Professor Lawrence Walsh continued…
I am writing to support the nomination of Dr Hisham Abdalla for the NZDA Outstanding Young Dentist Award. I have known Hisham since 2004, when I met him at a number of continuing professional education events over that year. At the time he was developing a strong interest in the use and teaching of lasers in dentistry and cosmetic medicine, and he took every opportunity to pursue every educational event available in that field. His progress up the learning curve for that technology was nothing short of spectacular, and within 12 months he was firmly on the path which would lead to him now being recognised as one of the top 5 dentists and educators in this field in the ANZ region.
I have had the pleasure of lecturing with Hisham at CPD events in the ANZ region since 2005. His lectures demonstrate his passion for dentistry, his clinical acumen, and his abilities as a first rate communicator. The physical expression of these traits can be seen in the dental practice he established in Auckland, which brings together lasers and other advanced technologies for patient care in an environment which not only supports a quality patient experience but which facilitates passing on that expertise to other clinicians through training and education. It was a far-sighted move for Hisham to shape his practice in that way, as a solo practitioner at the age of only 29. It is certainly a most impressive facility – and I say this having seen dental practices across some 30 countries. It is the physical expression of his consuming passion for high quality dentistry, and certainly is one-of-a-kind. Visiting it just after it opened was one of the highlights of my many visits to New Zealand.
By 2006 Hisham’s knowledge and skills had reached the point where I could be confident in his abilities to provide laser education in New Zealand at the level our UQ Focal Point program does here in Australia. We developed an alliance in which he delivers the basic laser training program in NZ and then the examination of the candidates is undertaken by myself in Australia. This is a special and unique relationship which we do not have with others, and this testifies to his standing in the field.
Hisham has been an invited speaker at several international laser meetings for which I have been the scientific program chair, and is a regular invited lecturer at the scientific congresses of the Australian Association for Laser Dentistry (AALD). I am looking forward to what he will contribute to the next AALD meeting this coming July.
In sum, Hisham is an energetic and inspiring young dentist whose accomplishments to date belie his youthful age. He is truly a leader in the profession and I have no doubt that he will continue to be a significant influence in the ANZ region. He embodies excellence, and has already achieved so much in his career – which has been for the benefit of the wider profession in NZ and in Australia.
His nomination for this award has my strongest support.
With kind regards.
Professor Lawrence Walsh