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Associations Now

My Workspace: Honoring Dad

ASSOCIATIONS NOW, November 2012 The A List

By: Julie Shoop

Summary: Michael DiFrisco's unlikely path to his father's profession.

Michael DiFrisco finally went into the family business—sort of.

"My dad was a dentist," says DiFrisco. "And while he had six children, he was dismayed that none of his kids followed in his professional footsteps."

Like his siblings, DiFrisco instead followed his own path to a career in advertising design, which led to association marketing and eventually to his current post as director of membership and marketing at the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. When he moved into his office at AACD, DeFrisco remembered a family memento that he thought belonged there.

"Squirreled away in my basement for decades was my dad's instrument case from dental school," says DiFrisco, whose father died many years ago. "His name is stenciled across the front, and now each drawer is filled with office supplies. But I do have a few dental instruments adorning the shelves. I think he would be pleased that one of his kids in now 'in dentistry.' "

Julie Shoop is VP/editor-in-chief of Associations Now in Washington, DC. Email:

Photo credit: Michael DiFrisco

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