Health Care Research is His Passion

Lynn Jackson Brown to receive Alumni Achievement Award

Dr. Lynn Jackson Brown’s list of career accomplishment is long: He’s a dentist, economist, epidemiologist, researcher, consultant, author and editor.

And now Brown can add this to his list: He is receiving the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s Alumni Achievement Award for the School of Dentistry.  Brown’s award, and those of the other alumni honorees, one from each school and five receiving university-wide awards of distinction, will be presented at the 2013 Alumni Awards luncheon on April 18. For information and tickets for the event, click here.

“Dentists are bestowed special privileges to care for the oral health of our citizens,” said Brown (B.S. ’66, D.D.S. ’69). “A sea change has occurred in oral disease and its management since I graduated from the UMKC School of Dentistry. Unlike our predecessors of 60 or 70 years ago when it was common for individuals to have lost all of their teeth by the age of 50, today most elderly retain a functional dentition. We have much to celebrate.”

Brown’s work in 1969 with Vietnam veterans at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Kansas City spurred his interest in economics and epidemiology — the study of health-related patterns in society.

“When I entered the UMKC School of Dentistry, the dean of the school was Hamilton Robinson, a lion among dental educators at the time,” Brown said. “He was a pathologist and his love of knowledge and research influenced me. Although I continued my education further, I never encountered more dedicated educators than those I was privileged to meet at UMKC.”

Adding a master’s degree and a doctorate in social medical science, Brown began what would be two decades of government service in health care research.

In 1991, he was named director of the Division of Epidemiology and Oral Disease Prevention at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Brown was associate executive director of the Health Policy Resources Center, the American Dental Association’s main source of information and analysis on dental practice, economics and epidemiology. The ADA honored him in 2011 with its Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor bestowed by the ADA’s Board of Trustees.

Brown was editor of the Journal of Dental Education and a member of the senior staff of the American Dental Education Association from 2007 until July 2012, and received its Presidential Citation.

Based in a Virginia suburb of Washington, D.C., Brown now works mainly as a researcher and consultant.

“I am working on a grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration to develop innovative new delivery systems to provide care for disadvantaged populations in Appalachia,” he said. “I consult with philanthropic foundations to address the needs of those living in remote areas of the country.”

Brown enjoys spending time with his wife of 46 years, their sons and their spouses and their 10 grandchildren. He plays piano.

“And with some humility and considerable timidity, I am trying my hand at writing fiction,” he said.

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