Presenter Biographies

Hakeem Ayinde, M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Ayinde is a board-certified cardiac electrophysiologist at the Cardiology Associates of Fredericksburg, and a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

He has a very strong interest in medical education, mentoring, reducing healthcare disparities, and increasing access to healthcare among minority populations. He serves as the Vice-Chair of the Internal Medicine Section of the National Medical Association and serves on the membership committee of the Heart Rhythm Society.  He mentors many young minority physicians through the Association of Black Cardiologists.

Dr Ayinde enjoys teaching medical students and residents, primarily focusing on basic and advanced interpretation of Electrocardiograms. His research focuses on atrial fibrillation and cardiac implantable electronic devices. Some of his research interests include atrial fibrillation in athletes, device-detection of atrial fibrillation, and outcomes of atrial fibrillation ablation.

When he is not at work, he enjoys biking with his 2 little boys.

Virginia D. Banks, M.D., M.B.A.

(read biography…)

Dr. Virginia D. Banks, M.D., M.B.A. graduated from Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio, and completed an internship in Internal Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and two years of residency and an infectious disease fellowship at University Hospitals of Cleveland. Dr. Banks holds an M.B.A. from the Williamson School of Business at Youngstown State University in Youngstown, Ohio.

Dr. Banks is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases. She is a fellow in the Infectious Disease Society of America and the first Black to receive their prestigious Watanakunakorn Clinician Award. Dr. Banks is with Northeast Ohio Infectious Disease Associates in Youngstown, Ohio. She recently completed fifteen years as head of Infectious Disease at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center-Horizon Campus in Hermitage, Pennsylvania. While there she was named Clinician of the Year in 2014. Dr. Banks has been involved in medical education for many years. Dr. Banks was the National Chair of The Links, Inc. initiative on HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C. While in this position Links, Inc collaborated with CDC to bring a Sexual Health Curriculum to historically Black Colleges.

Daniel Blackman

(read biography…)

On November 29, 2021, President Biden appointed Daniel Blackman to serve as the Regional Administrator for EPA’s Southeast Region (Region 4). In this role Daniel is leading EPA efforts to protect public health and the environment for the region spanning Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

Daniel has dedicated his career to creating economic opportunities for marginalized communities throughout the South, specifically in building more resilient communities with equitable economic opportunity, greater access to education and a healthy environment for all, not just for a select few.

Daniel has spent over a decade advising policymakers at the state capitol, and advocating on behalf of Georgia ratepayers and small businesses in energy-related matters before Georgia’s Public Service Commission. He has served as chairman of the Georgia Chapter of the Sierra Club and board member to the ACLU.

During the Obama Administration, Daniel worked closely within EPA Region 4 on issues including water infrastructure, clean air, and land/emergency management policies that impacted the southeast. He leaned heavily on his civil rights background to amplify the Region’s Environmental Justice (EJ) Policy and convened stakeholders with federal agencies to address a multitude of community concerns strategically and comprehensively.

His work in addressing groundwater contamination at nuclear plants and its impact on public health and safety has given him the opportunity to testify numerous times before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission; and his commitment to working throughout the Southeastern United States to push for legislation that addresses toxic ash left behind from burning coal has given him the opportunity to play a key role in the transitioning from coal to clean energy in the United States.

He is the son of immigrants from Barbados and is an alumnus of Clark Atlanta University. Daniel and his wife Jeanelle are the proud parents of four children, and the family resides in Forsyth County, Georgia.

Rachel Bond, M.D.

(read biography…)

Rachel M. Bond, MD, FACC is a board-certified attending cardiologist who has devoted her career to the treatment of heart disease through early detection, education, and prevention. She is the System Director of Women’s Heart Health at Dignity Health, in Arizona. Dr. Bond is the Co-chair of the Women in Cardiology Committee, as well as Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee for the Arizona Chapter of the American College of Cardiology. She also serves on the Women in Cardiology Section Leadership Council for the National Chapter of the American College of Cardiology and was most recently appointed the Co-Chair of the Women and Children Committee for the Association of Black Cardiologists. She holds a faculty position as Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Creighton University School of Medicine. Dr. Bond earned a bachelor of science degree from the seven-year accelerated medical program at the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, where she graduated Summa Cum Laude and earned her medical doctorate from NYU School of Medicine. She completed her training in internal medicine at NYU School of Medicine and in cardiovascular disease at Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine at North Shore University Hospital and Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New York. Dr. Bond is the author of several review papers referencing maternal health, sex and gender differences and cardiovascular conditions that predominantly affect women, along with opinion pieces aimed at addressing health equity, reducing health disparities, and promoting the professional development of women and minorities in the health-science profession. She has a passion for advocacy of education and mentorship and has advised as an expert source through news and media outlets. Her clinical interests include prevention, maternal health, cardio-oncology and lipid disorders. Her research interests currently include the heart-mind connection, cardio-rheumatology and gender disparities in valvular heart disease. Dr. Bond is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology and a member of the American Society for Preventive Cardiology, Association of Black Cardiologists, and the American Heart Association, where she is a national spokesperson for the “Go Red for Women” campaign and sits on the board of directors.

