2014 Academy Award Recipients

These awards are given for outstanding contributions to the AAP and the profession of periodontics.

Based on recommendations from the Leadership Development and Qualifications Committee, the Research Submissions Committee and the Education Committee, the Board of Trustees selected the following recipients of 2014 AAP awards. The recipients were recognized at the 2014  AAP Annual Meeting.

Gold Medal: Dr. William Becker

William BeckerThe highest award bestowed by the Academy, this award is given annually in recognition of outstanding contributions to the field of periodontics. Founded in 1967, it is sponsored by Sunstar Americas, Inc.

Dr. William Becker has been making an impact on periodontics for nearly 50 years. A member of the Academy since 1966, he has served on more than a dozen committees; earned prestigious commendations including the Presidential Award, the Master Clinician Award, and two Clinical Research Awards; and served as president from 1989-1990. Dr. Becker has published widely and has served as a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Periodontology for over two decades. He has presented at many AAP Annual Meetings, conferences, and symposia worldwide on topics including guided tissue regeneration and minimally invasive implant procedures.

Dr. Becker graduated from the Marquette University School of Dentistry, earned his certificate in periodontics from Baylor College of Dentistry, and currently manages a private practice in Tucson, Arizona, with his brother Burt. He became a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology in 1969 and served as its vice chair from 1988-1989.

He has always had a strong commitment to service; he was a Captain of General Dentistry in the United States Air Force and his periodontal office has an ongoing commitment to helping rehabilitate veterans in need. He has been a clinical professor in the University of Southern California’s Department of Periodontology since 1969, where he helps periodontal and prosthodontics graduate students. He and his brother host a free dental implant study club for young dentists, exposing them to diagnosis, treatment planning, and implant placement. Dr. Becker has been a visiting professor at the University of Washington, The University of Texas at Houston, and the University of Arizona. He credits his experiences in Washington, where he served as a mentor to two promising graduate students, as “one of the most interesting and wonderful learning experiences in [his] time in dentistry.” Dr. Becker takes pride in the fact that both former students are now accomplished clinicians who contribute to their communities and their specialty.

The Academy is pleased to honor Dr. Becker with its 2014 Gold Medal Award and thanks him for his decades of support to the American Academy of Periodontology and the field of periodontics.

Master Clinician: Dr. Barry D. Wagenberg

Barry WagenbergThis award is given to an Academy member who has practiced and demonstrated consistent clinical excellence in periodontics. This award is sponsored by Hu-Friedy.

Dr. Barry D. Wagenberg has demonstrated exceptional clinical skills over the past 39 years in a variety of areas, including periodontal diagnosis and treatment planning, interdisciplinary treatment, resective and regenerative periodontal surgery, and implant dentistry. He has published more than 30 articles, a textbook, and contributed chapters to other scientific publications.

Several of his papers have changed the way periodontists perform surgical procedures and his emphasis on the team approach promotes optimal patient care.

A worldwide presenter, Dr. Wagenberg has given more than 100 lectures on interdisciplinary treatment planning, surgical crown lengthening, and surgical implant dentistry. He has shared his clinical expertise as an associate professor of Periodontics and Implant dentistry at New York University School of Dentistry since 2001, and has been a part-time academic for almost his entire career, serving at Beth Israel Hospital as director of the Department of Periodontology since 1982 and director of Dental Education since 1997.

Dr. Wagenberg has been an active member of the periodontal community since he completed his residency at Columbia University in 1974. He also served as a Major in the U.S. Air Force Dental Service from 1974-1976. He has served in leadership roles on numerous AAP committees, including chairman of the section on gingival augmentation and mucogingival treatment at the landmark 1989 World Workshop of Periodontics. He has high ethical standards and is a popular presenter because program planners know he will share the whole story – short- and long-term results, successes as well as problems.

He served on the Academy’s Board of Trustees from 2000-2006. Dr. Wagenberg is a gifted surgeon and respected expert who has made many valuable contributions to clinical periodontics while maintaining a private practice in New Jersey. His keen mind, quick sense of humor, and untiring passion for his profession make him a most deserving recipient of the AAP’s Master Clinician Award.

Distinguished Service: Dr. Pamela K. McClain

Pam McClainEstablished in 2008, the Distinguished Service Award is presented to an AAP member selected for distinguished service to the Academy in more than one area, over a period of not less than 20 years.

