School of Dentistry names Sheila M. Riggs to Lead Primary Dental Care Department
University of Minnesota School of Dentistry has named oral healthcare researcher and epidemiologist Sheila M. Riggs , D.D.S., Dr.MedSc , to chair its Department of Primary Dental Care.
Dr. Riggs received her doctor of dental surgery degree at the University of Iowa College of Dentistry and both a master’s degree and a doctorate of medical sciences in epidemiology at Harvard University.
“Dr. Riggs is a trained epidemiologist and researcher, grounded in the application of evidence-based research to the delivery of oral health care services”, said School of Dentistry Dean Patrick Lloyd. “She brings with her exceptional academic credentials, community and private sector experience and perspectives, extensive knowledge about a variety of dental public health issues, and a national reputation as a leader in community health improvement initiatives.”
Most recently the CEO, president, and director of Delta Dental of Minnesota (2005-08), Riggs also has held executive leadership positions within Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Iowa and the Wellmark Foundation (1995-2005). In 2003, she was appointed by the Governor of Iowa to lead the statewide Healthy Iowans 2010 program, was the founding Director of the Ames, Iowa Free Dental Clinic, and has been a member of numerous state, regional and national healthcare policy task forces. She is a member of the board of directors of the Greater Twin Cities United Way, the YWCA of Minneapolis, and the Minnesota Women’s Economic Roundtable.
According to Lloyd, “Dr. Riggs joins our faculty at a significant time as we continue to integrate our dental and dental hygiene programs, prepare to launch new educational programs, and expand our community outreach initiatives to assist the state in addressing access challenges for Minnesota communities”
“This is an outstanding opportunity for our School of Dentistry to hire a recognized leader in primary dental care issues, as well as health improvement,” said Frank Cerra, M.D., senior vice president for health sciences at the University.
The University of Minnesota School of Dentistry is the state’s only dental school, graduating dentists, hygienists, dental specialists and researchers committed to discovering new knowledge, technology and skills to benefit the profession and the community it serves.