ADEA Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee

The ADEA Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee (ADEA DIAC) advises the ADEA Board of Directors on issues related to diversity and inclusion in dental education.

The ADEA DIAC is comprised of the former ADEA Minority Affairs Advisory Committee (ADEA MAAC) and ADEA Women’s Affairs Advisory Committee (ADEA WAAC). The rationale for combining the two committees was based on contemporary diversity and inclusion frameworks, ADEA strategic goals, and the prevailing diversity and inclusion models on academic health center campuses that include multiple dimensions of diversity in academic dental institutions. 

The newly formed ADEA DIAC will retain a unique focus on women’s issues and those related to racial and ethnic minorities. Unique issues relative to racial/ethnic minority communities, women and the LGBT community include:

  • Underrepresentation in the dental school community and patient populations, and
  • Identity, advancement and a host of other topics that deserve unique focus and attention.

Within the new consolidated structure, committee members will continue to bring attention to and address issues regarding diverse communities. At the same time, cross-cutting issues exist that can impact learning and the quality of patient care, including inequity in treatment and general climate (cultural insensitivity, microaggressions, etc.).

The creation of the ADEA DIAC:

  1. Creates synergy between the issues.

    Consolidation creates an intentional space to increase the knowledge base within the membership about promising practices and provides an opportunity to share what works across the diversity and inclusion spectrum.

  2. Follows the trend at academic institutions across the country.
    Movement across the nation toward making excellence inclusive (quality and comprehensive strategies are needed) highlights learning and creating environments that maximize the benefits for all. All of the dimensions of diversity are included under one umbrella.
  3. Allows for more impactful program development.
    The consolidated committee will allow for a broad discussion about campus-wide diversity policies and practices in a holistic and comprehensive way. 

Members of the ADEA Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee

Ana N. López-Fuentes, D.M.D., M.P.H. (Co-Chair)
University of Puerto Rico School of Dental Medicine

Dennis Mitchell, D.D.S., M.P.H. (Co-Chair)
Vice Provost for Faculty Diversity and Inclusion, Columbia University 
Professor, Columbia University College of Dental Medicine

Patricia Blanton, D.D.S., Ph.D. 
Professor Emeritus 
Texas A & M University College of Dentistry

Lavern Holyfield, D.D.S.
Director of Faculty Development 
Texas A & M University College of Dentistry

Karin Quick, D.D.S., Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Director
University of Minnesota School of Dentistry

Pamela Overman, RDH, M.S., Ed.D
Associate Dean 
University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Dentistry

Machelle Thompson, RDH, M.S.P.H.
Associate Professor and Assistant Dean
Meharry Medical College School of Dentistry

Brandon Lynch
Predoctoral Student 
Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry 
University of Southern California

Scott Schwartz, D.D.S., M.P.H.
Assistant Professor 
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

Diana Macri, RDH, BSDH, MS.Ed.
Assistant Professor
Hostos Community College Dental Hygiene Program

Eugenia Mejia, M.A., M.Ed., Ph.D.
Senior Director for Admissions
New York University College of Dentistry

Board Appointees

Susan M. Ferrante
Board Director for the Corporate Council
School & Government Regional Sales Manager

Michael S. Reddy, D.M.D., D.M.Sc.
Board Director for Allied Dental Program Directors
University of California, San Francisco School of Dentistry