Deans’ Biographies

Huw F. Thomas, B.D.S., M.S., Ph.D.

Dean, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine

huw_thomas_132x180Dean Thomas received his B.D.S. (Dental Degree) from Guy’s Hospital, University of London, England, in 1975. In 1978, he received a Pediatric Dentistry Certificate from Eastman Dental Center, Rochester, NY, and M.S. (Dental Research) from the University of Rochester, Rochester, NY. From 1978 – 1980, he was appointed as Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. In 1980, he moved to the University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, CT, where he received his Ph.D (Biomedical Sciences) in 1986.

From 1980 – 1992, he held appointments as Assistant and subsequently Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatric Dentistry, University of Connecticut Health Center.From 1992 – 2003, he was Professor and Chairman, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and held additional appointments as Professor, Department of Pediatrics and Department of Cellular and Structural Biology. He was appointed Dean, School of Dentistry at University of Alabama at Birmingham, in January 2004. On August 1, 2011, he was appointed Dean and Professor of Pediatric Dentistry at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Thomas has given more than 100 lectures and continuing education courses at various Universities, Associations and Study Clubs throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. He is the author or co-author of over 150 published articles, chapters and abstracts in a broad spectrum of scientific journals. Dr. Thomas holds Fellowships in the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), American College of Dentists and International College of Dentists, and is a member of several national and international associations and societies. In 1996, he was elected to membership in OKU (Dental Honor Society) and in 2010 received the Award for Excellence from the Society for Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine. He has served terms as a member of the National Board Test Construction Committee (Anatomical Sciences) of the American Dental Association (ADA); Hatton Awards Committee, American Association for Dental Research (AADR) and International Association for Dental Research; and member and chairman of the Research Committee, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. From 1988 – 1991, he served as an Associate Editor, Pediatric Dentistry Journal, and from 1995 – 1997, as Chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee on Infant Oral Health, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. He has served as Chair, Section on Dentistry and Oral Health Sciences, American Association for the Advancement of Science; a Basic Science Consultant, Commission on Dental Accreditation (currently Chair of site visit teams); Executive Committee Member and Program Chairperson, Section on Pediatric Dentistry and Oral Health, American Academy of Pediatrics; Chairman of the Council on Scientific Affairs, AAPD; and as Chair, Council of Deans of the American Dental Education Association.

Dr. Thomas held a Post-doctoral Fellowship from NIH, 1980 – 1984, and in 1985 was the recipient of an NIH New Investigator Research Award. His research has been continuously funded by NIH from 1985 until he assumed the dean’s position at the School of Dentistry at University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2004. He is currently involved in studies on tooth development, nutrition and infant oral health. In 1979, he was the First Place winner of the Edward H. Hatton Award, Postdoctoral Division, International Association for Dental Research and the winner of a Graduate Student Research Award, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. From 1990-1992, he was a member of the NIH Oral Biology and Medicine Study Section.

Mark Gonthier, M.S.

Executive Associate Dean

111106_6752_gonthier083.JPGMark Gonthier is the executive associate dean for Tufts University School of Dental Medicine and serves as chief operating officer for the school.

Dean Gonthier began at the dental school in 1990 as the director of admissions. He previously served the Dental School as director, assistant dean, and associate dean of admissions and student affairs, building a culture centered on enhancement of student life and the success of all TUSDM students. In 2011 he was named the executive associate dean, and since then serves as a senior-level ambassador for the school and the university.

Dean Gonthier was recognized by the university at the first Tufts Distinction Awards with the peer-nominated Extra Mile Award in 2008, and in 2009, the Dean’s Medal for significant leadership and contributions to the school community. The TUSDM Class of 2010 dedicated their senior class gift to Dean Gonthier for building a critical bridge between students and staff, and TUSDM awards the Mark Gonthier Endowed Senior Prize Fund in Outstanding Service annually. Dean Gonthier was selected by the Chair of the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Board of Directors (TUSDM Dean Huw F. Thomas) to receive a 2016 Chair of the ADEA Board of Directors Citation.

Originally hailing from Franklin, Mass., Dean Gonthier received a B.A. in Sociology from Reed College, and an M.S. from the Carnegie-Mellon University Heinz College.

Robert Amato, D.M.D.

Interim Assistant Dean of Postgraduate Clinical Administration

Amato PhotoRobert Amato, D80, DG83, is the interim assistant dean of postgraduate clinical administration, Winkler Professor of Endodontics, and chair of the Department of Endodontics at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Amato received his DMD from TUSDM, graduating Cum Laude in 1980. He completed a General Practice Residency (GPR) at Rhode Island Hospital in 1981. After his GPR, he returned to Tufts for his residency in endodontics, receiving his certificate in 1983.

