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ADA History and Presidents of the ADA

The first president of the American Dental Association was William Henry Atkinson (1815–1891). He served the ADA from 1860-1861 and again from 1861-1862. Atkinson originally trained as a physician, but later became interested in dentistry and the opportunities it offered at that time for a young man starting a practice.

Since its founding in 1859, there have been 150 presidents of the American Dental Association. Each of these individuals represented some of the best in the profession and the list of ADA presidents reads as a who's who of the history of dentistry. Among the better known are G. V. Black and Thomas Hinman.

The History of Dentistry Timeline provides a chronology from ancient to modern times. The ADA History Timeline provides a chronological and historical representation of the American Dental Association from 1859-2009. If you are interested in finding out more on the history of the dental profession, visit the ADA Library & Archives