HomeNEWSBLACK GIRL MAGICTransforming Communities: Dr. Shanelle R. Dawson’s Entrepreneurial Journey into the Dental Industry

Transforming Communities: Dr. Shanelle R. Dawson’s Entrepreneurial Journey into the Dental Industry

In celebration of Women’s History Month, we shine a spotlight on the remarkable career of Dr. Shanelle R. Dawson, Principal at ACCESS Dental Laboratories. A powerhouse with 25 years of educational experience, 15 years of leadership development, 10 years of community service, and 5 years of industry knowledge, Dr. Shanelle is on a mission to uplift her community and build a lasting legacy.

In an exclusive interview, she shares insights into her journey, the formation of ACCESS Global Enterprises, and the establishment of ACCESS Dental Laboratories, reflecting her unwavering commitment to education and entrepreneurship. Dr. Shanelle R. Dawson’s journey exemplifies resilience, vision, and a commitment to community empowerment, aligning seamlessly with the spirit of Women’s History Month. Stay tuned for the inspiring story from this trailblazing entrepreneur!


Tammy: Women’s History Month is a time to honor the accomplishments of women. It is our distinct pleasure to highlight your inspirational career! Please tell our readers about the impactful services you currently offer at ACCESS Dental Laboratories.

Dr. Shanelle: ACCESS Dental Laboratories is on a mission to transform the city by building the first black-owned, woman-led, full-service dental laboratory on the south side of Syracuse and was birthed from 25 years of dental experience, 15 years of leadership development, and 10 years of community service. Here at ADL, we manufacture & design crowns, bridges, dentures, night guards, implants, veneers, and more.

Tammy: As the leader in the industry, and drawing from your own experiences in building and leading successful ventures, why is it important for you to coach women who are looking to start businesses?

Dr. Shanelle: Business ownership changed the trajectory of my life. I retired from teaching after 20 years of service, but entrepreneurship transformed my life. I coach because I want every woman to experience real freedom and transformation.

Tammy: How has your mission from the formation of ACCESS Global Enterprises to the establishment of ACCESS Dental Laboratories, changed or remained the same from when you first got started? How so?

Dr. Shanelle: I knew ACCESS Global Enterprises would be a powerhouse! However, I didn’t know in what capacity. When it was time to start ACCESS Dental Laboratories, I immediately made the decision to have ACCESS Global Enterprises serve as the parent company of ADL. AGE was an established company. I knew it would be better to approach bankers and investors with an established company. From formation to now, the mission has stayed the same; Uplift My Community and Build A Legacy. I know everything else will fall into place. Ideas from ACCESS Global Enterprises are woven with the fabric of ACCESS Dental Laboratories. Everything I do centers around my beliefs, values, and principles.

Tammy: What would you say have been some of your most memorable career milestones?

Dr. Shanelle: To date, my most memorable career milestones are graduating with my doctorate in 2009, securing the funding to build ACCESS Dental Laboratories in 2021, and acquiring all decision-making power at ACCESS Dental Laboratories in 2024.

Tammy: Women’s Health is a significant aspect of Global SAGE Wellness. Can you share insights into how this focus intersects with the broader mission of ACCESS Dental Laboratories, particularly in promoting holistic well-being within the dental profession?

Dr. Shanelle: Global SAGE Wellness encourages women to focus on the connection between the mind, body, and spirit. In January of 2023, I began my wellness journey. In March of 2023, I participated in an entrepreneurship webinar. The speaker talked about making a strategic pivot. A Strategic Pivot is when you blow up your life and move in an unexpected direction. It’s an intentional transformation. You know you deserve better, and you embark on the journey to receive all that the universe has to offer. Now, here we are, one year later, and I am leading ACCESS Dental Laboratories. This was my strategic pivot. The mission of ACCESS Dental Laboratories is to Uplift My Community and Build A Legacy. My goal is to grow ADL into a business that not only offers employment, but, I envision childcare services, yoga, and exercise classes, a whole food cafe, and a relaxation room. These workplace benefits highlight the connection between mind, body, and spirit and are my definition of work—life balance. This is the intersection between the two companies.

Tammy: What keeps you motivated to embody entrepreneurial spirit?

Dr. Shanelle: I truly believe every idea that enters my mind is a potential business opportunity.

Tammy: Throughout your career, you’ve been a catalyst for positive change. What are some of your future goals to continue making a lasting impact on future generations within your community?

Dr. Shanelle: I hope to buy a building and house all of my companies in one location: Headquarters of the Global Family Companies. I would also like to build a training incubator for the laboratory, and have students from the local high schools gain the necessary skills to work in the dental industry. Eventually, I’d like to be a major employer in Central New York.

Tammy: As a trailblazing woman in the dental industry, how do you see ACCESS Dental Laboratories contributing to the celebration and recognition of women’s achievements, not only within your organization but in the wider professional landscape?

Dr. Shanelle: My hope is to use my platform to help other women do as I’ve done. I will continue coaching and mentoring women to encourage entrepreneurship. Perhaps one day, I’ll be able to fund new business opportunities for women. Additionally, I plan to be more visible in spaces that celebrate the achievements of women. I hope my experiences can offer guidance to others. This journey is not for the faint of heart, I applaud women willing to dive in.

Tammy: We applaud your commitment to community empowerment which aligns with the spirit of Women’s History Month! What advice would you give women leaders and entrepreneurs to foster a supportive and inclusive work environment that celebrates the diverse talents and contributions?

Dr. Shanelle: I would encourage women leaders to take a view from the balcony and imagine the possibilities. What did you need when you began your career, create it. What resources did you hope for, provide them. What training did you desire, make it available. Additionally, I would ask current leaders to grow leaders from within their organizations and identify people with different perspectives and life experiences. With varied ideas and diverse backgrounds, we are still stronger together.

Get connected online:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/accessdentallabs/
X (Twitter): 



Read more lifestyle, entertainment, fashion, and beauty interviews by Tammy Reese@tammyreesemedia.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

- Advertisment - The Virtuous Hour Radio Show Ad

Most Popular