Leadership Training Programs

WKKF provides funding for MDFD leadership training programs. ADEA coordinates these one and a half day workshops. These leadership training programs provide a forum for creative thinking with regards to diversity and inclusion. They also promote change and provide the foundation for the long term commitment required for successful program outcomes.

Presenters are both participants and role models for diversity leadership. Program sessions have include presentations, discussions on MDFD survey results, panels of dental school deans, leaders of dental access projects and interprofessional education, and MDFD program leaders. Participants have also engaged in group exercises of exchanging ideas and approaches in order to develop storytelling as messaging, behavior modification, and communication skills. 

The ADEA/W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) Building Academic and Community Partnerships for Innovation and Change was held June 11–12, 2015, at the Capital Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C. The leadership development and training program included directors from MDFD I, MDFD II and MDFD III programs, and leaders from four of the dental health aid therapist (DHAT) programs sponsored by W.K. Kellogg Community Catalyst. The joint leadership training provided skills development for increasingly diverse academic and community partnerships envisioned for the future. The WKKF/Community Catalyst dental therapist programs provide care primarily in underserved communities with models in five states: Vermont, Ohio, Kansas, New Mexico and Washington. The shared efforts of both MDFD and Community Catalyst leaders benefit the health of vulnerable children and families through dental care, leveraging of resources and community engagement. The interactive training bridged dental and allied dental leaders in team building activities based on shared interests, commonalities and responsibilities.  

The event’s keynote address was presented by President Jay Gershen, Northeast Ohio Medical University. This statewide academic model of collaboration leverages academic, community and business resources for URM pipeline recruitment into health careers. MDFD I leaders participated in a discussion led by Dr. Todd Ester, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. This network of leaders shared personal benefits and critical factors in their mentoring experiences that influenced career choices, leadership behaviors and development. Peer mentoring was identified as an asset for achieving personal satisfaction for advanced-level trainees and faculty.

Dean Leo Rouse and Dr. Donna Grant- Mills gave presentations on interprofessional education (IPE) and team-based care. The emerging IPE delivery models include curriculum changes and development, cultural competency training and community engagement.

Training was led by Dr. Joseph West, a leadership consultant, who used group dynamics in visioning to demonstrate effective use of collective wisdom, personal experiences and shared values in strategic planning and marketing. 

Community Catalyst presentations by David Jordan and David Maywhoor focused on increased access to care through new delivery models for prevention and dental treatment in vulnerable and underserved communities. 

In a panel of deans, Drs. Laurie McCauley, Raymond Cohlmia and Mert Aksu represented the unique leadership styles and challenges deans face that contribute to institutional strategies for preparing graduates for competencies and changes. The dean’s leadership has been identified as a critical factor in the academic culture and climate of inclusion at their schools. 

The program’s working dinner invited participants to hear Dr. Brian D. Smedley, a thought leader and diversity strategist, speak about his work on health disparities related to demographics and race. Dr. Smedley’s research will contribute to policy and strategies to increase access to care for vulnerable communities throughout the United States.

The ADEA/WKKF MDFD grant supports the development of academic and academic–community partnerships that provide faculty development and outreach activities directed toward improving the lives of vulnerable children and communities.

Program agenda:

ADEA/WKKF Building Academic and Community Partnerships for Innovation and Change, June 11–12, 2015. PDF


Mentoring in the Academic Pipeline: Reflections from MDFD I LeadersPDF – Dr. Darryl Pendleton

Mentoring in the Academic Pipeline: Reflections from MDFD I LeadersPDF – Dr. Dennis A. Mitchell

ADEA Growing Our Own Future Dental FacultyPDF – Dr. Kenneth B. May

Challenges Facing Us With a New GenerationPDF – Dr. Raymond Cohlmia

Building Stronger Communities for Better Health: The Geography of Health EquityPDF – Dr. Brian D. Smedley

Building Academic and Community Partnerships for Innovation and ChangePDF – David Maywhoor

Interprofessional Education/Moving to Team Based Care and Interprofessional PracticePDF – Dr. Leo E. Rouse

