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UTHSC College of Dentistry Announces 2011 Outstanding Alumnus


Nearly 300 guests are expected to attend the Outstanding Alumni Reunion Luncheon at the Hilton Memphis Hotel on Friday, March 4,for the 2011 honoree: Wallace C. Lail, DDS.

Since 1878, the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry, one of the six colleges at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC), has maintained a competitive four-year dental program. For 133 years, the South’s oldest dental school has filled the need for dentists in Tennessee, Arkansas and beyond. Annually, the UT College of Dentistry Alumni Association honors graduates who have made significant contributions to the field of dentistry and provided service to the college, the third oldest college of dentistry in the United States. This year’s award will be presented during the Outstanding Alumni Reunion Luncheon at the Hilton Memphis Hotel on Friday, March 4, as part of the 16th Annual Mid-South Dental Congress, a three-day continuing education conference for dentists hosted by the college on March 4, 5 and 6. Nearly 300 guests are expected to attend the luncheon for the 2011 honoree: Wallace C. Lail, DDS.

After completing pre-dental studies in 1961 at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga., Dr. Lail earned his DDS degree at the UT College of Dentistry in 1965. Upon graduation, he served in the US Army Dental Corps at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He returned to Georgia in 1969 to start a dental practice in Duluth. While maintaining his practice, Dr. Lail served as associate clinical professor at the Emory University School of Dentistry. In addition, from 1975 to 1988, he served as a member of the Board of Counselors at Oxford College (the junior college associated with Emory). During his career, he also performed as Chief of Dental Services for the Buford Manor Nursing Home in Buford, Ga.

Dr. Lail has been affiliated with numerous professional societies, including: the American Dental Association, the Georgia Dental Association, the Button Gwinnett Dental Study Club, and the Northern District Dental Society in the Greater Atlanta area. He is also Fellow of the American College of Dentists, Fellow of the International College of Dentists, and Honorable Fellow of the Georgia Dental Association. Since 1971, Dr. Lail has been an integral member of the Thomas P. Hinman Dental Society, a non-profit organization of more than 750 member dentists in Georgia that support professional development opportunities and high practice standards. During his tenure, he has served the society as secretary, vice president, president-elect and president, as well as a six-year role as a trustee. Dr. Lail was also chairman of several committees of the society and general chairman of the Hinman Dental Meeting in 1998.

From 2004 to 2006, Dr. Lail held the position of president of the UT College of Dentistry Alumni Board of Trustees. He continues to be a vital member of this board and is an active supporter of the annual Mid-South Dental Congress in Memphis.

Beyond his dental practice and activities, Dr. Lail actively participated in civic duties in Duluth as a member of the Duluth City Council from 1976 to 1979. During these years, his duties included acting as Mayor Pro-Tem of Duluth, and from 1974 to 1976, he served as chairman of the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission. Dr. Lail is a charter member of the Rotary Club of Gwinnett County in Georgia and has served as its secretary and president. Also, from 1983 to 1998, he was a member of the board of directors for Citizens Bank of Gwinnett.

Currently, Dr. Lail practices dentistry four days per week in Duluth and enjoys hunting, fishing, flying his restored 1938 Boeing-Stearman biplane (a military trainer aircraft), and staying at his cabin in the mountains of North Georgia with his family.