It has now been 10 years since Dean Jim Lund died. For many of us who knew and worked with him, the memories have come rushing back. Jim was a dentist and renowned neuroscientist, as well as Dean of our Faculty of Dentistry for 13 years. He was asked to take on the position after the faculty was threatened with closure because we had almost no research or graduate students.
Starting in 1995 and throughout his 13-year tenure as Dean, Jim recruited top researchers who then brought in graduate students; their work resulted in many successfully funded studies and an increasing cohort of trainees that continues to the present day. Early on, Jim engaged with our expert clinical instructors to direct our faculty in the complete revision of our undergraduate curriculum, including the addition of core training with the medical faculty. Along with other initiatives, he worked tirelessly to lead the faculty in the development of our internationally recognized Alan Edwards Center for Research on Pain and our Dental Outreach Program. Thus, we now have the Jim Lund Lecture Room (Room 547) and the Jim Lund Dental Clinic at the Welcome Hall Mission.
These are specific examples of his accomplishments. However, his impact on many of us also stemmed from who he was as a person. His vision and passion to support our faculty, at all levels, also encompassed the way in which he dealt with every individual; he inspired and guided those around him. His commitment to underserved communities characterized his compassionate nature. His unwavering affirmation and support gave us all the confidence that we could accomplish anything we aimed to achieve. Jim was a mentor and role model to many within our faculty and far beyond.
On the 10th anniversary year of his death, we remember Dean Jim Lund for his strength, compassion and leadership. Our Faculty of Dentistry is his living legacy, as it is for everyone who contributes to its success.