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Give Kids A Smile ambassador receives Shils Award for community service

October 30, 2019

By Mary Beth Versaci

New York –– Give Kids A Smile ambassador Dr. Joseph Brofsky is being honored with a 2019 Shils Fund Innovator Award for his community service.

The Dr. Edward B. Shils Entrepreneurial Fund Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to innovation in health care, held its 17th annual awards ceremony and third annual Shils Stars Dental Student Competition on Oct. 16 at the New York University College of Dentistry, according to a news release.

"Our event is an exciting opportunity for health care entrepreneurs to motivate, educate and engage with one another in a mission to advance innovation in oral health," fund board of directors President Steven W. Kess said in the release. "From our competition showcasing young entrepreneurs to the recognition of social entrepreneurs who help expand access to care, Dr. Shils' legacy lives on in elevating the contributions of the next generation of health care leaders."

Joseph Brofsky
Dr. Brofsky
Dr. Brofsky, the section head of pediatric dentistry at Cohen Children's Medical Center in Queens, has volunteered with Give Kids A Smile for about 15 years. As an ambassador, he organizes an event each year in Long Island, New York, sponsored by the Nassau County Dental Society. It typically serves more than 1,000 children and sometimes as many as 1,500.

Part of Dr. Brofsky's work with Give Kids A Smile over the last few years has focused on extending the program's care to children with disabilities.

He was recognized with the Innovator Award for excellence in community service because of his efforts to advance the oral and overall health of children who are underserved or have special needs, the release stated.

Dr. Brofsky previously received the inaugural Joan Allen Give Kids A Smile Ambassador Award in August.

The other Innovator Award honorees included Dr. Teresa A. Dolan, vice president and chief clinical officer of Dentsply Sirona, for her excellence in industry; Meg Booth, executive director of the Children’s Dental Health Project, for her excellence in a nonprofit organization; and Stephen LeBeau, Ph.D., president of nanoMAG LLC, for his excellence in research.

Other awards presented at the ceremony included the Special Recognition Award, which was given to Dr. Karen Fields-Lever, founder and owner of 28 to Brush Dental Studio and Mobile Dentistry Program, and the Cohen-Volpe Award, which recognized Dr. Daniel H. Fine, chair of the department of oral biology at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine and senior vice dean of research at the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.

The winners of the Shils Stars Dental Student Competition, who pitched their ideas, innovations and inventions to a panel of judges led by Stanley M. Bergman, chairman of the board and CEO of Henry Schein Inc., included first-place winner Ola Adel Farrag from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, second-place winner Michael Schiappa from the Columbia University College of Dental Medicine, third-place winner Dr. Supontep Teerakanok from the Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine and fourth-place winner Fareed Tareen from the New York University College of Dentistry.

Dr. Shils served as the executive director of the Dental Manufacturers of America and Dental Dealers of America for almost 50 years. His friends and colleagues founded the fund to honor Dr. Shils' legacy of entrepreneurship.