Doris Browne, M.D., M.P.H.

(read biography…)

Dr. Doris Browne is the President and CEO, Browne and Associates, LLC, a health consulting company that manages programs addressing disease prevention, improving the health status and inequities of national and international vulnerable populations. Dr Browne is the 118th President of the National Medical Association (NMA) and principal Investigator of the NMA Cobb Health Institute. She has tirelessly championed many causes that have significantly contributed to the health of vulnerable populations. As a medical oncologist she has a special interest in and is passionate about women health, cancers especially breast cancer, sickle cell anemia, other chronic diseases, environmental health, clinical trials research, and radiation casualties. Dr. Browne retired from the military as an Army Colonel and also retired from the NIH, National Cancer Institute where she managed the breast cancer portfolio in the Division of Cancer Prevention. She is an advocate for increasing minority participation in clinical trials at all levels of clinical research and a trusted resource for community health programs. She is a graduate of Tougaloo College (BS), University of California at Los Angeles (MPH), and Georgetown University (M.D.). She is member of Trinity Episcopal Church, numerous professional organizations, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and recipient of f plentiful awards including the NIH Merit Award and the 2018 Top Blacks in Healthcare award.

G.K. Butterfield

(read biography…)

Congressman G. K. Butterfield is a life-long resident of eastern North Carolina. Raised in Wilson, Congressman Butterfield spent his formative years attending Charles H. Darden High School and worked tirelessly in the Civil Rights Movement as a young adult. His parents were Dr. & Mrs. G. K. Butterfield, Sr. His father practiced dentistry for 50 years and served as one of North Carolina’s first black elected officials since Reconstruction. His mother was a classroom teacher for 48 years.

Congressman Butterfield graduated from college and law school at North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina. After earning his law degree, Congressman Butterfield founded a law practice in Wilson and served the community in that capacity for 13 years. He is best known for his successful litigation of voting rights cases that resulted in the election of African-American elected officials throughout eastern North Carolina.

In 1988, Congressman Butterfield was elected as Resident Superior Court judge. In this role, he presided over civil and criminal court in 46 counties of North Carolina. For two years, he served on the North Carolina Supreme Court by appointment of the governor. Butterfield retired from the judiciary after 15 years of service and successfully ran for Congress. He was elected to serve the First District of North Carolina in the U.S. House of Representatives in a special election on July 20, 2004, where he continues to serve today.

In Congress, Butterfield is a champion of affordable health care, education, investments in rural communities, veterans, renewable energies, and federal programs that support low-income and middle-class Americans.

Butterfield serves in the Democratic leadership as Senior Chief Deputy Whip and is a past Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus (114th Congress). He sits on the influential Committee on Energy & Commerce where he serves as a senior member of the Subcommittee on Health. In addition, he serves as a member of the Subcommittees of Communications and Technology and Energy. Since the 116th Congress, Congressman Butterfield sits on the Committee on House Administration, and as of the 117th Congress, he was appointed to serve as Chair of the Subcommittee on Elections.

Congressman Butterfield is a life-long member of Jackson Chapel First Missionary Baptist Church. He is a veteran of the U.S. Army and a proud husband, father and grandfather.

Virginia Caine, M.D.

(read biography…)

Virginia A. Caine, MD is the Director and Chief Medical Officer of the Marion County Public Health Department. She is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine Infectious Diseases Division.  In 2020, the Indianapolis Business Journal (IBJ) named her as one of the 40 Influential People of the past 40 years, as they celebrated 40 Years of Progress in Indianapolis.

She helped set up the first HIV/AIDS healthcare delivery system in Indianapolis, in all the major city hospitals, ten community health centers, and the resource for community-based HIV/AIDS prevention programs.  Her HIV/AIDS program in the past was recognized number one in the country by the White House.

She is Chair of the National Medical Association Infectious Diseases Section, Co-Chair of the NMA HIV/AIDS Section, and member of the National Medical Association COVID-19 Task Force.

Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick

(read biography…)

Freshman Congresswoman Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in January 2022, becoming the first Haitian American Democrat to be elected to Congress. She now proudly represents Florida’s 20thdistrict. Rep. Cherfilus-McCormick is honored to serve on the House Committee on Education and Labor, as well as the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.  She is also a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, Haitian Caucus, and the Caribbean Caucus.

Congresswoman Cherfilus-McCormick earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Government from Howard University. In a further pursuit of education, the Congresswoman also earned a Juris Doctorate from St. Thomas University.

