At the first Congress of the Australian Society of Orthodontists Inc held in Sydney in 1961, the Foundation for Research and Education was born. Initiated by a generous gift from Dr Stanley Wilkinson, members were invited to make donations to the Foundation. From this small beginning, the capital base of the Foundation has slowly increased due to continuous generous donations from members, the annual Foundation levy, profits from some early Congresses and past Foundation Meetings, corporate supporters, and financial support from grateful patients. Over the years this has resulted in the Foundation having close to $7,000,000 in 2018. The interest and dividends earned from these funds is used to support orthodontic research and education.
The main mission of the Foundation is to promote and advance research and education in orthodontics. The work of the Foundation is intrinsically involved in the future of orthodontics.
As a way of fostering the education of present and future orthodontic practitioners, the Foundation stages biennially highly successful ‘Foundation Meetings’ between Congress years utilising overseas and local lecturers. The prestigious Donald Spring and Gerry Dickinson memorial lectures are presented at this meeting. The Foundation also supports Students Meetings with these Foundation Meetings and some Congresses.
The Foundation continues to fund and encourage scientific and clinical research exploring methods for improved orthodontic care, supporting individual and faculty members and postgraduate students which further promotes advancement in the art and science of orthodontics.
In encouraging research, the Foundation confers the following awards:
- the P Raymond Begg Award
- the Elsdon Storey Research Award
- the Milton R Sims Award
- the AB Orthodontics Fellowship
- the ASOFRE Australasian Student Poster Award
- the ASOFRE Scientific Poster Award
- the Jan Taylor Lectureship
The Foundation is administered by a committee appointed by the Council of ASO Inc and the current Federal President of the ASO Inc who is an ex-officio member. The Council of the ASO Foundation are the Trustees of the Foundation. The Foundation has been given the status of a Health Promotion Charity, a tax-free organisation which means that donations to the Foundation are tax deductible.