Meet Our Doctors

Dr. Merrihew

Dr. Merrihew received his Bachelor of Arts Degree Cum Laude in Philosophy from the University of Southern California in 1974 and his Doctor of Dental Surgery, also from USC, in 1979, where he was awarded the Certificate of Merit of Excellence in Endodontics from the American Associations of Endodontists.

Committed to delivering state-of-the-art dentistry to his patients in a friendly, caring office, Dr. Merrihew has completed well over 2000 hours in advanced postgraduate dental education, and is a sponsored speaker for Oral CDX, lecturing on oral cancer screening and prevention.

Dr. Merrihew is a graduate of the prestigious Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies in Cosmetic Dentistry and has been awarded fellowships and Masterships in the International Congress of Oral Implantology, the Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation, and the Academy of General Dentistry, a distinction held by less than 1% of all currently practicing dentists worldwide. He was appointed Qualified Medical Evaluator in Dental Surgery by the Department of Industrial Relations, State of California in 1993, is an Advanced Cardiac Life Support Provider, Invisalign Premier Provider, and was voted one of “Riverside’s Best Dentists” by readers of the Press Enterprise in 2013 & 2014.

Dr. Brent

Dr. Alexandria Brent received her Doctoral Degree in Dental Surgery from the University of Washington where her involvement as student council president was recognized by receiving the Jack E. Nichols and WSDA Dan G. Middaugh leadership awards, and where she was selected as a teacher’s assistant in restorative dentistry as a result of her clinical proficiency and gentle patient interactions.

Dr. Brent enjoys working with patients of all ages and finds it rewarding when patients leave with a smile. She strives to provide care of the utmost excellence in all areas of dentistry and as an Oral Conscious Sedation provider and DOCS member, Dr. Brent is dedicated to ensuring that her patients have a comfortable experience. Dr. Brent is also an Invisalign provider and is happy to consult with patients about the esthetic and hygienic benefits.

Outside of Canyon Crest, Dr. Brent is a member of the American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, California Dental Association and the Tri-County Dental Society and is actively involved in study clubs here in Riverside. In her free time Dr. Brent is an avid runner and loves watching football.

Dr. Leoni

Dr. Leoni received his DMD from the highly accredited Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio in 2004 where he graduated first in his clinical class. Upon returning to his hometown in San Diego, Dr. Leoni was quickly recruited to work for a large national dental organization where he received experience second to none. Dr. Leoni’s unparalleled experience translates into diagnosing the most successful treatment and therefore outcome for the patient. Dr. Leoni was in fact the dentist for other dentists in his organization.

Dr. Leoni enjoys spending time with his family; wife Raelynn, and their children Stormie, Kaeli, Brendi and Kyle. Dr. Leoni enjoys camping, barbecuing, surfing and fishing. We are thrilled Dr. Leoni has joined our practice. His expertise is a true asset for our patients and demonstrates our commitment to providing exceptional dental care.

Dr. Leoni is a graduate from the prestigious Misch Implant Institute and is certified in Invisalign. He is a member of the ADA, CDA and SDCDS. In addition, Dr. Leoni has provided dentistry for several charities and has supported the efforts of Charity Water, a non-profit organization on a mission to bring clean and safe drinking water to every person on the planet.

Dr. Nora

Dr. Nora is a general dentist focused on delivering personalized quality care to all her patients. She graduated from the University of Illinois Chicago College of Dentistry and completed a one-year residency in an Advanced Education in General Dentistry at Wichita State. During her residency, Dr. Nora gained exposure to cutting-edge technologies and concepts. She built up advanced experience with full mouth rehabilitation cases, implants, and cosmetic dentistry. This training further prepared her to deliver the highest quality of care to her patients.

Dr. Nora has a passion for dentistry because it combines her interests in health and science and her love of art. She values patient education and actively listening to patients’ concerns. Dr. Nora is committed to spending time with each patient to ensure all treatment options are fully understood and together develop a customized, comprehensive treatment plan for each individual.

Dr. Nora worked as a dentist for several years in her hometown of Chicago before moving to California with her family. She stays up to date on the latest developments in dentistry by attending numerous continuing education courses throughout the year. Dr. Nora is Invisalign certified and an active member of the American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, California Dental Association, and Tri-County Dental Society.

Dr. Andy

Dr. Andy is a general dentist focused on making patients feel comfortable while in the dental chair. He graduated from the University of California, Irvine, followed by the University of Illinois Chicago College of Dentistry where he achieved individual honors in pediatrics, periodontics, and practice management. He also gained valuable experience working for years in the city of Chicago before returning home to the Inland Empire. Dr. Andy is Invisalign certified and continuously looking for ways to improve his quality of care.

Dr. Andy combines an empathetic approach to dentistry with a passion for the most current recommendations of the dental community to deliver quality, honest and focused care. He stays up to date on dentistry by attending continuing education courses to further his knowledge of the field. Dr. Andy enjoys a personalized and comprehensive treatment style so that his patients feel as if they are part of the process and makes sure his patients receive the proper education before making any treatment decisions.
Dr. Andy is most proud of his dental experience working with many different patient populations throughout his career. He has worked with many patients from a wide range socio-economic and cultural backgrounds in Chicago and the surrounding areas, and even in rural Colorado. He speaks a little bit of Mandarin and is working on his Spanish, both languages he constantly tries to improve. These experiences have really allowed him to connect with a wide-range of patients and develop his personalized and gentle style to suit any patient that he sees. In his free time, Dr. Andy enjoys spending time with his wife and twin boys. He is also an avid ice hockey player, golfer, sports fan, and snowboarder.