While in office, Congresswoman Cherfilus-McCormick intends to tackle rising unemployment rates, the soaring cost of living, inadequate access to quality health care, and lack of equitable opportunities. As a Haitian American woman in Congress representing one of the largest Haitian communities in the United States, she vows to be a voice for the voiceless representing her beautifully diverse district. Congresswoman Cherfilus-McCormick has established herself within her district as a healthcare executive working up to the position of Chief Executive Officer for Trinity Healthcare Services Inc. She has an established track record within the healthcare industry improving the quality-of-care people needed for nearly two decades.

Congresswoman Cherfilus-McCormick is married to Corlie McCormick and she is a proud mother of two.

Yvette Clarke

(read biography…)

Hailing from central Brooklyn, Congresswoman Yvette Diane Clarke feels honored to represent the community that raised her. She is the proud daughter of Jamaican immigrants and takes her passion for her Caribbean heritage to Congress, where she co-chairs the Congressional Caribbean Caucus and works to foster relationships between the United States and the Caribbean Community. Clarke is a Senior Member of both the House Energy and Commerce Committee and House Committee on Homeland Security, where she serves as Chair of the Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Innovation Subcommittee. Clarke has been a member of the Congressional Black Caucus since coming to Congress in 2007 and today chairs its Immigration Task Force.

As the Representative of the Ninth Congressional District of New York, Congresswoman Clarke has dedicated herself to continuing the legacy of excellence established by the late Honorable Shirley Chisholm, the first Black woman and Caribbean American elected to Congress. In the 117th Congress, Congresswoman Clarke introduced landmark legislation, which passed in the House, the Dream and Promise Act (H.R. 6). This legislation would give 2.5 million DREAMers, temporary protected status, and deferred enforcement departure recipients a clear citizenship pathway.

Clarke is a leader in the tech and media policy space as co-chair of the Smart Cities Caucus and co-chair of the Multicultural Media Caucus. Congresswoman Clarke believes smart technology will make communities more sustainable, resilient, and livable and works hard to ensure communities of color are not left behind while these technological advancements are made. Clarke formed the Multicultural Media Caucus to address diversity and inclusion issues in the media, telecom, and tech industries. Clarke is one of the Co-Chairs of the Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls, which develops programs to support the aspirations of Black women of all ages. Congresswoman Clarke is also the co-chair of the Medicare for All Caucus, where she is fighting for the right to universal health care.

Prior to being elected to the United States House of Representatives, Congresswoman Clarke served on New York’s City Council, representing the 40th District. She succeeded her pioneering mother, former City Council Member Dr. Una S. T. Clarke, making them the first mother-daughter succession in the City Council’s history. She cosponsored City Council resolutions that opposed the war in Iraq, criticized the federal USA PATRIOT Act, and called for a national moratorium on the death penalty.

Congresswoman Clarke is a graduate of Oberlin College and was a recipient of the prestigious APPAM/Sloan Fellowship in Public Policy and Policy Analysis. She received the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa from the University of Technology, Jamaica, and the Honorary Doctorate of Public Policy from the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean. Congresswoman Clarke currently resides in the Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn, where she grew up.

Garfield A. D. Clunie, M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Garfield A. D. Clunie is a leading expert in women’s health and healthy equity. He currently serves as President of the nation’s oldest and largest organization of African American physicians, the National Medical Association and has dedicated more than 15 years with the organization. He has served on the National Medical Association’s Board in several roles including as Region 1 Chair and Trustee; Chairman of the Board of Trustees; Chair of the Committee on Administrative and Financial Affairs, National Treasurer and has served as a member of numerous councils/committees. Dr. Clunie has built his career on serving vulnerable populations and as an advocate for the elimination of health disparities and seeking health equity for all. Dr. Clunie is double boarded in Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Maternal-Fetal Medicine (MFM) is an Assistant Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Dr. Clunie currently works at the Mount Sinai Health System, where he supervises MFM fellows, OB/GYN residents, and medical students at the Outpatient High-Risk Pregnancy Clinic and Ultrasound Unit at Mount Sinai Hospital and is Site Director of Maternal-Fetal Medicine at Mount Sinai Downtown – Union Square. In addition to caring for pregnant women with complex medical conditions, Dr. Clunie’s special interests include prenatal diagnosis of fetal anatomic and genetic abnormalities, and preconception and inter-conception care, diabetes in pregnancy and fetal growth abnormalities. Dr. Clunie has authored several peer-reviewed articles and book chapters. In September, Dr. Clunie will be joining the faculty at NYU Langone Health where he will be Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and inaugural Vice Chair for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Department. After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, Dr. Garfield Clunie earned his medical degree from Bowman Gray School of Medicine at Wake Forest University. He completed a residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at NYU Downtown Hospital and went on to complete a prestigious fellowship in Maternal-Fetal Medicine (MFM) at Tufts – New England Medical Center. Dr. Clunie has focused his organizational leadership on his beloved National Medical Association but he is active in numerous organizations including the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology where he is a fellow and Secretary/Treasurer of District II, Section 1 (Manhattan) and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, where he is a fellow has served on the Legislative Affairs Committee, the Maternal Alcohol Abuse Task Force, and is currently a member of the Global Health Committee. As a medical student he was a leader and served as Co-President of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) at his medical school and as Region 4 Director, which involved coordinating and executing programmatic initiative within 6 states (North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama) as well as the Caribbean. The SNMA is the nation’s oldest and largest association of minority medical students. He is also a member of the NAACP, the National Action Network, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Global Jamaica Diaspora Council’s Jamaica Diaspora Northeast Health Sector and the Jamaica Diaspora Health Taskforce Action Network. Dr. Clunie’s personal story is one of resilience, vision and tenacity; he is a native of Jamaica, born in The Garden Parish of Saint Ann, and currently resides in New York City where he serves on the Board of his condominium. Dr. Clunie remains dedicated to addressing health and wellness nationally and internationally as this is his purpose of his life.

