Dental Foundation

Inaugural Best of Dentistry Weekend a Success; Gala Raises $35,000 for School Entities

On April 27 and 28, the UNC School of Dentistry held its inaugural Best of Dentistry Weekend. By all measures, the weekend was a huge success.

The weekend’s festivities were numerous, with plenty of opportunities for alumni and friends of the school to take part. Best of Dentistry Weekend is a new, annual weekend where alumni and friends of the school will come together to appreciate and applaud the accomplishments of the dental community, the quality students at the UNC School of Dentistry and the standard of excellence maintained by the school. Highlights of the 2012 Best of Dentistry Weekend included the Koury Oral Health Sciences Building ribbon cutting and dedication, Best of Dentistry Gala and D.D.S. Class Reunions. Three options for continuing education were also offered.

The school welcomed approximately 150 people to the building dedication, where Chancellor Holden Thorp, Dean Jane Weintraub and UNC Board of Trustees Chair Wade Hargrove joined Mr. and Mrs. Maurice Koury to officially open the new facility. Event attendees were able to tour the five-story, state-of-the-art building following the dedication ceremony. Koury Oral Health Sciences adds 216,500 square feet to the school’s footprint, making the UNC School of Dentistry one of the largest dental complexes in the U.S.

Following the building dedication, 375 alumni and friends of the school gathered together for the inaugural Best of Dentistry Gala. The gala included both live and silent auctions with attendees bidding on exciting items such as a week-long stay in Vail, Colo., dinner and wine-tasting for six in Calif., and autographed sports memorabilia. Proceeds from the dinner and auction totaled approximately $35,000 and will benefit the UNC Craniofacial Center, School of Dentistry scholarships and fourth-year student clinic upgrades.

“We knew the Best of Dentistry Gala would be a great way to make a difference within our school,” said Paul Gardner, associate dean for advancement. “The UNC Craniofacial Center, school scholarships and our fourth-year clinic are three areas we knew could not only use the additional funds but were also areas we knew our alumni and friends would feel passionate about supporting. We’re so pleased that we were able to raise $35,000 for these groups, and immensely grateful to all those who joined us for dinner for making such a huge impact.”

On Saturday, five-year cycle anniversary D.D.S. classes reunited at the Paul J. Rizzo Center for their UNC Dental Alumni Association (UNCDAA)-sponsored class reunions. All attendees enjoyed a reception prior to their class-specific dinner. The UNCDAA hosted 221 dental alumni and their guests/spouses for a leisurely evening of reminiscing and reconnecting.

“The D.D.S. class reunions are always really special,” said Sarah Andrews, assistant director of advancement and executive director of the UNCDAA. “We’re fortunate that so many of our alumni stay involved with the school after graduation, but they don’t always get a chance to reunite with their classmates very often. We really enjoy providing that opportunity for them.”

The second annual Best of Dentistry Weekend is planned for April 26-27, 2013. Events will include the Best of Dentistry Gala and D.D.S. Class Reunions for classes celebrating a five-year cycle anniversary. Details will be announced as they become available.