Jerry L. Halpern, DDS, clinical associate professor of Dental Medicine at Touro College of Dental Medicine in New York, received the Humanitarian Award for Fellows and Members from the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) at its 100th Annual Meeting in Chicago in October. The award recognizes AAOMS fellows and members who have sacrificed time and effort in their local community or on a global basis, resulting in improved quality of life for the public.
Halpern was honored for his outreach efforts during the last eight years in the Dominican Republic. He is oral surgeon-in-charge and president of the World of Smiles Foundation, a nonprofit that cares for 500 to 600 patients per service trip. Two to three times a year, World of Smiles and senior students from dental schools, oral and maxillofacial surgery residents, and general practice residents from New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center join dentists from the New York Academy of Dentistry to treat children from underserved areas.
In 2010, Halpern received the AAOMS Presidential Achievement Award that honors AAOMS fellows and members who have made significant long-term contributions to the specialty. He has also has been recognized for helping identify victims of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the crash of American Airlines Flight 587 in 2001. He received a congressional Certificate of Recognition for his efforts.