The Week That Was: June 21-25

Lots of great action this week. Be sure to also check out this past Tuesday’s special edition blog post on Connect4Success.

Fluoride Heroes Everywhere

Fluoridated water has long been touted by dentists and many others as a public health rock star for its aid in caries prevention. However, it usually doesn’t get attention unless there’s some contentious debate at the local level. I wanted to change that and highlight some unsung heroes. New State Dental Director, Dr. Guy Deyton has been happy to celebrate the success as well. First up, the Park Hills Water Department was awarded a Reaffirmation Award from the state, the ADA and others for their continued adjustment of optimal fluoride levels. Read more here. In the photo, from left, are Mark McFarland, City Administrator; Sherry Cauley, Executive Director of Upward Smiles; Jeff Crannick, Assistant Utilities Director; Frank Shovlin, Utilities Director; Julie Boeckman, Program Manager for the Office of Dental Health; John Clark, Mayor of Park Hills; Cate Reando, RD with the St. Francois County Health Department; and, Gwen Sullentrup, Community Water Fluoridation Coordinator for Office of Dental Health.

Meanwhile, the Poplar Bluff Utilities department was honored by MO DHSS for 50 years of fluoridation in the water supply. Julie Boeckman, Program Manager for the Office of Dental Health presented Bill Bach, Utilities Manager for Poplar Bluff with a plaque at the ceremony.

And next month on the 13th, the city of Charleston will also receive a 50 year award for its fluoridation commitment. David Harris, utilities director, will receive the award during the city council meeting. To all these local officials, we say thank you for your example and congratulations on your awards.

Finally, last week, the MDA served as the location for demonstrating a New Wave Pellet Fluoridation System. The Office of Dental Health hosted the hands-on demonstration of how the system works and a Q&A session at the end. Dr. Guy Deyton, State Dental Director, was excited at the prospect of this system, stating, “This puts community water fluoridation within the reach of small water districts.” This is just one of the efforts underway to support community water fluoridation across the state. Read this news piece to learn more about other ways the Office of Dental Health provides resources.

Speaking of State Dental Directors, Farewell to Dr. John Dane

Today was the retirement party for Dr. John Dane who served for many years as the state dental director. He was responsible for drawing down federal dollars for oral health outreach and his leadership through the Covid pandemic was exemplary. He’s also a nice guy who won the MDA Dentist of the Year Award in 2020. The party theme was baseball because Dr. Dane loves the national pastime, especially his Kansas City Royals. Thank you, Dr. Dane for your service and all the best in retirement!

New Waves of Dental Students

With Covid restrictions lifting, Team Travel (me, Stacey Hemmel, Jerri Wildhaber) will be cranking up the motor again and heading out to various student activities. This past Tuesday, the GSLDS team did an awesome job welcoming 61 MOSDOH D3s and D4s to St. Louis for their final two years of education. Local members Drs. Jessica Monroe, Alyssa Mazzoli, Emily Hahn and Prasanth Haribabu fielded questions and shared their views. A catered dinner and some game time with prizes rounded out the evening. Next month there are “White Coat” ceremonies planned for D1s at both dental schools. Add to that orientation fairs featuring a new video from the MDA and some local component welcome receptions in Kansas City and Kirksville, and you have a full plate of love for our valued dental students. Be sure to greet and welcome them when they cross your path.

Next Wave of Dental Students Gets a Boost

It won’t be long (August 2023) before the first class of dental students at KCU’s College of Dental Medicine launch their studies. The school received good financial news recently. Read the article here.

SmileCon Registration is Open!
Registration for SmileCon 2021, October 11 through 13 in Las Vegas, is now open! Deal yourself in with Early Bird discounts available until July 7 at 5pm. Early Bird discounts are extended to ADA member dentists, dental students, dental team members, dental team students, and guests. Check out your pass options at

The Week Ahead

As we round out the month of June, many staff are on a key marketing webinar with the ADA next Tuesday. Plus, lots of planning on legislative fronts, student activities and more.

Quote of the Week

Dentistry is not expensive, neglect is.

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