Dr. Pamela K. McClain has a distinguished record of service to the American Academy of Periodontology. She was a Trustee from 2002-2008 and served as AAP president from 2011-2012. She has made major contributions as a leader, serving as chair of pivotal committees such as Annual Meeting, Continuing Education Oversight, Planning, and Finance. She also chaired the section on growth factors, chemical root surface modifiers, and bone replacement grafts for the 2003 Workshop on Contemporary Science in Clinical Periodontics. She most recently co-chaired the Academy’s 2014 Workshop on Regeneration. She received the inaugural R. Earl Robinson Periodontal Regeneration Award in 1989 and also received this prestigious award two more times – in 2004 and 2006.

She received her dental degree from the University of Colorado School of Dentistry in 1985 and her certificate in periodontology from the University of California – San Francisco in 1987. She became a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology in 1992.

She is a peer reviewer for several professional journals, including the Journal of Periodontology, the Journal of the American Dental Association, the International Journal of Periodontics & Restorative Dentistry, and the Compendium of Continuing Education in Dentistry.

She is a past president of the Rocky Mountain Society of Periodontists. Dr. McClain lectures on a variety of topics in the United States and abroad and has more than 20 publications in professional journals and books. She has maintained a full-time private practice in periodontics since 1987, and is also an associate clinical professor in the Department of Surgical Dentistry at the University of Colorado School of Dentistry. She promotes interdisciplinary collaboration for the improvement of patient care and is a role model for young periodontists, including her niece, with whom she practices.

Distinguished Scientist: Dr. Steven Offenbacher

PhotoEstablished in 2008, the Distinguished Scientist Award is presented to an AAP member who has actively contributed to the basic science and/or clinical science of periodontology through published literature, and may have contributed to pre- or postdoctoral education and/or scientific conferences or symposia. The award is sponsored by Procter & Gamble Professional Oral Health.

Dr. Steven Offenbacher earned his DDS and PhD in Biochemistry from the Virginia Commonwealth University as well as a certificate in periodontology from the Harvard School of Dental Medicine. He has been making an impact on the science and practice of periodontology for the last 38 years. Dr. Offenbacher is currently director of the Center for Oral and Systemic Diseases and chair of the Department of Periodontology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he leads cutting-edge research projects while mentoring and training future leaders of the profession.

He is being recognized for his outstanding contributions to the basic and clinical science of periodontics throughout his successful career. He has published nearly 300 articles in refereed journals and presented hundreds of times on epidemiological and clinical research that investigated the role of periodontal infections on other diseases and conditions. Dr. Offenbacher has been the recipient of four AAP Clinical Research Awards as well as the Norton Ross Award for clinical research, the Gies Award, and the Basic Research in Periodontal Disease Award from the International Association for Dental Research.

Balancing his own exploration with a dedication to shaping future periodontists, Dr. Offenbacher is a committed educator, having mentored countless award winning students during his tenure at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Emory University, Harvard University, and the Medical College of Virginia. He was awarded the AAP Educator Award for Outstanding Teaching and Mentoring in Periodontics in 2008.

Explaining his passion for research, Dr. Offenbacher says, “As a clinician, I can only help so many patients, but as a researcher and educator I can work to transform the role of dentistry in healthcare…I love basic science and molecular pathogenesis, but the research has to provide new insight that touches lives.”

The AAP thanks Dr. Offenbacher for his decades of service to periodontics and we look forward to celebrating his continued advances in the clinical and basic sciences.

Outstanding Periodontal Educator: Dr. Kent G. Palcanis

PhotoRecognizing the importance of periodontal faculty in maintaining the excellence of the specialty, the Board of Trustees established the Award for Outstanding Periodontal Educator in 2001. This award recognizes an exemplary periodontal faculty member who demonstrates excellence in teaching and is an inspiration to students.

The AAP honors Dr. Kent G. Palcanis with the 2014 Outstanding Periodontal Educator Award for demonstrating excellence in teaching and serving as an inspiration to his students throughout his successful career.

After serving in the U.S. Air Force, Dr. Palcanis received his periodontal certificate in 1973 from the University of Washington. He moved directly into education as an assistant professor of Periodontics at the Medical College of Virginia, now Virginia Commonwealth University. Throughout a career that spans more than four decades, he has served in many capacities including mentor, professor, lecturer, department director, department chair, and associate dean for academic affairs.

