A.T. Still University’s Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health alumnus Abrahim Caroci, DMD, MPH, ’13, is one of only 109 individuals and organizations in the world to be honored this year with the Golisano Health Leadership Award. The Golisano Health Leadership Awards were launched in 2016 to recognize individuals and organizations that are furthering the cause of Special Olympics and improving access to healthcare, fitness, and wellness programs for people with intellectual disabilities. The awards are named for philanthropist and Paychex founder, Tom Golisano, who has donated more than $37 million to Special Olympics to expand its work in increasing global access to inclusive health for people with intellectual disabilities.
Dr. Caroci began his work with Special Olympics Special Smiles in Arizona. He then joined a research delegation, attending Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Greece and Los Angeles. Since moving to Rochester in 2013, he has become a Special Olympics Special Smiles clinical director, helping to coordinate projects locally and statewide. He is also a board member of the American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry, which focuses on integrating the medical and dental fields to serve people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
“It all started while in dental school,” says Dr. Caroci. “I volunteered at the Special Olympics Special Smiles and never stopped. Special Olympics events allow current and future clinicians to meet athletes on ‘their own turf’ as a person first, and not as a patient. That makes a real impact. Today we work to provide the same experience for the new generation of clinicians. I am certain that such positive experiences will help to forge a strong relationship beyond the academic years and help meet our goal of inclusive health.”
Dr. Caroci is a pediatric dentist committed to offering children and families high-quality service and care for long-lasting healthy smiles. His training includes hospital dentistry, management of trauma, infections, sedation, dental treatment under general anesthesia and special needs patients.
Stephanie Corkett, manager of health communications for Special Olympics, contributed to this article.