"Dr. Lytle is a legend in the field of oral and maxillofacial surgery," said Dean Avishai Sadan in a memo nominating Lytle for the award, which recognizes outstanding volunteer efforts on behalf of the university. "He has helped organize and unify the profession, trained generations of oral and maxillofacial surgeons and has positioned the university as a highly visible national leader in the field."
An Ostrow Board of Councilor member since 1987, Lytle is the most senior member of the 26-person governing board. Through his work with the USC Dental Century Club, he's helped advise several dental school administrations through the years. He's also served as president to the Friends of Dentistry, Ostrow's premier support group (formerly USC Dentistry Associates), which he joined in 1978.
Lytle said he felt honored and humbled to receive this award and credited his mentor for guiding him into the profession.
"Many years ago my mentor and friend, Marsh Robinson DDS '46, MD '52, showed me the satisfaction a surgeon receives from the treatment of patients with the best available knowledge and experience," Lytle said.
"More importantly, he shared the joy of passing on to those who follow the desire to learn from the past and strive to innovate and improve the specialty of oral and maxillofacial surgery in the future."
In addition to his contributions and involvement with the university, Lytle is a key contributor to the medical profession, including being a driving force behind the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery .
Nationally Lytle was named Fellow of the American College of Dentists and of the American Dental Society of Anesthesiology, Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Surgery as well as a Diplomate of National Board of Medical Examiners. Each of these achievements is a significant professional milestone; to have achieved all four is considered extraordinary, said Dean Sadan.
Lytle was one of the nation's first oral and maxillofacial surgeons to complete a dental degree and then a medical degree, both from USC. Having dual degrees in medicine and dentistry was visionary at the time, but has since become the educational standard.
Lytle was class president for both his dental and medical school classes during his time at USC and has since been invited to join several honor societies.
He was awarded the USC Dental Alumni Association Alumni of the Year award in 2003 and, in 2012, he received the 40 Years of Service Award at Ostrow's Part-Time Faculty Awards. In 1992, he and his wife, Marcia endowed a four-year scholarship for a doctor of dental surgery student.
Lytle will receive his Alumni Service Award at the 2016 USC Alumni Awards Gala, an event sponsored by the USC Alumni Association to be held April 16, 2016 at the JW Marriott.
Past honorees have included Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong '70, world-renowned architect Frank Gehry '54, opera great Marilyn Horne '53 and Academy Award-winning filmmaker Robert Zemeckis '73.
For more information on the USC Alumni Awards go to alumnigroups.usc.edu/awards/index.html .