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Presidential Gala, Give Kids A Smile event to merge

April 23, 2012

By Jean Williams, ADA News staff

San Francisco—The annual ADA Presidential Gala will have a new look this year as it merges with the ADA Foundation Give Kids A Smile Gala at the 2012 Annual Session.

The combined event, the ADA Foundation Give Kids A Smile 10th Anniversary Gala, will be held at the Marriott Marquis San Francisco hotel on Oct. 22.

“The Give Kids A Smile program is a tremendous example of how all aspects of the oral health profession can work together for one common cause, better oral health for underserved children,” said Dr. David Whiston, ADA Foundation Board chairman and a past ADA president.

In 2012, an estimated 40,000 volunteer dentists and their team members will treat more than 400,000 children at nearly 1,600 treatment sites nationwide. GKAS unites the oral health community, combining the efforts of dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants and technicians, community volunteers, corporate leaders and corporate sponsors in educating the public about the need for preventive oral health care in children.

The significance of the challenge is obvious, said Dr. Whiston, pointing out that about 80 percent of tooth decay in the United States is suffered by 25 percent of the children, according to the National Institutes of Health. Thousands of GKAS volunteers are working to significantly reduce those numbers, using a program that makes educating children and their parents entertaining and understandable, he said.

“The ADA Foundation is pleased to raise funds in support of this program, working in close collaboration with ADA leaders, corporate sponsors, thousands of volunteers in the dental community and the public toward this goal,” Dr. Whiston said. “We hope you’ll join us for this special event to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Give Kids A Smile and to help us lay the groundwork for even more success in the years ahead.”

Gala tickets may be purchased during registration for Annual Session at and are $250 each, $100 of which is a tax-deductible charitable contribution to the ADA Foundation.