About The OTA
About The Orthodontic Technicians Association
The association was formed in 1971 following a meeting between orthodontic technicians employed in London teaching hospitals. Since then membership has grown steadily to represent all members of the industry. It is estimated that there are currently between 400 and 500 technicians earning their living from orthodontics in the UK.
The association is strictly a professional body devoted to the interests of orthodontics. It is not a trade union, but there would be no reason why the Association should not give opinions to institutions on the role of the orthodontic technician.
- To Encourage The Study, Improve The Practice And Advance The Knowledge Of Orthodontic Laboratory And Clinical Techniques For The Benefit Of The Orthodontic Team And Patient.
- Act as an advisory body to institutions and individuals on the use of all orthodontic laboratory techniques and the service orthodontic technicians provide.
- To widen, improve and develop the education and knowledge of those actively engaged in orthodontic technology through: the media, publications, lectures, exhibitions, conferences and any other appropriate means.
- Keep a register of members and their qualifications.
- To invite and collect subscriptions and donations to the funds of the Association by any lawful means.
- To co-operate with other organisations with the view to the promotion of the objects of the Association.
Benefits of Membership
The Association holds an annual technical conference at a suitable venue each year. This is well supported by both members and traders, and a good opportunity for members to get to know each other. Besides the social aspect of the conference, it is probably the best way of keeping up with the latest techniques and innovations in orthodontic technology as the lead-time on publication of articles can be long. The annual general meeting of the Association is held during the conference.
In addition to our own conference, the Association also takes part in the British Orthodontic Conference each year. Members are invited to put on table and poster demonstrations at these conferences. It is vital that we maintain a presence at this event in order to strengthen our links with our clinical colleagues.
Members of the Council sit on various boards and committees to represent the interests of orthodontic technicians. This is an important function due to the many changes taking place in dental technology at present. Areas under discussion at present include registration, orthodontic auxiliaries and clinical dental technicians.
As a member, you gain recognition of your skills as an Orthodontic Technician. In addition, you also gain representation on the following bodies:
- Central Council for Health Authority Dental Technology
- College and University Education Advisory Boards
- Consultant Orthodontists Group
- The British Orthodontic Society
- The British Orthodontic Conference
The Association produces a quarterly newsletter and members are encouraged to contribute letters and technical tips. The Newsletter reports on meetings attended by Council officers and keeps members up to date on changes in legislation affecting our profession. The Newsletter also provides technical support from the expertise of your fellow members.
Since 1997 Conference we have combined our Conference Programme with Proceedings, which, as well as containing abstracts of the lectures given at the Conference, also contains technical articles so that it can be used as a reference source. Anyone can submit an article for consideration for publication in the Proceedings.
History of The OTA
Thirteen orthodontic technicians attended the meeting and it was agreed that such an association should be formed. From this meeting, a steering committee was organised.
Len Bradshaw became the first chairman and Bert Aldridge the first secretary. Other committee members included P. Chittenden, H. Close, J. Ford, J. Griffin and H. Haringman.
During the first four meetings aims and objectives of the association were decided and in March 1972 a letter and questionnaire were sent to dental schools, hospital orthodontic departments and county council dental laboratories. As an act of confidence each committee member together with E. Cripps, H. Essinger, A. Wing and G. Wisker contributed to a launching fund to cover the costs of stationery, printing and postage.
In July 1972 a letter together with an application form and the comments received from the original replies were sent out inviting orthodontic technicians to apply for membership.
During the meetings that followed, the Constitution was written and the first OTA conference was planned and subsequently held in London during April 1973.
Conferences have regularly been held ever since at venues across the UK and the number of attending delegates has steadily increased over the years, as has the membership of the association.
The link with our clinical colleagues has also been strong since the inception of the association. This is in part maintained by inviting prominent orthodontists to serve as presidents of the association.
The OTA has also been an affiliate organisation of the British Orthodontic Society since it was formed in 1994.
In 1999, the first British Orthodontic Society technicians award was established in collaboration with the Orthodontic Technicians Association. This was first awarded in 2000 and continues to be awarded annually at the OTA conference. In 2003 another award was created, The British Orthodontic Society Award to an Orthodontic Technician for Distinguished Service.