Interprofessional Education/Moving to Team Based Care and Interprofessional PracticePDF – Dr. Donna Grant Mills

University of Minnesota MDFD III Program ReportPDF – Dr. Karl Self

Understanding Health Disparities Through Workforce Research: A National Sample Survey of Underrepresented Minority DentistsPDF – Dr. Paul E. Gates

Georgia Regents UniversityPDF – Dr. Ana Thompson and Dr. Kandyce A’see 

The ADEA/WKKF (W.K. Kellogg Foundation) Building Leadership Teams for a Diverse Dental Workforce was held June 12-13, 2014 at the Renaissance Hotel, Washington D.C. The two day leadership training brought together the directors from MDFD I-MDFD III programs, as well as leaders from WKKF Community Catalyst dental therapy programs.  Training provided a framework for mission-driven activities in diversity programming. 

The Building Leadership Teams program included three academic/community models from The University of Detroit Mercy, Howard University, and Georgia Regents University that are developing allied professionals for leadership positions in the dental workforce.  Recruitment and retention of minority faculty and students, cultural competency, mentoring, valuing diversity and academic and academic/community partnerships are program priorities within the three models. 

Dr. Joseph F. West, Consultant, led the skills training session on Thinking Forward and Microaggressions and Unintentional Bias.  A focus group comprised of MDFD I Leaders from the Universities of: Oklahoma, Michigan, Columbia, Illinois at Chicago and Baylor shared reflective wisdom and lessons learned that influence context, behaviors and outcomes.  Evidence for the Need for Change in the Dental Workforce was presented by Dr. Frank A. Catalanotto, former ADEA President and former Dental Dean.  Dr. Marc A. Nivet, a thought leader in medical education, presented rationale for Reframing Diversity as Core to Excellence.  

The ADEA/WKKF MDFD grant supports the development of academic and academic/community partnerships that provide faculty development and outreach activities directed toward the improvement of lives of vulnerable children and communities throughout the U.S. 



Program: Building Leadership Teams for a Diverse Dental Workforce, June 12-13, 2014PDF


Evidence for the Need for Change in the Dental Workforce of the FuturePDF – Dr. Frank A. Catalanotto

Microaggressions and Unintentional BiasPDF – Dr. Joseph F. West

MDFD III Progress Report GRUPPT – Ms. Ana Luz Thompson

MDFD III Progress Report UDMPDF – Dr. Deirdre D. Young and Dr. Divesh Byrappagari

MDFD III Progress Report HUCDPPT – Dr. Donna Grant-Mills 

Retooling for Change

The ADEA/WKKF (W.K. Kellogg Foundation) Building Leadership Teams for Sustainable Academic and Community Partnerships Training Session was held June 13-14, 2013 at the Hamilton Crowne Plaza Hotel in Washington D.C. The day and a half training program brought together the leadership from MDFD (Minority Dental Faculty Development) I and MDFD II with Community Catalyst Dental Therapist Program leaders from four programs and the Dental Health Aide Therapist (DHAT) program in Alaska. Training focus was in two areas: “Storytelling“ as a leadership tool and the new National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) in Health and Health Care. The revised CLAS Standards were released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) April 24, 2013.

ADEA/WKKF/MDFD I included six dental schools (Alabama, Baylor, Howard, Illinois at Chicago, and Oklahoma) and one consortium (NYSADC) of the five schools in NY State (Columbia University, New York University, Stony Brook University, University at Buffalo and University of Rochester). MDFD II included two dental schools (University of Detroit Mercy and Howard University). MDFD I had a dental faculty focus while MDFD II has an allied dental faculty focus.