Dr. Palcanis was acknowledged by many of his former students as extremely accessible with a high regard for ethical behavior. “Dr. Palcanis…was always easy to approach when problems arose. He was interested in the fair treatment of students and patients. He always treated students as professional colleagues, and expected us to behave that way, too,” stated one of his former students.

After receiving his first award from the American Academy of Oral Medicine in 1968, Dr. Palcanis has gone on to receive 22 additional awards and honors from the American Dental Association, the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), and the American Academy of Periodontology. Those who worked closely with Dr. Palcanis have said that “…when he retired from his position as the Dean for Academic Affairs at UAB, two faculty members were needed to fill all of the roles that he provided to the School of Dentistry!”

Dr. Palcanis has served on over 20 AAP committees and task forces, as well as on its Board of Trustees. As the current executive director of the American Board of Periodontology, Dr. Palcanis has made some significant and positive changes to the examination process. He consistenly advocates for all periodontists to pursue a lifetime of continuing education.

The Academy congratulates Dr. Palcanis on his exemplary service and dedication to periodontal education.

Humanitarian Award: Dr. Craig J. Hovic


The Humanitarian Award is presented to an Academy member who has given selflessly through extraordinary actions that benefit a deserving population. The award acknowledges the member's selfless act.

Dr. Craig J. Hovick is being honored with the 2014 Humanitarian Award for his dedication to serving those in most need of help, regardless of their location in the world or their means to pay him for his services. A true servant leader, Dr. Hovick has been selflessly volunteering his time and dental expertise to patients in third-world countries since 2004. For more than a decade, Dr. Hovick has participated in programs in Costa Rica, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Cambodia, Ecuador, Liberia, Uganda, and Cameroon, taking charge of the planning and organization of these initiatives, sometimes providing the necessary equipment and supplies as well. He confesses that he is the one who benefits the most from his volunteer work, stating that he “receives far more from the experience than he delivers.”

Joining the AAP in 1987, Dr. Hovick became a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology in 1993 and is a former president of the Rocky Mountain Society of Periodontists and the Boulder County Dental Society. He earned his DDS from the University of Iowa and his certificate in periodontology from the University of Nebraska. When not volunteering elsewhere, he operates his own private practice in Longmont, Colorado, where he often donates dental exams and other services to needy schoolchildren and the handicapped.

Honorary Membership Award: Dr. Peter Mark Bartold


Awarded to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the art and science of periodontology

Dr. Peter Mark Bartold is being awarded Honorary Membership in the American Academy of Periodontology for his outstanding contributions to the worldwide study and practice of periodontics. With a highly decorated career in periodontal research, education, and administration, he is most deserving of honorary membership in our Academy. Dr. Bartold has a PhD in Oral Biology and a BDS and a DDSc from the University of Adelaide, where he still teaches.

Currently serving as professor and director of the Colgate Australian Clinical Dental Research Centre at the University of Adelaide, Dr Bartold is a member of the Order of Australia, Chair of the board of the Australian Periodontology Research Foundation, and Past President of organizations including the ANZ Division of the IADR, the Asian Pacific Society of Periodontology, the IADR Periodontal Research Group, and the Division of Periodontics at the Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons.

An accomplished researcher, Dr. Bartold has published over 200 scientific articles, co-edited seven textbooks, and holds four patents arising from his prolific research. He has also served on over 20 editorial boards for various publications.

A devoted educator throughout his career, Dr. Bartold has mentored over 50 postgraduate and doctoral candidates on research projects, theses, and dissertations – many of whom have also received awards for their work. He has also been invited to present on various topics throughout the world, delivering 197 lectures in 27 countries.

We thank Dr. Bartold for his influence on the world of periodontology and welcome him as an honorary member of the AAP.

Special Citation: 2011-2012 Task Force to Update the Glossary of Periodontal Terms

Special citations are awarded to individuals who have contributed to the Academy in a noteworthy manner, such as an Academy committee or special project. These awards are sponsored by Johnson & Johnson Healthcare Products.

The Academy recognizes members of the Task Force to Update the Glossary of Periodontal Terms for their efforts in bringing the AAP’s outdated glossary up to date and placing it online in an interactive format. This group refreshed the 2001 edition to include terms that reflect the state of the science and current practice. They examined approximately 1,500 terms, adding, amending, and updating content with the assistance of several postdoctoral periodontal programs.

