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CU Dental alumna Leah Schulz addresses graduates at the DDS Class of 2023 Commencement

Leah E. Schulz, DDS '14, Named CU Dental Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Her advice to graduates: “Treat people well, and the rest will follow.”

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Written by Laura Ramsey on June 12, 2023

At her white coat ceremony in 2012, Leah E. Schulz, DDS ’14, said, “Listening to leaders from the dental community talk about our future patients and the ethical standards that will guide us resonated with me more than ever." Eleven years later, the roles were reversed.  

Schulz—now a leader in the dental community—gave the convocation address at the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine (CU SDM) DDS Class of 2023 commencement ceremony on Monday, May 22. She offered advice and a warm welcome to graduates as they enter the dental profession.  

“Treat people well, and the rest will follow,” she said. “I have learned over the years that those people you should treat well include yourself, your team and your patients, among others—present company included.”  

Following her speech, Schulz was presented with the 2023 CU Dental Distinguished Alumni Award.  


CU SDM Dean Denise Kassebaum, DDS, MS, presents the CU Dental Distinguished Alumni Award to Colorado Dental Association President Leah E. Schulz, DDS ’14, at the DDS Class of 2023 Commencement Ceremony on May 22, 2023.   

The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes CU SDM alumni who have demonstrated excellence in the dental profession, commitment to community involvement, and whose work has made a significant mark in the field of dentistry.  

Dean Denise Kassebaum, DDS, MS, proclaimed, “Dr. Schulz, this year we proudly celebrate your many achievements.”  

Schulz said, "It was such an honor to be recognized by the dean and the CU SDM faculty in this way.  The dental school’s commitment to providing quality dental education and instilling in us a social responsibility to advance the oral health of ALL Coloradans is a privilege that I don’t take for granted. I feel fortunate to precept CU Dental students on their clinical externships, continue to learn from and alongside members of the CU SDM community, and to participate in organized dentistry with ASDA students and CU SDM faculty." 


About Leah E. Schulz, DDS ’14  


Colorado Dental Association President and CU SDM alumna Leah E. Schulz, DDS '14.

Leah E. Schulz, DDS ’14, is an alumna from the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine (CU SDM) and is the current President of the Colorado Dental Association (CDA). She is passionate about improving health equity through her work as the Director of Dental Projects at Salud Family Health, a federally qualified health center and Advanced Clinical Training and Service (ACTS) program site. Schulz enjoys meeting and teaching dental students as an ACTS preceptor.  

Schulz has a keen interest in political advocacy efforts, especially those that benefit historically marginalized communities, and is actively involved in the National Network for Oral Health Access (NNOHA) Policy and Advocacy Committee, the CDA Government Relations Council and the CDA Small Donor Committee. She is chair of the Colorado Dental Political Action Committee, a CDA Action team leader and the dentist representative on the Colorado State Medical Assistance and Services Advisory Council.  

Equally passionate about practice management and organizational leadership, Schulz is a member of NNOHA’s Practice Management Committee, a delegate to the American Dental Association (ADA), an ADA Success Speaker, a 2019 graduate of both the National Oral Health Leadership Institute and the Regional Institute of Health and Environmental Learning’s Primary Care Movers and Changers Leadership Program, and a 2020 graduate of the ADA Institute for Diversity in Leadership. Schulz was awarded the Geiger-Gibson Emerging Leader national distinction in 2018 and was honored with a fellowship by the Pierre Fauchard Academy in 2022. She will be inducted into the International College of Dentists in 2023. 


Watch Schulz's convocation address: 


Topics: Alumni