Our Specialists

Dr. Jo

Dr. Philip Jo received his D.D.S. degree from Loma Linda University School of Dentistry (LLUSD) in 2001. During the first year of dental school, he was selected for a 3-year U.S. Army Health Profession Scholarship Program (HPSP). Dr. Jo received multiple awards and honors in dental school including the coveted M. Webster Prince Award and admission into the Omicron Kappa Upsilon Dental Honor Society.

After graduation, he completed a 1-year U.S. Army Advanced General Dentistry (AGD) Residency with the U.S. Army Dental Activity, Hawaii and voluntarily deployed to Joint Task Force-Bravo, Soto Cano Airbase, Honduras for six months. Dr. Jo spent the remaining two years of active duty as a staff dentist and supervisor at Schofield Barracks Dental Clinic, Hawaii.

In 2004, he returned to LLUSD to complete a 27-month Advanced Dental Education Program in Endodontics and received a Certificate in Endodontics in 2006. His treatment philosophies are based on published scientific research and practice modalities in endodontics which enhances the patient’s quality of care.

Currently, Dr. Jo is serving as a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve for the 7305th Medical Training Support Battalion located in Sacramento, CA. “It is truly an honor and privilege to properly train the brave men and women of our Armed Forces prior to deployment.” In this spare time, Dr. Jo loves to travel and spend time with his wife and two daughters. He enjoys golf, trap/skeet shooting, and dabbles in mixing music.

Dr. Shabtaie

Dr. Ramin Shabtaie graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Dentistry. Subsequently, he completed and Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery residency training at UCLA Medical Center. Dr. Shabtaie is on staff at the UCLA Medical Center, and has formerly been on staff at Cedars Sinai Medical Center. He is a lecturer for the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at UCLA. He was a clinical instructor at Cedars Sinai Medical Center Department of Dentistry/Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Dr. Shabtaie is certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support. He is able to treat patients in the hospital, outpatient facilities, surgery centers and in his private office. Dr. Shabtaie is also a state examiner for general anesthesia, providing and monitoring standard of care in office anesthesia and sedation.

Dr. Shabtaie uses only the best in dental implants from the most reputable dental implant manufacturers. This, coupled with his extensive years of highly specialized training and years of clinical experience has earned him the reputation of ” Top Doc Oral Surgeon” Having performed over 10,000 surgical procedures to date- some on well known celebrities, including complex dental implant surgeries as well as reconstructive procedures, Dr Shabtaie is one of the top Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. With patients coming to see him both locally and from long distances, and other dentists and specialists seeking advice from him, Dr. Shabtaie is known among his peers to be a knowledgeable and experienced surgeon. Among his patients, he is well known for being caring and gentle. He prides himself in being a perfectionist, and very detail oriented.

Dr. Staadecker

Coury Staadecker DDS, MS is a board certified periodontist who earned his dental degree from The Ohio State University, and his Periodontics Certificate from the Naval Postgraduate Dental School in Bethesda, MD. While pursuing his Periodontics certificate, he also earned a Masters of Science degree from George Washington University. Dr. Staadecker is a Board-Certified Periodontist with over 20 years of experience, a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology and an Accredited Fellow of the American Society of Dental Anesthesiology.

When Dr. Staadecker had maintained his private practice in beautiful Newport Beach, CA he continued his involvement with academia as a local leader of the prestigious Spear Study Club, an interdisciplinary dental learning continuum, “University Without Walls.” Previous to that, he was a clinical instructor and Affiliate Professor at the University of Washington, Department of Graduate Periodontics. He enjoyed his tenure as the Senior Clinical Editor-in-Chief of the Seattle Study Club Journal, reaching over 8000 dentists worldwide.

Outside of the office, Dr. Staadecker enjoys spending time with his family, swimming, pickleball and pursuing new culinary delights.

Our Staff

Meet our teams of experienced professionals. They each share the belief that our care should be comprehensive and courteous – responding fully to your individual needs and preferences.


Office Manager


Administrative Assistant Manager


Patient Treatment Coordinator


Patient Treatment Coordinator


Patient Treatment Coordinator


Patient Treatment Coordinator


Patient Treatment Coordinator


Patient Treatment Coordinator


Insurance Benefit Coordinator


Hygiene Manager


Hygiene Assistant Manager


Hygiene Scheduling Coordinator


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Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Hygiene Assistant


Clinical Manager


Expanded Function Provider


Expanded Function Provider


Expanded Function Provider

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Expanded Function Provider


Expanded Function Provider


Clinical Assistant Manager


Registered Dental Assistant


Registered Dental Assistant


Registered Dental Assistant


Registered Dental Assistant


Registered Dental Assistant


Registered Dental Assistant


Sterilization Tech

10 Reasons to Choose Canyon Crest Dental, Riverside Dentist