Dr. Ronald Strauss, dental director of the UNC Craniofacial Center since 1977, has been named the recipient of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association’s highest honor: the Honors of the Association award.
Strauss also is chair and Dental Friends distinguished professor within the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Dentistry’s Department of Dental Ecology, as well as a professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Social Medicine.
The American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association (ACPA) will present the award on April 27 at the organization’s annual meeting in Broomfield, Colo.
The award honors individuals whose lifetime of research, health-care delivery or leadership has improved physical, behavioral or social effects associated with cleft lip and palate or other craniofacial disorders.
Dr. Donald W. Warren, who directed the UNC Craniofacial Center from 1963 through his retirement in 2000, nominated Strauss for the award. “He has been a spokesperson for ethical and humane approaches to health care, and his research and teaching in this area have impacted cleft care worldwide,” Warren said in his nomination letter. “Ron has been the keynote speaker at many international meetings, and his expertise is widely recognized.”
The UNC Craniofacial Center is an interdisciplinary team of professionals dedicated to the care of patients with cleft lip, cleft palate and other craniofacial disorders.
“From the very beginning, Ron has been an advocate of ‘Team Care,’ meaning comprehensive care that takes into account the cultural, social and emotional needs of the child and family, as well as the medical/treatment needs of surgery, speech and dentistry,” said Dr. Kathy Kapp-Simon, president-elect of the ACPA, in her nomination letter. “It is no surprise then that Ron was chosen to spear-head the work of the Team Standards Committee, which he chaired for nearly 10 years.”
Strauss has served as president, vice president and Executive Council member within the ACPA and previously received the organization’s Distinguished Service Award (1998).
The ACPA is an international nonprofit medical society of health-care professionals who treat and/or perform research on birth defects of the head and face.