Yvonne Commodore-Mensah, Ph.D, M.H.S., R.N.

(read biography…)

Dr. Yvonne Commodore-Mensah is an Associate Professor at the Johns Hopkins Schools of Nursing and the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is also faculty at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity.

As a nurse scientist and cardiovascular disease epidemiologist, her program of research seeks to advance cardiovascular health equity among African-descent populations locally (United States) and globally (sub-Saharan Africa) through epidemiological and community-engaged methods. She is the Principal Investigator of the LINKED-BP Program and co-PI of the LINKED-HEARTS Program, two cluster-randomized controlled trials, which are testing the implementation of multi-level interventions to improve hypertension control and the management of chronic conditions in community health centers. She is co-PI of the Addressing HypertensIoN CaRe in Africa (ADHINCRA) Study,a cluster-randomized control trial testing the effectiveness of a nurse-led, mobile health intervention to improve hypertension control in Ghana, using an implementation science approach.

She is a member of the Steering Committee of the National Hypertension Control Roundtable and serves on the Advisory Boards of the National Hypertension Control Initiative and Target:BP. She is a Board member for the American Heart Association Baltimore and Greater Maryland area.

Franklin L. Davis

(read biography…)

Franklin L. Davis is the vice president of federal government relations for the American Beverage Association (ABA), which represents America’s non-alcoholic beverage industry. In this role, he helps to lead the industry’s federal legislative agenda and drive advocacy efforts before Congress and the Biden administration. This includes working on initiatives to help communities recover from the pandemic, reduce the beverage industry’s plastic footprint and provide families with more beverage choices to support their efforts to reduce sugar in their diet. Prior to this role, Franklin served in both director and senior director of federal affairs roles since joining the association in 2012.  He has held previous positions with the American Subcontractors Association, South Carolina Commission on Higher Education and Toyota Manufacturing.  A native of Marion, S.C., Franklin received a bachelor’s degree in agricultural education from Clemson University and a master’s in public administration from the University of South Carolina.  He resides in Maryland with his wife, who is a talented French horn player.

Lola Fashoyin-Aje, M.D., M.P.H.

(read biography…)

Lola A. Fashoyin-Aje, M.D., M.P.H., is a medical oncologist and Deputy Director in the Division of Oncology 3 (DO3) in the Office of Oncologic Diseases (OOD) at the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research- Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In this role, she provides scientific and policy guidance and oversight to multidisciplinary teams reviewing drugs and biologics under development for the treatment of solid tumor malignancies (gastrointestinal, cutaneous, and sarcoma). Dr. Fashoyin-Aje is also an Associate Director at the FDA Oncology Center of Excellence at the FDA, leading scientific and policy initiatives to address disparities and other regulatory science issues in oncology drug development. Prior to joining the FDA, Dr. Fashoyin-Aje completed her undergraduate and graduate training at Columbia University and Yale University, respectively, and received her M.D. degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. She completed her training in internal medicine and medical oncology at Johns Hopkins.

Brendan Fitzpatrick, M.P.A.

(read biography…)

Brendan Fitzpatrick is a vice president at Keybridge, where he specializes in corporate social responsibility (CSR), impact evaluation, economic modeling and environmental policy. For more than a decade, he has served as an evaluator and advisor to nonprofit organizations, industry associations and private companies on their CSR commitments. Brendan has also led economic modeling projects to estimate the impact of potential energy and environmental policies on the economy and specific industries.  Prior to joining Keybridge, Brendan served in the Office of the Chief Economist of the World Bank where he focused on development finance, aid effectiveness, environment and the production of the 2006–08 Global Monitoring Reports. He holds bachelors’ degrees in Bioengineering and Economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a master’s degree in Public Administration in International Development from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

Dial Hewlett, Jr., M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Hewlett received an M.D. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison Wisconsin and is Board certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases. He completed an internal medicine residency at Harlem Hospital Center – Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons in New York City. He then served for an additional year as Chief Medical Resident at Harlem Hospital Center. Following internal Medicine training, Dr. Hewlett completed a two year clinical and research fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein Affiliated Hospitals in the Bronx, New York.

