Alumnus will serve as the sixth dean to lead LLU School of Dentistry


Loma Linda University (LLU) School of Dentistry has named Robert Handysides, DDS, its new dean, effective Jan. 1, 2018. Handysides currently serves as the school’s associate dean for academic affairs.

“I am deeply honored and humbled to learn that my colleagues and peers have chosen me to lead the School of Dentistry,” Handysides said. “Although the School has a proud tradition of excellence and is recognized as having one of the profession’s premier clinical programs, we have no interest in resting on our laurels.”

Handysides, who has served as an associate dean since 2013, has guided and directed the decision-making and implementation of both clinical training and curriculum design — essential to the maintenance, integrity, and growth of the school.

He will replace Joseph Caruso, DDS’73, MS’75, who has served as the acting and interim dean for the School of Dentistry since May 2017. Caruso will continue through the academic year serving as associate dean for Strategic Initiatives and Faculty Practices, as well as program director for the Advanced Specialty Education Program in Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics.

“It has been my privilege to work closely with Dr. Handysides as the School of Dentistry’s associate dean for academic affairs,” said Ronald Carter, PhD, LLU provost. “Rob demonstrates a delightful blend of attention to detail and process with a cheer and humor that lightens the load of serious decision making.”

Additionally, “Dean Handysides has a vision for academic and professional excellence and the commitment to forge a faculty and administration equal to the challenges of 21st-century dental education,” Carter said.

In 2001, Handysides served the Department of Endodontics in a variety of roles: course director, lecturer, clinical educator and researcher. In 2003, he became director of the LLU Faculty Endodontics practice, a position he held for 10 years.

Handysides was added to the LLU Faculty of Graduate Studies as associate professor in 2007, and in 2008 he was promoted to associate professor status with the Department of Endodontics. In November 2008, he was named a Diplomate by the American Board of Endodontists.

Handysides graduated from LLU School of Dentistry in 1993. Following graduation, he established a solo practice in Kingston, Ontario, his Canadian home, for five years.  

“I look forward to collaborating with our School’s highly dedicated faculty, staff, alumni and students as we strive to improve on our laudable past,” Handysides said.

About Loma Linda University Health

Loma Linda University Health includes Loma Linda University's eight professional schools, Loma Linda University Medical Center's six hospitals and more than 900 faculty physicians located in the Inland Empire of Southern California. Established in 1905, Loma Linda University Health is a global leader in education, research and clinical care. It offers over 100 academic programs and provides quality health care to over 40,000 inpatients and 1.5 million outpatients each year. A Seventh-day Adventist organization, Loma Linda University Health is a faith-based health system with a mission "to continue the teaching and healing ministry of Jesus Christ."

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