Implanting Knowledge, Integrating Skills​.

About Us

Clinicians Implant Academy was founded in 2023 to create the premier off-site dental implant training academy in the U.S. to service our industry partners with high-quality, professional education, featuring their products and technology.

Our mission it to provide personalized, advanced dental implant education through lecture, videos, and hands-on experience.


Committed to Providing the Highest Value Dental Implant Training

We prioritize immersive learning, utilizing live surgery, hands-on practice, and cadaver models to place you in the center of the surgical experience with our dental implant training.

Expert-Led Instruction

Our courses are led by seasoned professionals with over a decade of hands-on experience in dental implant operations, ensuring top-tier education from industry experts to best equip our students for success.

Cutting-Edge Curriculum

We take great pride in our comprehensive curriculum which incorporates education on the latest technologies and advancements in implant dentistry to prepare our students for the forefront of the field.

Hands-on Learning

Our training offers hands-on opportunities, which allows participants to apply knowledge in real-world scenarios for an immersive educational experience in order to fulfill our commitment to practical skill development.


Clinicians Implant Academy Leadership Team

Clinicians Implant Academy is led by a team of industry-leading clinical professionals.

Dr. Rick Kapitan

Founder & Surgical Director

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Dr. Rick Kapitan, DDS, MS, FACS

Dr. Kapitan holds both a doctorate in surgery and masters of science degrees, as well as advanced training as a specialist in surgery and anesthesia (OMS) from The Ohio State University Medical Center and was awarded a Certificate of Added Qualifications (CAQ) in Pediatric Craniomaxillofacial Surgery.

Dr. Kapitan is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, a Fellow of the American Academy of Craniomaxillofacial Surgeons, Diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, a Fellow of the American Association of OMS, and is a member of both the North Carolina Society of OMS and the Southeastern Society of OMS.

He holds an appointment as an Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery at Louisiana State University (LSU).

Locally, he is the Director of both the Carolinas Center for Cleft Lip & Palate Surgery and of the Envision™ Implant Academy, positions that both involve speaking to groups of practitioners and extensive clinical instruction in surgery.

Additionally, Dr. Kapitan is a national lecturer and clinical course instructor in advanced dental implant surgery for the Straumann Group and Zimvie BioMet’s ZimVie Institute.

Internationally, Dr. Kapitan is a volunteer cleft surgeon, surgical team leader, and sits on the Board of Directors of the Free To

Smile Foundation; a not-for-profit medical mission group that provides free cleft lip and palate surgeries to children in need around the globe.

Dr. Kapitan devotes multiple weeks annually to travel abroad to Central America, South America, and Africa to provide this much-needed surgery free of charge.

Locally, Dr. Kapitan is the founder of Face to Face, formerly Cleft Out Foundation, a Charlotte based non-profit that he established to raise money to help families cover the cost of their non-surgical cleft care.

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Dr. Dawson

Dr. Hunter Dawson

Restorative Director

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Dr. Hunter Dawson, DMD, MSD

Dr. Hunter Dawson attended the University of Louisville School of Dentistry (ULSD) to complete his DMD. He also completed his Advanced Education Program in Prosthodontics at ULSD and his Masters of Science in Dentistry (MSD). During residency, his research interest focused on implant abutment materials and design.  He has published multiple articles in the areas of novel restorative materials using digital workflows utilizing guided implant surgery.  He is also a contributor to Spear Digest for Dental Implant topics. 
Dr. Dawson lectures internationally on Comprehensive Diagnosis and Treatment Planning, Digital Implant Workflows, Advances in Digital Dentistry, and Full Arch Reconstruction.  He enjoys leading comprehensive treatment planning workshops helping clinicians utilize the latest digital technology workflows.  He lectures for Straumann, ITI Study clubs, Straumann Blueprint Programs, Spear Study Clubs, and Seattle Study Clubs
In Dr. Dawson’s clinical practice, Envision Dental Implant Center, he has focused his patient care on diagnosis and treatment planning of the terminal dentition using the latest digital technology workflows.  

