Reconnecting in 2017

Our strong alumni network is one of the great assets of the Dugoni School. We recently had an opportunity to gather with more than 1,600 of our distinguished alumni and friends at the 118th Annual Alumni Meeting held next door at the InterContinental Hotel.

Thank you to our Alumni Association staff, alumni board of directors, and all of our volunteers for organizing the events. It is a very large meeting and we could not have made it a success without your help. Special congratulations to our immediate past Alumni Association President, Kimberly LaRocca ’06 DH, and to the new Association President, Daniel Castagna ’81, for stepping up as leaders among the alumni family.

During the event the Alumni Association presented its highest honor, the Medallion of Distinction, to Dr. Dorothy Dechant, Melanie and Richard Lundquist, and Dr. Ariane Terlet ‘86. Congratulations to each of these recipients for the impact they have made on the school, our profession, and the community.

Another aspect of the meeting was the reunion dinners held that Friday night at locations throughout the city. I had the opportunity to attend all of these gatherings, held this year for the Classes of 2012, 2007, 2002, 1997, 1992, 1987, 1982, 1977, 1972 and 1967. The IDS alumni each held a reunion gathering as well. The reunion classes held mini fundraising campaigns and collectively donated nearly $2 million to support the Dugoni School’s fundraising campaign. We thank the classes for this amazing display of philanthropy to support our people and programs.

Saturday’s Legacy Ball at the InterContinental ballroom was a festive opportunity to celebrate and socialize with our alumni, donors, friends, and guests. Thanks to those of you who volunteered at the gala, and especially to our Office of Development for all of their work on this signature event. It is always one of the highlights of the weekend, and this year’s Nowruz-themed event was no exception.

Looking ahead, we are excited about the upcoming American Dental Education Association Annual Session being held March 18-21 in Long Beach, California. Nearly 30 faculty, staff, and/or students are involved in presentations or posters at the event, and we have others involved in leadership activities for their ADEA Sections. The Dugoni School has a history of strong involvement with ADEA and it is great to see this tradition continue. More details are available at http://www.adea.org/2017/

 The ADEA conference will be special for the Pacific Center for Special Care, which is receiving a “Gies Awards for Innovation” on March 20. We congratulate Dr. Paul Glassman and the entire team at the Pacific Center for their work on the Virtual Dental Home system and their many other innovations.  The Gies Awards, named after dental education pioneer William J. Gies, Ph.D., debuted in 2008 and are the profession’s preeminent recognition for individuals and organizations that exemplify the highest standards in oral health and dental education, research, and leadership.

 We have much to celebrate as our Winter Quarter soon comes to a close. From our students to our patients to our alumni family and our colleagues in dental education, the Dugoni School is making an impact. Thank you for continuing to support each other and creating an environment of success.