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Communities, leaders in fluoridation recognized

April 29, 2015

By Michelle Manchir

Dr. Gooch

Ms. Feinstein
Kansas City, Mo. — To mark 70 years of community water fluoridation, the ADA, the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention honored leaders, states and communities at the National Oral Health Conference April 28 at the Sheraton Crowne Plaza.

Dr. Barbara Gooch, D.M.D., associate director for Science in the Division of Oral Health  at the CDC's National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and also Judith Feinstein, dental director for the state of Maine, were honored with Fluoridation Merit awards for their contributions toward the progress of fluoridation.

Dr. Gooch was recognized for outstanding leadership in revising the 1962 Public Health Service Recommendations for the concentration of fluoride in drinking water to prevent dental caries.  According to a colleague, Kip Duchon, who nominated her, she oversaw the complex project, recognizing multiple perspectives while  maintaining scientific rigor that often demanded repeated reviews of literature.

"Dr. Gooch's reasoned, patient leadership proved essential to accomplishing the task; she managed the four-plus years of work with poise and integrity, as well as an unwavering focus on documentation supported by science," said Mr. Duchon, who is a national fluoridation engineer at the CDC.

About the work that led to her nomination, Dr. Gooch said, "of my professional activities related to fluoridation over the past 25 years at CDC, I consider this collaborative effort to be among the most important."

Meanwhile, Ms. Feinstein received the honor for a second year in a row.

Feinstein, who has served more than 36 years in public health with 18 years as Maine's dental director, has moderated, coordinated or presented numerous sessions on a variety of fluoride topics, including fluoridation workshops held in conjunction with the National Oral Health Conference, and other oral health issues at state, regional and national meetings.  She has chaired the ASTDD Fluorides Committee for the past 12 years.

"Her influence on states' fluoride policy is immeasurable," Ms. Feinstein's colleagues wrote in nominating her.
In accepting the award, Ms. Feinstein said, "To be recognized two years in a row by professional colleagues is a tremendous compliment, both professionally and personally, and I am honored to receive this award."

Meanwhile, Arkansas, Connecticut, Indiana, Massachusetts Main and North Dakota were awarded the 2014 State Fluoridation Quality Award for consistent optimally fluoridated water in more than 90 percent of the adjusted water systems or population supplied by adjusted water systems.

Communities awarded the Community Fluoridation Reaffirmation Award for defeating initiatives to discontinue community water fluoridation during the past year are Healdsburg, California; Loveland and Meeker, Colorado; Valparaiso, Indiana; Tama, Van Meter and Storm Lake, Iowa; Salina, Kansas; Bronson, Boyne City, Cassopolis, East Jordan and Traverse City, Michigan; Sweet Home, Oregon; Fircrest and Kalama, Washington; and Albany and Madison, Wisconsin.

Communities awarded the Community Initiative Award for passing water fluoridation during the past year are Richland, Georgia; and Lena Water Association, Hancock County Utility Authority, Grenada Ind. Park & Airport Water, Grenada Co. Water System-Girl Scout, Grenada Co. Water System-Mondy Rd./Elliott, Grenada-Bogue Basin/Gore Springs Grenada-Bogue, Basin/Holcomb, City of Grenada, Mississippi.

Finally, several communities were honored for 50 years of continuous community water fluoridation. They were Fort Payne Water Works Board, Alabama; Pocahontas Waterworks, Arkansas; City of Merced, California; Lewes Water Department, Delaware; City of Madison, City of Clarkesville, City of Milledgeville, Sylvester , Georgia; Consumers Illinois Water-Kankakee- Country Estates Subdivision, Jerseyville, Ridgewood Ledges Water Association, Illinois; Crawfordsville-Indian American Water, South Whitley Municipal Water, Indiana; Belmond Water Supply, Bloomfield Municipal Water Department, Carlisle Water Supply, Denison Water Supply, Humboldt Municipal Water Department, Spencer Municipal Water Utility, Winterset Municipal Water Works, Iowa; Fort Riley, Kansas; Campbellsville Municipal Water & Sewer, Franklin Water Works, Grayson Utilities Commission, Hardinsburg Water Department, Shelbyville Water & Sewer Commission, Kentucky; Broadcreek, Gibson Island, Herald Harbor, Westminister, Maryland;  Brighton, Mason, Plainfield Township, Michigan; Brooklyn Center, Cottage Grove, Mountain Lake, Richfield, Robbinsdale, Springfield, Minnesota; City of Durant, Crystal Springs Water Service Department, Mississippi; Albany, Cameron, Chaffee, Dexter, Unionville, Missouri; Beach Haven Water Department, Trenton Water Department, Wharton Water Department, New Jersey; Farmington, New Mexico; City of Binghamton, Delhi Village, Monroe County Water Authority, New York; Two Rivers Utilities, North Carolina; Devil's Lake, North Dakota; City of Defiance, Village of Fairport Harbor, City of Wadsworth, Oregon, Reynoldsburg, Ohio; Albany, Oregon; Bedford Borough Water Authority, Borough of Chambersburg Water Department, Pennsylvania; Belton-Honea Path Water Authority, South Carolina; Alcoa Water System, Metro Nashville Water Services-Old Hickory, Smyrna, Trenton Water System, Tennessee; Denton, Texas; Town of Bluefield, Virginia; Kalama, Kent Water Department #111, Washington; City of Philippi, Green Valley-Glenwood Public Service District, West Virginia; and Brodhead, Eau Claire, Hudson, Kenosha, Monticello, Platteville Waterworks, Prairie Du Sac, Rothschild, Schofield, Waterloo, Weston Waterworks, Wisconsin Dells Waterworks East, Wisconsin.