Oral Health Group

Dental Hygienist Honoured with Premier’s Award


November 26, 2013
by Kahaliah Richards

Ottawa, ON, Canadian Dental Hygienists Association (CDHA) member and Canadore College dental hygiene graduate, Elina Katsman, is the recipient of the 2013 Premier’s Award for Health Sciences, in recognition of her outstanding contributions, commitment, and dedication to her profession.


The annual Premier’s Awards honour the important social and economic contributions made by Ontario college graduates to the province and to the world. Nominations are submitted by Ontario’s 24 colleges and are presented in six categories: Business, Creative Arts and Design, Community Services, Health Sciences, Technology, and Recent Graduate.  Katsman, who ranked first in a field of 21 nominees in her category, received her award at a gala event held recently at the Royal York Hotel in the company of Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario, and Brad Duguid, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities.

Elina resides in Toronto and teaches at the dental hygiene college, APlus Institute.  She is President and Founder of the Smile Foundation and Sonrisas, and her Healthy Smiles project in the Dominican Republic has provided services to more than 3.5 million clients utilizing 150 active volunteers mobilizing operations for 15 clinics across the country.  “This award is such a great honour,” said Katsman. “There are many children around the world who cannot smile because they are too poor and too unhealthy. We can make a difference and I urge you to each help just one child.”

Elina has been offered the prestigious position of Honorary Consul to the Dominican Republic for Canada, is the recipient of the Rotary International Paul Harris Award, and has received awards and medals from her local municipality, the Dominican government, and the Canadian Embassy for her social work. She is a long time CDHA member and was recently honoured for her 25+ years of membership in the association.  “This is an amazing honour recognizing the valuable contributions that dental hygienists make to their communities both globally and locally,” said CDHA president Mary Bertone.  “CDHA is extremely proud of Elina’s accomplishments and contributions.”

Serving the profession since 1963, CDHA is the collective national voice of more than 26,800 registered dental hygienists working in Canada, directly representing 17,500 individual members including dental hygienists and students. Dental hygiene is the 6th largest registered health profession in Canada with professssionals working in a variety of settings, including independent practice, with people of all ages, addressing issues related to oral health.

For more information on oral health, visit: www.dentalhygienecanada.ca.