Dr. Charles Siroky

Take a moment and read ICD President Charles Siroky’s commentary during his presidential term.

IT SEEMS TO ME… a note from International President Charles Siroky

Final Report to the Fellowship, Reflections and Farewell

When my Presidential year began, I had six major goals in mind for our ICD in the year 2011. How did we do? What were the goals and have they come to fruition? Allow me to list the goals and then offer my take on accomplishments.

1) Increase the College’s emphasis on the key characteristics of ICD Fellowship…HONOR AND PRIDE. I have been trying to re-instill in each Fellow the feelings of Honor and Pride they had at the moment of their Induction into the College. All of us felt proud at that moment; honored that our colleagues selected us; and we each sensed that we were a part owner of our College. For many – those feelings go away. I tried to bring back those feelings through personal communications and my President’s Notes. Did it work?

2) Through our words and our deeds, project a vibrant and progressive…IMAGE OF THE COLLEGE. Our many worthwhile projects at the local level allowed us to project a wonderful image of caring, sharing and giving by our Fellows – all highly ethical individuals – to our communities and countries. We also promote that same image to the world through publicity of these projects through our College at Large, local Web pages and on Facebook.

3) Empower ICD Fellows everywhere to celebrate and take part in the…WORLDWIDE ACTIVITIES OF THE COLLEGE. We have about 140 projects around the world combining the totals from all our Sections and Regions. The Sections selected their best 5 projects during the last 5 years and I then summarized the genesis, the history, the actions and the results of these projects and combined them into a document entitled Project 55. It is posted on our College at Large Website (www.icd.org) for all to see. We do so much good. Congratulations to all.

4) Strive for continuous improvement in all areas of…COLLEGE COMMUNICATION. In addition to our yearly Globe Magazine which is the linchpin of our communications, we also publish The College Today (TCT) electronically 3-4 times a year and other communications like an Image Brochure. We also achieved this, in part, by making our letters, written and electronic, more formal and professional and yet easy to understand and comprehend. Further improvement is still possible and remains an achievable and realistic goal. We must overcome the modern tendency to write in short, incomplete sentences and or language with implied meaning as popularized on social media like Facebook and Twitter. Congratulatory letters about significant achievements of Fellows were written when we learned of them as well as letters of Condolence. All correspondence is geared to the Fellows in their local offices. It is sad to add – too many letters of Condolence and too few letters of Congratulations.

5) Achieve world class proficiency and image in our business practices through…ENHANCED CENTRAL OFFICE AND COLLEGE WIDE OPERATIONS. We have accomplished much this year in that we have a new Secretary General, John V. Hinterman, a new Editor, Dov Sydney and a new Treasurer, Clive Ross. All are preforming admirably. COA Kathleen Bula gives her best to satisfy the many requests that come her way each day. Continued improvement can, should and will be realized this next year, and beyond, now that the transition is over and the learning curves are near an end. The College Webpage is working well, but our Database is still not as functional as we would like and corrective steps are soon anticipated.

6) Extend the International College of Dentists to under-represented areas through…NUMERIC GROWTH AND GEOGRAPHIC EXPANSION. This is a very bright spot for the College. We approved a new Region late last year in Mongolia. In March 2012 a new Region will form in Kazakhstan; and we approved 50 candidates from five nations in Africa. They will be inducted in January 2012 and divided into two Regions. Kudos to those who work hard in the Growth and Development arena – singling out Cedric Haddad, Manfred Seidemann, Christopher Ogunsalu, Woong Yang, Heun Taek Jhee and Akira Senda. Viet Nam may well be reactivated in the spring of 2012.


Each month I addressed a different subject (Fellowship meaning; Membership pathways; Leadership; Growth; Ethics; Humanitarianism; Professionalism; Philanthropy and 4 topics related to College business and activities) and I tried to show how each subject related to the qualities we look for in the selection of Fellows, and I stressed how each of our Fellows actually possessed those qualities. This effort relates directly to Goal #1 listed above. I felt that if I spoke to those issues, it might spark a feeling, perhaps buried somewhere under the concerns of running a successful dental practice, that “that guy is speaking to me and about me.” I felt that if I could reinvigorate the feelings each Fellow had on their Induction day, good things would happen.



