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Photo of Tomar, Scott

Scott Tomar, DMD, DrPH

Associate Dean for Prevention and Public Health Sciences, Professor - Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Interim Associate Dean for Research, Interim Department Head of Oral Biology

Pediatric Dentistry


Building & Room:

Room 102GB


College of Dentistry 801 S. Paulina Street, IL 60612


Dr. Scott Tomar joined UIC College of Dentistry in April, 2020 as Associate Dean for Prevention and Public Sciences.  He formerly served as Professor and Chair of the Department of Community Dentistry and Behavioral Science at the University of Florida College of Dentistry, where he also served as Director of Institutional Analysis and Evaluation and Director of Research for the Department of Pediatric Dentistry.  He is a Director of the American Board of Dental Public Health and has served as President of the American Public Health Association’s Oral Health Section, the American Association of Public Health Dentistry (AAPHD), and the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) Behavioral, Epidemiologic and Health Services Research Group.  Dr. Tomar is a former editor of Journal of Public Health Dentistry and Journal of Evidence-Based Dental Practice.  He has received a number of awards, including IADR’s H. Trendley Dean Distinguished Scientist Award, American Association for Dental Research’s Jack Hein Public Service Award, AAPHD’s Distinguished Service Award, and the Florida Dental Hygienists’ Association’s Presidential Oral Health Hero Award.  He received his B.A. and D.M.D. degrees from Temple University, M.P.H. degree from Columbia University, and certificate in Dental Public Health and Dr.P.H. degree in Oral Epidemiology from The University of Michigan. Dr. Tomar is a graduate of CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Public Health.

Selected Publications

Dr. Tomar has published about 170 journal articles and book chapters, and contributed to seven reports of the US Surgeon General.  Recent publications include:

Kerr AR, Robinson ME, Meyerowitz C, Morse DE, Aguilar ML, Tomar SL, Guerrero L, Caprio D, Kaste LM, Makhija SK, Mungia R, Rasubala L, Psoter WJ; National Dental PBRN Collaborative Group. Cues used by dentists in the early detection of oral cancer and oral potentially malignant lesions: findings from the National Dental Practice-Based Research Network. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol. 2020:130(3):264–72.

Wolf KK, Dávila ME, Tomar SL, Governale L. Impact of promotora model on caries incidence after a comprehensive dental treatment. [Impacto del modelo promotora sobre la incidencia de caries dental después de un tratamiento dental complete]. Revista Odontológica de los Andes 2020 [in press].

Thomas ML, Magher K, Mugayar L, Dávila M, Tomar SL. Silver diamine fluoride helps prevent emergency visits in children with early childhood caries. Pediatr Dent 42(3):217-20.

Serna CA, Sanchez J, Arevalo O, Tomar S, McCoy V, Devieux J, De La Rosa M, Bastida E. Self-reported factors associated with dental care utilization among Hispanic migrant farmworkers in South Florida. J Public Health Dent 2020; doi: 10.1111/jphd.12364. Online ahead of print.

Frebel H, Mugayar L, Tomar SL. Hospital inpatient admissions of children and adolescents for non-traumatic dental conditions in Florida. Pediatr Dent 2020;42(3):212-216.

Tomar SL, Morón E, Alwalie A. Hospital use for non-traumatic dental conditions among older adults in Florida. Gerodontology 2020; 7(1):66-71.

Shenkman E, Tomar S, Manning D, Davis D, Sun Y, Amundson CW, Mistry K. Feasibility and usability of measuring receipt of sealants in 2 states. J Am Dent Assoc. 2019;150(10):839-845.

Tomar SL, Hecht SS, Jaspers I, Gregory RL, Stepanov I. Oral health effects of combusted and smokeless tobacco products. Adv Dent Res. 2019;30(1):4-10.

Khan N, Tomar SL. The incidence of oropharyngeal cancer and rate of HPV vaccination coverage in Florida, 2011–2015. J Am Dent Assoc 2020;151(1):51–8.

Milling EP, Dávila ME, Tomar SL, Dodd VJ. Impact of the promotora model in improving caregivers’ oral health knowledge [Impacto del modelo promotora en el mejoramiento del conocimiento sobre salud oral de los cuidadores]. Revista de Salud Pública de la Universidad Nacional de Colombia 2019;21(1):64–9.

