2022 School of Dentistry Alumni Achievement Award Winners Honored

Each year, the University and School of Dentistry recognizes an outstanding alumnus or alumna for lifelong commitment to the profession, the community, and the School. We are privileged to recognize Dr. Brenda Bohaty and Jo Ann Weatherwax as this year’s honorees.

Dr. Brenda Bohaty is Chair of the UMKC School of Dentistry’s Department of Pediatric Dentistry and concurrently the Director of the Residency Program in Pediatric Dentistry at the Children’s Mercy Hospital and Clinics in Kansas City, Missouri. During her nearly 35 years of service to the School, Dr. Bohaty has accomplished a long list of academic and research endeavors including her instrumental role in initiating and running the Dental Clinic at Operation Breakthrough. This program allows children who attend day care at Operation Breakthrough to receive comprehensive dental care at no cost to their care providers. An impactful experience for both the children in the community and dental students. Dr. Bohaty serves as one of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry representatives on the Commission for Dental Accreditation Review Committee as a site visitor, she received a national appointment to serve as a member of the Review Committee member for the National Commission on Dental Specialties, she serves as Chair of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry Graduate In-Service Examination Committee and as an expert consultant on the Council of Pre-Doctoral Education. She also serves on the Rinehart Foundation Board.

Jo Ann Weatherwax serves as the founding Dental Program Director for the Volusia County Health Department in Daytona Beach, Florida and has dedicated her career to help solving the national issue of access to oral healthcare services. Jo Ann, the first dental hygienist to serve as a dental director at a county health department in Florida, developed a clinical program, added an additional clinic to serve the western area of Volusia County, and established a county-wide school sealant and oral health education program. Her dedication to the Health Department and safety net programs in Volusia County has resulted in the delivery of oral healthcare services to countless children and families. Along with her work in public health, Jo Ann has served in numerous leadership roles including most recently as the President of the Florida Dental Hygiene Association.

Both awardees will be recognized at the UMKC campus-wide celebration on April 29th

Photos from the reception honoring the awardees here.

Midwest Dental Conference Wraps Up with Encore – Sunday Events

The Midwest Dental Conference’s “live tour” concluded Sunday after four days of long-awaited in-person reunions and lessons on the latest in dental education. On the morning of the final day, the annual Dental Alumni Trustees’ and Alumni Past President’s Breakfast was followed by three more scientific sessions. The last of the more than 2,500 attendees exchanged farewells after getting the band back together and hit the road to put into practice all the lessons learned over the course of the conference.  Sunday photos here.

Rockin’ Saturday Filled with Honors, Reunions and Education

Saturday’s activities started with Orthodontics meetings over breakfast at the Sheraton. Courses took up much of the morning at MDC 2022, before the Alumni Recognition Luncheon. The highlight of the event was a generous donation from GEHA to the UMKC School of Dentistry. The luncheon also honored outstanding alumni, including the class of 1972, which is celebrating its 50th reunion this year! The day’s scientific sessions addressed a wide range of topics, from emerging trends in periodontics to the lessons learned in dental care during two pandemics: HIV and COVID-19. The day’s events wrapped up with the annual Presidents’ Reception, where they honored donors atop the Westin at Benton’s.  Saturday photos here.

Midwest Dental Conference Welcomes Alums and Friends – Friday Events

Friday began by welcoming MDC’s more than 2,500 attendees to the learning sessions. Day two of this four-day conference offered attendees 70 top-notch technical exhibits, as well as Continuing Education sessions with topics like digital impressions and new 3D technology, better ways to give personal and customized care to patients, and even how to spot obstructive sleep apnea and save lives. As the evening began, a special happy hour gave attendees more chances to connect, followed by the ever-popular Friday night Welcome Party. This year, the party served as an opportunity for many to meet the new dean, Steven E. Haas, D.M.D., J.D., M.B.A.  Photos from the day here.

Pouring from the Heart Turns 22 in 2022

Pouring from the Heart celebrated its 22nd year in 2022. We were back in-person at the Westin Century Ballroom Thursday evening for an evening filled with delicious food and wine pairings. While the food and wine made it an evening to enjoy, this party was also filled with purpose. Pouring from the Heart raises money to provide crucial funding to help care for those in need. Guests enjoyed a scrumptious three-course meal put together by the Westin staff with a wine pairing for each dish. Silent auction items ranged from a getaway to New Orleans, to a Caribbean Vacation in Cancun, Riviera Maya, Cozumel or Isla Mujeres.  Enjoy photos from the Gala  Find the selfies taken by the Photo Bus here

2022 Midwest Dental Conference Ready to Rock – Thursday Events

The band is back together, live in Kansas City! The UMKC Dental and Dental Hygienists’ Alumni Associations welcomed 2022 Midwest Dental Conference attendees to the first of four days of meetings, reunions, celebrations, technical exhibits and scientific sessions at the Sheraton Kansas City Hotel and Westin Hotel at Crown Center. Old friends and new, happy to be back seeing each other face-to-face, met up at registration and throughout the day. The conference’s wealth of Continuing Education offerings began, with four sessions in the morning and four sessions in the afternoon, separated by the Fedi Patron’s luncheon. Please enjoy these photos from the day and look for more photos from our Pouring from the Heart event, the annual fundraising gala that capped a rock-n-rollin’ first day of the Midwest Dental Conference.  Thursday photos here.

