Dr. Mark Kaschube
The Magic Dentist
Dr. Mark Kaschube is an experienced general dentist, the founder of Grand Dental Group, and believe it or not, a professional magician. Performing has been a part of his life for as long as he can remember. Born and raised in the Midwest, he embraced his local roots, attending Holy Ghost grammar school and Marist High School. When it came time for higher education, Loyola University in Chicago and Loyola Dental School were his choices.
“Excellence is never an accident; it’s the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, skillful execution, and vision.” Dr. Mark continues to gain knowledge by exceeding the annual requirement for continuing education and staying active in professional organizations, such as the American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Illinois State Dental Society, and CEREC Study Club.
Service is a Way of Life…
A natural extrovert and performer, Mark found his niche in life at an early age. He was active in school, church, community, and scouting activities where he earned the honor of Eagle Scout. To this day, he’s still extremely active in community service projects. He regularly puts on magic shows at preschools, participates in parades, and he’s the driving force behind the annual Halloween Magic Show, seen by thousands.
Keeping Magic Alive…
Dr. Kaschube’s love of magic isn’t limited to his patients and local community. For ten years, he helped promote National Children’s Health Month by appearing with Bozo the Clown on WGN-TV’s syndicated television show “Bozo’s Circus.” He’s also performed in Las Vegas and Europe, and is a member of The International Brotherhood of Magicians. Dr. Mark is always looking for a way to put a little “magic” in your smile!
Dr. Steve Napier
Dr. Steve Napier has two passions, music and dentistry. His music career began with guitar lessons at an early age and led to a high school band. When he realized he wasn’t going to be a rock star, he turned his attention to dentistry and became a co-partner at Grand Dental Group. An avid music buff who continues to play guitar with multiple acts, he continues to satisfy his need to appear before an audience by speaking and performing in the surrounding communities.
A graduate of the University of Illinois, Dr. Napier attends continuing education courses in excess of the annual required amount. He feels one of the best ways he can serve his patients is to stay current with all of the latest technology, techniques, and materials. He maintains active memberships with the American Dental Society, the Academy of General Dentistry, the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, the Illinois Dental Society, and the CEREC Study Club. Dr. Steve likes being part of a progressive group practice that offers general and specialty care to patients of all ages, in state-of-the-art facilities.
Service is not just a vocation; it’s a way of life. Dr. Napier is active in community, church, school, and sporting events. For seven years, Dr. Steve coached and served on the board for the Leyden Bears football program, and recently he started coaching soccer, lacrosse, girls’ softball, and girls’ basketball. He approaches everything he does with enthusiasm, which exemplifies his personal philosophy: “It can be done!”
Dr. B. Bruce Abdullah
Periodontics & Implants
Dr. Bruce Abdullah earned his dental degree from Loyola University School of Dentistry. He received his Certificate in Periodontics and Masters Degree in Science from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine in 1989.
He is currently an Associate Clinical Professor of Periodontics in Post Graduate Periodontics at the University of Illinois and has been teaching for the last 16 years. Dr. Abdullah both performs and teaches the latest techniques in implant and periodontal surgery. Furthermore, he is responsible for instructing students and residents on the placement of implants and advancements in the field of implant surgery. Dr. Abdullah is fortunate to have lectured both nationally and internationally on a broad range of topics, including periodontal plastic surgery and enhancing aesthetic outcomes in cosmetic restorative dentistry.
In 1987, Dr. Abdullah became one of the very first periodontists to be trained in the field of implant osseointegration by the esteemed Professor Per-Ingvar Branemark. Currently, he is among only a small percentage of periodontists throughout the world that has attained the qualifications necessary to become a Diplomate of The American Academy of Periodontology.
Dr. Abdullah was named by his peers to the list of “The Best Dentists in the United States”. He is one of 7,119 Dentists chosen from the 150,000 actively practicing Dentists in the United States to be listed on www.bestofus.com.
