Leslie Nazaroff, DrPH, DH ‘90, was selected as this year’s Dental Hygiene Alumnus of the Year. Leslie has played an important part in both dental hygiene and dental student education for nearly 20 years.
Dr. Nazaroff completed her dental hygiene training in 1990, finished her master’s in public health in 1994, and received her doctorate in public health in 1998. For most of those years, she was also teaching full time in the department of periodontics at Loma Linda University School of Dentistry.
A dedicated and enthusiastic teacher, Leslie taught second year dental students the importance of oral health, including the techniques of scaling and root planing. Dental hygienists can thank her that hundreds of dentists value their hygienists and the importance of oral health, due her dedicated teaching.
In 2000, Dr. Nazaroff left the School of Dentistry to take a teaching position with San Joaquin Valley College, much closer to her home in Rancho Cucamonga. There she taught courses in basic sciences, local anesthesia and periodontics, and designed their highly effective National Board Review Course. A naturally gifted critical thinker, based in scientific theory and research, Dr. Nazaroff was destined to be an excellent teacher. Her love for the topics she teaches makes her even more effective and inspiring as she threads the bond between science and the clinical aspects of hygiene and dentistry. She added her administrative skills when she became the director for the San Joaquin Valley College dental hygiene program in 2007.
The words on the plaque she received fully describe the esteem of her colleagues and peers: “and we salute her for her devotion to educational pursuits.”