About the AAOF

What does the AAOF do?

The AAO Foundation, the charitable arm of the American Association of Orthodontists, provides support to orthodontic education programs and orthodontic research.

The AAO Foundation is incorporated as a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit corporation in the state of Missouri. The Board of Directors consists of eight directors elected by the eight AAO constituent societies; three ex-officio members from the AAO (i.e., AAO secretary-treasurer, secretary-treasurer designate, and executive director); three public directors appointed by the Board; the Board meets twice annually and is the managing body of the Foundation, vested with the authority to conduct all business of the organization, subject to the laws of the State of Missouri.

The Mission of the AAOF is to advance the orthodontic specialty by supporting quality education and research that leads to excellence in patient care.  Foundation funding ensures the future viability of the specialty by investing in the next generation of educators and researchers.

Since 1994, the AAO Foundation Awards Program has provided just over $10.7 million in funding, primarily in support of Junior Faculty, including:

  • 225 Fellowship Awards
  • 222 Research Awards

Support for Junior Faculty has resulted in:

  • Publications – over 100 articles and abstracts, most of which have been published in journals within orthodontics, but many in journals outside the specialty and the profession.
  • Lectures – scores of lectures at dental, orthodontic and at other scientific meetings as well.   
  • Professional advancement – Of the 66 Department Chairs and 36 Program Directors (total of 102) in the 72 graduate orthodontic residency programs in the U.S. and Canada, 31 were supported early in their academic careers by the AAO Foundation.
    • Numerous tenured, associate and full professor positions 
    • Eighteen NIH funding recipients
    • 80% of Junior Faculty supported by the AAOF remain in full-time academics after five years.
    • On the AAOF website, there are Final Reports from some 391 peer-reviewed, funded proposals.

In addition to support of Junior Faculty, the Foundation has created the AAOF Craniofacial Growth Legacy Collection designed to preserve representative materials from the participating orthodontic collections and has launched a new campaign (Research Initiative) focusing on improving orthodontic research in the U.S. and Canada.