Membership FAQs

Can I become a member of CDS without joining the ADA?

If you are dentist in the United States, you must belong to the American Dental Association (ADA) to be a member of CDS. International members are not required to join the ADA but should be a member of the primary dental organization in their country.

For members in Cook, Lake and DuPage Counties, you must also be a member of the state society, the Illinois State Dental Society, to be a member of CDS. Together with the ADA and ISDS, we form a tripartite organization. For dentists in our membership area of Cook, Lake and DuPage Counties, dues for all three organizations are collected by ISDS.

How is CDS organized?

We have approximately 4,200 in Cook, Lake and DuPage Counties. These members, called tripartite (or regular) members, are further divided into nine branches. 

What is the difference between a Tripartite member and an Associate member?

A Tripartite member practices in Lake, Cook, or DuPage County in Illinois and has full voting powers. Associate members are dentists who practice outside of these boundaries of the CDS, including dentists who reside in countries other than the United States. Although they cannot vote in CDS elections, they are entitled to many member benefits including free admission to the Midwinter Meeting.

Who governs the CDS?

CDS is governed by a Board of Directors, comprising five officers and nine branch directors. Learn more about our Board of Directors.

What are the dues?

Please review our dues information.

Who staffs the CDS office?

There are 16 staff members at the CDS office. You may contact us during our working hours, Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.