The relationship between the OTA and the BOS was strengthened further in 2010 with a closer affiliation which would see the two organisations sharing membership services and the registered address of 12 Bridewell Place in the City of London.
The OTA Council
Contact me about how the OTA’s aims and objectives are represented at the BOS.
Rye Mattick qualified from Leeds in 1988. She later gained her orthodontic qualification from Newcastle and she went on to do her Senior Registrar training in Manchester.
She is now Consultant Orthodontist at Newcastle Dental Hospital where she is involved in undergraduate and postgraduate supervision, teaching and training and holds honorary university status.
She is the Training Programme Director and ran the MSc course for several years as well as supervising PhDs.
She is lead orthodontist for the Northern and Yorkshire Cleft Lip and Palate Service. She is active in research and has been involved in a number of award-winning clinical, randomised controlled trials.
She has published on a variety of topics although mainly in the area of cleft lip and palate. Within BOS she has served on COG Committee, been Director of the British Orthodontic Society Foundation (BOSF), and Chairman of the Scholarships and Grants Committee. She now takes great pleasure in being President of the OTA!
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact me about the management of the OTA, how the OTA is represented nationally and internationally, advertising with the OTA and publicity.
Andrea Johnson is the orthodontic and maxillofacial laboratory manager at Montagu hospital, Mexborough. She is the current chair of the Orthodontic Technicians Association (OTA) and the chair and founding member of registered charity Den-Tech.
She has served as a council member of the Dental Technologists Association (DTA), an associate lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University, a visiting lecturer at the University of Chester and is now a sessional teacher at Nottingham College.
The winner of a Star award, Pride of Derby and the Aldridge Medal, Andrea has a first class BSc (hons) degree in Dental Technology, she is a keen advocate of lifelong learning, she has written many CPD papers and lectured on a variety of subjects both nationally and internationally on subjects such as appliance construction techniques, dental materials, regulations and infection control etc.
Contact me about the organisation of OTA council meetings and conferences.
Jade is an experienced Orthodontic Technician with strong leadership and relationship-building skills. She is an extremely motivated and ambitious individual who is always looking for new ways to broaden her skill set and is looking to make a wider impact on the realm of Orthodontic Technology.
As senior Orthodontic Technician at Worcestershire Royal Hospital, she is responsible for the supervision of the Orthodontic Department of the Maxillofacial Laboratory on site. She is required to manufacture custom-made dental devices for public consumption and liaise closely with the Orthodontic consultants to ensure that the best possible outcome is achieved for all orthodontic cases requiring the laboratories services.
In addition to this, she also aids in the training and development of the Orthodontic trainee within the laboratory.
Jade promises an energy and excitement to approaching new challenges as well as a passion for her chosen field. She believes that it is her passion that sets her apart from other technicians her age, and continued professional development allows her to embrace innovation and new technologies.
The idea of being part of the wider Orthodontic community, brings with it new ideologies and methodologies, that she may not have explored to date. She believes that being part of the OTA council is the ideal course of progression for herself at this point, and feels that this step would broaden her current skill set and allow her to fully explore her potential as an Orthodontic Technician, whilst allowing her to give something back to the orthodontic community.
Membership Secretary and Commercial Laboratory Engagement
Contact me about how to join and maintaining your OTA membership.
Jennifer Dunnett runs her own business JD Denta Care in Edinburgh.
She qualified from Edinburgh’s Telford college with an advanced certificate in orthodontics and since qualifying has worked and volunteered in a variety of different commercial laboratories along with working full-time in one of Edinburgh’s leading orthodontic practices.
As an independent commercial technician, she feels she can bring a realistic outlook to the council without prejudice.
Contact me about the maintenance of the OTA’s financial affairs, records and procedures.
Daniel began his career as an apprentice dental technician in 1996 at Albion Dental Laboratory, Chesterfield. Albion covered all aspects of dental technology and this gave him a broad vision and foundation early in his career.
He finished his basic training at Rotherham General Hospital between 1999 and 2001 and then moved to Chesterfield Royal Hospital.
