Dr. Manfred Seidemann

Take a moment and read ICD President Manfred Seidemann’s commentary during his presidential term.

Santiago, Chile: July – August 2010

Dear Fellows around the world,

During my conversations with Fellows in different countries this past year, I could readily sense that ICD-Fellowship is viewed as a High Honor. It is a Distinction that recipients greatly appreciate. However, I could also perceive a lack of understanding regarding our College’s Purpose, Organizational Structure, National Identity, Route, and Guiding Spirit. As I stated in my previous Presidential Notes, I strongly believe that such misunderstandings must be promptly rectified. Fellows should be knowledgeable about their College.

I. Purpose

In 1920, our institution was visualized by our Founding Fathers as an “international” organization whose purpose was to spread cordiality and state-of-the-art knowledge among dentists worldwide. The most prestigious and ethical dentists were to be recognized and honored through an “invitation” to participate in this vital mission. In 1927, the Founding Fathers decided to structure this special organization of professionals as a “College”; that is, “a society of persons engaged in common pursuits, having common duties and interests”.

II. Organizational Structure

The International College of Dentists was founded in 1928. To assure its global development, in 1930, the leadership approved the College’s organization into Sections. This would allow the institution to enlarge its field of service, strengthen its effectiveness, and expand its membership worldwide. To facilitate College work and communication, an Official Language was adopted: English.

The Sections consist of pre-established geographical areas or countries. They are autonomous, guided by their own Bylaws within the framework of the College’s Central Document (Constitution and Bylaws), as well as self-governing bodies. From the very beginning, the Sections were conceived to be, regardless of their size and prominence, “equals among peers”.

Each Section is governed by a Board of Regents – a body formed by the Presidents (also known as Regents) of the Districts that comprise the Section – and an Executive Committee. This Governing Body as a whole operates with standing committees and committees appointed by the Section President for specially assigned tasks. Each Section’s Board of Regents holds a regularly scheduled annual meeting. Annual Board of Regents Meetings are usually accompanied by a Continuing Education Activity, an Induction Ceremony for New Fellows, a Fellowship Orientation Program, and social activities.

To allow administration at a more local level, the Sections are subdivided into Districts (as mentioned above), which are individual countries, or states and provinces within a nation. They are also autonomous and self-governing bodies, with Bylaws within the framework of their respective Section Bylaws.

The International College of Dentists-at-Large is governed by its Constitution and Bylaws. It is administered by the International Council. This body is formed by 32 Councilors (who represent the 15 Sections), and eight Officers (President, President-elect, Vice President, Past President, Treasurer, Editor, Secretary-General and Deputy Secretary-General). The International Council has Standing and Ad Hoc Committees. The Council meets in October or November of each year in a different country.

The composition of our International College of Dentists is as follows:


Section Name Countries Included Date # Councilors
I U.S.A. United States of America 1934 10
II Canada Canada 1949 2
III Mexico Mexico 1980 1
IV South America South American countries 1981 1
V Europe European countries, Israel and Malta 1955 3
VI India, Sri Lanka and Nepal India, Sri Lanka, Nepal 1964 2
VII Japan Japan 1958 2
VIII Australasia Australia, New Zealand, Fiji Islands, Papua, New Guinea, and other Islands of the South Pacific 1964 1
IX Philippines Philippine Islands 1966 1
X Middle East Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar 1967 1
XI Korea South Korea 1986 1
XII Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei 1994 1
XIII China People’s Republic of China 2009 1
XIV Myanmar Myanmar 2009 1
XX International Asian Sector African Sector English Caribbean Sector Spanish Caribbean Sector 1978 4

III. National Identity

As mentioned earlier in my May 31 Presidential Notes, our International College of Dentists does not belong to, nor is it affiliated with, any nation in particular. The College’s Central Office is located in the United States for numerous reasons, including: easy to reach country; the broad range of banking facilities; the worldwide use of the USA Dollar and English language; the availability of supplies.

IV. Route

Our College’s route is clearly marked by its Motto, Mission Statement and Objectives.

  1. Motto: “Recognizing Service and the Opportunity to Serve”.
  2. Mission Statement: “The International College of Dentists is a leading honorary dental organization dedicated to the recognition of outstanding professional achievement and meritorious service, and the continued progress of dentistry for the benefit of all humankind”.
  3. Objectives Very briefly, the College’s Nine Objectives are:
    1. To advance the art and science of Dentistry
    2. To encourage postgraduate study and research in Dentistry
    3. To bring together outstanding members of the Dental Profession from around the world
    4. To develop cordial relations in Dentistry
    5. To collaborate in the prevention and control of oral disorders
    6. To dignify the profession by maintaining the highest ethical standards
    7. To preserve the history of Dentistry
    8. To accept the responsibility to evaluate the performance of other colleagues and, if appropriate, become a sponsor for those colleagues who qualify for ICD-Fellowship
    9. To encourage and support projects of a humanitarian nature.

V. Guiding Spirit

The International College of Dentists is a model institution that unites in Fellowship dentists of different cultures, languages, ethnic origins, religions, political preferences, social backgrounds, countries and regions. The ICD fosters understanding, respect, and goodwill. It encourages professionalism and academic pride. It strives to help eliminate cultural and national barriers among its Fellows.

Each one of the Fellows must stand out through his or her integrity, knowledge of the needs of our profession, strict adherence to the Code of Ethics, participation in continuing education, high professional or academic capacity, and active involvement in scientific and professional societies.

Lastly, I would like to take this opportunity to once again invite you to assist your College. This time I would like to encourage you to ask your local ICD Leadership for a task in your ICD area of interest. Much needs to be done. By participating in ICD activities, you would be making important contributions to your College, your Profession and society. At the same time, you would also be developing a greater understanding of your International College of Dentists’ History, Philosophy, Fellowship Requirements, Organization, Operational Procedures, Leadership, Projects and Activities.

Hoping that you, dear Fellows, and your Families are well and wishing you all the very best, I remain,

With warmest fraternal and friendly regards,

Manfred Seidemann International President

c.c.: Fellow Terry Hoffeld Secretary General

Downloads: 2010_Presidential_Notes_2010-07 (PDF format 67 KB )