Dean Emeritus Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni Led a Life of Service, Inspiration and Excellence 

Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni, who transformed University of the Pacific’s school of dentistry into one of the nation’s best during his 28 years as dean, died September 23rd at his home in Palo Alto, Calif. He was 95.

The charismatic and energetic educator championed a student-centered caring, “humanistic” approach to dentistry that became a national model in dental education.

His oft-quoted mantra was, “at Pacific we grow people, and along the way they become doctors.”

“Art Dugoni was one of the most important leaders in the 169-year history of California’s first university,” said Pacific President Christopher Callahan. “He not only transformed the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, but the discipline of dental education. Art will be deeply missed, but his legacy will live on through the thousands of alumni, faculty, students, staff, supporters and friends at the school that bears his name.”

Reflections
on an Iconic Man

“Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni was an icon for our school and profession. Dentistry and dental education are stronger today because of Art Dugoni and his passion for people and the profession. Thank you to an incredible mentor and role model.”

—Dr. Nader A. Nadershahi, dean of the Dugoni School of Dentistry

“Art Dugoni was one of the most important leaders in the 169-year history of California’s first university. He not only transformed the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, but the discipline of dental education. Art will be deeply missed, but his legacy will live on through the thousands of alumni, faculty, students, staff, supporters and friends at the school that bears his name.”

—Christopher Callahan, president of University of the Pacific 

“Dr. Dugoni’s contributions to Pacific are immeasurable. His humanistic focus has enriched the lives of thousands of students, faculty, and friends of the dental school and the university. His philosophy and actions set the standard for quality education, and we are made better by what we learned from him.”

—Norm Allen ’88, ’94, chair of Pacific’s Board of Regents

Art led a purposeful life and his legacy lives in the people he educated and the lives he touched. I’m proud I was president when Pacific honored him by naming the dental school the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry. He so wonderfully exemplified Pacific’s mission of preparing individuals for lasting achievement and responsible leadership in their careers and communities.

—Don DeRosa, President Emeritus, University of the Pacific

It was a true privilege to have known Art Dugoni. He transformed dental education - not just at the UOP dental school, but across the nation. Art's vision of a humanistic education allowed the Dugoni School of Dentistry to prepare the nation’s best clinical dentists - while also creating a family of students, alumni, staff and faculty that support one another and the school through the generations. Art will be missed, but his legacy will live on.

—Pam Eibeck, President Emerita, University of the Pacific 

It was November 11,1997 at the ADEA Deans Meeting in Tucson. It was my first year leading ADEA. I was at one of the initial sessions and there was a bit of political tension in the room. From behind me, a voice said,  “Just be quiet and I will tell you what you need to know.” It was Art Dugoni and it was the start of 20 years of Art serving as a mentor. I learned so much from him.

—Rick Valachovic, President Emeritus, American Dental Education Association

When I accepted the position at the ADA in 2009, he called my cell phone immediately and after asking me if I knew was I was getting into, advised me to live close to the ADA building - he knew it was a 24/7 career, much like his years as Dean. I loved him as a friend, mentor, and will treasure always the signed copy he gave me about his career in his “Quest for Excellence” by Martin Brown. A life so well lived!

—Kathleen O’Loughlin, Executive Director, American Dental Association 

Dr. Art Dugoni was a pioneer for the dental profession and orthodontics. He had a passion for dentistry, serving his patients with knowledge, skill and compassion. His vision helped shape the dental profession and the ABO where he served as Director and President. Dr. Steven Dugoni described him as a loving father guided by his faith and convictions. His legacy as an amazing professional and uniquely inspiring person will last forever. 

—Dr. Valmy P. Kulbersh, President, American Board of Orthodontics 

Dr. Dugoni was a pioneer for the dental profession and he will live on through the many lives he has touched with his immeasurable contributions. He set a standard that we all should aspire to achieve so that we too can give our best to this profession. 

Dr. Richard Nagy, President, California Dental Association

In his passing, the dental profession has lost one of its most respected leaders. Dr. Dugoni was a man bound by a sense for a greater good, optimism and hard work. He has truly transformed the dentistry profession and his legacy will continue to inspire the next generation of leaders who harbor the same unwavering passion for dentistry as he did. 

—Peter DuBois, Executive Director, California Dental Association

It is with great sadness that the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) joins the University of the Pacific community in mourning the recent passing of Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni. He was a great leader to many and his passion and vision will always be remembered.

—Lynne Thomas Gordon, CEO, American Association of Orthodontists
 

   

Timeline

1948

Dr. Dugoni graduates as valedictorian and earns a D.D.S. degree from the College of Physicians and Surgeons in San Francisco.

1978

Dr. Dugoni named dean of University of the Pacific School of Dentistry.

1998

FDI World Dental Federation elects Dr. Dugoni to the List of Honour, limited to 30 living members from around the world.

2004

School renamed “Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry” in his honor. He was the first dean in the U.S. or Canada to have a dental school named in his honor while holding the position as dean.

2006

Dugoni School completes largest capital fundraising campaign of any dental school ($65.7 million).

2009

American Dental Education Association honors Dr. Dugoni for Outstanding Achievement as a dental educator.

“At Pacific we grow people, and along the way they become doctors.”

Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni