Meet Dr. John Kharouf

I believe orthodontics is about improving your health, your life, and your bite! If you choose to practice it in its entirety and to your fullest capability, you can grow personally and professionally to heights unimagined. You will go to places and meet people you couldn’t have dreamed about.

I enjoy the full spectrum of the practice of orthodontics, both in the personal relationships I build with my patients and its connections with general dentistry, medicine, and overall human health. I enjoy the clinical interaction with patients of all ages: making them feel better about themselves psychologically, socially, and physically by helping them breathe better, eat better, and live a fuller life. 

Excellence in Education

I grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, attended Marquette University High School and Marquette University as a chemistry major, then entered Marquette University School of Dentistry. I graduated in 1985 and was inducted into OKU Honorary Dental Society.

I joined the US Air Force after taking the Northeast dental boards and getting married, and completed a general dentistry practice residency at Langley AFB Regional Hospital in 1986. From there, I was stationed overseas at Hahn AB, in what was then West Germany, and practiced general dentistry until 1990, at which time I returned to Iowa. 

It was during my practice in Germany, where I did lots of TMD treatment, that I realized I needed to train in orthodontics to help many of those patients. I earned a certificate of orthodontics and a Master of Science with a thesis on TMD at the University of Iowa in 1992. Then I was assigned to Yokota AB in Tokyo, Japan until 1995, when I returned to Rapid City and began private practice.

In 2003, I successfully completed my orthodontic boards and became an active member of the College of Diplomates of the American Board of Orthodontics the following year. From 2005 to 2007, I completed the two-year postgraduate Roth/Williams Functional Orthodontics program at the University of Detroit/Mercy, and returned to help teach the lab portion of the course from 2008 to 2009.

In 2011, I completed the American Dental Association Executive MBA Program at Northwestern University, part of the Kellogg School of Management in Chicago, to help me put together a not-for-profit general dentistry clinic: St. Francis Dental Clinic with the Jesuits and Fr. John Hatcher, on the Rosebud Indian Reservation.

Commitment to Continuing Education

My goal is to provide the finest orthodontic treatment for our patients, and that is only possible by keeping abreast of the changes not only in orthodontic treatment modalities, but also in general dentistry and medicine.

Orthodontic treatment is not “just straightening teeth.” If your goal is like mine — to practice at the highest levels possible and train to become a master orthodontist — then continuing education is a necessity! Patients who choose my care benefit from my wisdom of knowing what to do, when to do it, and what all of the possibilities are. 

Professional Affiliations

  • American Association of Orthodontists
  • Midwestern Society of Orthodontists
    • Director for South Dakota 2015 to the present
    • President in 2022
  • South Dakota Society of Orthodontists
    • Vice President, 1997-2003
    • President, 2004-2009
    • Treasurer, 2015 to the present
  • College of Diplomates, American Board of Orthodontists
  • Roth/William International Society of Orthodontists
    • Roth Study Club Member, San Francisco
  • American Dental Association
  • South Dakota Dental Association
  • Black Hills Dental Society

Community Involvement

Kharouf Orthodontics’ two most important community actions are our professional relationships with Shriners Hospitals for Children in Chicago for our Cleft Palate and Cranio-facial Anomaly patients, and St. Francis Mission Among the Lakota Dental Clinic for Native American patients on the Rosebud Indian Reservation.

The St. Francis Mission Dental Clinic opened to patients in 2012 on the Rosebud Indian Reservation. The Lakota Native Americans have been the subject of several studies sponsored by the American Dental Association, and those have demonstrated that this population has one of the greatest needs for dental care in the country. The clinic has grown to one week per month, and maintains agreements with Creighton, Indiana, and Missouri dental schools for treatment, in addition to in-state and out-of-state volunteer dentists and hygienists.

Family Life

My wife Mary, who taught chemistry and physics at St. Thomas More High School for many years, joined the clinic team on a full-time basis in 2012 to help our patients and me. Both our children attended St. Elizabeth Seton and St. Thomas More Catholic Schools. Their excellent experience there and growing up here prepared them for success in college and graduate school.

Our daughter Jacqueline went to St. Regis in Denver and Vermont for her master’s in creative writing. She currently works for the city of Golden, Colorado, in the building contracting offices. Our son, John Jr., is a corporate attorney who works for Thompson Reuters in the Twin Cities. His specialty is privacy law, both US and international. We are proud of their achievements and attribute it to the wholesome religious and social environment of Rapid City.

When I can make free time, I enjoy hiking and biking in the beautiful Black Hills, playing some tennis, and traveling, especially overseas. In 2016, we went to the Holy Land for a pilgrimage with Fr. Vasko, head of the Franciscans who are responsible for the Christian sites.

Patient Love


Say Hello