By Douglas Hackleman - April 16, 2016

Loma Linda University School of Dentistry’s Advanced Education Program in Implant Dentistry celebrated 40 years of service April 3 and 4, 2016, with a two-day symposium at the Damazo Amphitheater of LLU’s Centennial Complex entitled “Anterior Implant Esthetics: Preservation vs Regeneration.”

Giovanni Zucchelli, DDS, PhD, professor associato confermato, Universita’ di Bologna, Italy, lectures at the Damazo Amphitheater on the “Esthetic treatment of soft tissue defects around teeth and implants.”

More than 500 oral healthcare professionals attended presentations by leading experts in the field of anterior implant esthetics that included lectures on current treatments and philosophies in soft and hard tissue preservation and regeneration, as well as prosthodontics management of occlusion and its complications.

Istvan Urban, DMD, MD, PhD, assistant professor of implant dentistry, LLUSD, presents his Damazo Amphitheater audience with “New perspectives on vertical and horizontal guided bone regeneration.”

Attendees received 16 hours of continuing education credit for their attention to presentations by eleven implant dentistry specialists (see box).

The Robert A. James Society for Implant Dentistry hosted a fundraising dinner Sunday evening at Riverside's Mission Inn. And after introductory remarks by LLUSD Dean Ronald Dailey, PhD, Jaime Lozada, DDS, director, Advanced Education Program in Implant Dentistry, shared his vision for the remodel of the School’s Implant Dentistry Center that will make the facility consistent with the quality of education and patient care that it already provides. 

Dr. Lozada addresses the Robert A. James Society for Implant Dentistry fundraising dinner at the Mission Inn.


Renovations to the Center will include an upgrade to the front desk and reception areas as well as all new dental chair units in each of its six operatories.

The “Anterior Implant Esthetics: Preservation vs Regeneration” symposium was an enormous success as evidenced by the comments attending professionals left on their evaluation sheets: “Very informative. I will change my practice.” “The whole event was top-notch.” “Amazing. Thank you very much for these two wonderful days.” “Very impressive group of speakers. It’s like walking with the gods.”

During the banquet, Joe Kan, DDS’90, MS’99, former student of LLUSD’s implant program (1993), member of its faculty since 1995, and director of the “40 Years of Implant Dentistry” symposium, was feted with a surprise award for his efforts in putting the symposium together. John Kois, DMD, MSD, director and founder, Kois Center, described the trajectory of Dr. Kan’s career that included an affectionately humorous presentation of photos from his early childhood and education at Loma Linda University.

Dr. Kan stands at the podium with Dr. Kois and responds (inset) to the standing ovation he received for his contribution to the education and practice of implant dentistry.

The occasion also provided an opportunity to honor the contribution made to the School’s implant dentistry program by its laboratory technicians: Lui Calvillo, CDT (22 years), Satoshi Sakamoto, RDT (6 years), Mick Ilich, CDT (22 years), and Dennis Corydon, CDT (9 years).

Implant dentistry lab technicians standing together are (L-R)Luis Calvillo, Dennis Corydon, and Satoshi Sakamoto (not shown is Mick Ilich).

Also, recognized for her service to LLUSD’s implant dentistry program was senior administrative secretary Cynthia Briceno.

Cynthia Briceno recognized
Cynthia Briceno is bracketed by Anatoanela Garbacea, DDS, MSD'12, assistant professor for the Advanced Education Program in Implant Dentistry, vice president, Robert A. James Society, and Dr. Aladdin AlArdah.

The 40th Anniversary’s third day of celebration (Tuesday, April 5) was devoted to the Robert A. James Society of Implant Dentistry’s 3rd Alumni Symposium in Loma Linda University’s Wong Kerlee Pavilion. The day’s activities were organized by the Society’s president, Aladdin AlArdah, DDS, assistant professor for the Advanced Education Program in Implant Dentistry, and featured lectures by thirteen LLUSD implant program alumni from all over the world—countries that included Canada, France, Greece, Italy, Japan, Korea, Lebanon, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, Lebanon, and USA.  The presenters (see box) shared with their colleagues the results of their professional activities and insights.

40th anniversary implant alumni presenters

“What sets our program apart from so many others,” says Dr. AlArdah, who hosted a gathering of 90 implant celebrants for dinner at his home on Monday evening, is the sense of belonging to a bigger family with bonds of shared memories, friendship, and professional specialty.”

40th anniversary implant symposium presenters
Symposium presenters (L-R) Drs. Jaime Lozada, Giovanni Zucchelli, Otto Zuhr, Kirk Pasquinelli, Stephen Chu, and Joseph Kan

A week after the event, Dr. Lozada noted, “As of today I am still receiving emails of congratulations from those who attended the symposium and personal congratulations from many of our faculty in the School of Dentistry who attended the meetings, all of which reflects the outstanding work that Dr. Kan as program chairman, with the assistance of LLUSD’s Continuing Dental Education staff, accomplished for this event.

Symposium presenter Mike Picos, DDS, founder and CEO, Picos Implant Center, autographs a "40 Years of Implant Dentistry" poster.

“We are looking forward to the continuing collaboration with our former students," Dr. Lozada added, "and welcome their support that enriches the Robert A. James Society and future implant symposia.”