Tag: VCU School of Dentistry blog

Farewell to Jim Burns

With much appreciation for his robust 47-year career in oral health and with my personal thanks for his friendship and guidance along the way, I am honored to pay tribute to Jim Burns.

While we already miss him here at school, I have no doubt that he and his family – wife Karen and four sons – will enjoy his well-deserved retirement.

Jim was born in Havre de Grace, Maryland. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology from VMI, his DDS degree from VCU, a master’s in education from the University of Southern California and a Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from VCU. He completed his oral pathology residency at VCU as well.

His military career included a rotating dental internship at Letterman Army Hospital in San Francisco. He received the European Outstanding Clinician Award and was Assistant Dental Clinic Commander in Baumholder, Germany. He retired from the U.S. Army Dental Corps at the rank of major.

Please join me in expressing gratitude for Jim’s service to our students, to our faculty, to our staff and our friends.

March Madness Update

 

VCU may not have made it to the Final Four this time around, but there’s plenty to celebrate here at the School of Dentistry on the MCV Campus of Virginia Commonwealth University.

ADEA GIES AWARD

I had the privilege of accepting a 2018 Gies Award presented at the ADEA Annual Session and Exhibition in Orlando earlier this month.

The Gies Awards, named after William J. Gies, Ph.D., honor individuals and organizations that exemplify the highest standards in oral health and dental education, research and leadership.

For our work in partnership with the VDA to create the nationwide MOM Project movement, we were honored with the Gies Award for Vision – Public or Private Partner.

It was a bittersweet moment not only for the School of Dentistry, but also for the friends, colleagues and family of the late Carol Brooks, D.D.S., whose passionate care and vision for providing oral health access to those who need it most led to the creation of the first MOM Project in Wise, Virginia, in 2000. Today, MOM Projects take place across the nation.

FACULTY RECOGNITION

Congratulations and appreciation to our dedicated faculty.

Michelle McGregor, R.D.H., B.S., M.Ed., director of dental hygiene, was selected for the ADEA/Colgate-Palmolive Co. Allied Dental Educators Fellowship. She will work alongside ADEA staff in Washington, DC, for a three-month assignment involving issues affecting allied dental education.

Carlos S. Smith, D.D.S., M.Div, director of ethics curriculum, was selected as one of the National Minority Quality Forum’s 40 Under 40 Leaders in Minority Health. The Forum is an initiative of the Congressional Black Caucus Health Braintrust.

DEPARTMENT NEWS

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

I am pleased to report that the OMFS program came through the CODA accreditation site visit earlier this month in full compliance with no recommendations or suggestions.

Congratulations to the department and hospital leadership and in particular, to Dr. Robert Strauss, program director, and Dr. Omar Abubaker, chair.

Oral Health Services Research Core

Tegwyn W. Brickhouse, D.D.S., Ph.D., director of the oral health services research core, has been selected as a 2018 Translational Research Fellow in the Office of Public Policy Outreach in the Wilder School.

Orthodontics

Eser Tufekci, D.D.S., M.S., Ph.D., M.S.H.A., professor, is currently serving as President of the Virginia Association of Orthodontists.

Periodontics

Tom Koertge, D.M.D., Ph.D., has assumed the position of interim chair of the Department of Periodontics. Harvey Schenkein, D.D.S., Ph.D., is stepping down from the chairmanship but will continue as Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Periodontics. This change is part of a planned succession for the department and for Dr. Schenkein who will continue his NIH funded research for at least three years.

Dr. Schenkein joined VCU in 1978 as assistant professor of periodontics and microbiology and quickly rose to be an internationally known researcher and has been continually funded by the NIH.  He was named the Paul Tucker Goad Professor in the School of Dentistry in 1993 and has served as our associate dean of research since 1986. Dr. Schenkein was appointed chair in 2003 and has served as both chair of periodontics and associate dean since then.

On behalf of the school and university, we thank Dr. Schenkein for his outstanding leadership, teaching, scholarship and service to our institution and profession. I appreciate Dr. Koertge’s leadership during this transition period and thank him in advance for his service.

Research growth

The school’s research faculty members have won competitive federal and foundation awards to support their research work.  Our ranking among schools of dentistry in total awards from the National Institutes of Health has improved from 42 to 24 of 48 dental schools receiving NIH awards.  There are about 65 dental schools in the US so some receive no NIH funding.

VCU School of Dentistry NIH funding and rank among US. Schools of Dentistry

The total sponsored program awards (all external grant funding to support research and education) has risen from below $1 million per year to over $4.6 million.

If you haven’t seen the latest Dental Fill-In Vlog, be sure to take a look. 

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