Dr. Dave Brunson, associate director of the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Center for Equity and Diversity, will give the keynote address at the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Dentistry commencement ceremony May 9.
The event will be held at 3:30 p.m. at Carmichael Arena on the University campus.
Brunson received his undergraduate and DDS degrees from UNC-Chapel Hill and was a member of the School of Dentistry faculty from 1982 to 2003.
The ADEA Center for Equity and Diversity supports the advancement of women and minority initiatives, access, diversity and related activities associated with the national organization. ADEA is the only national association that represents the academic dental community.
Among his roles within the center, Brunson is co-deputy director of the Summer Medical and Dental Education Program, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. This six-week academic enrichment program is focused on college freshmen and sophomores from disadvantaged backgrounds or from communities with limited access to medical and dental care.
Brunson also coordinates the Academic Dental Careers Fellowship Program, which works to increase the number of dental students and allied dental students pursuing careers within academics. He also works with a collaborative effort that brings together 10 professional groups to develop a tool that effectively measures professionalism.
Prior to joining ADEA, Brunson served as the School of Dentistry’s assistant dean for predoctoral education (in which he managed the predoctoral admissions process and curriculum) and clinical professor in the Department of Diagnostic Sciences and General Dentistry.
He has taught numerous courses, participated in research on posterior composite restorations, written articles and book chapters and presented continuing education courses in dental materials, practice management and professional ethics.
Prior to beginning his career in dental education, Brunson practiced general dentistry for 11 years in Fayetteville.
He also has been active in national organized dentistry: his American Dental Association involvement includes membership on the Committee on Dental Products, and his Academy of General Dentistry involvement includes more than six years of service on the Fellowship Examination Committee and past presidency of the North Carolina organization. Brunson is a member of the Omicron Kappa Upsilon (OKU) National Dental Honor Society, was inducted into the American College of Dentists in 1984 and served as chair of that organization’s Carolinas Section in 2001.
Brunson also was president of the Fourth District Dental Society in 1982.
“Dr. Brunson has led important initiatives supporting the diversity of our nation’s dental schools and focusing on students who might not otherwise have known of opportunities available to them within dentistry,” said Dean John N. Williams. “We are grateful for his outstanding accomplishments that have benefited both dental education and the UNC School of Dentistry. We welcome him ‘home’ to share his valuable perspective with our graduates.”
The University’s commencement for May graduates will be held at 9:30 a.m. May 9 at Kenan Stadium.