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Election deadline: April 11, 2017, 11 pm EDT

William B. Chan, DA75, DG82, D10P, DG13P, DG13P

Lincoln, RI
B.S. Zoology, University of Rhode Island, 1971; D.M.D. Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, 1975; Certificate, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, 1982

Work Experience:

William Chan and Associates, Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics. Cumberland, RI (1982–present) and Private Practice in Chinatown, Boston (1983–present); Tufts School of Dental Medicine, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Assistant Clinical Professor (1986–present); South Cove Community Health Center (1975–1980); Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard School of Medicine, Department Anesthesia, NIH, Clinical and Research Fellow (1975–1980)

Tufts Volunteer Activities:

Member, Dental Campaign Committee (2016–present); Board of Advisors, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (2010–present); member, Beyond Boundaries Campaign Committee (2007–2011); member, M Club Executive Committee (1990–present); reunion co-chair, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (all reunions 1980–2015); dues paying member, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine Alumni Association (2006–present); co-chair Selection Committee, Dr. Walter Brehm Memorial Lecture (2014–present); co-chair, Dr. George White and Dr. Anthi Tsamtsouris Fund for Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (2014)

Non-Tufts Volunteer Activities:

Board member, Rhode Island Delta Dental Insurance Group (2000–present); president, Woonsocket RI Dental Society (1990–1991); board member, South Cove Community Health Center, Boston (1983–1985)

Tufts Family:

Married to Garly (Quan), J75; son, Benjamin, D10, DG13, DG13


It is an honor and privilege to be nominated for an Alumni Trustee position to the Tufts Board of Trustees. Tufts has played such a significant and enduring role in my life, first providing an immigrant from Hong Kong with the education to fulfill his aspirations, and later as a professional with a place in a community devoted to enriching the lives of its students and the future. It is beyond my wildest dreams to be nominated for this prestigious position.

At age 12, I immigrated to New York City from Hong Kong with my family. I entered my first day of seventh grade not able to speak, read, or write a word of English. While I worked diligently to learn and write English, it was only with the help of my patient teachers, who worked with me after school hours, that I was successful. My parents were working even harder at a restaurant and a clothing factory during this time to support us. My father always believed in running his own business and after four years, saved enough money to purchase his own Chinese restaurant. The restaurant business is tough, with its stressful seven-day-a-week work schedule, limited family and vacation time, and never-ending list of miscellaneous problems. While in high school, I worked every day at my father’s restaurant alongside my parents. However, they instilled in me the notion that education was the key to opening up new possibilities of what I could achieve. It is a simple but deep-rooted and powerful belief, which I took to heart and passed on to my children. My experience as an immigrant and the kindness demonstrated to me by my teachers sowed the early seeds of what would be a life-long passion for teaching and helping others.

My long-time family dentist, Dr. Canestrari, D61, introduced me to the dental profession and to Tufts, his alma mater. I was attracted to Tufts by Dr. Canestrari’s stories as a student, and was also drawn to its location in Chinatown, Boston. The area was significantly underserved at that time with only one dentist; it became clear to me I could help provide much needed care to the community and its immigrant residents. I applied to Tufts School of Dental Medicine and was admitted to the class of 1975A. After graduation, I was awarded a clinical and research fellowship in the Department of Anesthesia at Massachusetts General Hospital, and I was also fortunate to help establish the dental department at South Cove Community Health Center in Boston’s Chinatown. I served as a staff dentist there during the early years of my career, fulfilling what had originally compelled me to study dentistry at Tufts.

No words can fully express how thankful I am and will forever be to the Tufts University School of Dental Medicine—for providing me with the education and skills to support my family, for empowering me to aspire and make a difference in my community, and for so profoundly shaping my life for the better.

The kindness and opportunity extended to me throughout my life has influenced me to make Tufts a priority and search for ways to help the university and its students. While I make monetary donations annually, I realize I can also effectively support the school and its students through my time and effort. Teaching and mentoring my students at the dental school has been one of the most gratifying experiences over the last 30 years. I have also contributed to strengthening such sentiments in my fellow Jumbos through many fundraising efforts. One of the most rewarding fundraising experiences was in honor of my mentors, Dr. George White and Dr. Anthi Tsamtsouris of the Department of Pediatric Dentistry. I rekindled old friendships and helped reestablish a sense of school pride and loyalty in many new contributors. The outpouring of support resulted in the largest amount of donations recorded in the department to date.

It has been my honor to give back over the years with my service to the school, and I fully appreciate the rich relationships built because of the university. As a member of the Board of Trustees, I will be deeply committed to ensuring Tufts carries on as an institution that changes the lives of its students and impacts the world. I hope to positively contribute as a trustee, drawing on my experiences as a former student, a current member of the Board of Advisors for the dental school, a faculty member, and a parent of a Jumbo.

I appreciate your consideration for my nomination as an Alumni Trustee of Tufts University. I will bring to the Board of Trustees my diverse background, honesty, dedication and passion, to strengthen Tufts University and its reputation as a world class institution.

View the other Trustee candidate:

View Alumni Council Candidates