In the Mid-Year report, I mentioned the planning for a June meeting of the EC via a Skype conference call. I am pleased to advise the Fellowship that the “Virtual” meeting worked very well. We focused on three areas: College at Large finances, International Council Committees present status and new business which had surfaced since the beginning of the year. Treasurer Clive Ross shared his efforts over the first 6 months of the year and, with the help of the Executive Committee and the College’s accountant, has a good grasp on our financial status. We are in a deficit position and will rely on reserves for the balance of the year, but with the annual dues increase on 1.1.12, income and expenses will be in balance. Our Committees are on target for the year. Some must function all year long, others primarily in the beginning of the year and the balance near year end. The EC Liaisons assured me that all are functioning as planned. Under new business, we addressed many small items requiring EC approval. All in all, we dealt with 29 items. Secretary General Jack Hinterman provided a copy of the June EC meeting to the Councilors in early July 2011.


I arrived in Vienna, Austria on June 15 for the European Section meeting. As we (Gayle, my wife, joined me on this trip.) arrived early in the morning, we had time for a short walking tour of the central city surrounding St Stephen’s Cathedral in the heart of Vienna, including lunch at a sidewalk cafe. That evening we joined Section V’s Board for a Reception at the very spacious and beautiful office of European President Peter Brandstatter and then onto dinner at a restaurant overlooking old Vienna. Thursday, I joined the Board for their annual meeting and participated when asked. That evening all participants and guests, approximately 250, had a welcoming dinner at a local winery. On Friday, the ICD Fellows attended an all-day CE course that featured five different speakers while the spouses and guests toured Schonbrunn Palace (the Hapsburg Summer Palace) and Albertina (an art museum). Friday evening was the Official Congress Evening which was held at the Palais (Palace) Liechtenstein. The group  toured most of the first floor of this beautiful building and viewed the wonderful art collection of many European masters including Rubens and Van Dyck. A beautiful dinner followed in a very spacious royal dining room with a surprise mini-concert by a professionally trained vocalist who was an ICD Fellow from Austria. Violin music during dinner was provided by the daughter of another Austrian ICD Fellow and one of her colleagues. I had the feeling of being in the midst of royalty. Saturday was highlighted by the Initiation Ceremony, which was quite structured and formal. Forty new Fellows were honored with Fellowship. I was privileged to present my Presidential remarks as well as present, belatedly, a letter of appreciation to Dr. Peter Kotschy for his service as a Councilor. It was prepared last year by then President Manfred Seidemann. That was followed by a Gala Dinner at the Palais Festal, in another gorgeous room. Entertainment included a live orchestra and a performance by a dance troupe of eight couples performing a Viennese Waltz. It was a memorable day and I congratulate President Peter and Sabine Brandstatter on their gracious hospitality.


Following my graduation from the University of Southern California Dental School, I joined the US Army and was stationed for three years in Nurnberg, Germany. As Gayle and I were already in Europe, we decided to revisit some of the places from our early marriage years. It was very nostalgic and many of the sites remained the same, while others were “modernized” with a McDonalds or Starbucks franchise. I say that with tongue in cheek as it just didn’t seem to fit. We toured all over the Nurnberg area and had a memorable evening at a romantic and historic Gasthaus where we spent “special” evenings when we lived there. We also took an all day tour following the “Romantic Road” ending in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, a small city untouched during WWII and still appearing as it must have looked in medieval days. We spent four days down memory lane, had a wonderful time and took many photographs.


College Treasurer, Clive Ross of New Zealand, also served as the Chairmen of the Special (ad-hoc) Structure Committee, first appointed last year by then President Manfred Seidemann and reappointed this year. He asked that as many of the EC as possible meet electronically via Skype to give him a sense of the opinions of the Executive Committee on some of the material he would be presenting at the Annual Meeting in New Delhi, India. Not all were present, but it was a good discussion and he felt he had captured the information he was seeking.


I traveled to Mexico City, Mexico for their biannual Induction Celebration held on September 15th. It is no accident that they chose this date as the Annual Meeting of FDI, the Annual Meeting of the Mexican Dental Association and the celebration of the Mexican Independence Day all of which occurred in that same weekend. It was a very festive time. I was met at the airport by Section President Alfonso Gonzales Campdera and his wife Maru, who then took me to the Nikko Hotel. They also invited me to a wonderful Mexican dinner at the Hacienda de los Morales along with several of their officers. The next day began with a General Assembly of the Section III Fellows and was followed by an orientation for their new Fellows. I offered some opening remarks on the achievement of my yearly goals to date. The Induction was held in the evening, during which I offered my Presidential remarks. As the FDI was also meeting in Mexico City, many international dignitaries attended the ceremony including the ADA President and the President of ADI. A Banquet followed in a beautifully decorated room featuring a Mexican Fiesta theme. Ten new Fellows received the honor of Fellowship and one very revered female Fellow was named a Master of the College.


