School of Dentistry Alumni Achievement Award winner
Dr. Connie L. Drisko, recipient of the 2014 UMKC School of Dentistry’s Alumni Achievement Award, died Sunday at Georgia Regents Medical Center.
Drisko was Dean Emeritus of The Georgia Regents University College of Dental Medicine. She enrolled in dental school after a 16-year career as a dental hygienist. After completing her DDS degree, she joined the UMKC dental faculty as an associate professor, teaching in various departments for 10 years. The quality of her work there was reflected in the teaching awards and research grants she received, as well as her community service.
She was then appointed dean of the College of Dental Medicine at Georgia Health Sciences University, now Georgia Regents University. During her tenure, student enrollment grew significantly and greater student diversity became an enrollment goal. In recent years the American Dental Association commended her school’s dedication to educating minority and low-income students for careers in dentistry.
According to an announcement by GRU she died after a short battle with acute myelogenous leukemia. Drisko is survived by her husband, Dr. Richard Drisko; a step-daughter, Julie Gardner, and her husband, Marc, of Frisco, Texas; a sister, Carol Barr of Wichita, Kan.; two granddaughters, Kristin Longstaff (husband, Travis) and Cara Gardner, all of Frisco, Texas; and five nieces and nephews. A memorial service for friends and extended family is being planned for September. Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors in Augusta, Ga., is in charge of arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made in Connie Drisko’s memory to the Georgia Health Sciences Foundation, 1120 15th Street, FI-1000, Augusta, GA 30912. Funds will be used to support the College of Dental Medicine’s pediatric dentistry outreach programs and other efforts related to the oral health needs of children.