AO Annual Meeting Preview - Interview with Planning Chair Jeffrey Ganeles
By Harriet K. McGraw, DDS, Academy News Editorial Consultant
This article offers a preview of the 2017 AO Annual Meeting in Orlando, Fla, March 15-18. Dr. Harriet McGraw discusses the highlights of the upcoming conference with the 2017 Planning Committee Chair, Dr. Jeffrey Ganeles, to give us a first look at the unique programming that lies in store for attendees.
The 2017 meeting is a collaborative effort with the AAP, AAOMS and ACP. How far in advance did the planning process begin? How is the group organized and what is your role?
Dr. Ganeles: The planning began two years in advance of the meeting. Each specialty has a representative on the committee, of which I am the chair. My role is that of facilitator, organizer, challenger and worker. I’m the guy pushing this forward. Ultimately, I communicate the committee’s recommendations to the AO board.
Past meetings have had a theme. Is there one for the 2017 meeting? If so, how was it selected?
Dr. Ganeles: The theme is “Good to Great®*”. The idea was inspired by the book “Good to Great®*: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t” by Jim Collins. The topic is relevant for AO members, in that it translates to the practice of implant dentistry by looking at how the profession can innovate and excel, so as to be better in the future.
How did you become Program Chair? It is a big responsibility.
Dr. Ganeles: It evolved from a conversation I had with Dr. Alan Pollack in 2013. He said he was going to be AO President in 2017 and wanted me to be the Program Chair. I had been on program committees for the AO, as well as the ITI and AAP and knew what I was getting into. I thought about it a few days before accepting the position. At the time, it seemed safe to say I had no other plans. Now that we are close to 2017, I have lots of plans and the date and time are looming near. Still, it has been a great opportunity to meet and work with like-minded individuals and serve a worthwhile group. I also get to put my stamp on my profession, which is a unique opportunity.
Will there be a regional focus at the 2017 meeting?
Dr. Ganeles: The regional focus in 2017 will be Latin America. Latin American speakers are included throughout the 2017 program to give meeting attendees a unique insight into the practice of implant dentistry in this region. Simultaneous translation in Spanish and Portuguese will be offered for the sessions held in the main meeting rooms.
How has the experience been coordinating all three specialty groups?
Dr. Ganeles: My practice and teaching beliefs, as well as those of the organizations with which I have affiliations, promote multi-disciplinary collaboration. Overall, the planning has actually been pretty easy; it’s been a balancing act. There are many opinions from the committee members, intelligent individuals who have the vision and commitment to create a successful meeting. The members take their positions seriously and should be individually acknowledged.
Representing AAOMS is Dr. Michael S. Block, Metairie, LA; AAP, Dr. Joan Otomo-Corgel, Los Angeles, CA; and ACP, Dr. Frank J. Tuminelli, Great Neck, NY. Other committee members are Drs. Joseph Y.K. Kan, Yoma Linda, CA, Russell D. Nishimura, Westlake Village, CA, Michael R. Norton, London, England, UK, Alan S. Pollack, New York, NY, Farhad F. Vahidi, New York, NY, and Robert C. Vogel, Palm Beach Gardens, FL.
Please share some of the meeting highlights.
Dr. Ganeles: The opening session is going to address the meeting theme very closely, relative to what we know/do now versus 20 years ago, i.e. “Good to Great®*.” Dr. Jill Helms DDS, PhD, from Stanford University, is presenting “Beauty, Reconsidered.” She will discuss the neural circuitry underlying facial recognition in infants, the role that the face plays in communication, and the fact that the face also serves as an advertisement of our health, youth and vitality.
We are featuring an innovative session on “The Business of Implant Dentistry,” which will be moderated by Bill Ryan. It will look at practice delivery systems.
Drs. Michael Block, Vince Iacono, and Ole Jensen have coordinated a special session on sinus grafting, updating the original AO consensus conference from 20 years ago.
The closing session will focus on the “team approach” to the treatment of various clinical problems. Several international teams will be presenting.
There will be an outstanding collection of speakers, from around the world, presenting throughout the meeting. The committee went out of its way to blend classic powerhouse speakers with emerging talent, to address dozens of important, clinically relevant topics in implant dentistry. Our goal is to provide AO meeting participants with new insights and better ideas, which they can take back to their practices on Monday morning March 20, 2017!
*Trademark is owned by The Good to Great Project LLC. Used under license.