Two Alumni Honored by ADA’s “10 Under 10” List of Rising Stars

Two School of Dentistry alumni have made the 2020 American Dental Association 10 Under 10 list, which honors rising star dentists for career excellence in their first decade after graduation.

The alumni – Dr. Ashley Popejoy, DDS ’12, and Dr. Nathan Suter, DDS ’13 – both have improved access to dental care for underserved populations in Missouri. They also have assisted UMKC students with their externships at federally qualified health centers.

“Outstanding young alumni such as Dr. Popejoy and Dr. Suter continue to make us proud,” said Dean Marsha J. Pyle. “They exemplify our commitment to service and excellent patient care. Their inclusion also makes us the only school to have two alumni among the 10 on this year’s list.”

Dr. Popejoy is director of pediatric dentistry at the Jordan Valley Community Health Center in Springfield, which often provides care for people who are least able to afford it. Besides providing care, she manages staff at the clinic and develops its training protocols.

“I am truly honored and believe the entire field of contenders is made up of amazing dentists who have accomplished great things in their short careers,” Dr. Popejoy said. “I am thankful to be part of a profession and an organization where I can truly take care of individuals who wouldn’t otherwise be able to receive the care they need.”

Dr. Popejoy, who lives in Nixa, Missouri, also is a board member and co-chair of programs for the Greater Springfield Dental Society and clinical director of Special Smiles for Special Olympics of Missouri.

Dr. Suter, who lives in Kirkwood, Missouri, has done pioneering work in teledentistry to expand the availability of dental care. Before establishing his own private practice, he was dental director at the federally qualified clinic in Jefferson County, and he also is the CEO of his consulting company, Access Teledentistry.

Dr. Suter partnered with the Missouri Dental Association in 2016 on teledentistry legislation and started a pilot teledentistry program in 2017. He has developed more than $2.8 million in grant projects to extend care to more than 9,500 underserved Missourians each year. Dr. Suter also is chairman of the Missouri Coalition for Oral Health and has received the MDA 2019 Dentist of the Year award and the Dr. David Whiston Leadership Award.

At the Missouri Dental Association, Foundation and Outreach Director Paul Roberts said, “The entire MDA membership is proud of the well-deserved honor Drs. Ashley Popejoy and Nathan Suter received. In addition to both of them having active practice lives and young families, I have had the pleasure of watching firsthand their contributions to organized dentistry. From presenting on topics of their passion and expertise at various gatherings to providing leadership at the state and local level, these two dentists are exemplary role models and we gladly cheer their achievements.”

Midwest Dental Conference Cancelled Due to COVID-19

Dear MDC attendees:

It is with much regret that we announce that the 2020 Midwest Dental Conference and all related events and activities, April 16 – 19, 2020 in Kansas City, Missouri, have been cancelled due to spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

Under the authority of Mayor Quinton Lucas’s State of Emergency proclamation, and per new Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidance, no events or gatherings with 50 or more attendees will be allowed in Kansas City for the next eight weeks. With this new information, we must safeguard the health of all attendees, guests, presenters, exhibitors and staff who are a part of the event. As part of our larger dental family, we want to do all we can to help ensure your safety.

All registered attendees will receive a full refund for registration via the method used at time of registration in the coming weeks. We appreciate your patience; with a large number of registrants it will take a while to facilitate all the refunds but we promise we will get to you and hope you understand we will be working as hard as we can while also insuring the safety of our staff.

Please contact your hotel directly for cancellation of your reservations. hotel has informed us that guests may cancel their reservation for no charge until two (2) days prior to arrival. Please note that the hotel will assess a fee equal to one (1) night room and tax if the reservation is cancelled after this deadline, so we do urge you to contact the hotel sooner rather than later.

To contact the Sheraton at Crown Center, please call: (816) 841-1000 or (866) 716-8134

To contact the Westin Crown Center, please call: (816) 474-4400 or (800) 228-3000

Most major airlines are currently waiving change and/or cancellation fees for tickets purchased, but please check with your individual airline to confirm.

We would like to thank all involved with the conference for your support and understanding as we did not come to this decision lightly during this challenging time.

We hope to see you at the 2021 Midwest Dental Conference April 15 – 18, 2021.

For more information about the Coronavirus, frequently asked questions, or how to mitigate the transmission of the disease, please refer to the Centers for Disease Control.

We know that with the cancellation of the Midwest Dental Conference, it may be difficult to find alternative ways to get your continuing education credits. The UMKC School of Dentistry’s Continuing Education Program full course listing can be found here: We invite you to join us for our upcoming courses, including our webinars this summer.

We are a proud ADA CERP Recognized Provider and an Approved PACE Program Provider by the Academy of General Dentistry (Provider number 214214). In addition to our program, we suggest taking a look at the ADA’s continuing education programs, available here:, as well as the AGD’s continuing education program, available here: Both offer a selection of online courses.

Faculty News

Dr. Cindy Amyot (BSDH ’92, MSDH ’93, ESD ’00, EdD), professor emeritus and recently retired associate dean for Distance Education and Faculty Development, will contribute to the 2020 Surgeon General’s Report on Oral Health, only the second time such a report will focus on oral health. Dr. Amyot will contribute to a section titled “Oral Health Integration, Workforce and Practice.” Continue reading

Class Notes

Classes of the 1960s

James K. Hocott (DDS ’60) is recovered after breaking a hip this summer.

Robert A. McPherson (DDS ’60, Ortho ’67) practiced orthodontics 47 years in Las Cruces, New Mexico. He sold his practice in 2004 and then ran a pecan farm till 2013. He and his wife of 64 years enjoy their four children, 10 grandchildren and a great-grandchild. Continue reading