Whitney Kapitan

Director of Practice Management

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Whitney Kapitan

Whitney has over 20 years of dental experience which she brings to the CIA. Her particular areas of expertise are in implants and treatment acceptance of complex and costly cases. As a practice consultant, Whitney has experience helping general practitioners as well as specialists achieve their business and financial goals.  
Professional headshot of Clinicians Implant Academy President of Patient Care Experience, Mikki Weaver.

Mikki Weaver

Director of Patient Care Experience

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Mikki Weaver

Mikki has a natural gift to connect with patients.  This allows her to take patients through their surgical and recovery process with an optimistic outlook. By expertly educating her patients through what they will experience she is able to eliminate barriers they may have and then celebrate the success with them on the other side of treatment. 
Professional headshot of Clinicians Implant Academy Restorative Director, Dr. Brandon Kofford.

Dr. Brandon Kofford

Restorative Faculty

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Dr. Brandon Kofford

Dr. Kofford is a 2008 graduate of Case Western Reserve
University School of Dental Medicine. He completed his
Prosthodontics residency with the United States Air Force
(USAF) at Lackland Air Force Base Wilford Hall Medical Center
Mackown Dental Clinic in 2011 as well as his master’s degree in
Biology from the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at
San Antonio. He served 6 years with the USAF and achieved the
rank of Major. He has been in private practice in Cary, North
Carolina since 2014. He is a partner in 7 dental practices and a full-service dental laboratory.
In 2018, Dr. Kofford and Charles Rudisill developed the Smart
Denture Conversions Separable Fastener technology and
introduced it to the market in 2019.
Dr. Piper

Dr. James M. Piper II

Restorative Faculty

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Dr. James M. Piper II, DMD, MS

Dr. Piper is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine. In June of 2004, Dr. Piper joined the United States Air Force (USAF) Dental Corp, where he completed his residency in Prosthodontics at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. Dr. Piper earned his Masters of Science Degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. Dr. Piper successfully completed the rigorous board certification process and was awarded his Board Certification in Prosthodontics in November 2007.

After graduating from the prosthodontics residency in 2007, he joined the Advanced Education in General Dentistry (AEGD-1) teaching staff at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha, Nebraska. In 2011, Dr. Piper returned to San Antonio to undergo a Fellowship program in Maxillofacial Prosthetics. This fellowship enabled him to complete multiple complex multidisciplinary treatments for our nation’s wounded warriors and multiple other service members, retirees and family members.

Dr. Piper maintains membership in the American Academy of Maxillofacial Prosthetics, American Board of Prosthodontics, American Dental Association and, now, the North Carolina Dental Society. In 2015, Dr. Piper resigned his commission as an officer in the United States Air Force to join Dr. Carnaggio in his dental practice. Dr. Piper prides himself on providing the highest level of care and compassion to his patients. His ultimate goal is to provide his patients with an understanding of their dental condition and to improve the quality of life for his patients. Dr. Piper values family time with his wife, Shannon, and their four beautiful children: Eliana, Jimmy, Avonlea, and Tate.

Dr. Cockerham

Dr. Tripp Cockerham

Periodontal Faculty

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Dr. Tripp Cockerham, DDS, MSD

Dr. Tripp Cockerham was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina.  After completing his education at Charlotte Latin School, he attended Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.  Dr. Cockerham graduated Cum Laude from Wake Forest University with a BS in Biology and a Masters of Arts in Business Management.  Dr. Cockerham graduated with Honors from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill School of Dentistry.  After Dental School, he completed a General Practice Residency at UNC Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Cockerham completed his Masters of Science in Dentistry and his specialty training in Periodontics at the University of Louisville. Dr. Cockerham is a Diplomate certified by the American Board of Periodontology.

Additionally, Dr. Tripp Cockerham has two published articles on Ridge Augmentation and Extraction Preservation in the International Journal of Periodontics & Implant Dentistry.

Outside of his professional life, Dr. Cockerham is happily married to Traci, also a native of Charlotte, NC, and together they are proud parents of two children.

Dr. Cockerham’s dedication to his profession has been recognized by his community, as he has been nominated and selected as a top dentist in Charlotte, NC for the past seven years.

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