Focus on Alumni
National Dental Museum Honors Dr. Irwin Smigel

The National Dental Museum, part of the Smithsonian Institution, premiered a new exhibit, "The Smile Experience," on June 6, 2009. The exhibit, a multimedia presentation, features the achievements of Dr. Irwin Smigel, NYUCD Class of 1951, who is widely known as the "father of aesthetic dentistry" for pioneering tooth bonding for aesthetic purposes in the late 1970s.

Visitors can see how people have enhanced their smiles throughout history, from the ancient Mayans who decorated their teeth with jade, to the Elizabethans who whitened their teeth with acid, to Dr. Smigel's introduction of tooth bonding to the American public on the popular TV show, "That's Incredible," which ushered in the modern age of aesthetic dentistry.

In 2000, NYUCD established the Smigel Prize in Aesthetic Dentistry, which honors individuals who have advanced the field of aesthetic dentistry.