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Presidents Message

A Letter From our President… 

For those who know me well, are aware that one of the ways in which I find  

relaxation is having the opportunity to step into the cockpit of a historic airplane for  what I like to call “flight therapy”. Flying, momentarily frees us from our earthly  bounds. Flying a plan smoothly requires a bit of knowledge, skills, and confidence – much like organizational leadership. When flying, it is critical to set your course,  pick a point on the horizon and keep your aircraft pointed towards that point on the horizon. While this  may sound simple, it is easy to get caught up in managing the speed, heading, and altitude – allowing you  to become distracted. Leaders must have the clarity around the goals of the organization, where it is  headed, and where we want to be in the future. As leaders, we must be able to get people to lift their  heads and focus on the horizon. If everyone can pick the same point on the horizon, it is unlikely that  anyone will be left behind. 

When flying the pilot works with three dimensions – lift which allows the plane to overcome the weight  of the craft, drag which counteracts the thrust, and roll and yaw which allows the pilot to maneuver the  craft up or down and left or right or as well like to say while doing aerobatics – loop and roll. To  maintain the plane in the air, the pilot must manage the balance between the various forces along the  journey. Leading an organization is very similar. Leading through change is not always a linear process  and leaders must find ways to energize and mobilize people in a way to create positive forward  momentum. 

Occasionally when flying, you may find yourself in a cloud or approaching storm which can block your  view of the horizon. During these situations, the pilot must maintain safety by relying on instruments to  provide data or information that allows the pilot to manage his plane safely through this stormy  environment. In a similar way, leaders use transformational change to build their own instrument panel or  dashboard – carefully selecting data or information to help stay on track. While the leader may have the  controls, it is the contribution or collaboration of the team that provides accountability and delivers  success. 

I am honored to accept the position of the President of the North Carolina Dental Hygienists Association.  As your President, I will continue the course that has been chartered from our previous leaders to advance  our profession in our state. It is my vision to continue to nurture positive collaborative relationships with  

our peers (both state and nationally), as well as with our entire state dental community – this includes  dentists, hygienists, assistants, and office administrators – we are a team! If 2020 has taught us anything it  has shown us what it is like to step out of our normal routines and use our skills and knowledge to chart a  new course. This coming year we will complete the overhaul of our ByLaws , Operations Manual, and  Policy Manual that will bring us into compliance with NC non-profit legislation as well as with our  ADHA constituent agreement. Furthermore, we will finalize the change to General Assembly. I will  continue to work with the North Carolina Dental Society and NC Legislators to advance our efforts to add  local anesthesia as a delegable function in NC, with the goal of introducing that legislation in long session  of 2021. I look forward to working with our executive committee, board of trustees, component leaders,  and Management Company for the advancement of our association and our profession. As an individual  we may flourish, but together as a team we will soar. So for 2021 – Through TEAMWORK we will  SOAR into Success!!!

About Our Association

Lets Begin with a Brief History

In the earlier years of our association, five charter members: Carolyn Smart Keith, Winifred Brewer Burns, Maxine Bowman, Mary Louise Tuttle and Nancy Horton Pappas created NCDHA’S Constitution and Bylaws and were adopted in 1949, at the annual meeting of the North Carolina Dental Society, in Pinehurst, NC. Over the next decade, dental hygienists slowly transitioned from public programs into the private practice setting by educating dentists and the public about the advantages of the preventive therapies provided by dental hygienists. Dental hygiene education in North Carolina began in 1953 at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, accepting 11 students who graduated in 1955. Dental hygiene education programs were implemented at the community college level beginning in 1965.

Who We are Today 

The North Carolina Dental Hygienists’ Association is part of the tripartite structure of the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA), making all ADHA members a member of NCDHA as well as members of one of our 11 components. We proudly represent over 7,000 dental hygienists and we are your resource for current information impacting dental hygienists in North Carolina and throughout the nation!

Happening Now

Membership Matters! Renew

2020 has been very challenging and we want you to know we value and appreciate you! 

The results of our T-Shirt fundraising design are in!

FYI: This is an ongoing campaign, so no pressure to buy in this time of crisis if you cannot do it.

We are in this together~always


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The Today’s RDH Dental Hygiene Podcast is for curious and passionate dental hygienists, students, and other dental professionals.

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