Members & Fellows

Linda Niessen, D.M.D., M.P.H., M.P.P.

Dr. Linda Niessen serves as Dean and Professor for Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine was founded in 1997 and was the first new dental school to open in 25 years in the US, the first dental school affiliated with an osteopathic medical school and the first private dental school in Florida. Since opening, NSU’s College of Dental Medicine has focused on innovative clinical education incorporating state of the science dental technologies into the dental curriculum. With academic excellence and student-centerness as core values, the College of Dental Medicine has focused on caring for underserved children and adults, medically complex and special needs populations.

Dr. Niessen is a diplomate of the American Board of Dental Public Health and the American Board of Special Care Dentistry. As a clinician caring for medically complex and geriatric patients, Linda has authored numerous papers in peer reviewed journals and has been an invited speaker at meetings throughout the world on these topics. As a member of the faculty at Baylor College of Dentistry (now Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry), she launched a 2 minute dental news segment, “Dental Health Check” focusing on oral health. “Dental Health Check” aired weekly on WFAA-TV (Dallas’s ABC affiliate) for 15 years, providing oral health news for consumers.

Dr. Niessen has served as president of the Dallas County Dental Society, American Association of Women Dentists, American Association of Public Health Dentistry, Friends of the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research and the American Academy of Esthetic Dentistry. She currently serves as a member of the US Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration Advisory Committee on Training in Primary Care Medicine and Dentistry. She previously served as Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer for DENTSPLY International, where she oversaw the global clinical education and professional relations activities for the $2.9 billion dental manufacturing company.

Linda received her Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry (Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of New Mexico. She received her dental degree (DMD cum laude), her Masters in Public Health degree (MPH) and her Masters in Public Policy degree (MPP), all from Harvard University. Linda’s passion lies in identifying programs, models and partnerships that improve the oral health of the public, whether through education, research, new technologies and/or community service programs.