Holiday Greetings to all USA Fellows!
As we approach the Holiday Season and the completion of my year as your President, I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every Fellow for your dedication and commitment to the health and wellbeing of your families, patients, colleagues and communities. The leadership and the service you provide to others is exemplary and commendable.
The Holiday Season is a time of joy and thanksgiving. I am thankful for the trust and support you have given me this past year. It has been an enjoyable year working with a talented Registrar, Executive Committee, Board of Directors, Section staff and Fellows from all over the States. We have had a very productive year in preserving and creating projects that continue to move our organization in a positive direction to meet the needs and desires of our Fellows.
Throughout the year, I was afforded the opportunity to attend several District ICD meetings where I was warmly and graciously received. At all of these meetings throughout the county, the USA Section Core Values of Integrity, Leadership and Service were the guiding principles in the lives and practices of all. I am grateful for being able to meet, interact and learn from so many talented and dedicated individuals. It is encouraging to see that our organization continues to grow and be active at the local level.
The USA Section proudly inducted 308 new Fellows into our community in Denver this past October. I congratulate and welcome each of you into this great organization. As Fellows, you are our greatest resource. The time and talents you lend to the dental community in leadership and service are admirable. You were recognized by one of your colleagues who invited you to Fellowship and we hope that you pay this privilege forward by nominating other deserving individuals in the future. I know you will enjoy the comradery of this fine group as you attend local and national meetings. I am humbled and grateful I was afforded the opportunity to extend the hand of Fellowship to this fine group!
A few weeks ago, I attended the Greater New York Dental Meeting where I had the honor of assisting with the induction of 21 new Fellows from Section XX. These new Fellows were from Cuba, the Caribbean Islands, Mexico and Africa. During the induction, I reflected on the international makeup of the College and the rich diversity of culture, language, and faith that defines our community, united by the International College of Dentist’s universal motto of “Recognizing Service and the Opportunity to Serve”. It is this practice that unites all of us in an unbreakable bond of leadership and service to others.
As 2016 comes to a close and 2017 begins, the USA Section bids farewell to our Registrar, Dr. Carol Turner who has served with distinction for the past seven years as well as our Editor, Dr. Richard Galeone who has produced our award-winning publication, the “Key” for 13 years. We are truly grateful for their tenures and wish them both well in their next adventure. In January 2017, we will welcome our new Registrar, Dr. Elaine Wagner as well as our new Editor, Dr. Clifton Simmons. We are looking forward to working with them and feel confident they will assume their new roles without missing a beat. We will also welcome our new President, Dr. Charles L. Smith. Chuck hales from the great state of West Virginia (District 6). He is forward thinking, innovative and respected by all. It has been a pleasure to serve with him. I am sure he will lead the Section to new heights. Our organization continues to be in great hands!
Once again, it has been both a privilege and an honor to have served as your President in 2016. Thank you for allowing me this opportunity. I have enjoyed meeting and working with so many extraordinary Fellows and look forward to sustained friendships. Upon my invitation and induction to the ICD nineteen years ago, my life and career have been enriched by my membership and involvement in this preeminent organization. I believe in the saying, “Be a leader: make a difference”. I hope I have lived up to that saying. I do know that I will always be PROUD to be a Fellow in the International College of Dentists.
Best wishes for a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year!
Margaret M. Culotta-Norton, DDS
President, ICD USA Section