Additionally, the Consumers’ Research Council of America announced the inclusion of Dr. Abdullah to the publication “Guide to America’s Top Dentists”. The selection process is based on a point value system that awards points for education, years in practice, affiliations with professional associations and board certifications.
Dr. Abdullah has also been included in “Strathmore’s Who’s Who“. Based on one’s position and lifetime of accomplishments, Strathmore honors professional men and women in all academic areas and professions. Inclusion is limited to individuals who have demonstrated leadership and achievement in their occupation, industry, or profession.
Dr. Jeffrey A. Nickas
Dr. Nickas received his bachelors degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and completed his dental schooling at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he received the Dr. Lina K. Tharp award for compassion in providing care to his patients. He continues his education to this day, regularly attending courses at the Cosmedent Center for Esthetic Excellence. He has also received further training in endodontics, periodontics, and with the Dawson Academy for Dental Continuing Education. Dr. Nickas has also taken courses in the area of dental implantology, receiving training in both the placement and restoration of dental implants. He is certified both in Lumineers and Invisalign, and recognizes that a true doctor never stops being a student.
Dr. Nickas’ practice philosophy centers on patient comfort and education. “Coming from a dental-phobic family, I realize that many patients have had difficult experiences in the past. I strive to create a relaxing atmosphere, and will listen to your concerns.” He believes in a patient-centered method, and will take the time to explore your treatment options with you.
“I feel that my staff is an extension of me. If I could do it all, I would, but it takes a team to properly treat our patients. I would not be able to do my best work without the extraordinary effort of my assistants and staff.”
“One of the reasons I chose to pursue dentistry is that it allows me to create lasting relationships with my patients. I am a wholehearted Chicagoan, live music aficionado, and sports fan who always enjoys meeting patients with unique tastes. Oftentimes, I end up learning as much from you as you from me.”
Dr. Joe Nierzwicki
Dr. Joe Nierzwicki, a native of Chicago’s northwest side, attended Fenwick High School in Oak Park, IL where he excelled both in and out of the classroom. Graduating with a 4.0 GPA as a three-sport student-athlete, Dr. Joe decided to accept a soccer scholarship to Loyola University Chicago where he continued to pursue his passion for academics and athletics. Graduating Magna Cum Laude with Biology Honors, Dr. Joe moved out to Omaha, Nebraska, where he earned his DDS from Creighton University School of Dentistry.
As a dentist, Dr. Joe enjoys all aspects of general dentistry and loves getting to know more about his patients. Dr. Joe is also a member of Omicron Kappa Upsilon, a national dental honor society, the American Dental Association, Illinois State Dental Society, and Chicago Dental Society. Having finished two Chicago marathons, Dr. Joe is an avid runner. In his free time, he enjoys hanging out with his family and cheering on his two favorite Chicago sports teams, the Bears and the White Sox.
Dr. Taina Yanez
Enjoying the outdoors, spending time with her pets, sharing laughs with her family, and providing excellent dental care are just a few of Dr. Taina Yanez’s passions. Dr. Yanez was a Grand Dental Group patient long before she earned both her undergraduate degree (with honors) in biological sciences and her doctorate degree in dentistry from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is an active member of the American, Illinois State, and Chicago Dental Societies.
Dr. Yanez grew up in the Chicagoland area and is a second-generation Grand Dental Group team member. Her mother was one of the first dental assistants to work with both Dr. Mark Kaschube and Dr. Steve Napier. In fact, the sealants that Dr. Napier placed on Dr. Taina’s teeth as a child are still present! Although she is a self-proclaimed chocoholic, Dr. Taina is cavity-free to this day as a result of excellent Grand Dental care!
Dr. Yanez is genuinely enthusiastic about providing quality patient care and dedicates much of her personal time and energy to local community events. With a fluency in Spanish, Dr. Taina is able to provide education and dental treatment to all patients with comfort and compassion. She is excited to meet you, your family, and your friends. Dr. Yanez’s professional goal is to create a long-lasting relationship with her patients and their teeth!
