A well-known pair of central Ohio orthodontists are teaming up to open a new office. But the two men aren't just new business partners -- they also are brothers.

A well-known pair of central Ohio orthodontists are teaming up to open a new office. But the two men aren't just new business partners -- they also are brothers.

Larry and Jim Hutta have operated their own central Ohio orthodonture practices for 28 and 22 years, respectively. With offices on different sides of Franklin County -- Larry in Dublin and Worthington, and Jim in the Gahanna/New Albany area -- they've each developed large, separate clienteles.

But the brothers had never operated a joint practice until they opened Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics Feb. 17 at 214 Hoff Road, Westerville.

"It's just such an easy thing," Larry said of the partnership. "I don't have to worry about who my partner will be in this venture. I know (Jim) and I trust him completely."

The brothers, who grew up in Youngstown, both graduated from the Ohio State University College of Dentistry and completed the orthodontics residency program at the University of Rochester School of Medicine.

They've both lived in Westerville for many years, and both say they have clients in the Westerville area.

Now they're hoping the new office can keep patients' commutes to a minimum.

"We have such a following in Westerville, we thought we'd join forces and make it more convenient," Jim said.

"We've had people who commute to other locations asking us why we didn't open this one sooner," Larry added.

The Huttas, both of whom have served on national orthodontics boards and won numerous professional accolades, say they aren't just offering name recognition, however.

Their commitment to their patients, they say, is what sets them apart and has allowed them to grow their practices to the point of working with local college coaches and professional athletes.

"It's about training and building a relationship with the patient," Jim said. "We're both on board with the same philosophy, and that's key."

And, while both men will continue to offer services at their other offices, Larry and Jim are emphasizing that one of them will be at the Westerville location at all times.

"Our competition is telling people that our name is on the door, but we'll never be here," Larry said.

"That's just not the case. We're doing this together. We don't want to leave any doubt that we're 100 percent behind it."