Inside Dental Technology
January 2017
Volume 8, Issue 1

APS Honors LeBeau with Rudd Award

The American Prosthodontic Society (APS) has announced that Dene LeBeau, will be the recipient of the 2017 Kenneth D. Rudd Award, which is presented annually to a certified dental technician who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of the prosthodontics and dental laboratory communities.

"Receiving a career achievement award from such a prestigious organization is truly an honor, and I am thrilled about it," says LeBeau, Owner of LeBeau Dental Laboratory in Renton, Washington, and a member of Inside Dental Technology's Editorial Advisory Board. "The APS is one of the premier organizations in dentistry and the Kenneth D. Rudd Award is a gold-standard award for any laboratory technician."

The Rudd Award, established in 2005, was developed to promote and encourage dental laboratory technicians and support the advancement of dental technology education.

"As a fellow technician, I believe the Rudd Award salutes 'the best of the best' of my peers," says APS Vice President Todd Fridrich, CDT, who is in line to become the first technician to serve as the organization's president. "It recognizes efforts well beyond technical expertise or the ability to innovate. Recipients are passionate, motivated individuals who have reached significant milestones in the advancement of dentistry and dental technology."

LeBeau joins a prestigious list of past winners that includes five other members of IDT's Editorial Advisory Board as well as icons such as Enrico Steger (2015) and Willi Geller (2009).

"What an honor to be included on a list of heroes from my past, amazing friends from the present, and other great technicians whom I hope to meet," LeBeau says. "I had no idea this honor was attainable for me, so it feels extra special. I spent some time researching Dr. Rudd and was able to speak to some of the talented clinicians who developed under him. Everything I heard indicated he was a remarkable man who drew technical praise, heartfelt compliments, and fun stories from all who knew him."

LeBeau will give a presentation at the 89th Annual Meeting of the American Prosthodontic Society, which will be held February 23-24 at the Swissôtel in Chicago. His presentation will be February 23 at 1:30 PM.

"I will present a short but fun story of my incredible journey to this award, and I have produced a unique dental/technical video to honor my clients and employees," he says. "I promise it will be eye-popping."

Fridrich says the Rudd Award presentation "routinely ignites conversations that resonate with every member, from every specialty, from all over the world."

"Put simply," Fridrich says, "the Rudd Award is a celebration of achievement and the presentation provides a platform to share their knowledge in an exciting, dynamic environment."

The APS encourages dental technicians to join its ranks and attend its annual meeting.

"The phrase 'team approach' is used frequently by all dental organizations, but few embrace the actual concept in their structure," Fridrich says. "Because the membership of the APS is both exclusive and inclusive, my colleagues include the generalist, specialist, and technologist. Our meetings are friendly and accessible; the vibe is fun and engaging. This becomes evident in the way the Rudd Award presenter is received by the audience. The technical message is always appreciated because members believe in the structure of the society. We stand by our peers and value their perspective."

LeBeau says he commends the APS for including laboratory technicians and hopes that competing organizations take notice.

"Collaboration between specialist, dentist, and the laboratory team is not only more likely but more important today than at any time in our history," LeBeau says. "The digital revolution has allowed the skilled technician to play a larger role in transitional dentistry and case planning than we ever imagined. A few years ago, my laboratory started inviting clients for a 'digital tour,' during which we show them how we can digitally help plan a current case, while making provisionals and planning future restorative. The dentists love this digital/technical interlude and they always leave excited and armed with new ideas for future casework. I sincerely believe the inclusive attitude of the APS is serving as a driving force for collaboration like this."

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