Following his academic training, Dr. Amato joined a group endodontic practice in the Boston area. In addition to the practice, he maintained various clinical and didactic teaching roles at Tufts Dental. He also held many leadership roles in both local and national dental societies, including chairman of both the Continuing Education Committee and Clinical Care Committee for the American Association of Endodontists. He served on the American Association of Endodontists Board of Directors for four years. Dr. Amato has been very involved in the Tufts University Dental Alumni Association, serving as President in 2006.

After 29 years of practice, Dr. Amato joined the Department of Endodontics at Tufts Dental School full-time as the Director of Postgraduate Endodontics. As director, he oversees the didactic, clinical and research efforts of fourteen endodontic residents in a rigorous 24-month program. He strives to prepare the residents for Board Certification, clinical practice and service to the profession.

Dr. Amato is Board Certified in Endodontics. The research concern in his department focuses on clinical outcomes of various aspects of endodontic treatment.

Dr. Ruby Khodadoust Ghaffari, D.M.D.

Interim Assistant Dean of Predoctoral Clinical Affairs

Dr. Ruby Khodadoust Ghaffari, D92 is the interim assistant dean of predoctoral clinical affairs and an assistant professor in the department of comprehensive care.

After receiving a Doctorate of Dental Medicine in Dentistry from TUSDM, she built her first practice in downtown Boston in 1997 followed by her second practice in Chestnut Hill, MA. In 2005, she moved to Dubai to lead the implementation of American dental practice standards throughout the UAE. During her five years there, she established protocols for educational and operational structure.

Dr. Ghaffari joined TUSDM as a full-time faculty member in 2011 after many years as a volunteer faculty member in prosthodontics and operative dentistry. Starting as a practice coordinator position, Dr. Ghaffari held several didactic and clinical roles at the university over the years. She served as the director of the Medically Compromised Patient Care Clinic and served as the assistant chair of the department of comprehensive care.

In July 2014, she led a year-long pilot program to improve clinic efficiency and enhance didactic and clinical education. The pilot resulted in measurable improvement in quality of education and efficiency in the clinic, and was adopted throughout the school. In this model, faculty calibration and cross training provided a more effective faculty to student ratio. Core faculty were trained to work more closely and consistently with the same students. Chair utilization and material management in the clinic also improved.

Dr. Ghaffari is member of the advisory board of Boston University Academy and co-chair of the design team and a board member of Attar Foundation. She still practices part-time at her multi-specialty practice in Boston.

Mary-Jane Hanlon, D.M.D., M.B.A.

Interim Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs

Dr. HanlonMary Jane Hanlon, D97, is the interim associate dean of clinical affairs. Dr. Hanlon is a member of the American Dental Association and the Academy of General Dentistry. She has served the Massachusetts Dental Society as chair of the Council of Public Affairs and chair of the Council of Dental Education, and currently serves as trustee for the Middlesex District.

In addition to her trustee duties, she was scientific co-chair for the Yankee Dental Congress in 2011, 2012, and 2015, scientific chair for 2014, and will be general chair for 2017. She has remained involved with Tufts as a reunion class co-chair and is currently co-chair of the Dental M Club.

Dr. Hanlon has a B.S. in biology from Worcester State College, an associate degree in dental hygiene from Forsyth School for Dental Hygienists, an M.B.A. from Suffolk University, and a D.M.D. from TUSDM.

Nadeem Karimbux, D.M.D., M.M.Sc.

Associate Dean of Academic Affairs

120913_9077_karimbux072.JPGNadeem Karimbux is the associate dean of academic affairs and professor of periodontology at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Before joining TUSDM in 2012, Dr. Karimbux served numerous positions at Harvard School of Dental Medicine (HSDM) including director of predoctoral periodontology, program director of the Advanced Graduate Education Program in Periodontology and in 1998, assistant dean for dental education. Dr. Karimbux has served on the board of editors for the Journal of Dental Education and as an associate editor for the Journal of Periodontology and MedEdPORTAL. He is the editor for the Journal of Dental Education and the online editor for Carranza’s Clinical Periodontology textbook.

Dr. Karimbux has received numerous honors during his academic career, including the G.W. Teuscher Award from the American Society of Dentistry for Children, the Periodontal Educator Award from the American Academy of Periodontology, and Distinguished Faculty Awards from Harvard School of Dental Medicine. In 2010 he received the Presidential Citation from the American Dental Education Association. He has published more than 100 papers, authored textbooks, and lectured worldwide. In 2015, he received the Provost’s Award for Outstanding Teaching and Service from the University.

Dr. Karimbux received his D.M.D. from HSDM in 1991 and his M.M.Sc. and Graduate Certificate in periodontology from HSDM in 1993.

Robert Kasberg, Ph.D.

