Meet your Smile Team at Aspire Dental

Our Team

Get to know us.
We are here to guide and help you achieve and maintain optimal oral health.
We are serious about dentistry, but not ourselves.

Dr. Jesse Hwang, DMD

Education & Experience

  • Bachelor of Science in Bioengineering from the University of Maryland at College Park

  • Research Fellow at the American Dental Association Paffenbarger Research Center

  • Doctorate of Dental Medicine (D.M.D.) from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine in Philadelphia, PA

  •  General practice residency at NYU Lutheran Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY

  • Chief Resident of the Department of Dental Medicine

  •  Affiliate Faculty at the University of Washington School of Dentistry Restorative Department

  • Fluent in Mandarin Chinese

  • America’s Top Dentists Award 2015-2018

Dr. Jesse Hwang is an enthusiastic and engaging general and cosmetic dentist. He completed his Doctorate of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, where he received the Abram Cohen Award in Periodontics. After graduating at the top of his class, he completed his residency at NYU Lutheran Medical Center, a Level 1 trauma center in Brooklyn, NY, where he worked closely alongside oral-maxillofacial surgeons and many dental specialists on cases involving head and neck trauma, facial plastic surgery, anesthesia and sedation, dental implants, and TMJ.

He then served a second year as Chief Resident in the Department of Dental Medicine. This additional year of training allowed Dr. Hwang to further his knowledge and experience in surgical and restorative dental implants, full mouth rehabilitation cases including crown, bridge, and veneer restorations, root canals, complex extractions, and cosmetic dentistry. Following residency, he lived and worked in Manhattan for five years before moving to Seattle.

Dr. Hwang’s warm chair-side manner and communicative style allow him to provide comfortable, quality, and ethical dental care. Outside of Aspire Dental, Dr. Hwang enjoys cooking, playing volleyball, reading, traveling, and exploring the great Pacific Northwest with his wonderful wife and young son.

Dr. George Knutzen, DDS

Education & Experience

  • Doctorate of Dental Surgery (D.D.S.) from the University of Washington School of Dentistry

  • Commissioned Officer of The Medical and Dental Corps United States Navy, San Diego, CA 1967-1969

  • Serving the University District of Seattle since 1969

Dr. Knutzen is a lifelong Husky and attended the University of Washington for college and dental school. He is a native Seattleite and lived in Seattle for most of his life, except when he served in the Navy and was based in San Diego (1967-69). Dr. Knutzen is a published painter, and in his free time he enjoys restoring his old cabin, saltwater crabbing, and wading for clams and oysters. He loves spending time with his lovely wife, Karen, two sons, daughter, and 4 grandchildren.


Office Manager & Treatment Coordinator

Julie has been a tremendous asset to our team and is the first friendly face you are most likely to see when you walk through our doors. She enjoys getting to know our patients and their families, showing them around the office, and making them feel comfortable. She is an award-winning dog show breeder and has been involved with AKC conformation dog showing since 1982. Her hobbies include spending time with her two bearded collies, Patrick and Ranger, and painting with acrylic and watercolor.


Hygiene & Patient Coordinator

Sarah is a native Washingtonian and grew up in Bothell/Kenmore. Sarah is an incredible asset to the team and has worked with the practice in numerous roles, from dental assistant to hygiene coordinator, for more than 9 years. You are likely to receive a pleasant phone call from Sarah reminding you of your appointment. She is a recent newlywed and has two dog children, one being a puppy who is full of energy.

Dene, RDA

Dental Assistant Extraordinaire

Dene comes to our office with more than 25 years of clinical assisting experience. Her aspiration is that every patient have a great dental experience and her comforting and caring nature demonstrates that. Dene is instrumental in helping our patients make informed decisions about their dental care.

When she is not in the office, Dene enjoys the great outdoors. She is an avid appreciator of music and has been an extreme audiophile since her teenage years. She attends several blues festivals and concerts in the Seattle area every year. Fun fact, Dene has also been a licensed barber since 1974.

Saradel, RDH

Dental Hygienist Extraordinaire

Saradel is one of our amazing and friendly hygienists. She grew up in Virgina, but lived in NJ, Boston, and Atlanta before settling in Seattle. She is a graduate of Forsyth School for Dental Hygienists and has been helping patients maintain excellent oral health for more than 35 years. She has two daughters with her wonderful husband, and an energetic granddaughter. In her free time, Saradel enjoys working out and watercolor painting.

Mesti, RDH

Dental Hygienist Extraordinaire

Mesti was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She moved to Seattle in 2003, and after graduating from Ballard High School, attended Eastern Washington University Dental Hygiene program. She graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene. She loves working as a hygienist, and enjoys interacting, encouraging, and educating patients on achieving optimal oral health.

She is married, and has an 18 month old son and a baby girl on the way! In her spare time she enjoys taking long walks with friends, reading novels, and running after her energetic son.

Jill, RDH

Dental Hygienist Extraordinaire

Jill is another one of our personable and experienced hygienists. She is married with two grown children and two grandchildren. In her free time, she enjoys collecting and repurposing antiques and remodeling her 1912 home.

Aspire Dental Seattle

We want to see your smile

It’s our mission is to provide you with a dental experience you genuinely look forward to and to empower you to achieve a happy and healthy smile for life. We strive to provide you with the highest level of dental treatment in a relaxed, refreshing and non-judgmental atmosphere.

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