Last year, with the passing of Dr. Bettie R. McKaig, the first female vice president of the American Dental Association on February 3, dentistry lost one of its vibrant leaders. Her momentous firsts for women in the profession on international, national and regional levels offer even more inspiration because they were achieved by a person completely dedicated to patient care.
Benco Dental honors women in dentistry year round through its Lucy Hobbs Project, but during March and Women’s History Month also recognizes specific achievements women have made throughout history in the world of oral health care. Today, we pay tribute to the late Dr. Bettie McKaig, who in addition to her leadership role with the ADA, is renowned for her contributions as the first female president of three organizations:
- the International College of Dentists,
- the North Carolina Dental Society (NCDS), and
- the North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners.
“A passionate, strong woman, she forged new paths for female practitioners — both dentists and hygienists alike. She dedicated her career to caring for patients but also to being an advocate for providers in dental hygiene and dentistry and especially for women in the profession.”Dr. Scott S. De Rossi, dean and professor at the UNC at Chapel Hill Adams School of Dentistry stated in a message to the school’s Dental Review
Her legacy continues through the numerous oral health professionals she educated as an adjunct professor at the UNC Adams School of Dentistry and with the Bettie McKaig Scholarship Fund, established at the school in her memory.
To learn more about Dr. Bettie McKaig’s recognitions earned throughout her career and in her commitment to dentistry, click here.