Meharry seal

Join us for the 143rd Fall Convocation Monday, October 8, 2018 at 10:00 a.m.

Keynote Speaker Jeanne Craig Sinkford, D.D.S., Ph.D., D.Sc., FACD


To view the 2018 Convocation Program with scholarships, awards and prizes.

Front cover of the 2018 Convocation program.
Portrait of Dr. Jeanne C Sinkford

Jeanne Craig Sinkford, D.D.S., Ph.D., D.Sc., FACD

Dr. Jeanne Craig Sinkford is Senior Scholar-in-Residence, Office of the President and CEO of the American Dental Education Association. She is also Professor and Dean Emeritus, Howard University College of Dentistry. Dr. Sinkford’s distinguished career in dental education includes serving as Dean of Howard University College of Dentistry from 1975-1991.


Dr. Sinkford is a nationally and internationally renowned dental educator, administrator, researcher and clinician. She finished first in the dental class of 1958 at Howard University before pursuing graduate study at Northwestern University where she received her M.S. (1962) and Ph.D. (1963). She completed a Pedodontic Residency at Children’s Hospital National Medical Center in 1975. Dr. Sinkford became the first woman dean of a dental school in the U.S. in 1975. She served in that capacity for 16 years.


She has served on numerous committees and advisory councils of national significance including: Council, Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences NRC Governing Board, National Advisory Dental Research Council; Directors’ Advisory Council, National Institutes of Health; Governing Board of the American Society for Geriatric Dentistry; Advisory Board, Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Program; Committee A, Council on Dental Education and Chair, Appeal Board Council of Dental Education, American Dental Association; Chair, Council of Deans American Association of Dental Schools; Council on Dental Research, American Dental Association; Tuskegee Study Advisory Panel; Special Medical Advisory Group (SMAG), Veterans Administration; National Academy of Sciences; Chair, Anatomical Review Board of the District of Columbia and National Board of Directors of the Girl Scouts USA. She served on Advisory Boards: Boston University Goldman School of Dental Medicine, Howard University College of Dentistry, West Virginia University Health Sciences Center National Advisory Council, the Sullivan Alliance Advisory Board, the National Project Advisory Committee (NPAC) Department of Health and Human Services and the Advisory Committee on Research on Women’s Health (ACRWH), National Institutes of Health.


Dr. Sinkford has more than 100 articles published in refereed journals and has written an instructional manual for Crown and Bridge Prosthodontics. From 1992 to 2011, Dr. Sinkford was responsible for diversity programming and initiatives at the American Dental Education Association (formerly, American Association of Dental Schools). Under her leadership, ADEA created numerous opportunities for the advancement of women and under-represented minorities including: ADEA/Enid A. Neidle Scholar-in-Residence Program for Women; ADEA International Women’s Leadership Conferences (1998, 2003, 2005, 2010); ADEA/W.K. Kellogg Access to Dental Careers Program; ADEA/W.K. Kellogg Minority Dental Faculty Development Program. Dr. Sinkford co-authored two seminal reports related to women’s health: Women’s Health in the Dental School Curriculum, Report of a Survey and Recommendations (1999) and ADEA Survey on Women’s Health in the Dental Curriculum, An Update 2011.


Dr. Sinkford holds honorary degrees from the University of Michigan, Meharry Medical College, Georgetown University, the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, and Detroit- Mercy University. She has received Alumni Achievement Awards from Northwestern University and Howard University and numerous other Citations for Exceptional Professional Achievement. Dr. Sinkford was selected as an Outstanding Leader in Dentistry by the International College of Dentists. She is the first AA woman to be so honored. She has received the Lucy Hobbs Taylor Award from the Association of American Women Dentists and Presidential Citation from the American Dental Association and the Society of American Indian Dentists.


Dr. Sinkford received the 2007 Trailblazer Award from the National Dental Association (NDA). She was also recognized with the distinguished 2009 Herbert W. Nickens Award from the Association of American Medical Colleges for her outstanding contribution to promoting justice in medical education and health care. In 2010, Dr. Sinkford received the Pierre Fauchard Academy Gold Medal Award for her outstanding contributions to the progress and standing of the dental profession. In 2015, Dr. Sinkford was presented with American Dental Education Association’s William J. Gies Award for Vision, Innovation and Achievement for Outstanding Vision by a Dental Educator and the American Dental Association’s Distinguished Service Award. In 2017, Dr. Sinkford received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American College of Dentists. She is a life member in the American Dental Association and was elected to Life Membership in the National Dental Association in 2012. Dr. Sinkford has been a member of the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences since 1975.

Roles of Volunteers:

  • Assist guests to their seats and/or overflow area
  • Direct VIPs to the reserved section
  • Assist and direct participants on and off stage

What time should you arrive?

  • Volunteers for the ceremony should arrive at 8:15 a.m. on Monday, October 8, 2018 and meet at the volunteer station located in Room 204 of the Cal Turner Center. All volunteer stations should be released by 1:00 p.m.


  • Business attire (black and white preferred) or dark-colored clothing (navy)

What to do if?

  • Guest has special request
    • If you encounter a guest with special needs (i.e., diabetic, asthmatic) security personnel will be stationed in the following locations listed below. The officers on duty have been directed to assist you and will know whom to contact in case of an emergency.
      • Turner Center Ballroom Foyer
      • Turner Center Lobby
      • President’s Corridor in the Turner Center
      • Alumni Hall -Main Floor Lobby Foyer


If you would like to serve as a volunteer, please R.S.V.P. via the form below.

7:30 am

Donor’s Appreciation Breakfast
Henry A. Moses Ph. D. Alumni Hall

10:00 am

2018 Convocation Ceremony
The Cal Turner Family Center for Student Education
2nd Floor Ballroom
1011 21st Avenue North
Nashville, TN 37208

Finding The Cal Turner Family Center for Student Education

The Cal Turner Family Center for Student Education at Meharry Medical College is located minutes from downtown Nashville just off I-65 near Nashville’s Germantown neighborhood and Fisk University.  The location is convenient to many of Nashville’s best hotels and attractions.


Ample parking is available on campus. The main entrance of The Cal Turner Center also allows valet parking service to support your banquet or gala.

From Interstate 65:

  1. Drive northwest on I-65N toward I-40W.
  2. Take Exit 209 to merge onto George L. Davis Boulevard.
  3. Turn left onto Charlotte Avenue.
  4. Turn right onto Dr. D. B. Todd Jr. Boulevard.
  5. Campus will be on the left.

From Interstate 24:

  1. Drive northwest on I-24W toward Exit 47A.
  2. Take Exit 47 toward Jefferson Street.
  3. Turn right onto Spring Street.
  4. Continue onto Jefferson Street Bridge.
  5. Turn left onto Dr. D. B. Todd Jr. Boulevard.
  6. Campus will be on the right.

From Interstate 40:

  1. Drive northwest on I-65N toward Exit 209B.
  2. Take Exit 209 to merge onto George L. Davis Boulevard.
  3. Turn left onto Charlotte Avenue.
  4. Turn right onto Dr. D. B. Todd Jr. Boulevard.
  5. Campus will be on the left.
Cal Turner Location Map