Exciting Changes Are Coming to the WSDA Foundation

Exciting Changes Are Coming to the WSDA Foundation

We look forward to supporting the good works of our component societies & expanding dental residency programs across the state with a new strategic vision for the WSDA Foundation.
Dr. Chris Dorow
President, WSDA Foundation

Over the last four years, the WSDA Foundation (formerly the Washington Oral Health Foundation) has undertaken an extensive overhaul. After listening to feedback from our donors and other stakeholders, we shifted our focus from oral health education for children to supporting dental capacity for vulnerable adults. We have moved from a staffed, “working foundation” to a granting organization with minimal administrative expense that is now covered entirely by WSDA.

These changes allowed the WSDA Foundation to make the largest gift in its history — a $255,000 contribution to the creation of a new dental residency program at Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia.

Our work at the WSDA Foundation is ongoing as we strive to build a Foundation that complements the good works of our members across the state. I am excited to announce several new changes that we believe will take us to a new level.

First, the WSDA Foundation Board of Directors has decided to exclusively focus on supporting new dental residency programs for the foreseeable future. We believe dental residency programs are the most effective way to expand capacity for vulnerable adults in our current Medicaid environment. The WSDA Foundation is uniquely positioned to facilitate early community contributions that are vital to securing state capital budget funding and other financial support. 

We believe the WSDA Foundation can excel in helping get more dental residency programs off the ground in Washington, which will significantly increase capacity for vulnerable adult populations.

With a strategic shift to helping start new dental residency programs, WSDA Foundation can move away from annual fundraising. Many of our partners have expressed concern that WSDA Foundation’s annual solicitations compete with the fundraising efforts of our component societies, their foundations, and other important local charitable care programs.

The WSDA Foundation wants to complement our component societies and not be perceived as competition. To that end, we are excited to announce that, this year, the WSDA Foundation will offer up its spot on the annual dues statement to local components to help with their charitable fundraising efforts. For example, a dentist in Pierce County will have the option to make a voluntary contribution to the Pierce County Dental Foundation while renewing their membership to organized dentistry. We are excited to offer this opportunity to our component societies and anticipate offering this again on future dues statements.

With these changes, the WSDA Foundation is not going away, quite to the contrary. We believe these changes focus us on the important work of expanding dental residency programs all while better complementing our component societies. 

The WSDA Foundation will continue to fundraise, but our focus will shift to targeted campaigns for specific dental residency programs. When WSDA Foundation does announce a campaign, all donors will know exactly what their contribution will be funding, and that 100% of their donation will go towards that project and not to administrative overhead.

I would like to take a moment to thank the members of our 2018-19 Board of Directors. For the last several years, this group has worked to make WSDA Foundation more relevant and complementary to everyone in our state.

2018-2019 WSDA Foundation Board of Directors
Dr. Dexter E. Barnes
Dr. Chris Dorow, President
Dr. Spencer S. Jilek
Dr. Michael D. Karr
Mr. Bracken R. Killpack, Secretary-Treasurer
Dr. Bruce P. Kinney
Dr. Peter Lubisich IV, Vice President
Dr. Princy S. Rekhi
Dr. Ashley Ulmer
Dr. Laura Williams

We look forward to better supporting the good works of our component societies and expanding dental residency programs across the state with this new strategic vision for the WSDA Foundation.