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Lucy Hobbs Project to honor six women in dentistry

February 08, 2017

By Kimber Solana

The Lucy Hobbs Project announced on Feb. 2 the six women — including three ADA leaders — it will honor at its annual celebration to recognize dentists who set new benchmarks in their profession.

Dr. Blanton
Dr. Booker
Dr. Ishkanian
Dr. Marron-Tarrazzi
Dr. Smith
Ms. Fickess
Named after the first woman to earn a degree in dentistry in 1866, the Lucy Hobbs Project 5th Annual Celebration will be held April 27-28 in Philadelphia, according to a news release.
The six women to be honored are:
  • Dr. Patricia L. Blanton, former vice president of the American Dental Association, is the recipient of the Industry Icon Award. Dr. Blanton is a professor emeritus in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and interim dean at the James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine, Medical University of South Carolina. She was the first female president of the Texas Dental Association and served as president of the American College of Dentists.
  • Dr. Winifred J. Booker, owner of a pediatric dental practice in Owings Mills, Maryland, will receive the Humanitarian Award. In 1996, Dr. Booker established the Children's Oral Health Institute, where she serves as the CEO and director of development. Her work with the nonprofit has focused on advancing two efforts: oral health education programs, which is on track to reach all 50 states and 50,000 elementary schools in 2017; and preserving the state law she helped to get passed in 2012 that requires oral health education to be taught as part of the curriculum in all Maryland public schools.
  • Dr. Emily Ishkanian, chair of the ADA New Dentist Committee, will receive the Mentor Award. Dr. Ishkanian established the Southern Nevada New Dentist Committee of the ADA with a goal to help dentists succeed. Dr. Ishkanian is a graduate of the University of Nevada Las Vegas School of Dental Medicine and practices in Henderson, Nevada.
  • Dr. Irene Marron-Tarrazzi, first vice president of the ADA, will receive the Woman to Watch Award. A periodontist in private practice in Miami, she became the youngest elected vice president of the ADA. Dr. Marron-Tarrazzi seeks to inspire women to pursue a career in dentistry and encourage them to run for leadership roles at the national level.
  • Dr. Andrea Joy Smith is the recipient of the Clinical Expertise Award. A published diplomat in the International Academy of Mini Dental Implants, Dr. Smith embraced technology to provide a less costly and less invasive alternative to medically compromised patients unable to receive conventional dental implants. In 2011, she established the Smile Again Now Foundation, which seeks to extend access to dental care to members of Sacramento, California, and community.
  • Margaret Fickess is the recipient of the Innovator award. She serves as program director for dental assisting at San Diego Mesa College where she designed, in 2009, an 11-chair dental clinic for the Allied Health Building.
To learn more about The Lucy Hobbs Project, which has a network of more than 9,000 members, visit