Memorial Service For Dr. Richard P. Ferguson

Dear UW Orthodontic Alums,
With sadness, I share with you the news that Dr. Richard P. Ferguson, one of our most respected alumni and member of the Washington orthodontic and dental community, passed away on Friday.

Dr. Ferguson practiced orthodontics in Seattle and received his Certificate in Orthodontics and MSD from UW in the early 1970s.  He was a past president of the Washington State Dental Association and the Washington State Association of Orthodontists. He was a founder and steering committee member with the Seattle Vocational Institute Dental Assistant Program and the Seattle Central College Dental Hygiene Program, as well as the South Seattle Community College Expanded-Function Dental Auxiliary Program. He also served in the U.S. Air Force, where he was a consultant to the U.S. Surgeon General.

Here at the UW SoD, he had an immense impact as a strong, clear voice for inclusion and diversity. For more than 20 years, he served on the SoD Admissions Committee, where he helped to recruit and interview students from under-represented communities. He also worked in the Partners in Diversity program and with the African American Mentoring Network.

He was a powerful force for inclusion outside the School as well, working to advance this cause at WSDA. He and his wife, Phyllis, were also key members of the campaign that led to the election of the American Dental Association’s first woman president, Dr. Geraldine Morrow, in 1991. Dr. Ferguson also founded the Washington State Black Health Care Professionals and was a member of the International College of Dentists and Seattle King County Dental Society, as well as the Sand Point Community United Methodist Church.

In 2012, he received the Volunteer Service Award at the annual UW Health Sciences Martin Luther King Jr. observances. In 2005, our Dean’s Club gave him its highest recognition, the Honorary Lifetime Member Award.

A memorial service for Dr. Ferguson will be held on Saturday, Oct. 14 at 11 a.m. at Sand Point Community United Methodist Church, 4710 NE 70th St., Seattle. All are invited to celebrate the life of this remarkable man.  He was a real gentleman, and he will be missed dearly by his family, friends, and colleagues.

Greg Huang

Chair – Department of Orthodontics
UW School of Dentistry