Dr. William Hare
Dr. William Hare is a native of the southwest suburbs and a graduate of Lockport Township High School. He then attended the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he earned his Bachelors of Science and then completed his dental education at the University Of Illinois College Of Dentistry. Dr. Hare is proficient in all areas of general dentistry, including oral surgery, endodontics, and removable and fixed dental prosthodontics.
Dr. Hare is committed to providing the highest level of dental care for his patients and to make each and every patient as comfortable as possible. With a philosophy centered on patient desires and treatment goals, Dr. Hare will formulate a treatment plan that is best for you.
Dr. Hare is a member of the American Dental Association, the Illinois State Dental Society, and the Chicago Dental Society. In his free time he enjoys watching sports, swimming, and spending time with his friends and family.
Dr. Brandon Bice
Dr. Brandon Bice was born and raised locally, growing up in the small community of McCook, IL. Attending Lyons Township High School, Brandon was a standout two sport athlete, achieving All-State honors in Football and multiple Division I scholarships. After choosing to pursue football at Northern Illinois University, Brandon went on to become a three-year starter at Defensive-End and Captain for the Huskies. During his tenure the Huskies made three Bowl Game appearances while Brandon earned all-conference honors. Dr. Brandon became passionate about service early on as he pursued his undergrad degree in Biological Sciences and Chemistry. Brandon participated in service at the DeKalb Opportunity House, Hope Haven, and the Big Brothers Big Sisters club throughout his time at Northern Illinois University.
Dr. Brandon went on to receive his Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) degree from Midwestern University College of Dental Medicine in Downers Grove, IL. He trained there using state-of-the-art technology, while following the most current research and practices. While working toward his degree Brandon founded the Academy for Sports Dentistry Club at CDMI. During his time at Midwestern, he developed high standards of care, where patients’ needs come first. Upon closure of his degree, Brandon was inducted into the school’s chapter of Omicron Kappa Upsilon, the National Dental Honor Society.
Dr. Brandon is proficient in all aspects of general dentistry and is excited to come on board and join a team of outstanding clinicians. He is currently a member of the ADA, CDS, ISDS, ASDA, AGD, ADEA, and Students Professionalism and Ethics Association. Dr. Brandon is a huge Chicago Sports fan, enjoys traveling, and living an active lifestyle when outside of work.
Dr. Marcos Montoya
Dr. Montoya is a proud new addition to the Grand Dental Family. He and his wife have recently moved back to the North-West suburbs and are enjoying the area. Dr. Montoya was raised in Glenview, and attended Loyola Academy High School. As a high school student, he was an All-State ice hockey goalie and won two Illinois State Hockey titles. His passion for medicine and science ultimately motivated him to graduate from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a biology degree. He then went on to graduate from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry with his Doctorate of Dental Surgery (DDS) in 2012. During his later years at the college, Dr. Montoya was honored with a student teacher position, where he served with great value to help implement UIC’s new dental curriculum. He is an avid student of life, but he also enjoys sharing his knowledge with others especially his patients.
Dr. Montoya has been practicing in Chicago since 2012 with his aunt who is also a dentist. “My aunt has been such an invaluable mentor and source of knowledge throughout my career.” Dr. Montoya is a dynamic dentist, always up-to-date with the latest dental research and technology that help improve the lives of our patients. “I really enjoy building rapport with each patient individually. Every person is unique in their own way and must be cared for properly.” Dr. Montoya is a member of the Chicago Dental Society and the American Dental Association.
Dr. Montoya’s true joy is traveling with his wife and exploring new places. Just this past year, they spent a week traveling through Bogotá and Cartagena, Colombia. He also enjoys doing CrossFit at his brother’s gym and loves watching his older brother play in the National Hockey League for the Florida Panthers.
Dr. Thomas Cole Wells
Dr. Cole Wells is an associate dentist who bounces between the Grand Dental – Naperville and Grand Dental – Aurora, providing excellent care to his patients and lightening the atmosphere with his keen sense of humor. Dr. Cole received his bachelor’s degree in biology and biochemistry from Augustana College before graduating from the dental program at Midwestern University.
