Patient Care

U of R Alumnus Becomes American Dental Association President

Oct. 16, 2011
William R. Calnon, D.D.S.

University of Rochester alumnus and Spencerport resident William R. Calnon, D.D.S., has been installed as president of the American Dental Association, the nation’s largest dental association representing more than 156,000 dentist members. 

Calnon is the first from Upstate New York to be named ADA president since 1899, when Harvey J. Burkhart, who later became the Rochester Dental Dispensary’s first director, served. Calnon was inducted during the ADA’s 152nd Annual Session in Las Vegas.

“It is a great honor,” said Calnon, “to serve as president of America’s leading advocate for oral health. We will focus on raising public awareness of the important relationship between oral health and overall health, as well as address a growing faculty shortage, collaboration between the dental and medical communities, access to care, and improving oral health literacy and prevention strategies.”

Calnon is also president of the Eastman Dental Center Foundation Board. “In this role, Bill has had a first-hand view of the many challenges dental academic centers face,” said Cyril Meyerowitz, D.D.S., M.S., director of Eastman Institute for Oral Health, part of the University of Rochester Medical Center. “This understanding will serve him well as he addresses dental education issues during his presidency.”

Calnon’s service with the ADA has been extensive. He recently completed a four-year term as a trustee on the ADA Board representing New York. He also served as a leadership representative at the 2010 National Summit on Diversity in Dentistry, was a member of the Council on Dental Practice, and served on key committees and subcommittees, including one on ergonomics and disability support services.

He is past president of the New York State Dental Association, the Seventh District Dental Society and Monroe County Dental Society. In addition, he is a fellow of the American College of Dentists, the International College of Dentists and the Pierre Fauchard Academy.

Calnon graduated magna cum laude from the State University of New York (SUNY) college of Environmental Science and Forestry at Syracuse University and received his dental degree from the University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine (UB Dental) in 1978. He completed his General Practice Residency in 1979 at what is now the Eastman Institute for Oral Health at the University of Rochester Medical Center. 

Calnon lives in Spencerport, and is a partner in Calnon & Cilano, DDS, PC, a general dentistry practice in Chili. He and his wife Mary Kay have two sons, Christopher, a dentist, and Timothy, who is in his third year at UB Dental.

The ADA is the premier source of oral health information. The monthly Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA’s flagship publication and the best read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit the

Eastman Institute for Oral Health is a world leader in research and post-doctoral education in general dentistry, pediatric dentistry, orthodontics, Periodontics, prosthodontics and oral surgery. Patients are seen at many sites throughout the Rochester community.