College of Alberta Dental Assistants

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Award Recipients

2017 Awards

Our Awards Program recognizes commitment to excellence that benefits the profession of dental assisting. We are proud to have presented the following awards:

Award of Excellence

Our Award of Excellence is all about celebrating excellence in dental assisting, whether in a clinical, educational, administrative, institutional or volunteer setting of the profession and the contributions members make to the profession and to the public through any of the following:

  • excellence in delivery of care
  • leader/mentor/preceptor within the profession
  • advancement of the profession
  • community involvement that has a positive impact on the oral health of Albertans

Congratulations to this year's recipients:

Maeghan Heck

Maeghan's nominators tell us that, in addition to providing excellent patent care and being a mentor in her workplace, she is a champion volunteer. The Calgary Dental Assistants Association has benefitted from countless hours of Maeghan's time. Not only has she been president of the association twice, she has held a variety of other positions, including her current roles of Past President, Membership Coordinator, and Parliamentarian. She has also recently been elected as a Director at Large with the Alberta Association of Dental Assistants.

Maeghan believes the Calgary association is important to dental assistants and has invested her time to ensure it continues to serve the members' needs. By stepping up to fill vacant roles and mentoring other volunteers, she is showing her commitment to the success of the association. She works to provide continuing education topics to help dental assistants meet their continuing competence requirements. This, in turn, improves the quality of care dental assistants provide to Albertans.

Not only does Maeghan volunteer for the associations, she also participates in volunteer outreach programs to help improve the oral health of those in her community.

All of this is balanced with a busy family life that includes caring for an aging parent and volunteering for her children's sport activities.

Maeghan is indeed a leader and mentor.

Sarah PichorSarah Pichor

All of Sarah's nominators agree that she provides excellent care to patients and she does this in many ways.

Sarah respects that everyone's time is valuable. By reviewing day sheets and adjusting appointment times she works to avoid patients waiting for appointments. She looks for ways to keep the office team functioning effectively to ensure timely care.

Whether it means staying late or coming in on a day off, Sarah is at the office for emergency patients.

She is a favourite of many patients which is no surprise. For a patient who was particularly scared she would dress up in a different costume for each visit to surprise and help calm them. She put together a tickle trunk of costumes for that one patient.

In addition to patient care, Sarah excels at many parts of the dental assistant role. She manages a clinical staff of 25, maintains supply inventory and oversees maintenance and sterilization. She empowers staff to do their best and ensures everyone is following standards and regulations.

Sarah has created office procedure and training manuals and does most of the training of new staff. By mentoring practicum students she is contributing to the future of our profession.

When all of us in dentistry had to implement the new infection control standards Sarah researched every product her office used and best practices, and developed protocols and manuals. She used her amassed knowledge to help other dental offices implement the standards and spoke about the topic at dental assistant meetings.

Sarah is the "go-to" person when co-workers have questions. Her costumes, practical jokes and kind ways create a wonderful work culture. She supports others' learning, lends a hand and helps problem solve.

Sarah shows the same dedication in her role as a parent, spending many hours volunteering for and involved in her son's activities.

Sarah you are showing us what excellence in delivery of care looks like.

President's Commendation

Our President's Commendation allows us to recognize a contribution to or support of our College and/or the profession of dental assisting made by individuals, business and organizations. We know that many factors contribute to our success and we believe in acknowledging those who help us reach our goals.

Congratulations to this year's recipients:

The two gentleman we have chosen for this year's President's Commendation Award are public members of our Council. They:

  • bring a unique perspective to the board room table
  • advocate for the views and interests of the general public-especially where public protection and safety are involved
  • provide valuable public input, oversight and representation into College policy and decision making processes
  • bring varied life experience and expertise
  • have been instrumental in our governance restructuring and establishment of a strong financial and risk management committee
  • helped strengthen our parliamentarian, motion writing, and meeting running skills
  • have challenged us to be open minded and forward thinking

Our College is a better organization because of their commitment to their public member role. We are grateful they have joyfully maintained their council positions well past their required tenure.

10Ken Anderson

Ken joined council as a Public Member in December of 2012. His background includes a Bachelor of Science (Biochemistry), Chartered Accountant, a Master's degree in Business Administration and the designations of Certified Local Government Manager and Registered Parliamentarian.

Ken enjoys Board Governance and is generous in sharing his expertise with Council, especially with word-smithing our motions. He has been one of the backbones of our financial committee. Thank you, Ken for your gentle guidance and limitless wisdom!

Ken has recently retired from a career of senior positions within health and corporate administration in several northern communities.

Peter MurrayPeter Murray

Peter also joined Council as a Public Member in December of 2012. His background is in education and health administration. Peter has a Diploma in Special Education, has served on a number of health and education-related boards and committees and is a recipient of the Alberta Centennial Medal. He is a retired elementary school vice-principal.

Peter's vast experience and knowledge have been of huge benefit to our Governance Committee. He is always 110% engaged in his role at the Council table and encourages us to think outside our box and keeps us on task when making regulatory decisions. We enjoy his quick wit and "all in" attitude!