UDHA President 2021-2022 Speech

Empowering Each Other- UDHA 2021-2022

Below is the speech Kali Hunt gave after being put into her president role. We're so excited to have her leading the Board this year!

"Thank you Danyelle, for that beautiful induction, what an honor it has been to have you as a friend for all these years. I want to also thank my family, husband and kids and also my parents for all their love and support they have provided me with to be able to be in this position. I recognize it has taken sacrifices on their behalf, and I am grateful for their efforts. And a HUGE Thank you to all the newly installed members that have accepted positions to serve on the 2021-2022 Utah Dental Hygienist Association Board of Trustees. I hope we can make this coming year a positive one for everyone!

Since I was nominated for President of UDHA last year, I have been pondering what my theme for the 2021-2022 year should be. One thing that kept coming back to me was that life constantly brings us change. If we don't change, we don't grow. If we don't grow, we aren't really living. Don’t we all want to live the one and only life we have, to the fullest? How we react and respond to that change is what shapes and molds us into the individuals we are. This year, I would like the UDHA theme to be Empowering Each Other. Wouldn't it be great if we could focus on supporting, uplifting, and encouraging each other on a more frequent basis? Think of all the positivity that would be encircling us in this crazy world we live in!

To empower, by its definition, means to put power into – therefore, empowering people is the process of enabling someone to do something themselves. Let's all work together to empower a positive change in our daily lives. We can’t make the change for any specific individual, but we can encourage and support them in the change they are choosing to make. We can empower each other to focus on the good in the changes we face in our day to day lives.

Think back to your dental hygiene education years...Don’t shriek or shudder as you contemplate the rigorous years of blood, sweat and tears you put into earning your degree as a Registered Dental Hygienist. Were those years of schooling filled with change? I know mine were, but I also know they were some of the best years of my life. I moved across the state, away from all my family and had to find and make new friends---all changes that resulted in growth. I would be lying if I said I had to do hygiene school “on my own” because I quickly became empowered by those with whom I was working, roommates and friends I made, and of course all my dental hygiene classmates.

Take a minute to reflect on the person you have become today compared to who you were as a dental hygiene student. Did that require change? I know for me it did! But I also know I did not make those changes on my own. I was empowered by my classmates, my instructors, my patients, my family, sometimes even complete strangers.

I was lucky enough to meet Danyelle when I moved across the state and got a job as an assistant to help put myself through school. From the moment I met Danyelle, I knew she was a hygienist I wanted to mirror when I graduated. She was always empowering me as an assistant, and helping me learn and grow or change as I worked towards my goals. The empowerment I got from her, helped shape me into who I am today.

Maya Angelou said “If one has courage, nothing can dim the light that shines within”

Wouldn’t it be great if we could help make each and every hygienist's light shine brighter in whatever their drive/decision/goal may be?

  • 2020-2021 have been different years as we have lived through and been affected by the Corona Virus Pandemic

  • It has been a rough year, a year most definitely filled with change. We have gone from having lots of hygienists available to cover a shift/day off/ etc to begging hygienists to cover a day off. We should be looking for ways we can empower each other through the changes that have taken place over this last almost 2 years and as we continue to embrace the ever changing future.

  • We need to come together, members and non members alike and up-lift and empower each other

  • No matter where you are in life, inspire and empower the women/men around you. Success is NEVER reached alone. Wisdom and Wealth are sweeter when shared.-Mizzfit

  • Instruments: Just as each one of the instruments I used to install my board are valuable in the process of achieving the end goal of providing treatment to a patient, each and every member/hygienist is a VALUABLE asset to our dental hygiene community and we need to uplift and empower each other no matter what stage or phase of life we are in.

  • Mother, working 1-2 days a week

  • Full time temp

  • Educator

  • FT Hygiene

  • Single mother/parent

  • Retired hygienist

  • Clinical Hygienist

  • Public Healthcare worker

  • Independent/Running their own business

  • We rise when we lift others and after almost 2 years of battling the pandemic, we need to support and lift each other up.

  • Supporting others' successes will never damper yours!

  • How do we empower others? Here are three things we can do to Empower each other in this coming year:

  • FIRST: Notice the positive details of each others personalities

  • Acknowledge the joy their laughter or smile brings to you. Always focus on the good you see in others. It takes 5 positive praises to balance out one negative comment. We can empower each other by looking for, and finding/focusing on those positive things. Not one of us here is perfect, we’ve all missed calculus at some point and most likely will miss another piece or two in our career lifetime. Don’t dwell on your own imperfections, or on those of the people around you. Stay positive.

  • Recognize others specific strengths and provide them with opportunities to help build up those strengths. Maybe a strength you notice about a co-worker or fellow hygienist is how they always comfortably interact with patients, even when the situation may be less than ideal. Empower others by recognizing what they are good at.

  • SECOND: show meaningful appreciation.

  • Saying “Thank you” goes a long way. Demonstrate your appreciation to empower those around you and in turn, you will empower yourself as well. Eckhart Tolle said “Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life, is the foundation for all abundance”. Be the good for others to see. Recognize and show gratitude for everything. Don’t compare yourself to others because we all know comparison is the thief of joy. We must find time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives. Showing meaningful appreciation is a two way street when it comes to empowering each other. You expressing gratitude empowers others and empowers yourself.

  • THIRD: Lead by Example. If we all made an effort to embrace the change before us and utilize that change to empower us, I believe, we as hygienists would be much stronger and happier. We embraced the changes that came at us throughout COVID. Hopefully we empower each other through those changes and can continue to uplift and support each other with this upcoming year.

You are the most influential person you will talk to all day. What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create. Don't fixate or dwell on the things you aren’t good at. Positive self talk and empowerment begins with you. I echo Mother Teresa when she says “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” As UDHA, let's empower each other by throwing the stone in the water. Let's create ripples of empowerment that can affect those around us, and continue to spread. Let’s be the empowering change in the world we face today. Let's notice the positive qualities and attributes of others, show meaningful appreciation, and lead by example.

  • Elanor Rosevelt said: “The Future Belongs to Those Who Believe in the Beauty of Their Dreams.”

  • We all need to believe in each other, just as I believe in each one of the members on my board, and all UDHA members, and non members alike. As Hygienists, we are working to save lives in whatever stage of life we are currently living/practicing in.The future of the next year is unknown, but we can believe in each other and the beauty of each individual hygienist. We can take the lead this upcoming year to better not only ourselves, but also all the hygienists in our state, nation, and profession as a whole.

I hope to help empower YOU, wherever you are at in your life, with whatever goal you have in mind. I hope that by working together to empower each other, we can make this upcoming year a positive year of change, because we know that change is constant.

So for this year, as UDHA President, I hope that at least one person, one hygienist, one patient feels empowered by something YOU can do by lifting them up. Let’s make this year an empowering, uplifting and exciting year, with whatever comes our way!

It has been said that “We are more powerful when we empower each other”, So let's embrace whatever changes may come, and make 2021-2022 a powerful year!"