Alumni Spotlight: Richard L. Williams, Class of ‘97

Richard L. Williams, D.M.D. Class of 1997, was recently inducted as a Fellow of both the American College of Dentists and the International College of Dentists, at their annual convocations in San Francisco, Ca., on Oct. 18 and 19, 2012, respectively.

Williams received his Ph.D. in Oral Sciences from University of Illinois at Chicago, and his D.M.D. and M.Ed. degrees from the University of Florida. He completed advanced residency training in periodontics at Eisenhower Army Medical Center, and earned a master’s in Oral Biology at Georgia Health Sciences University. Williams is a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology and holds the Army Surgeon General’s “A” Designator for professional excellence and is a member of the Order of Military Medical Merit.

Williams is currently a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army Dental Corps.  He is Deputy Commander for Dental Trauma Research and Chief of the Biofilm-Impaired Healing Program at the U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research, Fort Sam Houston, Texas.  He serves on the research faculties for both Air Force and Army Comprehensive Dentistry Residency Programs, and was recently appointed professor of periodontics in the Postgraduate Dental College of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD. Williams has lectured nationally and internationally, and published numerous articles on the multifunctional properties of antimicrobial peptides and their potential to mitigate hypertrophic scarring and ameliorate delayed healing in animal burn and wound healing models.

The American and International Colleges are honorary organizations that recognize dental professionals who have exemplified excellence through meritorious service, outstanding leadership, and exceptional contributions to dentistry and society.

The American College of Dentists is the oldest major honorary organization for dentists. It was founded August 20, 1920, with the goals to elevate the standards of dentistry, encourage graduate study, and grant Fellowship to those who have done meritorious work. The American College of Dentists is nonprofit and apolitical, and has long been regarded as the “conscience of dentistry.”  Membership includes the top 3.5 percent of dentists in the country, and the nomination and selection process is confidential.

The International College of Dentists, established in 1928, is the largest international honorary dental organization, with over 12,000 members around the globe.  Fellowship is extended by invitation only, following a rigorous evaluation of all candidates’ qualifications and achievements by a series of credential committees.