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Meharry Medical College Officer Will Head the National Dental Association
Date:12/2/2009

Nashville dentist Dr. Walter R. Owens will be installed as the 86th president of the National Dental Association (NDA) at 6 p.m. on December 5 at the Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel in Nashville.

Nashville, Tenn. (Vocus) December 2, 2009 -- Nashville dentist Dr. Walter R. Owens will be installed as the 86th president of the National Dental Association (NDA) at 6 p.m. on December 5 at the Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel in Nashville.

The 96-year-old dental association is the leading voice and advocate of oral health care concerns for ethnic minorities.

Its mission is to elevate the global oral health concerns of underserved communities and to enhance educational and financial opportunities and public policy awareness for its members.

Dr. Owens, a native of Nashville, practiced dentistry in Tennessee for more than 25 years before retiring from private practice in 2005. He currently serves as senior development officer for the Meharry Medical College School of Dentistry.

Dr. Owens will be joined during the installation activities by Dr. Ray Gist, newly elected president of the American Dental Association (ADA). Dr. Gist is the first African-American president-elect of the ADA in its 150 year history.

When Dr. Owens and Dr. Gist join for a panel discussion on oral health, it will mark the first time that the nation’s two leading dental professional membership organizations will both be led by African Americans.

“I am honored to serve as head of one of the nation’s largest professional health care associations during this important time for health care policy in our nation’s history,” said Owens, who was elected for a one-year term. “The National Dental Associ
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