Alumni Spotlight: Robert Ford, D.M.D., talks about the power of teams

On Oct. 16, Robert Ford, D.M.D., and University of Florida staff member Pearl Ann Harris demonstrated the power of teams and networking during a presentation for the North Central Florida Dental Hygiene Association (N.C.F.D.H.A.) meeting in Ocala, Fla.

Ford, a member of the UF College of Dentistry D.M.D. Class of 1981, received specialty training in orthodontics after he earned his dental degree and operates Ford Orthodontics in Ocala. During the association meeting he talked about, “Orthodontics and the Hygienist’s Role,” encouraging the association to consider the value of teaming orthodontists with dental hygienists who are not typically located in the same dental centers, “hygienists will always have a major role in the success of orthodontic treatment.”  Ford also shared photos and models demonstrating innovative procedures being used in orthodontics treatment today.

Pearl Ann Harris, R.D.H., B.A.S.D.H., followed with a presentation that gave a comprehensive overview of the National Dental Practice-Based Research Network, “The Nation’s Network: What’s it all about?”

Harris also shared a history of the network, describing how it was originally formed and its current funding cycle activities. The network is a National Institutes of Health research initiative, to improve the population’s oral health by conducting dental practice-based research. Harris reminded attendees that there is no cost to participate and shared information about the benefits of joining the network including obtaining continuing education credits, sharing research ideas, establishing collegial interaction with fellow research network members, participating as a co-author in manuscripts and presenting of network research findings.  The attendees were given the chance to ask questions and a significant number of hygienists joined the network after the presentation.

The North Central Florida Dental Hygiene Association meets every 3rd Tuesday of each month, please contact North Central Florida Dental Hygiene Association (NCFDHA) President, Suzanne Macomber, CDA, RDH, at or 561-302-2117 for more information.


Photo at top, from right: Suzanne Macomber, R.D.H., president of the N.C.F.D.H.A.; Diane Tyndall, R.D.H., president-elect of the N.C.F.D.H.A.; Jo Ann Weatherwax, R.D.H., M.S.D.H.; president of the Florida Dental Health Association; and Robert Ford, D.M.D., Ford Orthodontics.

Photo at left, from right: Diane Tyndall, R.D.H., president-elect of the N.C.F.D.H.A.; Pearl Ann Harris, R.D.H., regional coordinator, N.D.P.B.R.N.; Bunny Cooney, R.D.H., treasurer N.C.F.D.H.A.; and Suzanne Macomber, R.D.H., president N.C.F.D.H.A.