Explore UAB

Benjamin J. Cumbus, D.M.D., (‘72) looks back on his time at the UAB School of Dentistry with gratitude. Not only did the School build the foundation for his four-decade career as a pediatric dentist, but it also gave him community and lifelong friendships.

Benjamin J. Cumbus is a white man with gray hair, a dark jacket, light blue dress shirt, and vibrant fuschia patterned tie. “All the professors we had were wonderful,” Cumbus said. “They made me a better person and a better dentist.”

Cumbus completed dental school in 1972. He then went on to serve as a Captain in the United States Air Force. While stationed in Germany, he met his wife, Ginny. He spent two years as a general dentist in the Air Force before returning to UAB for a pediatric residency.

“When I was in the Air Force, I loved treating kids on the base. I thought I could make a difference in treating children,” he said. He went on to complete his residency and practice for more than 40 years in Montgomery.

“It was a great pleasure for me to be able to treat children, to see them come in somewhat frightened but leave happy with a smile on their face,” he said.

Cumbus has been an active member of the UAB alumni community since completing his pediatric dental residency. Over the years, he has contributed outright gifts, served on the board of the Alumni Association, and organized fundraising opportunities.

In 2017, Cumbus was asked to serve as Chair for the Campaign for UAB Dentistry, which hoped to raise $20 million for the School. By the end of the campaign, the School raised more than $25 million.

While Chair, he wanted to contribute to the fund in a unique and lasting way. Having given outright to the school in years prior, Cumbus wanted to help ensure the School’s success in the future. He decided to commit a bequest in his will to benefit the School of Dentistry.

A bequest is a deferred planned gift given from a donor’s estate. It’s a flexible technique that allows you to commit future support to the School of Dentistry without feeling the financial effects today.

Cumbus said he’s motivated to give to the School, through both outright gifts and the deferred bequest, because he enjoyed his time at UAB, the career it fostered, and the School’s impact on the future of the profession in Alabama. He said it’s important for the community to support the faculty and staff so the School can continue to attract talented professors and the brightest students.

“UAB gave me an education and a degree, and because of that, I was able to live a wonderful life and prosper from it,” he said. “I've always been someone who felt like we need to share what we had, especially if we are fortunate enough to have a little extra.”

When asked why he chose to give a planned gift, Cumbus said it simply: “I’ve always felt like it was important to give what you can. In the end, you can't take it with you.”

Like Cumbus, your legacy gift can impact the areas that mean most to you. For more information on your planned giving options, , contact the Office of Planned Giving at (205) 996-7533 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. today.


Give Online

Make a gift online, give through payroll deduction, or contact us to discuss the impact your gift could have on UAB.


Give By Phone

(205) 934-7242


Give By Mail

UAB Gift Records
AB 1230, 1720 2nd Avenue South
Birmingham, AL 35294-0112
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.