foundation Women of Color Grant and launched the “Dental Dreams, LLC- Dental Assisting School” to diversify the dental workforce and provide under-represented minority students with the necessary tools to be competitive applicants for dental school. Since 2014, Dr. Buchanan has served as the Assistant Director of Increasing Diversity in Dentistry (IDID), a national pipeline program for minority college students interested in pursuing a career in dentistry. Since coming on board with IDID, Dr. Buchanan has helped to grow the membership to over 750 pre-dental students nationwide.

A dynamic keynote speaker, Dr. Buchanan has given students of color the confidence and courage to follow uncharted career paths in science and technology. In addition, she has built a vast network inclusive of top healthcare leaders by serving as an HBCU engagement consultant to world-class institutions such as Harvard University, Tufts University, Virginia Commonwealth University, and UNC-Chapel Hill.

She is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, and The Dogwood City (GA) Chapter of The Links, Inc. She also serves as an adjunct professor at Morehouse School of Medicine in the Department of Medical Education.

 “The students I mentor in IDID call, text, email, and even engage with me on social media. They ask me real questions and expect me to provide honest and relatable answers. If I can give self-confidence to just one student and encourage them to pursue academic excellence, then my time on earth will be well spent.” – Dr. Zerita C. Buchanan