Meet the Team


Dr. Kip Etheridge, DDS

“I have the best profession in the world, providing Dental Healthcare in Battle Creek, Michigan. When I was a child, many hours of my day was spent drawing and enjoying the artistic side of my brain. It was while I was working towards my Eagle Scout, on my Dentistry Merit Badge, in Boy scouts, that I spent some time with my childhood Dentist. I discovered that you can blend science/medicine/healthcare with artistry, as you might say “I was hooked.”

I graduated from the University of Detroit Mercy, School of Dentistry in 2000 and returned to my hometown. In March 2001, Dr. Richard Rivard sold me his dental practice and in January 2009, I acquired the practice of the deceased Dr. Dominic Cannatti. My journey has led me to many wonderful experiences and friendships. After graduating, I joined the Oakridge Study Club; which is comprised of excellent dentists and specialists all from the Battle Creek area. It was there that I learned one of the most valuable lessons ever; it was that I did not graduate from Dental School knowing everything!

I truly enjoy my team and patients. We make every attempt to listen to our patients’ desires and needs, and then formulate a plan of action to meet those desires and needs, using the most advanced materials and techniques available.

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Renae Etheridge, RDH, BS, CFO, Dental Hygienist

I realized at a young age, third grade to be precise, that this was going to be my calling. In 1999, I graduated with my Bachelor Degree in Dental Hygiene, from the University of Detroit Mercy, School of Dentistry. My career choice has enabled me to improve patients’ health and I could not think of anything more rewarding.

My role, at Etheridge Dentistry, is one of “wearing many hats.” I am considered the Chief Financial Officer, so that means I handle much of the day to day operations; which permits my husband to focus on patient care and planning. My other responsibility is filling in for our hygienists, our assistant, and front office when needed. Continuing education is always on my list. We are continually learning and what a great way to keep oneself informed of the newest material, techniques and sometimes changes to how we advise our patients.

Education is extremely important and I have a passion for helping when and where I can. I enjoy going to the elementary schools and educating the children about their oral health. It is amazing to hear and see what they have remembered year after year and it allows me to build on that.

I have 4 beautiful children and in my spare time I enjoy swimming, golfing, crafting, and sewing.


Erin Cripe, RDH – Dental Hygienist

I graduated in 1998 from Bellevue High School and was always interested in the health care field. After several years at Central Michigan University, I transferred to Kellogg Community College and chose Dental Hygiene as my career path. I earned my hygiene degree in 2004 along with my Associates Degree in Allied Health. I joined the Etheridge Dentistry team later that same year and couldn’t have asked for a better team! My co-workers are more like family and they mean the world to me. They are caring, understanding, and have a good time even on difficult days. I enjoy being a hygienist and working with my patients one on one, getting to know them personally, and working with them to improve their oral health.

I attend many continuing education courses each year and am always striving to learn new information to help my patients. I love that my position allows me to choose how often I work, which is two days a week so I can be home more with my family.

I live in Bellevue with my two boys, Westin and Parker. They keep me very busy, but when I do get a free moment I enjoy reading, gardening, photography, camping and fishing.


Gena Bjornson, RDH – Dental Hygienist

I love my career choice in dental hygiene where I get to connect on a personal basis with my patients of all ages. I have been a Dental Hygienist for over 25 years where I have worked both in South Carolina and in Michigan. I graduated from Ferris State University in 1985. In addition, I have received my certification in Local Anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide Sedation.

Over the years I have met many wonderful patients who I continue to enjoy educating in their dental care. I am dedicated to staying current with the latest technology in the dental field. I strive to keep our office environment comfortable and friendly so that our patients are satisfied with their treatment.

I have been married to my husband, Ken, for over 25 years and we have two children, Kaila and Gunnar. I enjoy reading, walking, and camping in my spare time.


Mikayla Smith, Registered Dental Hygienist

I graduated from MCC with my Dental Hygiene degree in 2021 where I was President of my class! I am also certified in Local Anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide. I started out subbing and bouncing around different offices in Kalamazoo to find out what I wanted in an office. After 2 years, I found Etheridge Dentistry and I could not be happier to have found my dental home! I am happy to be a part of a team that helps one another and is always supportive.

In my spare time I love to go kayaking with my Fiancé, going up north, reading or walking our two dogs, Finley and Otis!


Jana Gardner, DA – Dental Assistant

I graduated from high school in 2016 and I had no clue what I wanted to do. After working retail and in the financial world, I joined the dental field in Fall of 2020, at the peak of Covid-19, so not only was I getting on-site job training, I was also grasping the ever-changing world around us. Going to the Dentist growing up for me was a TREAT! I enjoyed my dentist and his team and I wanted to take good care of my teeth.

As I got older, I found that some people just don’t enjoy the dentist as much as I did (shocker.) So, I decided I needed to get into the dental field to help ease patients nerves and jitters before appointments and talk them through it. It’s a reward to hear “you helped me overcome my dental fears.”

In my free time I enjoy hanging out with my family, either helping out at our wedding venue getting it ready for the next wedding or at the lake house letting our dogs cool off in the water. Cook outs are something my fiancé and I host often with our friends, where we live in Athens.

Dr. Kip Etheridge has the experience you expect and the credentials you can trust!