ASDA delegates serve to increase membership, interact with state and local dental societies, and encourage members to seek national and regional leadership positions. This past year, ASDA delegates faced an additional hurdle: keeping members engaged and sharing ASDA’s value throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Each district nominates a District Delegate of the Year award to a delegate who has shown outstanding commitment to ASDA. From the 11 District Delegates of the Year, one delegate is named National Delegate of the Year for their significant personal dedication and accomplishments. This year, Gabrielle Gette, Temple ‘22, was awarded the National Delegate of the Year Award.
Gabrielle, who serves as the chapter president for Temple ASDA and the District 3 facilities coordinator, has shared her passion for ASDA with Temple students and District 3 members. She connected students during this time of social isolation, encouraged peers to get involved and remained committed to the dental profession.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Gabrielle quickly shifted to a virtual world. To keep members informed, she sent biweekly ASDA newsletters with news from local, district and national ASDA. Recognizing Zoom fatigue, she and her team at Temple ASDA focused on hosting a few high-impact events to maximize member engagement. They hosted weekly virtual trivia games during the summer, which helped students decompress from the stress of the pandemic and strengthened the sense of ASDA community.
Advocacy is a key component of the ASDA tripartite, and Gabrielle encouraged students to learn more about ASDA’s important advocacy efforts. Temple ASDA had the most attendees at the Mid-Atlantic Advocacy Academy, hosted by Districts 2, 3 and 4. At this conference, students learned about ASDA’s key advocacy initiatives, such as dental professionals administering vaccinations, midlevel providers, student debt and licensure reform. At her chapter, Gabrielle established voter facilitation meetings, which instructed students to register to vote and how to request a mail-in ballot in Pennsylvania.
Lastly, Gabrielle was committed to promoting students’ wellness and enhancing community service initiatives at Temple. This year, Temple ASDA combined wellness and giving back through their Miles for Smiles Temple ASDA Wellness Challenge. During this month-long walk-a-thon, every mile Temple ASDA members walked was converted to a $1 donation to the chapter’s chosen non-profit, the Bethesda Project. Temple ASDA raised $1,000 to donate to the Bethesda Project, which helps the local homeless community in Philadelphia.
Gabrielle has shown her adaptability, determination and passion for organized dentistry. She has strengthened her chapter and encouraged Temple students to get more involved in ASDA. Gabrielle has also contributed to District 3 and the Philadelphia community. We thank her for her commitment to ASDA and congratulate her on receiving the National Delegate of the Year Award.
~ASDA 2020-2021 Executive Committee