Gayle accompanied me to Las Vegas on October 7th for the Section I – USA Annual Meeting and Induction. It was held at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Resort. That first evening we joined their Board of Regents and other guests for the Board Reception and Dinner. The next day was devoted to Committee Meetings, so we took advantage of the free time to visit with one of our children and his family who reside in neighboring Summerlin, NV. The following day I attended the Board of Regents meeting and had occasion to offer a few remarks and visit with many of the Officers and Regents. Our Secretary General was also present and we spent several hours reviewing agenda material and protocols for the 2011 Annual Session. Later that afternoon, the Section held their Fellowship Orientation Program to a capacity crowd. Their FOP was the model for all other FOPs in use in the College.

On Monday the 10th, the USA Induction was held at 1:00 and 280 new Fellows were honored with Fellowship. I was pleased to be part of the ceremony and placed the key around the neck of each candidate. The Keynote speaker for the Induction was Ken Austin, Co-owner and Founder of A-dec. Several hours later we all returned to the same ballroom for a Reception and Dinner-Dance. During the program portion of the meeting I was awarded a MICD certificate. With humility at receiving this high distinction, I thanked the Section and then offered remarks and a toast to the new Fellows. I also was given the opportunity to introduce ICD Fellow Paul Gosar (Flagstaff, Arizona) who serves in the US House of Representatives and was a surprise visitor at the dinner. He is one of two dentists currently serving in the US Congress.


I devoted the November 1 President’s Notes to this topic so I will not go into any detail regarding the protocol of the meeting. Rather, I will speak to the events surrounding the meeting and to the highlights of what proved to be a very good and productive annual Session. Your Executive Committee met on November 10th, the day prior to the Annual Meeting to review all material to be presented and discussed at the Council Meeting. We were hosted to a dinner on that same evening by the India Section and officially welcomed to India in a delightful and charming ceremony. We were called up individually, including spouses and guests, to have the traditional “red dot” (tilaka) placed on our foreheads, a lovely shawl placed around our neck and presented with a single Anthurium flower. Traditional Indian cuisine was served. Concurrent with the Annual Meeting, Section VI sponsored a Global Dental Congress in New Delhi. This was a very well attended CE program, titled “Trouble Shooters Worldwide” and featured 17 speakers. The entire International Council attended the Inauguration (Opening Session) of this event and we used this same venue for our 2011 IC official group photograph. The evening after the first day of the IC meeting (11.11.11) we were invited to a Cultural Event and dinner. The Cultural Event was a program about Classical Indian Dance and featured four dancers (3 female and 1 male) and four musicians and the director of the most famous dance school in Delhi. She told us of the history of classical dance in India and then described the significances of the various hand positions and other bodily movements and how each related to events in nature. It was very beautiful and quite precise. We had two further functions with our hosts – a dinner at a local restaurant on the final day of the Annual Meeting (11.12.11) and the dinner following the Induction (11.12.11) at Hotel LaLit.

The International Council business was addressed in a spirited but orderly manner. During the Strategic Thinking Session the subject of “Value of Fellowship” was fully discussed and will provide ideas for the College leadership to enhance this value for the next generation of Fellows. Committee meetings were then held. The nest day the Council adopted a new Logo for use by the CAL and the Sections in their correspondence initially with possible other uses in the future. This new Logo does not replace the key which is our traditional symbol. The Council also: approved a balanced 2012 budget; made positive decisions on our database system; rescinded a 2010 decision on a fee for the Globe in hard copy to Life members; and forwarded many Governance changes to the 2012 Bylaws committee for consideration by next year’s Council. Councilor Woong Yang was elected Vice President of the CAL starting 1.1.12. We also agreed to three Sections’ bids for hosting future Council Meetings: Chengdu, China in 2013; Australasia in 2012 (Auckland, NZ or Sydney, AU); Europe in 2015. The full 2011 minutes will be ready by the end of the calendar year.


My final Visitation occurred the day after our Annual Meeting. Section VI – India, Sri Lanka, Nepal held their Induction Ceremony on November 13th. All the International Councilors and their guests were cordially invited to attend the Induction where approximately 50 new candidates received the Honor of Fellowship as well as two senior Fellows who were awarded MICD certificates. The meeting started with a General Body Assembly at 5:00pm followed by the Induction and Award Ceremony at 7:00pm. A Reception and Banquet completed the day’s activities. The India, Sri Lanka and Nepal Section is to be congratulated for serving as warm and gracious hosts during the 5+ days most of us spent in their country. They also provided a bus for all those who chose to visit the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. Many of us did and we all enjoyed the beauty of one of the Seven Wonders of the World.


Saying “Thank You” is the easy part; remembering all who deserve my personal thanks is a bit harder. One should never fail to say thank you as often as possible and I have tried to do that as the year went along. However I wish to publically acknowledge several who have made this presidential year easier for me in so many ways.

