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South African Dental Journal

On-line version ISSN 0375-1562
Print version ISSN 0011-8516

S. Afr. dent. j. vol.71 n.5 Johannesburg Jun. 2016




Rustication and rejuvenation



WG Evans

Managing editor,




June or Juno was the wife of Jupiter. Caesar gave the sixth month her name. However, there is another version which ascribes the name of the month to Iunius... meaning Youth and indeed June is celebrated as Youth Month in South Africa. This is a time of rededication and of commitment to the future. The energy and enthusiaism and excitement of Youth are recognised and encouraged.

In many ways June may be a time of rebirth, of a determination to seek new paths and directions. So it has been for at least three of our Association colleagues who in the month of June have relinguished aspects of their current lives and are embarking on new and stimulating opportunities. This issue of the Journal recognises the enormous contributions made by those three colleagues.. disparate though their fields of endeavour may have been.



Johan Smit may just have set a world record for he has been Chief Dental Officer of South Africa for more than 25 years! He has retired to the Lowveld where he has every intention of taking advantage of country life, walking, reading, wildlife studies. The profession awards Dr Smit a resounding accolade for his dedication and for his commitment in representing Dentistry at the highest levels of government over all those years. A burdensome, challenging and at times frustrating responsibility, carried out with sincerity and with achievement. He held our trust and deep respect. Well done, Johan and thank you.

For many readers the Journal has over several years offered a truly impressive and valuable service -the accumulation of Ethics CPD points has been wonderfully facilitated by the regular columns contributed by Professor Su Naidoo. A more consistent contributor you will not find. Month after month an article appeared, a pertinent ethical topic was explored, some careful observations made and excellent advice and guidance delivered. This has been a column on which all could totally rely and it will be a source of sadness and distress that Su has now delivered her last Ethics commentarynumber 61 appears in the June issue, an unbroken line over all those Journals. Professor Naidoo is seeking a new direction in her life and has indicated that no longer will her bye-line be appearing in our Journal. Sad for us all but we wish her such success and happiness. Our sincere appreciation and congratulations on a significant contribution to the enormous benefit of readers.

Although Maretha Smit will be with us until the middle of August it was in June that the news of her impending departure was first announced. The vacant chair in the office of the CEO will emphasise just how much she will be missed. Over the years of her tenure the Association has matured and developed. Maretha can depart knowing she leaves an Association in shipshape condition. Her dedicated and intense and innovative efforts on behalf of Dentistry South Africa have earned her the respect and admiration and congratulations of members.

The Journal has profited from the input of all three of these colleagues, whether as author, referee or involved executive. Now changes are due.. and we may philosophize about change, ranging from Heraclitus (540-475?BC) who wrote: There is nothing permanent except change to Alfred North Whitehead (1861 -1947) who observed: The art of progress is to preserve order amid change and to preserve change amid order. In both quotations we should find truth. On that understanding the Journal and the Association will be encouraged to seek the youthful energy promised by June, and to continue to move forward in pursuing the ideals and the examples set by our departing colleagues to each of whom the warmest good wishes are extended.