Associate Dean of Admissions and Student Affairs

Dr. KasbergRobert Kasberg is the associate dean for admissions and student affairs at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Kasberg joined TUSDM in 2012. During his time here, he has spearheaded the Adapting to Diversity in Dentistry seminar series, developed a summer reading program devoted to enhance cultural competency for faculty, staff, and students, revamped the ethics committee, initiated a student wellness program, and implemented recruitment strategies that have led to the admission of some of the most diverse classes in TUSDM history.

Before joining TUSDM, Dr. Kasberg served as visiting lecturer and academic adviser at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. He then became assistant dean at Indiana University Graduate School where he focused on African-American and Latino graduate student recruitment and helped increase the number of African-American and Latino doctoral students in biomedical science programs. In 2002, he was named director of admissions for Indiana University School of Dentistry (IUSD), and in 2005, assistant dean for student affairs in addition to director of admissions.

In the fall of 2009, the IUSD Alumni Association selected Dr. Kasberg as Honorary Alumnus, and in the winter of 2010, the IUSD faculty elected him the Theta Theta Chapter of Omicron Kappa Upsilon.

Dr. Kasberg began his career in the U.S. Navy and served as a Navy Corpsman with the Marine Corps. He then joined the U.S. Peace Corps and worked for six years in the Philippines with Tribal Filipinos on the island of Mindoro in the areas of community development, land tenure issues, health care training, and agro-forestry.

Dr. Kasberg has a B.A. in anthropology from in Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, and a Ph.D. in anthropology from Yale University based on upon his dissertation Gubatnun Ethnomedicine: Religion, illness and medicine among the western Hanunoo written after two years of ethnographic field research in the Philippines.

Gerard Kugel, D.M.D., M.S., Ph.D.

Associate Dean of Research

Dr. Kugel

Gerard Kugel is the associate dean for research, and professor of comprehensive care at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

With an expertise in clinical research and esthetic dentistry, he is a reviewer for several journals, including the Journal of the American Dental Association, The Journal of Dental Materials, and the Journal of Dentistry. He is on the editorial boards of The Journal of Cosmetic Dentistry and Compendium among others, and is editor-in-chief of Inside Dentistry. He is a fellow in the American and International Colleges of Dentistry as well as the Academy of General Dentistry and the Academy of Dental Materials. Dr. Kugel is on the board of directors of the Clinicians’ Report Foundation. He holds a M.S. in anatomy and cellular biology and a Ph.D. in dental materials. He received an Executive Certificate in management from the MIT Sloan School of Business in 2009.

Dr. Kugel has published more than 120 articles and more than 250 abstracts in the field of restorative materials and techniques. He has given over 350 lectures both nationally and internationally. Dr. Kugel is part of a group practice, the Boston Center for Oral Health, located in Back Bay, Boston.

Noshir Mehta, B.D.S., M.D.S, D.M.D., M.S.

Associate Dean of Global Relations

Dr. MehtaNoshir R. Mehta is associate dean of global relations, professor in the Department of Public Health and Community Service, and senior adviser to the Craniofacial Pain, Headache and Sleep Center at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Mehta has a special interest in orofacial pain and dental sleep medicine. He is the founding director of the Craniofacial Pain Center at Tufts, teaches at the school, and lectures nationally and internationally. He is a fellow of the International College of Dentists, the American College of Dentists, and the Pierre Fouchard Academy. Dr. Mehta has received numerous awards from various dental organizations including the prestigious Hayden Stack Award from the American Academy of Craniofacial Pain and, most recently, 2015 Clinician of the Year from the Massachusetts Dental Society. He has published extensively in peer reviewed journals, is editor of the sleep section for the Journal of Craniomandibular and Sleep Practice, and sits on the editorial board of several other international publications. He is the senior author of the textbook Head, Face and Neck Pain: Science, Evaluation and Management published by Wiley in 2009.

Dr. Mehta has been instrumental in expanding the reach of TUSDM in the area of global collaborations, service learning and community service and has created a vast network of student exchange and global service learning sites around the world.

Maria Papageorge, D.M.D., M.S.

Associate Dean of Hospital Affairs

Maria Papageorge, D82, is the associate dean of hospital affairs, professor, and chair of the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. She has been a member of the full-time faculty since 1986.

Dr. Papageorge holds her D.M.D. from TUSDM, and received her Advanced Education Certificate in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and a fellowship in Cancer and Reconstructive Surgery from Tufts University and New England Medical Center in 1986. She also received her M.S. degree from TUSDM in 1989. She is the program director of the Advanced Education Training Program in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at TUSDM and chair of the Department of Dentistry at Tufts Medical Center.

Dr. Papageorge is a fellow of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the Pierre Fauchaud Academy, and the American Academy of Dental Science, as well as a diplomat of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.

Her research and clinical interests include cancer, maxillofacial reconstruction, orthognathic surgery, and implant surgery. Dr. Papageorge has authored over 60 articles, abstracts, and book chapters in peer-reviewed journals and has presented numerous abstracts and lectured extensively at national and international meetings.