Task Force members:

Dr. Margaret Hill (not pictured)


Clinical Research Award

This award, which is sponsored by Quintessence Publishing, is presented to a recent outstanding scientific published article with direct clinical relevance in periodontics.

Patient stratification for preventive care in dentistry. J Dent Res 2013;92:694-701. Giannobile WV, Braun TM, Doucette-Stamm L, Duff G, Kornman, KS.

R. Earl Robinson Regeneration Award

This award, which is sponsored by the AAP Foundation, is presented to a recent outstanding scientific published article on periodontal regeneration in the basic or clinical sciences.

Platelet-derived growth factor promotes periodontal regeneration in localized osseous defects: 36-84 month extension results from randomized controlled, double-masked clinical trial. J Periodontol 2013;84:456-464. Nevins M, Genco RJ, Giannobile WV, Hinrichs JE, Kao RT, Lynch SE, McAllister BS, McClain PK, McGuire MK, Nevins MK, Reddy MS.

PhotoWilliam J. Gies Award: William V. Giannobile

The William J. Gies Award is presented by the William J. Gies Foundation for the Advancement of Dentistry, part of the American Dental Education Association. The award is presented to a nominee who has made significant contributions to the periodontal literature and the advancement of dental education.

This year’s recipient of the William J. Gies Award is Dr. William V. Giannoble. Dr. Giannobile has made major contributions to research and practice that have advanced the clinical application of growth factors and stem cells in oral and periodontal reconstruction. Dr. Giannobile’s outstanding scientific contributions extend into other areas as well, including salivary diagnostics. His research has been published in multiple high-impact journals, both in dentistry and medicine, such as the Journal of Dental Research and the New England Journal of Medicine. His collaborative clinical research, for example, led to approval of a first-in-class synthetic bone graft that incorporates platelet-derived growth factor for periodontal regeneration. His international recognition as a leader in oral and periodontal tissue engineering is reflected, in part, by the large number of commentaries and editorials he is invited to contribute related to advances in clinical practice. He has served as an invited participant in multiple professional consensus workshops, including European workshops on periodontology and the American Academy of Periodontology’s Workshop on Contemporary Science in Clinical Periodontics, and he most recently co-chaired the Academy’s landmark 2014 Workshop on Regeneration.

He has served as editor or co-editor of multiple textbooks on clinical periodontology, tissue engineering, and research in oral health. A former associate editor of the Journal of Periodontology, Dr. Giannobile is currently editor-in-chief of the Journal of Dental Research.

He received his DDS and an MS in Oral Biology from the University of Missouri. He later received his certificate in periodontology from Harvard University. A Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology, Dr. Giannoble has been a member of the Academy since 1991.

He is the Najjar Endowed Professor of Dentistry and Biomedical Engineering and the director of the Michigan Center for Oral Health Research at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. In addition to his faculty appointment at the University of Michigan, he maintains a private practice limited to periodontics and implantology in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

AAP Dental Student Awards for Achievement in Periodontology:

This award is given at each dental school to the graduating senior who displays the highest level of academic and clinical achievement related to periodontics.

AAP Awards for Outstanding Teaching and Mentoring in Periodontics:

This award is given at each dental school to the periodontal educator who has demonstrated a commitment to excellence in providing education in the full scope of clinical periodontics and relays that enthusiasm to students.

Awards to Be Announced at a Later Date

  • Balint Orban Memorial Program competition is open to students currently enrolled in accredited periodontal programs in the United States and Canada or those who graduated less than 18 months ago.
  • Research Forum Poster Session Competition provides a platform for clinical and basic research to be presented by those in the field of periodontics. Finalists selected on the basis of written abstracts are invited to present their posters at each Annual Meeting.

Deadline for 2014 Award Nominations: January 31

Academy Awards are given annually, and members are encouraged to nominate their colleagues for contributions to the Academy and profession. Nominations must be received by January 31 to be considered for that year's awards.

Award criteria and nomination forms are available online. Nominations can be submitted online or printed out and emailed, faxed, or mailed to the AAP. Questions relating to Academy awards can be directed to:

Lynne A. Paul
Senior Manager, Governance & Administration
Telephone: 800/282-4867 ext. 3265 or 312/573-3265
Fax: 312/787-3983
Email: lynne@perio.org

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