In his first four years at Chesterfield, Daniel completed both the Higher National Certificate and Orthodontic Diploma in Professional Studies. During this time he worked on utilising mid-palatal implants as an alternative to headgear and he enjoyed this immensely, also using it as his dissertation project.
In 2004, Daniel was the proud recipient of the British Orthodontic Society Technicians Award. He then left Chesterfield for Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospital in 2005 and during this time he completed the Diploma in Maxillofacial Prosthetic s and Reconstructive Science. In 2015 he returned to Chesterfield Royal to manage to Maxillofacial and Orthodontic Laboratory.
In 2008 I attended Manchester Metropolitan University successfully gaining a BA in Forensic Chemistry – a career path I had chosen to take at a very young age. However, upon completion, I still lacked the fulfilment I had hoped this degree would have given me which led me to my next career decision.
I have a strong family background within the Dental field with my father being an Orthodontic Technician and other family members becoming Dentists.
In 2011 I took an interest in my father’s trade and found myself spending a lot of time In his laboratory. I found myself quickly falling in love with the trade that made a big difference to peoples lives and quickly realised this is what I wanted to do.
Realising this was my passion I joined the BTEC National Diploma course at Lambeth college in 2012 studying theory whilst working and having a hands-on approach with the laboratory. I found having both elements together helped accelerate my hand skills and knowledge of dental technology quite quickly.
After 2 years of hard work, I qualified as a dental technician and joined the GDC and worked to every opportunity to improve my skills, which enabled me to obtain my current role as Operations Director at H M London Orthodontic lab.
I joined the OTA as a member this year and am keen to give my support in keeping this historic organisation active for many more years ahead. I strongly believe the future of orthodontic technicians lies within the OTA and I want to show how much I enjoy their existence.
My future plans include strengthening my education aiming to get my masters in Dental Technology and ensuring this great organisation maintains a presence with the young, upcoming technicians that will take over within the next generation.
Council member, conference programme coordinator / conference proceedings editor
Contact me using the OTA website contact form.
Contact me about OTAC lecture programmes and conference proceedings.
James is a maxillofacial and dental laboratory manager for London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children and the North Thames Cleft Centre, a supra-regional network for patients with clefts of the lip and palate from North London, Essex and South and West Hertfordshire. This service is run jointly by Great Ormond Street and the St Andrew’s Centre for Plastic Surgery at Broomfield Hospital near Chelmsford and he also works there for part of the time.
He trained at Barts and the London, Queen Mary’s School of Medicine and Dentistry in association with Lambeth College and qualified in 2001. After a vocational training year at the Royal London Hospital, he spent the following two years at the Eastman Dental Hospital, part of the University College London Hospitals NHS Trust, before transferring to Great Ormond Street in 2004.
James has written or co-written papers for journals including The Angle Orthodontist, the British Dental Journal and The Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal. He is an invited speaker both nationally and internationally and in the past was a lecturer at Lambeth College in London.
He has been awarded the Quintessence Book Prize for the best student from a London teaching hospital, the British Orthodontic Society Technicians Award and the Fellowship of the Orthodontic Technicians Association.
James was first elected to the Orthodontic Technicians Association Council in 2006 and served on its executive committee as treasurer from 2007 to 2016.James Green is also the current president of the Dental Technologists Association.
Website/VLE Lead, Minutes Secretary and BSI Liaison.
Contact me about the OTA website and VLE, OTA awards, OTA council meeting and AGM minutes and the British Standards Institute (BSI).
Edward is a lecturer in Dental Technology at Cardiff Metropolitan University. He began his career as work experience student at Chanters Dental Laboratory in Ashford, Kent.
Having decided that dental technology was worth a go he studied at Lambeth College in London for four years qualifying with a BTEC in 2004 and PDC in 2005. While studying at Lambeth he undertook work experience at the Kent and Canterbury Hospital which led to a job once he had qualified.
He worked as an orthodontic technician at Canterbury and then at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford when the department relocated in 2011.
In August 2012 he took up another orthodontic post at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford looking for a new challenge.
In January 2015 he took on a completely different role as senior technician at Cardiff Metropolitan University for eight months before being promoted to a lecturer position.
In his spare time he is studying for a master’s degree in dental technology and can often be found rambling in the Brecon Beacons.