Our History and Mission

Our Story

Certifying Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Since 1945

As the only certifying board for the specialty of oral and maxillofacial surgery in the United States, ABOMS is dedicated to improving the knowledge and skills of oral and maxillofacial surgeons (OMS), nationwide.

Our Mission

The mission of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is to assure the public of safe and optimal care through the development and maintenance of high standards of certification and re-certification of Diplomates in the specialty.

Our Objectives

The objective of ABOMS is to elevate the standards of oral and maxillofacial surgery through a certification and maintenance of certification process that fosters excellence and encourages learning, thus promoting the delivery of superior health care.

To meet this objective, ABOMS will:

  • Evaluate specialists who apply for initial certification and assure that they have the requisite training, education and experience;
  • Administer a certification process that assesses the knowledge, experience, and skills requisite to the provision of high quality patient care in oral and maxillofacial surgery; and
  • Administer a maintenance of certification process that assures Diplomates are committed to lifelong learning, keep current in knowledge and skills, and practice in a safe and contemporary manner.

Our History

In 1945, at the annual meeting of the American Society of Oral Surgeons, a committee was authorized to establish an American Board of Oral Surgery, which would conduct examinations for the certification of specialists in oral surgery. One year later, in 1946, the American Board of Oral Surgery was incorporated under the laws of the State of Illinois.

During the following year, the American Board of Oral Surgery was approved by the Council on Dental Education of the American Dental Association and was authorized to proceed with the certification of specialists in oral surgery. The American Board of Oral Surgery was renamed the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (ABOMS) in 1978 to reflect the scope of the specialty. The name modification was incorporated under the laws of the State of Illinois.

Today, the operation of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is entrusted to an eight-member Board of Directors. These Directors are Diplomates of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Fellows of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. One Director is elected each year to an eight-year term by the House of Delegates of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. An Examination Committee composed of Diplomates of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is appointed by the Board of Directors to prepare and conduct the annual certification examination. The Board of Directors and its Examination Committee serve without salary.

For our full history you can download our History Book and Addendum

ABOMS Historical Photo