The Central Office staff, SG Jack Hinterman and Kathleen Bula, are available to me almost 24/7, although I don’t think I have abused it quite that much, to give advice, help with assignments and lend a supporting ear. Former SG Terry Hoffeld, who was in office for the first three months of the year provided similar service. Thanks, Jack, Kathleen and Terry.

The entire Executive Committee was most supportive and special thanks to Garry Lunn, PE and Leon Aronson, VP who were key members of our leadership team and were most generous with their thoughts, opinions and advice. PP Manfred Seidemann, whom I spoke with often via Skype, always gave me good feedback based on his leadership year. Gracias, mi Amigo. Clive Ross as Treasurer, from way down under, gave me good constructive suggestions and has “righted our financial ship,” a most difficult task and was aided by our newly hired CPA, Mark Zimmerman, and SG Jack Hinterman. DSG Van Zissi, was always a good “go to” person for another opinion and a cheery outlook. Editor Dov Sydney is a veritable fountain of good ideas and is full of energy and devotion to the College. Thanks, again, to you all.

I take special pride in the President’s Notes as mentioned above. I would like to share that it was not entirely a solo effort, though half of them were. While I had the ideas and outlines of each in hand, I had too many talented editors and authors around me not to take advantage of their talents in helping put these concepts into words. They then returned a draft allowing me to put it into final form in words and style comfortable to me. I am so grateful and wish to acknowledge, for their “editorial assistance,” Rich Galeone; Jack Hinterman; Vic Lanctis; Clive Ross; Manfred Seidemann; Dov Sydney. Hugs to all of you – you made me look good and helped me share good thoughts with the Fellowship. I will long cherish your friendship and help.

Special thanks to the Leadership and Hosts in all the Sections I visited. Your hospitality was wonderful and first class. You were gracious, generous, kind and considerate. Truly this was ICD Fellowship at its best.

This year would not have been possible for me without the support of my lovely wife, Gayle. She allowed me to do “my thing” with nary a comment about the time it was taking, or the times we were apart. Gayle, you are most special – my thanks and my love.


“The ICD Tree” As I traveled around the globe this year in my nine Section Visitations, I was able to speak to about 5% of our total Fellowship. In my Presidential Addresses, I told a story of a magical tree based on a dream I had on several occasions late last year and on which I based the presentation. Near the end of the address, I mentioned what real trees provide to the world and then added additional things our magical ICD tree provides: I said it is a:

TREE OF KNOWLEDGE – Helping us share dental knowledge worldwide.       TREE OF SERVICE – Helping us provide charitable works and humanitarian projects       TREE OF FRIENDSHIP – Helping us cultivate cordial relations within the profession       TREE OF INSIGHT – Helping us recognize distinguished service to the profession and the public worldwide       TREE OF STANDARDS – Helping us uphold the highest standards of professional competence and personal ethics       TREE OF LOVE – Helping us respect and understand one another regardless of age, gender, nationality, ethnic  origin, language or culture

I was so very pleased to find that this was exactly what I witnessed and what I experienced as I journeyed.

“Ottofy, Okumura and me” I have wondered what our visionary founders would have to say if they could see the ICD today. I think they would be very pleased with the cordiality that exists today among dentists in all parts of the world. That was their first objective and it is still fundamental to the College. Similarly I think they would not be surprised by the continued emphasis on education. ICD Fellows and Sections worldwide continually provide opportunity for CE – offering the latest in dental research, clinical dental techniques and procedures and public health concepts. As the world’s dentists improve their knowledge, the public they serve is benefited as well, another of their goals. Of course, with globalization and the shrinking world, it is much easier to offer Continuing Education in a myriad of formats and venues. They might be a little surprised by the many and varied humanitarian projects being provided by ICD Fellows all over the world. Or would they? Humanitarianism is just a logical extension of education, after all – ICD Fellows offering humanity the benefits of their knowledge and living the Motto of the College: Recognizing Service and the Opportunity to Serve. I also feel they would be most pleased, if a little surprised, at the growth of the College

My year is nearly over, but the memories will last my lifetime. I have given the position of ICD President all that I have to give, met many wonderful people in many wonderful places and tried to convey the feelings of Pride, Honor and Sense of Ownership that I possess to all in the College. I hope I had some success.

With humble gratitude and in warm Fellowship,

 Charles L. Siroky, 2011 International President

THIS AND THAT… A reminder to all Fellows: You were inducted into the International College of Dentists in your local section, but be aware you are also a member of a very large Global Fraternity. Wear your lapel pins proudly where ever you go. You never know who you will meet.

Downloads: Presidential Notes December 2011 (PDF format 120 KB )