Lisa Poole Deem was recently appointed to the Pennsylvania State Board of Dentistry. Deem is the first Temple dental faculty member to serve on the board.
The State Board of Dentistry sets policy and regulations within the dental field to ensure patient safety. Disciplinary actions and licensure applications are also brought before the board.
The 13 members of the board were all nominated by Gov. Ed Rendell and approved by the State Senate to serve six-year terms. While members usually contact their state senators for support, Deem was fortunate enough to get the nomination from Rendell himself after unsuccessful attempts with former Gov. Tom Ridge.
“I was delighted that I was finally recognized as a highly qualified candidate for the position who will bring a unique perspective to the board as dentist, lawyer and educator” Deem said.
Deem attended Temple’s Kornberg School of Dentistry from 1981 to 1985. She returned to Philadelphia in 1987 to work for the school where she started off screening patients for student assignments.
After multiple promotions, culminating with a position as director of clinics, Deem chose to enroll in the Temple’s Beasley School of Law from 1995 to 1999.
“After five years in that position, I realized that in order realize future career developments, I would have to include additional academic credentials,” she said.
Martin F. Tansy, dean of the dentistry school, chose to promote Deem to associate dean for admissions and student affairs because of her upcoming dual degrees in law and the dental field.
In addition to her promotion, Deem is a member of the North East Regional Board of Dental Examiners and the associate professor of dental public health sciences at Kornberg.
Tansy calls Deem “an instrument of positive change.” Deem noted the importance of her dual degrees by saying she is not only licensed to practice by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania because of her law degree, but also by the State Board of Dentistry because of her dental degree.
She said she plans to pursue the collective interests of the board but has personal interests as well. She has lobbied on Capitol Hill for expanded health care coverage for children and said she wants the welfare of dental patients in Pennsylvania represented within the board.
“As a brand new appointee to the board, I feel like the door of opportunity has been opened wide,” Deem said.
Greg Adomaitis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.