Dr. Hal E. Hale Honored as 2019 Dentist of the Year
At the KDA Annual Meeting on Saturday, March 23, Dr. Hal E. Hale was honored as the KDA's 2019 Dentist of the Year.
Dr. Hale has served the Kansas Dental Association in several capacities. He was a KDA Delegate representing Wichita for many years. Dr. Hale is not only a current member, but was one of the founding members of the KDA’s Kansas Initiative for New Dentists (KIND) Committee. Also, he has served several terms on the Council on Dental Legislation.
He has been a fixture at the KDA’s Dental Day in Topeka and has often testified before the Kansas Legislature on behalf of the KDA. Dr. Hale is the KDA’s Action Team Leader for the Kansas 4th Congressional District, one of his duties, as such, is to participate in the American Dental Association’s Student-Dentist Lobby Day at the Capital in Washington, D.C.
In addition, he serves as one of the KDA’s Delegates to the ADA House of Delegates. In 2011, he was elected President of the Kansas Dental Association.
About Dr. Hal E. Hale
Dr. Hal E. Hale was born in Arkansas City, Kansas but grew up and still lives in Wichita.
Inspired by his family dentist Dr. Gene Brown, Hal was interested in becoming a dentist from childhood. He began observing in Dr. Brown’s office at the age of 12. He continued these observations during the summers until his college days.
Hal graduated from Wichita State University. However, in 1979, his undergraduate studies were delayed a year, while he battled a rarely survived form of cancer. He attended the University of Missouri, Kansas City School of Dentistry, and graduated in 1988.
Upon graduation from UMKC, he returned to Wichita to practice general dentistry. Eventually, he bought Dr. Brown’s practice, and they practiced together for over 13 years, until Dr. Brown’s retirement. Hal practices solo now and intends to continue practicing for many more years.
Organized dentistry became one of Dr. Hale’s passions from the first time he served on a committee for the Wichita District Dental Society. After serving on the Board of Trustees and going through the officers’ line, he became President of the WDDS in 2006. In 2012, Dr. Hale was named the WDDS’ Dentist of the Year.
Hal has also served the profession in many other ways. He is a Fellow of both the American College of Dentists and the International College of Dentists. He is a Past President of the UMKC School of Dentistry’s Alumni Association.
Currently, he serves on the American Dental Association’s Council on Dental Practice, and the ADA Dental Wellness Advisory Committee. Additionally, Hal is the Past Kansas Section Chair of the Pierre Fauchard Academy and is currently the PFA’s Region 10 Trustee.
But, what Hal values most from his years of service, are the many close friendships he has made with dentists in Kansas and nationwide, and the memories and experiences that they have shared together.
Outside of dentistry, Hal has multiple interests. As a teenager, he was an honored member of the Order of DeMolay. Hal is a Past Trustee for the Wichita Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, and one of the youngest persons to ever receive the 33rd Degree of Freemasonry. He enjoys studying history and politics and watching multiple sports.
Of course, his greatest joys have come from his friends and family. Hal is an only child, but he and his best friend of over 43 years, Richard Paugh, are closer than most brothers. During his Senior Year of Dental School, Hal married the great love of his life, Kris. They had 15 happy years together until her untimely death in 2003.
Since that time, it has been Hal and his only child, Courtney. She now teaches first grade in Wichita. Many in this room know Courtney because she has attended several KDA and UMKC events with her dad. Courtney is the pride and joy of her father and brings him his greatest happiness. He is forever grateful for her support and mostly for her love. He could not have made this journey without her.