Celebrating Scholarship and Generosity

The School of Dentistry annually gathers to recognize and celebrate the scholarships awarded to our students and the generous donors who support these scholarships.

Due to the pandemic, we were unable to gather as in the past but don’t want to let this important recognition pass. To highlight the incredible scholarship support, the Rinehart Foundation, Dental and Dental Hygienists’ Alumni Associations, and the School released in early March this video of appreciation. We invite you to take a few moments to watch and hear the gratitude from members of our community.

To further recognize the student recipients and donors, we prepared a slideshow that includes each award and recipient.  View the slide show here.

This year we accomplished an incredible feat together, our students received the largest amount of scholarship dollars in our history totaling $1,082,740!  This is amazing and our students will be impacted for the rest of their lives by the support.  Here is a breakdown of this year’s award amounts.

    • Total Number of Student Recipients:  195
    • Total Dollars from Rinehart:  $767,060
    • Total Dollars from DDS Alumni Association:  $1,880
    • Total Dollars from DH Alumni Association:  $15,000
    • Total University Held:  $153,800
    • Total Outside Scholarships:  $145,000
    • Total Dollars Our Students Received:  $1,082,740

The UMKC School of Dentistry is lucky to have such strong supporters of scholarships and this wouldn’t be possible without the Roy J. Rinehart Foundation, the Dental Alumni Association, the Dental Hygiene Alumni Association, and our many outside partners.  Our appreciation to all our donors and scholarship partners for their committment to giving back and congratulations to our student recipients.  When the time comes we hope you will do the same for future students.  THANK YOU!

UMKC Dental Alumni Association Hosts the New Students Welcome Game at “The K”

The UMKC Dental Alumni Association once again hosted an annual night at “The K” complete with tailgate and the game, which featured the Kansas City Royals hosting the Cleveland Indians.  Guests of honor were the DDS Class of 2024 and Dental Hygiene Class of 2022 as well as the DDS Class of 2024 and Dental Hygiene Class of 2022 who sadly missed out on the tradition when it was postponed because of pandemic-related limitations last year.  There was a great turnout students, staff, faculty and alums, and while the Royals lost, the event was a lot of fun!

Find photos here.


Scholarship “Par-tee”! – The 2021 Annual Alumni Scholarship Golf Tournament

Golfers enjoyed a fantastic day on the course Friday, June 4 at the 21st annual UMKC Dental Alumni Scholarship Golf Tournament.

This year’s tournament took participants to WinterStone Golf Club in Independence, Missouri. As always, golfers were treated to food, fun, and some antics by way of wingspan drawings, hole contests, and a few mulligans.

The Alumni Scholarship Golf Tournament has awarded over $260,000 in individual scholarships to UMKC School of Dentistry students. Thank you to the steering committee lead once again by Dr. Joe Spalitto that included Dr. Chad Barth, Dr. Reese Graue, and Dr. Michael McCunniff.

Thank you to all of the players and sponsors for a great day of golf raising money for student scholarships! Don’t miss out next year as we celebrate the 23rd year of the Dental Alumni Scholarship Golf Tournament!

Find tournament photos here.

Team and sponsor photos here.

Virtual MDC 2021 Wraps Up

The first virtual Midwest Dental Conference came to a close on Sunday, April 18, 2021, with its final live Scientific Sessions, covering topics ranging from pediatric caries and emergencies to the stress- and pain-relieving benefits of yoga.

Conference participants also had another chance to visit the Virtual Exhibit Hall, where they could read about each company, interact with company representatives and enter to win such prizes as a Dental Survival Kit from Commerce Bank or an Amazon gift card from New Horizons. Each booth also had a link to sign up for the MDC raffle, which included one free registration to the 2022 conference.

Though the usual large MDC gatherings were not possible this year, the virtual format allowed people to participate from virtually anywhere, enjoying class reunions and business meetings by Zoom, along with picking up the latest knowledge — and CE credits — from some of the top authorities in dentistry and dental hygiene. Registered conference attendees will have access to recorded sessions for 30 days following the live portion of the event.

Thank you to the generous sponsors of MDC:
Presenting Platform Sponsor
Patterson Dental

Speaker Sponsors
Perio Protect

Exhibiting Sponsors
MO Health Professional Placement Services
US Army Medical Recruiting
Sunstar Americas, Inc.
Perio Protect
Missouri Dental Insurance Services
Goetze Dental
Ultradent Products, Inc.
Dental Practice Professionals
New Horizons Dental Practice Management
Insurance Pros, Inc.
Commerce Bank
Hero Practice Services

Looking ahead, save the dates April 21-24, 2022, for the next MDC, when we hope to be able to see you in person.