CHICAGO, February 24, 2021 — The American Student Dental Association (ASDA) is pleased to announce Dr. Raymond Cohlmia as the recipient of the 2021 Paragon Award. Dr. Cohlmia was presented the prestigious award as part of ASDA's virtual Annual Session on February 21.
The Paragon Award recognizes an individual who has significantly contributed to the advancement of the rights, interests and welfare of dental students throughout his or her career. It is the highest and most notable award given by ASDA.
Dr. Cohlmia is dean of The University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry and most recently served as the 12th District Trustee to the board of the American Dental Association (ADA). He has also chaired both the ADA's Council on Membership and New Dentist Committee. In addition, Dr. Cohlmia has served on the ADA's Council on Dental Benefits Programs, the Council on Annual Sessions and International Programs, and the American Dental Political Action Committee board. Dr. Cohlmia is also actively involved in the Oklahoma Dental Association, having served in numerous leadership roles.
In his acceptance speech, Dr. Cohlmia shared his belief that "ASDA provides the tools to be a true professional and change the life of one person every day." A graduate of The University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry, Dr. Cohlmia joined ASDA in his first year of dental school and has been a member of the OUCOD faculty since 1988. In his various capacities at OUCOD, he has mentored countless dental students and attends nearly every ASDA OU Chapter meeting or event. Dr. Cohlmia has also advised ASDA members throughout District 9 and beyond. Remarked ASDA 2019-20 President Craig McKenzie, "His consistent leadership in organized dentistry and commitment to the rights, interests and welfare of dental students, demonstrate that Dr. Cohlmia is the very definition of what it means to be an ASDA Paragon."
Dr. Cohlmia is the seventh recipient of ASDA's Paragon Award. Past recipients include Dr. Jeffrey M. Cole (2020), Dr. Linda Niessen (2017), Dr. Gregory Chadwick (2016), Dr. William Calnon (2015), Dr. Roger Triftshauser (2012), and Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni (2011). More information on the Paragon Award is available at ASDAnet.org/paragon.
The American Student Dental Association is the largest national organization that protects and advances the rights, interests and welfare of dental students and predentals. Representing 86 percent of all dental students, ASDA introduces students to lifelong involvement in organized dentistry and provides services, information, education, representation and advocacy. For more information, visit ASDAnet.org. Connect with ASDA on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube.