Phillips Sonicare/RDH magazine Mentor of the Year Award

June 27, 2008
During recent ADHA annual session in Albuquerque, dental hygienists honored one of their mentors, Mary Semancik of Virginia.

Gail B. Stoops, RDH, BSDH, senior manager of professional relations for Philips Sonicare, presented the Mentor of the Year Award on June 20 to Mary Semancik, RDH, during a ceremony at the ADHA Annual Session in Albuquerque.

To view a video of Stoops' speech during the ceremony, click here.

Semancik, a dental hygienist from Herndon, Va., was nominated by a colleague who cited her mentor's support during a return to the profession after an extended absence.

Pam Walters, RDH, also of Herndon, Va., said, "At 50 years old and newly licensed in Virginia, I was looking for a dental hygiene position with much trepidation."

She explained, "After showing me their office and explaining the responsibilities, Mary had the final say in hiring me. Mary not only gave the dentist the go ahead to hire me, but she took me under her wing to quickly get me up to speed. I was so grateful for her guidance and advice."

The two hygienists also teamed up to perform volunteer work for Virginia dental hygiene component societies and charity work.

Walters concluded, "Mary is not only my mentor but has become a personal friend as well as a fellow dental hygiene board member. I have been practicing for two years now and my confidence in my abilities l owe mostly to Mary. Because of Mary, I am enjoying being a dental hygienist now more than I did the first time around."

Semancik has practiced in Kentucky, Switzerland, Germany, Alaska and Virginia.

To view the RDH magazine article about the Mentor of the Year award, click here.