The AAO and the AAO Foundation were very saddened to learn of the passing of Robert W. Hazel, MA, CAE, CFRE on July 28 in St. Louis, after a long battle with cancer. Mr. Hazel retired in 2018 as executive vice president of the AAO Foundation, where he served as an executive for 26 years.

“We are so sorry about Robert’s passing and extend our condolences to his wife, son and daughter,” said Dr. Orhan C. Tuncay, president of the AAOF Board of Directors. “The Foundation will always remember his many years of dedicated service, his friendship and his great successes that led to support for many orthodontic academic leaders.”

During his years of work with the Foundation, Mr. Hazel developed pledging opportunities designed to build a strong financial basis. He worked closely with the AAOF Board of Directors on fundraising initiatives that enabled the Foundation to provide $12.3 million in funding in 26 years, primarily in support of junior orthodontic faculty, including:

– 232 Fellowship Awards
– 242 Research Awards

Approximately 80 percent of today’s orthodontic department chairs received support from the AAO Foundation when they were junior faculty.

Mr. Hazel also was instrumental in fundraising efforts that the AAOF undertook to support the Craniofacial Growth Legacy Collection Project. The collection preserves representative samples dating back more than 75 years, of irreplaceable longitudinal craniofacial growth records of approximately 1,000 children and adolescents who did not have orthodontic treatment. The complete sets of growth records are now in collections that are the property of a number of U.S. and Canadian universities.

The AAOF awarded the 2018 Eugene and Pauline Blair AAOF Distinguished Service Award to Mr. Hazel.

If you would like to make a donation to the AAOF in Robert Hazel’s memory, please visit