Date: June 11, 2006
About: Paul Obrock - Class of 1975
A Working Relationship
By Kelly Wilson
Herald-Whig Staff Writer
Dr. Paul Obrock has been practicing dentistry in Quincy for 23 years, and he's shared his dental office with a special partner - his father, Dr. Ed Obrock.
"It's been a joy to work with him," Obrock said of his father, who semi-retired from the profession several years ago but still sees patients a couple times a week.
"He's always been encouraging and helpful and a very good teacher," Paul Obrock said. "It's been a blessing because he's open to change and new things."
The Obrocks operate CornerStone Dental Health at 334 S. Eighth.
Ed Obrock, 76, graduated from dental school at the University of Illinois-Chicago in 1955 after getting a bachelor's degree at Quincy University. He spent two years in the Air Force before starting a practice in Quincy.
"When I was attending QU, I became interested in the sciences," he said. "I felt dentistry was a profession that was helpful to the public and also an occupation where you could set your own hours."
He and his wife, Lee, had just one child and he's grateful he's had the chance to work beside him for so many years - although he was surprised to learn that dentistry was Paul's profession of choice.
"He hadn't spent a lot of time around me at work," Ed Obrock said. "We were rather surprised. But his mother and I were both elated about it."
They were even more excited to learn he wanted to practice in Quincy.
Paul Obrock says Quincy offered the type of lifestyle he wanted, and says it's been a good place for he and his wife, Ellen, to raise their two boys, Eric, now 21, and Evan, 17.
"It's very nice to have the whole family here," Ed Obrock said.
Paul Obrock graduated from Augustana College in 1979 and from Washington University School of Dental Medicine in 1983. When he came home from school, his father moved his practice from 803 Ohio to 334 S. Eighth to accommodate both dentists.
In recent years, they've added associates Dr. Kimberly Speckhart and Dr.
"I just love it," Paul Obrock says of dentistry. "With all the technology, it is just phenomenal what you can do for patients. I also like wearing different hats - accountant, CEO, physician, metallurgist, surgeon, psychologist. That's what makes it so exciting."
Ed Obrock says he's enjoyed working with his son.
"It was great for me because he brought some new ideas and new techniques, some progressive things, things I wouldn't have done if he hadn't been here," Ed Obrock said.
On the flip side, Paul Obrock says he's learned a great deal from his father.
"He was a good role model," he said. "He's the ethical person you'd want to model yourself after."
Both have similar advice for fathers and sons considering going into business together: respect each other and each other's ideas.
They both admit not every parent and child could work so closely together for so many years.
"But we get along very well," Paul Obrock said. "He's easygoing and I am too, really. And we've had two somewhat independent practices so we're not under each other's noses."
Contact Staff Writer Kelly Wilson
at firstname.lastname@example.org or (217) 221-3391