Following completion of Post-graduate medical training, Dr. Hewlett served as the Chief of the Infectious Disease Division at Lincoln Medical & Mental Health Center in the Bronx, New York and Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at New York Medical College for nine years prior to joining the pharmaceutical industry in 1996. Throughout his 23 year career in the Pharmaceutical industry he simultaneously served on the voluntary medical staff as an Infectious Disease consultant at Lawrence Hospital Bronxville, New York and as an Infectious Diseases consultant and Co-Chair of Infection Control at Calvary Hospital in the Bronx, NY.

Since retirement from the pharmaceutical Industry in 2019, Dr. Hewlett has served as Medical Director at the Westchester County Department of Health Clinics where he has medical oversight of Immunization clinics, Tuberculosis services, Sexually Transmitted Infection clinics and HIV prevention Clinics. Since July 2021, Dr. Hewlett has served  as Principal Investigator on a Health Literacy Grant from  the U.S Department of Health & Human Services

Dr. Hewlett is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, The Infectious Disease Society of America and the New York Academy of Medicine. He is the recipient of an Infectious Diseases of America Citation Award in 2021. He currently serves as Vice Chair of the Infectious Disease Society of America Foundation Board of Directors, the Board of Directors for Calvary Hospital and is a member of the National Medical Association Task force on the COVID Vaccines. He is married to Janice Marie Chance-Hewlett B.S.N. R.N. and they have four adult children and four grandchildren.

Patricia Isaacs-Smith

(read biography…)

Patricia Isaacs-Smith is the Clinical Trial Site Diversity Strategy Lead at Pfizer.  She works with cross-functional teams to implement strategic initiatives that support Pfizer’s efforts to increase equity and inclusion in clinical research.


Patricia has over 20 years of US and global experience in the pharmaceutical and packaged goods industries developing insights on patients, consumers and Health Care Professionals.


Patricia received her MBA in Marketing/International Business from Rutgers Business School, Newark. New Jersey.

Maia M. Jack, Ph.D.

(read biography…)

Maia M. Jack, Ph.D., is the chief science and regulatory officer for the American Beverage Association (ABA), which represents America’s non-alcoholic beverage industry. In this role, she is responsible for representing the industry by advocating for sound science and regulatory policy in the scientific and technical aspects of international, federal, state and local regulatory proceedings and in interactions with scientific organizations.  Prior to this role, Maia served as vice president of science and regulatory affairs since joining the association in 2014.  She has held previous positions with the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI), Consumer Brands Association (formerly the Grocery Manufacturers Association), Human Genome Sciences, Inc. and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). Maia currently serves as president to the Chemistries of Heated Carbohydrates Consortium, and has received numerous prestigious appointments in her field, including being selected by federal agencies to serve on the Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee (ATAC) for Trade in Processed Foods and the Industry Trade Advisory Committee on Standards and Technical Trade Barriers (ITAC 16). Maia earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Canada’s Carleton University and her doctorate in biochemistry and molecular biology from The Pennsylvania State University. She lives in Virginia with her husband, three young adult children and their pint-sized family dog.

Yolanda Lawson, M.D.

(read biography…)

Yolanda Lawson M.D, Board Certified OBGYN is founder of MadeWell OBGYN in Dallas, Texas. She earned her medical degree at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She performed her internship at Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia and completed her residency at St. John Hospital & Medical Center in Detroit, Michigan.

Dr. Lawson is the President-Elect of the Board of Trustees of the National Medical Association, member of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Medical Association, the Texas Medical Association, and delegate for the Dallas County Medical Society.

She sits on a variety of boards, committees and other community activities and organizations.

Her professional time is divided between her patient practice, as Medical Director for a community- based organization that addresses HIV treatment and prevention disparities in target communities and as a medical science advisor.

These are all accomplishments that attribute to Dr. Lawson’s commitment as a women’s health advocate.

Meredith Lora, M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Lora earned her M.D. at Emory University and completed her internal medicine residency and chief residency at University of California – San Francisco in 2015. She subsequently completed a one-year fellowship in HIV medicine at the University of Southern California, where she worked as an HIV provider in the Los Angeles County Jail and on Skid Row. She joined Emory at Grady Health System in 2016 and is an Associate Professor of Medicine.  She created and implemented the HIV PrEP Program within the Grady Health System, which she now leads as the medical director. Her clinical and research interests include HIV prevention and treatment, in particular developing alternative care models that aim to destigmatize sexual health and HIV and create more accessible and empowering healthcare experiences.

Niva Lubin-Johnson, M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Niva Lubin-Johnson has been an advocate of quality healthcare for all and is the 119th President of the NMA. She is the third President and first woman to have served as President, Speaker of the House of Delegates and Chair of the Board of Trustees.

She finished her Medical Degree in 3 years. A board-certified General Internist, Dr. Lubin-Johnson was in private practice for 29 years.

