Ruth's career as a dental technician began in London in the late 1970s where she earned certificates in Dental Technology and Advanced Prosthodontics from the City & Guilds of London Institute. She took her first technician position at Guy's Hospital and later became a senior technician and instructor at both the Eastman Postgraduate Dental Institute and the Royal London Hospital Medical College.
While at the Royal London Hospital she developed a strong interest in dental aesthetics and the power of the emotional component of removable dentures under the mentorship of Dr. John Besford. His philosophy on complete dentures continues to be a motivating influence in her work today. While working alongside Dr. Besford, Ruth created a personalized denture for a young woman named Julie (front page of website) whose life had been deeply affected by the loss of her teeth. That denture dramatically improved Julie's self-esteem and autonomy. This experience convinced Ruth that when doctor, patient, and technician work together as a team it is possible to create high quality dentures that can impact patientsí lives and prove highly rewarding for everyone involved. It sparked a passion in Ruth for delivering life changing experiences to others that has been a defining characteristic in all that she does.
Ruth continued to pursue her lifelong love of learning and teaching within academic institutions when she joined the academic staff of Manchester Metropolitan University as a lecturer in the Department of Dental Technology and Materials Science, the first school in the U.K. to offer a four year Dental Technology degree. While still teaching Ruth completed a second degree in Dental Technology and, together with Dr. Besford, began collaborating with dental manufacturer Davis Schottlander & Davis on the design of the Enigma Denture System. In 2004 the Enigma Denture System won the Queens Award for Industry.
In 1996 Ruth moved to the U.S. to take the post of oral-maxillofacial prosthetic technician at the University of Washington where she is currently an affiliate faculty member of the Department of Restorative Dentistry. Alongside her academic experience Ruth has taken every opportunity to attend continuing education courses. Most recently Ruth has attended numerous courses given by Dr. John Kois at the Kois Center where she is recognized as a specialist.
In 2004 Ruth opened her own laboratory, RE Bourke, which specializes in complete denture aesthetics and implant retained removable prosthetics. Following her own mission to further technical excellence in the area of removable prosthetics Ruth has incorporated a number of Dr. Kois' systems into her own laboratory work. She continues to regularly lecture in the field of dental technology at the Kois Center and at various conferences in the U.S. and abroad.
For information on the Kois Center go to www.koiscenter.com