Dr. Ali Bolouri, Restorative Sciences
Dr. Ali Bolouri, professor
“When I started here, we were writing everything by hand, and now everything is on the computer.”
It’s a Monday morning in late January, and Dr. Ali Bolouri is buzzing around the Removable Prosthodontics Clinic, seeing patients and assisting students. For the moment, his office appears abandoned. Boxes of Kodak slides fill the empty spaces and tower over the table, a testament to Bolouri’s 35 years at the college.
An orange sits nestled in a coffee mug on the desk, intended as a midday snack; that is, if things slow down. It’s not that Bolouri minds the balance of his workday, since working with students is the favorite part of his role as a restorative sciences professor.
The pace of the morning isn’t that unusual for Bolouri, who spends most of his time in the undergraduate clinic helping students and overseeing dental implant cases. When he’s not in the clinic, he also teaches a selective dental implantology course and works part time at his North Dallas restorative and dental implant practice.
Bolouri enters the office, trailed by two dental students. One jokes that she has yet another question for him.
“It’s even worse when you’re related,” adds the other, who just so happens to be his daughter, D4 Mitra Bolouri.
There are photos of her and her two sisters affixed to Bolouri’s corkboard, perched over his desk. The photos take up most of the board, save for a little space allotted to his American Board of Prosthodontists diplomate certificate.
His daughter’s presence brings up an interesting story.
“Two of my daughters were born next door at Baylor Hospital,” Bolouri says. “I came to work and went there, and was back and forth.” After each daughter’s birth, he remained devoted to patients, alternately checking on them and tending to his wife and newborn.
One of those daughters, Marjan, is now a third-year radiology resident at the University of California – San Francisco School of Medicine. Visitors in his office can read all about when she was accepted into MIT in an old issue of the Plano Star Courier tacked to the wall.
He shares a humorous story about Mitra Bolouri’s acceptance into Texas A&M Health Science Center Baylor College of Dentistry.
“One of the funnier moments was when she called me crying saying, ‘I got in, I got in.’ I thought she was saying, ‘I got hit, I got hit.’”
Assuming she had been in a car accident, he asked where she was. When she told him she was at home, he got really confused.
“I was thinking to myself, How did she get hit at home?” Bolouri recalls. Visions of her driving into the garage wall flashed through his mind.
“She said, ‘No, I got in. I got in at Baylor,’” he says. “I said ‘OK, let me sit down and congratulate you.’”
A lot has changed at the dental school since 1976, when Bolouri was hired as an assistant professor and offered tenure, something rarely given to developing faculty.
“I think they gave it to me because they didn’t want me to move, and it worked,” Bolouri laughs.
He shares a few changes he’s noticed over the years, aside from having his daughter join him at TAMHSC-BCD.
“When I started here, we were writing everything by hand, and now everything is on the computer,” he says.
The view from the second-floor clinic, which looks out on downtown Dallas, also has transformed through the years.
“The downtown we used to see is quite different from the downtown we see now,” Bolouri says.
“I used to play tennis but not anymore. Now I just do work in the corner of my garage, which I converted into a lab.”
“My youngest daughter Maryam is 13 and attends high school in Plano, and I am married to Nooshi, my wife of 20 years, who is an anesthesiologist for several North Dallas hospitals.”