Dr. William “Will” Engilman, who founded the BracesBracesBraces brand and spent many years on the Mortenson Dental Partners executive team, passed away on July 16. He was 58.
Born on November 8, 1964, in LaMesa, California, Dr. Will studied computer science at Brigham Young University before pursuing his dental degree at the University of Louisville School of Dentistry. He went on to specialize in orthodontics at the University of North Carolina before returning to Louisville. In 1999, Dr. Will founded BracesBracesBraces, which has since grown to 15 practices in Kentucky, Indiana and Texas.
In his capacity as orthodontist, Dr. Will was known to donate free cases as part of the Smiles Change Lives program, which helps children from families who cannot afford the full cost of braces. He also frequently discounted or provided free treatment to children who could not afford braces. After transitioning from full-time orthodontics work to the Mortenson Dental Partners executive team, Dr. Will helped create and execute MDP’s long-term strategic vision. His distinct combination of skills in both dentistry and computer science led him to innovate an advanced support infrastructure, allowing administrative tasks to be handled by MDP’s Support Center and expanding time for providers to care for their patients.
After his retirement in 2021, Dr. Will remained an active member of the company’s board of directors as well as the Mortenson Charitable Foundation. Under his leadership, MDP was the first company in Kentucky to raise over $100,000 for the American Heart Association (a total of $130,000). He also co-chaired MDP’s contribution to the Heart Walk benefiting the American Heart Association several years in a row. In 2018, he received the “Heart of a Servant” individual award by the American Heart Association for his dedication, inspirational commitment and invaluable volunteer service at the 2017 Heart Walk. In 2021, Dr. Will was named a “Health Care Hero” by Louisville’s Business First, which recognizes healthcare professionals who go above and beyond to care for their patients and the community.
Bill Becknell, CEO of Mortenson Dental Partners, described Dr. Will’s legacy and what it means for the company going forward: “We will deeply miss Will and are forever grateful for the time we spent with him. He demonstrated unwavering compassion for others, including his patients, team members and the communities we serve. We look forward to honoring him by ensuring that Mortenson Dental Partners continues to live out the servant leadership principles he exemplified.”
Dr. Will is survived by his wife, Dena; daughters, Brooke and Emma; sons-in-law,Tyler and Spencer; father-in-law, Dr. Wayne Mortenson; and mother-in-law, Sue Mortenson.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Dr. Will’s memory to the Mortenson Charitable Foundation. Checks should be sent to the Mortenson Charitable Foundation, attn: Tanya Stewart, 10300 Linn Station Road, Suite 100, Louisville, Kentucky, 40223.