Kevin Matthew Byrd, Periodontology Class of 2021, is originally from Fort Wayne, Indiana. Byrd’s mother was a dental assistant who worked for a periodontist who shared time in private practice and who also taught at The Ohio State University College of Dentistry. She always made dentistry seem interesting, and both of his parents enthusiastically encouraged him to think about a career in science and medicine.
Byrd enrolled in Huntington University as a biology major during his undergraduate studies and spent his summers working for a private practice oral surgeon.
Byrd completed his Bachelor of Arts in biology while minoring in Spanish in 2009, and then trained at the University of Michigan, graduating with his Doctor of Dental Surgery in 2013. At the University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Byrd also worked as a translational research assistant, initially focused on biomarker discovery in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
After these early experiences, he found that he had an interest in stem cell biology and sought to establish an independent research career by enrolling in the Oral and Craniofacial Biomedicine PhD program at the Adams School of Dentistry in 2013, completing his PhD in 2017.
Byrd is still actively engaged in research as a postdoctoral research associate in the UNC School of Medicine and is excited to continue his clinical training as a periodontist in the Adams School of Dentistry. When not immersed in the world of stem cells and patient care, Byrd can be found in the kitchen, spending time with family, listening to podcasts, talking about music, and planning his next vacation.