On Feb. 6, 1952, Dr. Thaddeus Weclew and several colleagues met in Chicago to create and sign what would be the first charter of the AGD. These dentists identified a vacancy in the dental profession—there was no established, consolidated source to provide dentists with continuing education (CE) opportunities. At the time, Dr. Weclew and his colleagues believed that CE was “an occasional, haphazard experience for most professionals.”

AGD members learn the latest clinical techniques and treatments in order to provide patients with the best dental care available. The AGD has grown from offering members a handful of courses to hundreds of CE opportunities each year. The AGD not only tracks the CE that members earn to help them meet their state licensure requirements, but it also encourages members to pursue achievement-based designations, such as the AGD Fellowship and Mastership awards.

The AGD has created a strong presence at allied dental meetings and on Capitol Hill, advocating at the local and national levels when issues arise that affect our profession. Additionally, a dentist’s membership in the AGD demonstrates to patients, the public, and other professionals that he or she is committed to lifelong learning and the oral and overall health of the public.

In recent years, the AGD created a Practice Management Conference, started a blog, created a podcast, made its publications available online, launched a consumer-facing Web portal, and developed a comprehensive CE database. all of which further the general dentist in his skills and abilities to better serve his/her patients.