Dr. Elsbeth Kalenderian named next dean of the Marquette University School of Dentistry

Elsbeth Kalenderian, DDS, MPH, Ph.D., professor in the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Department at the Amsterdam University Medical Center, has been named dean of the Marquette University School of Dentistry, Provost Kimo Ah Yun announced today. Kalenderian, who will begin in the role on Aug. 14, succeeds Dr. William K. Lobb, who announced his retirement in January. Provost Ah Yun will serve as acting Marquette University School of Dentistry administrator between Dr. Lobb’s retirement and Dr. Kalenderian’s beginning in the role.

“We are delighted to welcome Dr. Kalenderian to the Marquette community,” Provost Ah Yun said. “Her strong leadership experience, passion for leading-edge dental education and research, and commitment to advancing oral health care, particularly among underserved communities, makes her the ideal leader for Wisconsin’s only dental school. I am looking forward to working with her to further elevate the Marquette University School of Dentistry as a premier provider of dental education, research and clinical service.”

“It is an absolute joy and honor to be appointed as the next dean for the Marquette University School of Dentistry — it will be a privilege to continue building together on MUSOD’s long history of excellence,” Kalenderian said. “It is my hope that the prospect of working together with the outstanding faculty, staff, students, residents, and alumni to implement and advance the universities’ strategic priorities, as well as a concerted focus on how we may expand our clinical operations, innovative educational programs, research efforts, community and alumni engagement, and fund development efforts is as exciting and energizing to everyone as it is to me. I look forward to getting to know the Marquette community in August!”

Prior to her position at the Amsterdam University Medical Center, Kalenderian served as dean of the faculty at the Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam, where she also holds the position of professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery. Previously, she was professor and chair of preventive and restorative dental sciences at the University of California, San Francisco, and clinic dean and chair at Harvard School of Dental Medicine.

Kalenderian received her Doctor of Dental Sciences degree in 1983 from Rijks Universiteit Groningen in The Netherlands. As a Fulbright Scholar, she completed her oral and maxillofacial surgery residency from Boston University in 1986 and received a Master of Public Health degree from Harvard University in 2007. In 2013, she earned a Ph.D. from the University of Amsterdam, defending her thesis on dental diagnostic terminologies.

Kalenderian’s well established research portfolio is continuously supported by numerous grants from the National Institutes of Health and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; her work uses informatics approaches with a focus on patient safety, quality metrics and quality improvement in the dental setting. Additionally, Kalenderian publishes in peer-reviewed journals and is frequently an invited speaker at national and international conferences on leadership, quality improvement, dental diagnostic terminologies and patient safety.

About the Marquette University School of Dentistry

Founded in 1894, Marquette University School of Dentistry has been a significant provider of oral health care to patients and excellent clinically based dental education to dental students and recently celebrated 125 years of providing dental education and community service. Programs are guided by dedicated faculty and practicing professionals who uphold Marquette’s vision to train highly skilled oral health care practitioners to bring top-quality dental care to urban and rural communities across the country and around the world.

As Wisconsin’s only dental school, MUSOD and its clinics throughout the State of Wisconsin serve nearly 30,000 patients with more than 110,000 patient visits from 66 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties annually and is one of the state’s largest dental Medicaid providers. MUSOD clinics in Milwaukee serve as a dental home to nearly 17,000 patients annually and have more than 27,400 active patients, providing $16 million worth of oral health care services annually in these clinics alone. Two-thirds of the patients are from Milwaukee County; one-third are from 52 other Wisconsin counties.

As a part of Marquette University’s Time to Rise campaign, MUSOD’s current capital fundraising efforts aim to raise $28 million to upgrade its original clinics within the school’s patient service areas. In 2022, the school raised more than $5 million to totally rebuild the facility and clinics — including 151 operatories — with the latest in technology and equipment.

Also under this new campaign, MUSOD will establish a dedicated special needs clinic to increase its capacity to serve special needs patients by more than 65%. In spring 2022, the school received a $2 million gift from longtime supporter Delta Dental of Wisconsin Foundation to fund significant technology enhancements and establish the Delta Dental Advanced Care Clinic, a dedicated area that will strengthen care for individuals with special needs and enhance focused training.

The Delta Dental Advanced Care Clinic will include spaces for sensory affected patients and specialized equipment for patients who use wheelchairs to allow for better and more comprehensive care. The clinic is anticipated to serve more than 1,200 patients annually.