Alumni and Guests Gather in San Francisco for 117th Annual Alumni Meeting

March 10, 2016

Dr. Steve Dugoni and Drs. Gabby and Gary Thodas

Dr. Steve Dugoni and Drs. Gabby and Gary Thodas.

Alumni meeting

At the Alumni Meeting.

Alumni meeting

At the Alumni Meeting.

class check

Presentation of class gift.

More than 1,600 alumni, guests and friends of the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry gathered in San Francisco March 4-5 to participate in the school's 117th Annual Alumni Meeting at the InterContinental Hotel. The event is among the largest dental school alumni conferences held anywhere in the United States.

Attendees enjoyed continuing education presentations from well-known speakers designed to help dental practitioners and dental office staff members create thriving practices. Other activities included an alumni reception held at the school, class reunion dinners held throughout the city, the Legacy Ball and the presentations of reunion class gifts to support students and programs.

At the Friday alumni recognition lunch, Dr. Steve Dugoni and Drs. Gabby and Gary Thodas were honored with the Medallion of Distinction — the association's highest honor. Dr. Dugoni has served for many years as a faculty member in the school's Department of Orthodontics and is president-elect of the board of directors of the American Board of Orthodontics (ABO). Dr. Gabby Thodas received her DDS degree from the Dugoni School in 1977 and completed the school's Orthodontic residency program in 1993. She currently serves as president of the Pacific Dugoni Foundation, and serves as clinic director in the Orthodontic Program.  Dr. Gary Thodas is a 1977 graduate of the Dugoni School and has served as a member of the Institute of Dental History and Craniofacial Study at the school since 1974, and has served as a member of the Pacific Dugoni Foundation, among his many other activities in the dental profession.

Also at the lunch, the Alumni Association welcomed Kimberly LaRocca '06 DH as its new president. LaRocca is the first alumnus of the school's Dental Hygiene program to serve as president. She follows in the footsteps of outgoing president Dr. William van Dyk '73. The association also welcomed Joanne Fox who was named director of the Alumni Association in January 2016. Fox has more than 34 years of experience in various roles at the Dugoni School, including service for many years as assistant director of the association.  
In the large commercial exhibit area, corporate vendors, companies and organizations were on hand to showcase their products and services to dental professionals and staff. The Alumni Association thanks Patterson Dental (Platinum), Align Technology, Inc., (Silver) and 3M ESPE (Gold) for sponsoring the meeting at leadership levels.

On Saturday night, hundreds of attendees gathered at the CityView at Metreon to celebrate the Legacy Ball. At the black-tie event designed to showcase the spirit of philanthropy, guests enjoyed spectacular views overlooking Yerba Buena Gardens, danced the night away to live music, and enjoyed food and drink provided by McCalls Catering and Events.

"The annual meeting is always such a great opportunity for our alumni to gather, reconnect, learn and have some fun," said Interim Dean Dr. Nader A. Nadershahi. "We thank all of the alumni, guests and supporters who continue to stay involved so closely with the Dugoni School family."  

The association's Board of Directors dedicated the meeting in honor of the late Katherine "Kaye" A. Dugoni, who served as the "First Lady" of the school for 28 years, from 1978 through 2006, during the deanship of her husband, Dr. Arthur A. Dugoni.  

Next year's alumni meeting is scheduled for March 3-4, 2017 at the InterContinental Hotel in San Francisco. Those interested in getting involved, including commercial exhibitors, may contact the Alumni Association office at 415.929.6423 or by emailing

View photos of the Alumni Meeting here.


Contact: Office of Marketing and Communications, 415.929.6434,

Categories: Alumni, Events, 2016