He’s a problem solver, and loves having the ability to take patients out of pain to allow them to achieve a health that they are confident in, as well as esthetics that they can be proud of. He is a member of the American Dental Association, the Illinois State Dental Society, the Chicago Dental Society, and the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, where he is pursuing continuing education on endodontics and implant dentistry.
Dr. Cole grew up in Bloomington and often played golf with his dad at Augustana. He is married to another member of the Grand Dental team, Dr. Paige Wells. Together, they enjoy spending time with family, including their white lab Hannah, as well as cheering on their favorite Chicago sports teams. Dr. Cole is also an avid reader who enjoys historical novels and biographies.
Dr. Kenneth Sandler
Dr. Kenneth Sandler, Grand Dental Group’s resident orthodontist, is a transplant from New Jersey, where he transformed thousands of smiles. He completed his post graduate training toward his Doctor of Dental Surgery at New York University’s prestigious College of Dentistry. It is a leader in research and innovation in the field of orthodontics and one of the country’s oldest dental schools. With a career spanning twenty-five years, Dr. Sandler has experience as a practitioner and as an instructor; in 1988 he returned to his alma mater to teach his craft to a new generation of aspiring dentists.
Patients appreciate his careful, individualized approach to dentistry and orthodontics and he is a member of the American Association of Orthodontics and the American Academy of Physiological Medicine & Dentistry. A firm believer in continuing education, Dr. Sandler regularly attends national workshops and seminars to stay abreast of new developments in orthodontic practices and technology.
At Grand Dental, his nickname is “the traveling dentist” because he serves patients at three different locations: Aurora, Channahon and Franklin Park. Outside of work he and his family enjoy following the New York Mets and having fun with their English bulldog, Daisy Duke. A self-described foodie, Dr. Sandler and his wife, Linda, are looking forward to exploring Chicagoland’s famous restaurant scene. Grand Dental is proud to add Dr. Sandler to the family.
Dr. Lilly Svjetlica
Dr. Ljiljana Svjetlica has been practicing general dentistry since 2007 in her native Serbia. She joined Grand Dental – Franklin Park in June 2018 after earning an international Doctor of Dental Medicine – Advance Standing from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Upon moving to the United States in 2011, Dr. Lilly served as a dental assistant for several years before pursuing her international license. The experience taught her the importance of complete patient care. “Customer service is just as important to patients as the quality of care they receive from the dentist. They want to be taken seriously and handled with respect.” She firmly believes patient health is a shared responsibility, each member of the team plays an important role in building trust. “A trusting relationship is critical to ensure acceptance of treatment and follow-through with recommended home care routines.”
Dr. Lilly Svjetlica lives with her family near Chicago and explores the city in her spare time. She is currently teaching herself Spanish and likes to practice karate, a hobby she now shares with her son.
Dr. Katy Correa
Dr. Katy Correa earned her Doctor of Dental Medicine, graduating top of her class from the dental advanced standing program at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She may be new to Grand Dental but has been practicing dentistry since 2001 in her native country of Mexico. She finished her undergraduate degree and earned a master’s degree in Comprehensive Dentistry at Benemerita Universidad Autonoma de Puebla in Puebla, Mexico. Originally planning on becoming an architect, her two older sisters—a cardiologist and dermatologist— convinced her to pursue a career in dentistry, and she couldn’t be happier. She is a member of Omicron Kappa Upsilon, a national dental honor society, and is an active member of the Chicago Dental society, the American Dental Association and the Hispanic Student Association since 2016.
Dr. Katy serves patients in our Aurora office and strongly believes that a patient’s oral health is an integral part of their overall health. “Patients often forget that the mouth is connected to the human body and poor oral hygiene can negatively affect other aspects of our health.” Fluent in Spanish and English, she provides dental care and education to many of our patients in the Aurora community.
