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President's Message

Dear Illinois dental hygienists,

Happy 2024!

Allow me to introduce myself. I am your 2023-2024 President of IDHA., Lori McNamara.  You can read a brief bio about me and the current IDHA leaders on the "About Executive Council" page. Your current Executive Council, as well as the past leaders of IDHA, are all passionate dental hygienists that truly want the best for our profession. 

In 2023, while I was president-elect, there were so many exciting things happening in IDHA.  This past summer, ADHA was in our backyard, providing education, networking and fun in the city, and Chicago shined! Our Annual Session happened in November, at the College of DuPage, where we had Dr. Joy Void-Holmes speak on Friday. The COD dental hygiene students (and students from other dental hygiene programs) experienced our event, heard Carol Jahn speak to them about what to look for job-wise after graduation.  On Saturday, Rebecca Ogrodny spoke about Mental Health, and as a special surprise, the 501st Midwest Star Wars Squadron stopped by for some fun. Darth Vader, multiple stormtroopers, a jawa, empire officials, tie fighter pilots, and the Mandalorian all crashed our event, tried to get some dental knowledge, and utilized the COD Dental Hygiene Clinic. (Check out some pictures below).

We will continue to work hard for the dental hygienists of Illinois, as we have been moving our profession forward. People are starting to realize the oral-systemic link with more and more studies, medical staff, and patients  hearing about how a healthy mouth can affect their overall health. Public Health Dental Hygienists can now go into skilled nursing facilities and prisons to provide dental care to the residents. (With a collaborative agreement with a dentist.)

This spring, we are hoping to  bring forward a bill for the CSG Licensure Compact. The Compact was a collaboration between the ADHA, ADA, and the Department of Defense. This compact will make it much easier to practice dental hygiene between states that are part of the compact. We would like to get this Bill passed for the hygienists and dentists in Illinois, and we need your support.  Because we want to keep all Illinois hygienists informed, we are having an information session regarding the Licensure Compact on Wednesday, January 24, 2024 at 7 PM. Look on this webpage, on Facebook, and emails for the link for this very important information session.

There are many other exciting things happening, please check the website regularly. And, in keeping with the Star Wars theme at Annual Session,

May the Force Be With You!


Lori McNamara, BS, RDH, PHDH

 IDHA President 2023-2024


400 E. Randolph St., Suite 3115

Chicago, IL 60601
(800) 550-4342

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