Dr. Lubin-Johnson is Past Chair of the Women’s Physician Section and the Minority Affairs Section of the AMA. She is a member of the American College of Physicians, Life-member of the Student National Medical Association and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and a founding advisory member of TimesUp Healthcare. She serves on the Illinois Department of Public Health COVID-19 Equity Team, the Illinois Lieutenant Governor Health Equity Task Force, and the Organizing Committee of the NMA and American Association of Medical Colleges Collaborative to increase Black Men in Medicine. Dr. Lubin-Johnson is also a member of the International Health and Wellness Committee of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Sorority, Inc. (2022-2026).

She believes in the need for wellness and preventive care to prevent physician burnout and focused on increasing the numbers of African Americans entering and completing medical school and residency.

Members of Trinity United Church of Christ for over 20 years, Dr Lubin-Johnson and her husband reside in Chicago and parents to three adult children. They will receive the best Christmas present ever, their first grandchild, December 2022.

Alister S. Martin, M.D., M.P.P.

(read biography…)

Dr. Alister Martin is a practicing ER physician and is dually appointed as an Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School and as Research Faculty at the Harvard Kennedy School. He is a former White House Fellow who served as an advisor in the Office of the Vice President under Kamala Harris and in the West Wing Office of Public Engagement as an appointed White House Fellow in the 2021–2022 class.

Dr. Martin currently serves as CEO of A Healthier Democracy, an incubator organization and healthcare organizing hub which leverages healthcare workers and healthcare settings as a place to build programs and movements that serve the needs of vulnerable patients. He is the founder of Vot-ER, a nonpartisan voter registration organization that has organized over 26,000 healthcare providers and 300 hospitals to help non-urgent patients register to vote. He is the founder of Get Waivered, a program that is converting our nation’s ERs into the front door for opioid addiction treatment. He also co-founded GOTVax, an initiative aimed at leveraging a get out the vote framework to deliver vaccines directly to vulnerable communities throughout Boston via hyper-targeted vaccine pop up clinics.

Dr. Martin earned his M.D. from Harvard Medical School as a Presidential Scholar, his Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School as a fellow in the Center for Public Leadership, and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Rutgers University where he was a Division 1 tennis player.

Celia Maxwell, M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Maxwell currently serves as the Associate Dean for Research at Howard University College of Medicine in Washington D.C. She is also a Professor of Medicine in Infectious Diseases  as well as the Principal Investigator of several prestigious projects. They include: The Center for Infectious Disease Management and Research’s, Ryan White EIS program, The DC DOH Routine HIV Testing Program and as Co-PI for the PEPFAR funded HBCU Clinical Practice Transformation Project in Zambia.

Dr. Maxwell was selected by Sharon Pratt-Kelly, former Mayor of Washington, D.C. to co-chair the Transitional Task Force on AIDS services, and was also appointed to the Healthcare Reform Task Force chaired by former First Lady, Hillary Rodman Clinton. As well was appointed by Dr. Donna Shalala, then Secretary of Health and Human Services, and served on the Office of AIDS Research Advisory Council of the National Institutes of Health. Additionally, from 1994-97, she served as a Special Assistant to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, Dr. David Kessler. Dr. Maxwell served as a health legislative assistant for Senator Tom Harkin (D. Iowa). She was inducted into the Washington D.C. Hall of Fame and is currently serving as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board, of the US President’s Emergency Plan for Aids Relief (PEPFAR), as well as a member of the External Advisory Board for the CITI program.

Dr. Maxwell obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Hunter College and her medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, both in New York City. She completed her residency training in Internal Medicine at Howard University Hospital and a Fellowship in Parasitology at the National Institutes of Health, Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases. Her research interests then involved the investigation of the immune response of humans to the hookworm parasite. Dr. Maxwell is a Professor of Medicine and in the Department of Medicine Division of Infectious Diseases. She is board certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, and is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and the Infectious Diseases Society of America, as well as a member of several boards and scientific associations.  To date she has conducted international medical site visits or served as a lecturer in Cuba, Haiti, Panama, Dubai UAE, Uganda, Zambia, Senegal, Beijing, India and Brazil.

Roger A. Mitchell, Jr., M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. Roger Mitchell, Jr. is a forensic pathologist who serves as the Chief Medical Examiner of the Nation’s Capital. He is one of only four black Chief Medical Examiners of a major city in the US. Dr. Mitchell is an expert in Violence as a Public Health Issue and has recently appeared on MSNBC Morning Joe and CBS Sunday Morning advocating for federal funding for firearm violence prevention research. He has been bringing attention to the issue of Firearm Violence in the African American Community for over a decade and serves as Chair of the Task Force on Gun Violence for the National Medical Association (NMA). He recently co-authored a position paper on The Violence Epidemic in the African American Community for the Journal of the National Medical Association, published in 2017.

Dr. Mitchell is a proud graduate of Howard University, Washington DC, and New Jersey Medical School, Newark, NJ. Dr. Mitchell is licensed to practice medicine in Washington DC. He has performed over 1400 autopsy examinations in his career and has testified as an expert on numerous cases. Dr. Mitchell made history when he served as the first black man in the FBI DNA Laboratories as a Forensic Biologist in January 1997.

