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31 May 2013 | Australasian Dental Practice

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A-dec mourns loss of company co-founder Joan Austin

By David Petrikas


It is with great sadness that A-dec marks the passing of its co-founder, Joan D. Austin, who unexpectedly passed away in her sleep in the early morning hours of June 5 at her Newberg, Oregon, USA home. She was 81. Her husband and A-dec co-founder, Ken Austin was at her side.

The passing of Joan (pronounced Jo Ann) is a great loss to the entire A-dec community and all who knew her. Joan Austin was co-owner and co-chair of the board for A-dec, Inc., the largest privately-owned dental equipment manufacturing company in the United States.

Joan and husband, Ken Austin, founded the company in October 1964. Up until her death, Joan was involved in the company's administrative, personnel, philanthropic, financial and legal operations and president of associated Austin\family businesses.

Son-in-law and A-dec President and CEO, Scott Parrish, announced to employees that A-dec is grieving the loss of a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, business leader and genuine altruist. Joan is survived by her husband Ken Austin, two children and five grandchildren, all residents of Newberg and its surrounding area.

"We are deeply saddened by the passing of Joan. Aside from Joan's dedication, breadth of experience, rich insight and business acumen, it's her enormous capacity to give that will create the greatest void," Mr Parrish said.

The company Joan co-founded with her husband Ken pioneered many of the innovations used in dental surgeries today, which include A-dec dental chairs, delivery systems and dental lights.

Today, A-dec employs more than 1,000 people. The company markets its manufactured dental products to dental professionals in more than 100 countries worldwide and partnered with other leading companies to provide complete dental solutions. A-dec CEO, Scott Parrish has reassured employees of the family's commitment to remain a family-owned business in Newberg.

Joan Austin holds several honorary degrees and distinguished awards and was very active in the local community, was an ardent supporter of education, the arts, youth and government and held the distinction as the first woman to chair the Board of Directors for Associated Oregon Industries. Joan remained active in the company and in the community up until the time of her death.

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