Dr. Linda Edgar, one of the School of Dentistry’s most prominent alumni, was chosen Tuesday to be president-elect of the American Dental Association (ADA). She will be the first UW dental graduate to hold the organization’s presidency when she assumes that office in 2023.
Dr. Edgar, a resident of Federal Way, Wash., was elected during the ADA’s annual House of Delegates meeting in Houston. An ADA member since 1992, she served in the House of Delegates from 2005 to 2018. She also served as the ADA’s Eleventh District trustee and on the ADA’s Council on Dental Practice, Business Innovation Committee, and Budget and Finance Committee.
From 2013 to 2014, she was president of the national Academy of General Dentistry. She was president of the Seattle-King County Dental Society from 2010 to 2011. She practiced privately with her husband, fellow UW dental alumnus Dr. Bryan Edgar, for 27 years in Federal Way before they retired in 2020. Before entering dentistry, Dr. Edgar was a teacher in Auburn, Wash., for 15 years, and she holds a master’s degree in education.
“I believe collaboration is very important, and I know it can move dentistry forward into more new and innovative programs and ideas,” she said in 2021 when she disclosed her plans to run for the ADA presidency-elect. At that time, she also noted the country’s rising dental workforce shortage and said, “I would like to see ADA be more proactive helping young people and diverse groups choose careers in dentistry.”
She and her husband have been two of the dental school’s leading supporters. From 2000 to 2008, they co-chaired the school’s Campaign UW fund-raising drive, which garnered $22 million and substantially exceeded its goal.
Dr. Edgar’s involvement with organized dentistry has also included organizations such as the Washington State Dental Association, Pierre Fauchard Academy, American College of Dentists, International College of Dentists, Academy of Dentistry International, and Washington Academy of General Dentistry.
Dr. Edgar was a top-level distance runner who completed at least 45 marathons and competed in the first Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials. She also completed two full Ironman races.