The UCSF School of Dentistry lost a strong and unforgettable voice with the passing of Dr. Po-Ping Wong (D’65) on Sunday, August 24, according to his son, retired Major General M. Ted Wong (D'84, former Chief of the US Army Dental Corps).
Dr. Po-Ping Wong was born in Hong Kong and immigrated to the United States as a teenager. He earned his undergraduate and master’s degrees in horticulture from the University of Idaho. Following a short career in academia, he entered the UCSF School of Dentistry, graduating in 1965.
In the fall of 1965 he began a private practice in Garden Grove, Calif., continuing to practice at the same location for 39 years, until his 2004 retirement. His philosophy as a dental professional, summarized in a 2013 Recognition Banquet biographical note, was "to do the best of my ability to perform any procedure, may it be simple or complex, regardless of the time required."
A dedicated and enthusiastic alumnus of the UCSF School of Dentistry, Dr. Wong was a regular attendee at the annual Scientific Sessions. Over the past decade it became a tradition to conclude the UCSF Dental Alumni Association Awards Luncheon with Dr. Wong leading those assembled in the UC hymn "All Hail Blue and Gold" in his distinctive tenor.
Dr. Wong was a life member of the American Dental Association, and in 1981 he was recognized as a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry. In 2013 he received the UCSF Dental Alumni Association Medal of Honor at the 117th Scientific Session.
Dr. Wong inspired his three sons to embark on health-related careers, and two of them are fellow UCSF School of Dentistry alumni: Dr. Ted Wong and Dr. Andre Wong (D’01).
Dean Featherstone remembers Dr. Wong as a dedicated friend of the UCSF School of Dentistry and a model of giving back to the school in every way. He asks that the school community join him in offering condolences to Dr. Wong’s family and in carrying forward his commitment to service.
Dr. Po-Ping Wong at UCSF Alumni Weekend 2014.