This award is given in recognition of prominent status and contributions to the field of orofacial pain and headache research. Nominations for this award are provided by membership, the TMD, Cervical Spine & Orofacial Pain Special Interest Section, and the Scottsdale Program Committee. Recipients are invited to present the lecture during a dedicated plenary session at the Scottsdale Headache Symposium.

This award was named in honor of the late Dr. Steven B. Graff-Radford, for his profound contributions to the dental field and among his many accomplishments, the first dentist to become a board member of the American Headache Society.

Dr. Graff-Radford

Graff-Radford, Steven. jpg

Dr. Graff-Radford came to UCLA in 1978 as a young dental school graduate from South Africa. He had been accepted to UCLA’s Oral Surgery Residency program and was exploring educational opportunities in the dental school prior to beginning his program.

He began studying temporomandibular disorders (TMD) and was interested in the way chronic pain was being treated at the UCLA Department of Anesthesia Pain Management Center. In 1982, Dr. Graff-Radford was offered a fellowship in pain management, which became his life’s focus. After completing the program, he began teaching and treating patients at the center and eventually became the education director.

In 1990, he approached the dental school administrators with a proposal to create an orofacial pain residency program. The program became the first residency program in orofacial pain in the world and became a model for similar programs. His program was so impactful that it became the example that the American Board of Orofacial Pain adopted for their board exam.

He later became the director of the Headache, Orofacial Pain and Sleep Apnea Program at the Cedars-Sinai Pain Center and held an appointment as a clinical professor at the USC School of Dentistry. Dr. Graff-Radford had a distinguished academic career, receiving numerous grants and publishing in excess of 150 papers, chapters and abstracts.

Dr. Graff-Radford became world-renowned in the headache community, and he helped to change the perception of dentistry in the medical community as it relates to TMD.

Past Recipients

2023 - Paul L. Durham, PhD

Towards A Better Understanding of Orofacial Pain Pathology and Treatments

2022 - Marcela Romero Reyes, DDS, PhD, FAHS

Translational Perspectives in Orofacial Pain and Headache:
Strengthening the Bond Between our Fields

2021 - Richard Ohrbach, DDS, PhD, OdontDoc (hon)

Comorbidity of Painful Temporomandibular Disorders and Headache

2020 - Tara Renton, BDS, MDSc, PhD

Head, Tooth or Heart Ache?

2018 - Rafael Benoliel, BDS (Hons)

Facial Pain… Or Just a Headache?

2017 - Barry Sessle, BDS, BSC, MDS, PhD, DSC

What have the Past 40 Years of Research into Craniofacial Pain Mechanisms Told Us about Craniofacial Pain States and Their Management?