The two MDFD II programs place strong emphasis on URM recruitment and academic/community partnerships for both service learning and patient care. The Community Catalyst Dental Therapist programs provide care primarily to underserved communities throughout the U.S. with dental therapy models in 5 states: Vermont, Ohio, New Mexico, Washington and Kansas. The day and a half meeting provided an opportunity for the sharing of mutual interests with regards to access to care and community based programs. Skills sessions were designed to improve Storytelling skills as a leadership tool and to increase understanding of the revised CLAS Standards. A roundtable of MDFD I program leaders discussed sustainability as an evolving leadership challenge that incorporates new ideas and trends such as Interprofessional Education and the CLAS standards (HRSA). The role of the deans in diversity programming was identified as key to the institutional climate and to resource allocation. Presentations from two deans, Drs. Leo Rouse (Howard) and Mert Aksu (UDM) included: challenges in Interprofessional Education and Community Service Learning. Leadership in the Changing Workforce Environment, from a Corporate Perspective was the keynote address by Dr. Ivan Lugo (The Procter & Gamble Company).

A roundtable discussion from the MDFD I project leaders provided models for inclusion of allied dental faculty in outreach programs with team-based delivery of care. Experiential learning from the community partnerships contributed to cultural competency and related skills for both dental and allied dental students.

Lessons Learned from the MDFD I Experience were shared:

  1. The Dean’s Leadership is critical to success.
  2. Clearly articulated diversity policy statement(s) are major drivers for resource support.
  3. Diversity is seen as numbers (compositional). Understanding and use of curricular and institutional components of diversity and inclusion are evolving concepts that change thinking and behaviors.
  4. Mentoring programs are needed for predoctoral and advanced dental education trainees and for faculty.
  5. Academic climate changes require supportive resources and opportunities for social and inclusive interactions.
  6. A diversity executive leadership pipeline is missing (e.g., second tier and dean’s “team”) in dental education.
  7. Cultural competency concepts require the inclusion of social determinants that affect behavior and policies.
  8. Logic modeling and GAP analysis—strategic planning to provide understanding on where you are, where you want to be and how you’re going to get there—are effective tools for strategic planning, messaging, and outcomes assessment.
  9. Be innovative in considering interprofessional education collaboration, resource sharing and leadership development opportunities.
  10. The value of short-term strategies to achieve long-term goals is being realized at MDFD grantee institutions. Constant Vigilance is required as the work in progress continues toward the long-term goal of diversity and inclusion in the dental workforce.

A dental therapist team led by Dr. Mary Williard from the Alaska Dental Health Aide Therapist program presented the role of the dentist and the therapist in the delivery of care to underserved families using both direct supervision and remote technologies. The practice-oriented session focused on how patient care is managed in team inter-actions between dentist and DHAT.

Models for expanded access to care in needy communities were presented by David Jordan, Community Catalyst at an evening working session.

Allied career laddering through distance learning technologies presented a range of career options for special skills needed to complement foundation knowledge and thereby enhance career development for dental hygienists.

CLAS Standards were released April 24, 2013. The new standards include culturally competent care, language access services (mandates and organizational supports for policy, organizational plans and management oversight). CLAS Standards are expected to improve treatment outcomes through improved health literacy.

Storytelling for Organizational Transformation was the venue for the Interactive Leadership Training Session led by Dr. Joseph West, consultant.

MDFD Survey results were shared in group discussion. Suggestions for IPE implementation include:

  • Shared clinical experiences during the predoctoral curriculum.
  • Policies agreed on by the departments and set in place by the academic dean and dean of clinical affairs.
  • Grand Rounds presentations on a specific topic.
  • Reworking the class schedules.
  • Create stronger ties between schools.
  • Create a committee for IPE research.
  • Need to get a sense of urgency and the rank and file clinical faculty need to see the importance and benefits of IPE.


Program– June 13-14, 2013PDF


MDFD I Alabama Model – Dr. T. Madelyn Coar PPT

MDFD I University of Michigan – Dr. Kenneth MayPPT

MDFD I Oklahoma CDHC – Dr. Dunn H. Cumby PPT

MDFD II Progress Report UDM – Dr. Deidre D. Young PPT

MDFD II Progress Report HUCD – Dr. Donna Grant-Mills PPT

ADEA will support continued use of MDFD I leaders in training of new leaders.