Dr. Katy is public-spirited and volunteers for the, Ronald McDonald’s House Charities and Calvary Christian Church. She lives in Naperville with her husband, Luis, together they enjoy playing volleyball in two different, highly-competitive leagues. She is also an animal lover and owns two beautiful cats.
Dr. Austin Martinez
Dr. Martinez grew up in Wheaton, IL, graduated from Augustana College and received his Dental degree from the University of Illinois College of Dentistry in Chicago.
Dr. Martinez loves working with kids and keeps his young patients comfortable in the chair by exchanging stories about Minecraft, Fortnite and his pet chinchilla Kiko.
He is very proud to have served as a volunteer member of the Douglas County Medical Reserve Corps, supporting disaster relief efforts.
A music lover and an accomplished musician, Dr. Martinez is proficient on multiple instruments. He actually played in a touring band during his dental school days!
Dr. Mackenzie Popko
Dr. Mackenize Popko Schar was born and raised in beautiful Stillwater, MN. She attributes her desire to become a dentist from her experience with her first dentist. As young as elementary school, she remembers enjoying her dental visits, even when she needed fillings!
As an undergraduate, she studied Cellular and Molecular Biology and Biochemistry and received her Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) at Midwestern University College of Dental Medicine in Downers Grove, IL. She volunteers annually with TeamSmile at Chicago Bears Training Camp in Bourbounnais, IL and has served other outreach programs in the the Chicagoland area. Dr. Popko Schar believes prevention is key and educating children in proper oral hygiene will help them develop lifetime habits that will prevent dental issues in the future.
When not serving patients in our Channahon office, Dr. Popko Schar enjoys spending time with her husband, Alex, and their dogs Jackson (Yorkshire Terrier) and Prea (Husky/Pit-bull), an unlikely duo. They enjoy traveling to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and spending time outdoors.
Dr. Daniel Brady
A graduate of the University of Illinois College of Dentistry, Dr. Daniel Brady takes a comprehensive and caring approach to dentistry, getting to know each patient individually. Dr. Brady chose a career in dentistry because of his love of science and the opportunity to serve and heal those in need.
He enjoys the team at Grand Dental – Sycamore because of the nurturing and friendly environment they create for their patients. Together, they strive to take the fear out of going to the dentist. “We as a profession need to make it less intimidating to come in for regular checkups. Using modern techniques and materials reduces discomfort and patients often comment that their dental visit was painless.”
He was drawn to Grand Dental by the resources available at our group practice, including state-of-the-art facilities, a warm welcoming staff and access to specialists. Dr. Brady believes that dental school is just the start of the dental journey and is committed to continuing education, seeking out some of the best dental educators to improve his ability to provide the best possible care for his patients.
Outside of dentistry, Dr. Brady enjoys fishing, hiking and biking. He has three adult daughters, three grandchildren, and three dogs. He and his wife, Lorraine, enjoy vacationing in Door County, Saint Pete’s Beach and Nashville.
Dr. Valerie Levrant
Dr. Valerie Levrant learned the importance of dentistry first-hand, at a very early age. Congenitally missing two teeth, Dr. Levrant spent a significant amount of time with her oral surgeon, orthodontist and general dentist when she was young. The impact that dental professionals had on her life as a child, created a lasting impression on her and resulted in a winning smile.
When considering a career, Dr. Levrant pursued a degree in civil engineering from John Hopkins University, but soon recognized that was not her calling. Remembering her own life-changing experiences receiving excellent dental care, Dr. Levrant decided that dentistry would be more fulfilling. She says, “Once I actually considered dentistry as an option, it seemed a perfect fit – and I would still get to build bridges.”
After receiving her Doctor of Dental Surgery from Columbia University College of Dental Medicine, she was drawn to Grand Dental by the commitment to patient care and comfort. She says, “Everyone at Grand Dental was super friendly and welcoming from day one, always willing to lend a hand go an extra mile for patients and and for each other.” In her free time, Dr. Levrant enjoys watching TV and movies and spends her commute listening to audio books. She has a pet poodle mix named Sandy.