Foundation

In 1969, Dr. Jae In Oh realized that it was necessary for Korean dentists in America to have their own professional society. He met with Dr. Shin Myung Cho, Dr. Andrew C. Nam, Dr. Soo Nam Oh, Dr. Yoo Whan Kim, Dr. Yang Kuk Seonwoo, Dr. Kyu Hwan Cho, Dr. Young Ok Han, Dr. Kenneth K. Chang, Dr. Esther C. Lee, Dr. Kyung Soo Kim, Dr. Sung Bong Whang, and Dr. Jung Joo Kim from Los Angeles, and Dr. Kwang Ok Roh, Dr. Young Ho Kim, Dr. Sung Soo Han, Dr. Bora Chung, Dr. Nhak Hee Kim, and Dr. Jin Myung Lee from out of state to discuss this matter.

After having several meetings, on August 21st, 1969 in Los Angeles, they decided to establish Korean Dental Association of U.S.A. The purpose of this Dental Association was to meet and get to know more Korean Dentists in America, and commit to the professional advancement by helping each other.

Since the members in Korean Dental Association were Seoul National University Dental College Alumni, they decided to unite with Seoul National University Dental College Alumni Association. At first, Korean Dental Association had to deal with the hardships that Korean dentists had to go through: obtaining license to practice in California. The United States acknowledged Degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery obtained from Korea. However, dentists from other countries had to take certain board examinations to be able to practice in the U.S.

During that period, government in California did not allow foreigners to take these tests. Immigrants from England, Germany, France, Italy, Korea, China, Japan, Philippine, and other countries got together and kept on proposing to allow foreigners to take examinations. Thanks to their efforts, the California government finally allowed foreigners to take the board examinations.

Growth

Since Korean Dental Association was founded, many things have changed throughout the years: publication of newsletter and directory, free clinics service, biennial scientific conference, more dental college alumni associations from UCLA, USC, and Yonsei University, continuing education, annual party, regular meeting, and so on. Korean Dental Association changed its name to Korean American Dental Association. As the years passed by, Korean Dental Association became more organized and more committed to the society for the public’s oral health. Korean Dental Association, which started with less than 30 dentists, now has about 800 members in Southern California, and 2000 members nationwide.

Presidents

THE 1ST 1969 – 1971       Jae In Oh                               오재인
THE 2ND 1972 – 1973      Andrew Chung-Woo Nam      남정우
THE 3RD 1974 – 1975      Kenneth K Chang                   장기열
THE 4TH 1976 – 1977       Soo Nam Oh                          오수남
THE 5TH 1978 – 1979       Dae Young Kim                      김대영
THE 6TH 1980 – 1981       Henry H Oh                            오흥조
THE 7TH 1982 – 1983       Booe Il Ma                              마부일
THE 8TH 1984 – 1985       Sung Bong Whang                 황성봉
THE 9TH 1986 – 1987       Nhak Hee Kim                        김낙희
THE 10TH 1988 – 1989     Il Jin Bak                                 박일진
THE 11TH 1990 – 1991     Yong Song Lee                       이영송
THE 12TH 1992 – 1993     Howard K Cho                        조규석
THE 13TH 1994 – 1995     John K Kim                             김광근
THE 14TH 1996 – 1997     Joong Gun Kwon                    권중건
THE 15TH 1998 – 1999     Paul Sangha Jo                      조상하
THE 16TH 2000 – 2001     Jong Chul Han                        한종철
THE 17TH 2002 – 2003     Howard J Yang                       양효준
THE 18TH 2004 – 2005     Hak Cheon Kim                      김학천
THE 19TH 2006 – 2007     Anthony T Park                       박동훈
THE 20TH 2008 – 2009     Peter Y Chung                        정양
THE 21ST 2010 – 2011      Brian Hong                             홍영진
THE 22ND 2012 – 2013     Seonho Ha                             하선호
THE 23RD 2014 – 2015     Pilseong Kim                          김필성
THE 24TH 2016 – 2017     Thomas Han                           한정훈

KADA Professional Chapters

Korean American Dental Association of Northern California
Korean American Dental Association of Southern California
Korean American Dental Association of Oregon
Korean American Dental Association of Nevada
Korean American Dental Association of Arizona
Korean American Dental Association of Kansas
Korean American Dental Association of Michigan
Korean American Dental Association of Texas
Korean American Dental Association of New York
Korean American Dental Association of Pennsylvania
Korean American Dental Association of Ohio
Korean American Dental Association of Georgia

(Above list of regional KADA societies are a record propose only, some chapters are not in active operation. )