Oral Health America to Award First Program Champion Awards at 28th Annual Gala & Benefit

CHICAGO, January 18, 2018 – Oral Health America (OHA) will present two new awards at its 28th Annual Gala & Benefit on February 21, 2018 at the new Marriott Marquis Chicago (at McCormick Place). OHA will recognize two program partners with a Program Champion Award, which acknowledges OHA partners who have demonstrated leadership and a collective impact on the oral health of vulnerable children or older adults in their geographical community.

The Marshall University/West Virginia Oral Health Coalition will be awarded the Smiles Across America® Program Champion Award for their commitment to advancing the oral health of low-income children in West Virginia and their contributions to growing the OHA Webinar Series. A founding partner of Smiles Across America, which helps to address and educate children and their families on the importance of oral health care, Marshall University/West Virginia Oral Health Coalition has strengthened their commitment to children through the establishment of West Virginia Healthy Kids and Families.

“Since 2006, Marshall University/West Virginia Oral Health Coalition has partnered with OHA to provide service to nearly 100,000 under- and uninsured children in rural West Virginia,” said Beth Truett, President & CEO for Oral Health America. “In addition to being instrumental in Smiles Across America and supporting school-based and school-linked sealant programs, they have also partnered with us for our Webinar Series, providing Continuing Education Credits through Marshall University to oral health professionals, nurses and social workers, helping to increase attendance at our 20 annual Webinars from 30 to 150 attendees.”

The DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) will be awarded the Wisdom Tooth Project® Program Champion Award for their dedication to advancing the oral health of older adults. In partnership with the Wisdom Tooth Project, which strives to improve the lives of older adults, DCHD hygienists have conducted over 50 Tooth Wisdom®: Get Smart About Your Mouth workshops to more than 720 older adults. These workshops provide older adults with a sense of self-efficacy to care for their oral health, delivered in community settings where they naturally congregate.

“The DuPage County Health Department took the initiative to call sites throughout the county to increase the number of Tooth Wisdom workshops, identifying new venues,” said Ms. Truett. “In addition, one of their hygienists assisted in the screenings of older adults as part of the ‘Manchester Project’ we are conducting in association with the Colgate Palmolive Dental Health Unit in Manchester, U.K. The findings of this global study will be submitted to the U.S. Administration on Community Living for evidence-based designation, making Tooth Wisdom: Get Smart About Your Mouth the first nationally approved oral health course for older adult consumers.”

The Program Champion Awards will be presented during the dinner at OHA’s annual gala which is recognized as the premier charity event kicking off the Chicago Midwinter Meeting. It will feature a cocktail reception, dinner and dancing, as well as a silent auction and raffles.

Tickets for OHA’s gala are currently on sale. For more information on the 28th Annual Gala & Benefit, visit or contact David Perez, Corporate Sponsorship Manager, at [email protected] or 312-836-9900.

All proceeds from the event underwrite OHA’s mission to connect communities with resources to improve access to care, increase health literacy and raise awareness about the importance of oral health’s impact on overall health. OHA’s programs serving children and older adults are active in 47 states and one U.S. territory as a result of support received from this annual event. Please join Oral Health America and commit to making a difference in the oral health of all Americans, especially those most vulnerable.

The gala is generously supported by: Cocktail Reception Sponsor – Ivoclar Vivadent; Technology Sponsor – Patterson Dental; Entertainment Sponsor – Henry Schein Dental; Platinum Sponsors – Colgate Palmolive Company, Dentsply Sirona, Philips Oral Healthcare, Septodont; Bid Card Sponsor – SciCan; Program Champion Award Sponsor – Colgate-Palmolive; Grand Raffle Sponsor – Darby Dental Supply; Dessert Sponsor – Midmark Corporation; Diamond Sponsors – Chicago Dental Society, DentaQuest; Wine Sponsor – DentalEZ Integrated Solutions; and Gold Sponsors – BISCO, INC., Burkhart Dental Supply, PLANMECA.


Cyndi Schu
Oral Health America
(312) 836-9900
[email protected]

OHA’s mission is to change lives by connecting communities with resources to drive access to care, increase health literacy, and advocate for policies that improve overall health through better oral health for all Americans, especially those most vulnerable. Through Smiles Across America®, which serves 501,000 children annually, the Wisdom Tooth Project®, which reaches tens of thousands of older adults, and the Campaign for Oral Health Equity, which prioritizes oral health alongside other chronic diseases, OHA helps Americans of all ages to have a healthy mouth and to understand the importance of oral health for overall health. For more information about Oral Health America, please visit

For years, Oral Health America’s (OHA) Annual Gala & Benefit has heralded the arrival of the Chicago Midwinter Dental Meeting as the premier networking event of the year. Our Gala & Benefit is celebrated with more than 1,000 dental and industry professionals, representing as many as 300 companies, private practices and organizations from many disciplines. The Gala is one of our largest fundraisers throughout the year, and helps OHA support the efforts that raise awareness about the importance of oral health. Our programs have grown tremendously since OHA was founded in 1955, in large part because of generous donors and through funds raised at the Gala. Oral Health America invites you to attend our Annual Gala & Benefit to learn more about our innovative programs and communications efforts that promote oral health across the lifespan!

® Smiles Across America and Wisdom Tooth Project are both registered trademarks of Oral Health America