Dr. Mitchell is a national expert on deaths that occur while in the custody of law enforcement and has served as an expert in many high-profile cases. He recently served as Chairman and lead author among a group of nationally recognized forensic pathologists tasked with making recommendations for the Definition, Investigation, Postmortem Examination and Reporting of Deaths in Custody for the medical examiner/coroner community.

Dr. Mitchell has lectured for the Governments of, Egypt, Bangladesh, Mumbai, London and several countries in Africa and Asia. His most recent article is entitled: Incidence and Cause of Potentially Preventable Death after Civilian Public Mass Shooting in the US published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

Dr. Roger A. Mitchell Jr. is a licensed minister at New Bethel Church in Washington DC and Master of Divinity student and Fuller Theological Seminary, who serves as a minister and mentor for those who are incarcerated. Dr. Mitchell is the author of a book entitled The Price of Freedom – A Son’s Journey where he shares how drugs and violence have shaped his own life. He is a dedicated husband to his wife, Angelique, of nearly 18 years and proud father to three teenagers (Matthew, Nina, and Nathaniel).

Randall Morgan, Jr., M.D., M.B.A.

(read biography…)

Randall C. Morgan, Jr., M.D., M.B.A., is the President and CEO of the W. Montague Cobb/NMA Health Institute based in Washington, D.C. In that role he leads a staff of scholars and research specialists who focus upon the elimination of Health Disparities. He is also an active orthopedic surgeon who has practiced in Sarasota and Bradenton, Florida since 2005. He serves as founder and President of University Park Orthopedics in that community. He is also Clinical Associate Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at Florida State School of Medicine and is also a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Community Medicine at the University of Connecticut. He is a graduate of Grinnell College with a B.A. in Chemistry. He received the M.D. degree from Howard University. He served as a resident in Orthopedic Surgery at Northwestern University and served a Pediatric Orthopedic Fellowship at Children’s Hospital in Cincinnati. He later received an MBA degree from the University of South Florida.

Dr. Morgan served as the 95th President of the National Medical Association during the years 1996 and 1997. He was the first board-certified orthopedic surgeon to hold that position. Dr. Morgan is a true pioneer in his profession and was among the first surgeons to perform total joint replacement surgery at Northwestern University. Dr. Morgan has practiced General Orthopedic Surgery and Pediatric Orthopedics in Evanston, Illinois, and as well in his hometown of Gary, Indiana, for more than 30 years prior to his relocation to Sarasota. With the assistance of his father, Mr. Randall C. Morgan, Sr., he founded the Orthopedic Centers of Northwest Indiana and served as its president from 1975 to 1999. At one time, this was the largest minority-owned orthopedic practice in the United States. He has written and published extensively throughout his career on Orthopedics, Social Responsibility, Health Equity and the Education Pipeline for Underrepresented young scholars.  He is a Diplomat of the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery and the American Board of Managed Care Medicine. He is also a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of Alpha Omega Alpha honorary medical society.

Melanie A. Nix

(read biography…)

Melanie A. Nix is a triple negative breast cancer survivor. From caregiver to patient, from breastfeeding to breast cancer, cancer can change your life in an instant. Melanie has endured a life changing cancer “instant” in every decade of her life beginning at age eight with her mother’s breast cancer diagnosis, her mother’s recurrences and ultimate death and Melanie’s own triple negative breast cancer diagnosis at 38 when her son was four years old and her daughter was 19 months old. A carrier of the BRCA1 genetic mutation, she is a fifth-generation breast cancer patient.

Once inhibited by her surgical and treatment scars, she now proudly wears her scars as symbols of fortitude. Melanie is a transformational speaker and resilience coach. She is the cofounder of Breast Cancer Comfort Site and Chief Visionary of Diagnosis to Destiny. A masterful storyteller, her candor and strength are hallmarks of her timeless messages about survival and reconstruction. Melanie has written for different publications and been profiled by CURE Magazine and OZY and earned invitations to the Obama White House and Biden Vice President’s Residence.

Guided by her manifesto, she shares her transformational and empowering lessons for achieving dreams and moving from Diagnosis to Destiny. A movie and music lover, some of her top stress relievers, she is easily transported by uplifting lyrics, a soul stirring monologue or comforted by the humor of an irreverent comedy. She is a celebrator of life who loves to travel and enjoys the serenity of water. She became a post cancer distance runner whose #Exercising4MyLife campaign highlights the health and wellness benefits of running and offers lessons on training and discipline. Running is a core part of her daily routine and she considers restorative naps an imperative.

She serves as Chair of the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center Community Advisory Board and is a Thelma D. Jones Breast Cancer Fund board member. Melanie holds a Master of Business Administration from the Robert H. Smith School of Business – University of Maryland, College Park and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia. She resides with her husband, Raymond; son, Carter; and daughter, Kennedy.

