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Inaugural address.

Presented at the President's Gala, July 10, 2004, in Anaheim, California

As you may know, the Mission Statement of the American Dental Assistants Association is:
 To advance the careers of dental assistants
 and to promote the dental assisting
 profession in matters of education, legislation,
 credentialing and professional
 activities which enhance the delivery of
 quality dental health care to the public.

That is truly what the ADAA is all about. And I believe that the members of the ADAA Board of Trustees, our executive director, and staff are all committed to this goal.

While attending the Oral Health America Gala this past February in Chicago, I had a conversation with the president of the American Dental Association, Dr. Eugene Sekiguchi. He asked me what exactly I want to accomplish during my term as ADAA president. I said I would like to continue as we have been doing, promoting the goals of our mission statement. When I returned home, I pondered his question further and wondered what else I could do to help promote our goal of delivering quality dental health care to the public.

I decided that one possibility would be to promote the concept of volunteerism among our membership. There are numerous community programs currently in place across the country that provide quality dental care to those less fortunate. They are always looking to enlist the volunteer services of all members of the dental team. There are also projects that involve traveling to other countries for a week to help provide dental services to the needy. Several of our members have already participated in this type of venture and have found it to be quite a fulfilling experience.

I followed yet a different path in September 2000 when I was fortunate enough to be a part of a professional exchange program that traveled to Egypt on a goodwill mission under the leadership of ADAA past president, Carla Schneider, CDA, RDA. During this trip we met with dental professionals to discuss common goals in regards to quality dental care and we visited an orphanage and elementary school to provide oral hygiene instructions. I was approached by the People to People Ambassadors program a few months ago to lead a delegation to Russia in February 2005 on a similar goodwill mission. I am looking forward to this trip with great enthusiasm.

Over the next year, I would like to showcase the ADAA members involved in these types of programs in The Dental Assistant magazine. I plan to appoint a special committee to research these projects and supply information to our membership via the journal and our website. Though volunteerism may not fit into everyone's lifestyle, we can provide the necessary resources for those members who are interested.

Just recently, I came across a quote regarding volunteerism that really sums it up. "You give but little when you give of your possessions; it is when you give of yourself that you truly give." (Kahlil Gibran 1883-1931).

Kristy S. Borquez, CDA, RDAEF, FADAA ADAA President 2004-2005
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Title Annotation:President's Page; American Dental Assistants Association
Author:Borquez, Kristy S.
Publication:The Dental Assistant
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Jul 1, 2004
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