Return to the Spring 2021 Newsletter

Message from Dr. Migliorati

Dear Diplomates and Colleagues,

At the end of April 2021, I stepped down from the ABOM Presidency after an unexpected two years term due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thomas Sollecito, the current Vice President will take over the command of this great group of colleagues and friends, the ABOM directors. He will guide our board working in collaboration with Drs:

Nagamani Narayana (incoming Vice President)
Jeffrey Casiglia (Director of Examination)
Craig Miller (Treasurer)
Ross Kerr (Director)
Stuart Taylor (Director)
Michael Brennan (Director)

This transition usually occurs during the Diplomates luncheon at the AAOM annual meeting. Due to obvious reasons, this year I am doing it through this brief letter.

Considering all the hurdles we all faced during the past two years, I strongly feel that we were successful. Several milestones were achieved. After many years of trials and effort by a large number of oral medicine experts, past board members, and many AAOM members, last year under the leadership of Craig Miller and Eric Stoopler, the ADA National Commission recognized our beloved specialty on Dental Specialties and Certifying Boards as the 11th dental specialty. The second phase of this process required the recognition of your American Board of Oral Medicine. After going through a series of revisions and updates of existing board documents, and the creation of new documents required by the National Commission, we submitted the application for the ABOM recognition as the official certifying board of our specialty. This was approved by the National Commission during their recent meeting on April 26–27 of 2021. The ABOM is now recognized as the official board of the oral medicine specialty.

Therefore, two major steps forward were conquered by oral medicine. The effort of board directors in this process cannot be measured. Long conference calls, long hours of work and dedication gave me the privilege of watching all of this happens during my Presidency. The status of a recognized specialty will take oral medicine to higher levels in the near future.

Many other hurdles were also presented to us. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the AAOM in-person meeting and the ABOM board exam had to be cancelled. The challenge for the board was to plan a way to give the board exam this year (2021) using electronic platforms. This was an idea suggested previously to the ABOM by one of its directors, Jeffrey Casiglia. Under Jeff’s leadership, we were successful in completing the board exam in April of 2021 using the Exam Soft platform for the written exam (Part A) and the Zoom meetings venue for the oral examination (Part B). There were 25 candidates who took Part A on April 19, 2021 and 23 who completed the Part B on April 23 and 24. There were candidates from the USA, Middle East and Australia. All completed the exams with only minor glitches that were dealt with and corrected with the help from Dr. Casiglia, the Exam Soft staff and the staff from our managing company, SBI, under the leadership of Mrs. Felicia Kenan, the new executive secretary. The board is proceeding with final evaluation of results and will soon announce the exam outcomes. For sure we will be welcoming new ABOM diplomates.

This new platform to give the ABOM board exam was so successful that the board will consider using it in the years to come. More on this will soon be announced!

With this humble and simple report, I am saying goodbye to the ABOM Presidency and taking the position as its Past President. This newly created position was first served by Mark Drangsholt who leaves the board after many years of service. Mark was instrumental to the ABOM with his ideas, leadership and hard work. A few years ago Mark organized a way to prospectively track exam results. The accumulated data over the past 5 or 6 years were instrumental for the ABOM application with the ADA National Commission. We hope to continue to collaborate with Mark and learn from his experience. I will continue to use the expertise acquired over the past 8 years to assist Tom Sollecito and the directors as much as I can.

It is important to mention that the process that started the recognition of oral medicine as a specialty was paved through the American Board of Dental Specialties (ABDS). Oral medicine representation at the ABDS continues to provide the board with important information about the future of ABDS and how this board will benefit the ABOM in the years to come. I want to thank Doug Peterson and Scott De Rossi for working hard to maintain this relationship going and assisting the ABOM on how this will continue in the near future.

It has been a great ride and a privilege to have served your board for so many years. I had the opportunity to see the ABOM grow from a somewhat amateur board to a very mature and professional institution, now ADA recognized, that seats at the table with all other recognized specialties. Great ideas will continue to be discussed that will stimulate the growth of our specialty and the process of forming new diplomates who will carry the oral medicine of the future. The relationship between ABOM and AAOM must grow even further with AAOM being the official sponsor of the board. A robust collaboration between the two groups will lead to better opportunities of growth and development of new colleagues who will carry forward the two groups in years to come.

I appreciate the support from the ABOM diplomates over the past several years. I thank you all for the opportunity to serve in the board and help place oral medicine to the same level and high standards that our beloved specialty deserves.


Cesar A. Migliorati DDS, MS, PhD
ABOM President