Psoter WJ, Morse DE, Kerr AR, Tomar SL, Aguilar ML, Harris DR, Stone LH, Makhija SK, Kaste LM, Strumwasser B, Pihlstrom DJ, Masterson EE, Meyerowitz C, National Dental PBRN Collaborative Group. Oral cancer examinations and lesion discovery as reported by U.S. general dentists: findings from the National Dental Practice-Based Research Network. Prev Med. 2019; 124:117–23.

Arevalo O, Tomar SL. Perpetual inequities in access to dental care: government or professional responsibility? In: Treadwell HM, Evans CA (eds). Oral health in America: removing the stain of disparity. Washington, DC: American Public Health Association; 2019:25–42.

Morón EM, Tomar SL, Souza R, Balzer J, Savioloi C, Shawkat S. Dental status and treatment needs of children in foster care. Pediatr Dent 2019;41(3):206–10.

Tomar SL. The transnational tobacco industry and oral health. Community Dental Health 2019;36(2):163–8.

Johnson B, Serban N, Griffin P, Tomar S. Projecting the economic impact of silver diamine fluoride on caries treatment expenditures and outcomes in young U.S. children. J Public Health Dent 2019; 79(3):215–21.

Morón E, Tomar S, Balzer J, Souza R. Hospital inpatient admissions for non-traumatic dental conditions among Florida adults, 2006–2016. J Am Dent Assoc. 2019;150:514–21.

Serban N, Bush C, Tomar SL. Medicaid caseload for pediatric dental care. J Am Dent Assoc 2019;150(4):294–304.

Gold J, Tomar SL. Interdisciplinary community-based oral health program for women and children at WIC. Matern Child Health J 2018; 22(11):1617–23.

Abukabbos H, Tomar S, Guelmann M. Cost estimates for bioactive cement pulpotomies and crowns in primary molars. Pediatr Dent 2018;40(1):51–5.

Serban N, Tomar SL. ADA Health Policy Institute’s methodology overestimates spatial access to dental care for publicly insured children. J Public Health Dent 2018;78(4):291–5.


  • Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry, Philadelphia, PA. DMD, 1984
  • Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, NY. MPH, 1989
  • University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI. Certificate, Dental Public Health, 1991
  • University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI. DrPH, Oral Epidemiology, 1993
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA. Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer, Epidemiologist, and Dental Officer. 1993–1996, 1998–2000
  • University of California, San Francisco. Assistant Professor, 1996–1998
  • University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. Associate Professor, 2000–2006; Professor, 2006–2020; Chair, Department of Community Dentistry and Behavioral Science, 2005–2009, 2015–2018; Director of Institutional Analysis and Evaluation, 2018–2020; Director of Research, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, 2018–2020.

Licensures and Certifications

  • American Board of Dental Public Health, Diplomate, 1994. Director, 2019–
  • American Association of Public Health Dentistry, Executive Council Member 1996–2000; President, 2009–2010.
  • American Public Health Association, Oral Health Section. Section Councilor (2010–2013), Section Chair (2015–2017), Governing Councilor (2018–2020)
  • International Association for Dental Research. Behavioral, Epidemiologic, and Health Services Research Group, President (2006–2007). Joint Publications Committee (2007–2010).
  • Journal of Public Health Dentistry, Editor-in-Chief, 2000–2004.
  • Journal of Evidence-Based Dental Practice, Senior Associate Editor (2012–2015), Editor (2015–2017), Editor Emeritus (2017– )
  • Illinois, licensed dentist
  • Michigan, licensed dentist

Research Currently in Progress

Dr. Tomar’s research focuses on four primary areas of investigation: (1) increasing access to oral health prevention and treatment services for vulnerable populations; (2) understanding the patterns and predictors of risk factors for oral disease, including tobacco use; (3) behavioral interventions to improve oral health; and (4) quality and cost-effectiveness of care in oral health.  He has been a key investigator on epidemiologic studies that helped establish the magnitude of oral health conditions, instituted oral health surveillance system in several locales, and tested community-based interventions to ameliorate those problems.