James Powell, M.D.

(read biography…)

Dr. James H. Powell is a graduate and former faculty at Weill Cornell Medical College. After 24 years as a clinical research executive in the pharmaceutical industry, he led the National Medical Association’s Project IMPACT (Increase Minority Participation and Awareness of Clinical Trials). There he designed and directed programs to develop physicians as clinical investigators and educate consumers on the benefits and protections in clinical trials. He is a past member of the Secretary’s (HHS) Advisory Committee on Human Research Protections, and a charter member of Alliance of Multicultural Physicians advocating for clinical trial inclusion. He is currently Chief Medical Officer of knowRX Health, a company focused on digital innovations for therapeutic equity.

Racquel Racadio, M.P.H, Dr.P.H.(c)

(read biography…)

Racquel Racadio is the Director of Global Representation in Clinical Research at Amgen, where she leads a team that is dedicated to improving the diversity and proportional representation of patients from historically excluded groups in Amgen’s clinical research programs.

Racquel has been at Amgen for over 4 years, and, in addition to her role in clinical research, she serves as Diversity Council Champion for the Global Medical Organization and as a member of the Senior Leadership Team for the Amgen Black Employee Network. Racquel is also the global Co-Lead of the TransCelerate BioPharma Diversity of Participants in Clinical Trials Initiative Workstream and serves as an SME representing Amgen on the majority of the cross-industry collaboration projects focused on diversity in clinical trials.

Racquel has nearly 15 years of experience in clinical research and the life sciences, at the start-up, CRO, and sponsor level, including clinical trial oversight, study feasibility, and clinical site selection across multiple therapeutic areas, direct clinical care, and independent consulting for cross-industry consortia. Her background also includes public health research, which has consistently focused on racial, ethnic, and gender disparities in healthcare access and health outcomes, including barriers to prenatal care for women of color, barriers to reproductive care for rural women, and racial disparities in infant mortality.

Racquel is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Milwaukee, an MPH graduate of the Medical College of Wisconsin, and is a DrPH candidate at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health, where her dissertation research is studying how technology may reduce barriers to oncology clinical trial participation for participants from racial and ethnic minority communities.

Outside of her day job, Racquel is a mentor for BIPOC women and girls interested in STEM fields to empower them to persist and succeed in their educational and career pursuits.

Tanya Rogo, M.D., M.P.H.&T.M

(read biography…)

Dr. Tanya Rogo is Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Dr. Rogo serves as the Associate Program Director of the Fellowship in Pediatric Infectious Diseases, the Global Health Educator in the Department of Pediatrics, and the Medical Director of Antimicrobial Stewardship at Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence, RI.

Dr. Rogo was born in Kenya and completed her undergraduate education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and then graduated from the dual MD/MPH program at Tulane University. She completed pediatric residency at Inova Fairfax Hospital for Children, and fellowship in pediatric infectious diseases at Brown University.

Dr. Rogo is a member of the NMA COVID-19 Taskforce, and also serves on several national committees of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society, including the Nominations & Awards Committee, and the Inclusion, Diversity, Access, and Equity Taskforce.

Karriem Watson, D.H.Sc, M.S., M.P.H.

(read biography…)

Karriem Watson, D.H.Sc., M.S., M.P.H., has been selected as the new chief engagement officer. He will lead the program’s efforts to foster relationships with participants, communities, researchers, and providers across the U.S. to help build one of the largest, most diverse health databases of its kind to study health and illness.

Dr. Watson comes to All of Us from his role as associate executive director of the Mile Square Health Center, a group of Federally Qualified Health Centers in Chicago affiliated with the University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System. He also served as the associate director of community outreach and engagement for the University of Illinois Cancer Center and as a research assistant professor in the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) School of Public Health. Beyond his work with UIC, he has served as co-lead of the All of Us Engagement Core at the Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance, cultivating positive relationships with the program’s participant ambassadors.

Dr. Watson has a Doctorate in Health Science (Global Health), a Master of Science in Basic Medical Research, and a Master’s in Public Health (Community Health Sciences). He has served as a principal investigator on multiple projects including those funded by the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, and the All of Us Research Program. His expertise in community-academic partnerships is also supported in his role as board chair of the Community Campus Partnerships for Health. His contributions have earned him recognition by the Chicago Urban League, American Heart Association, LUNGevity Foundation, and others.

Geoffrey H. Young, Ph.D.

(read biography…)

Geoffrey leads the new Transforming the Health Care Workforce unit, an extension of his responsibility leading the AAMC’s Strategic Action Plan 4 which aims to significantly increase the number of underrepresented medical school applicants and matriculants.

His unit’s work is focused on the education, professional development, and wellness of future health care workers along with creating viable pathways for historically excluded groups to enter the health care profession. Focus areas include disseminating research and data that provide insights on trends, structural inequities, and institutional culture that impact the diversity of the healthcare workforce and scanning the full medical education continuum to highlight promising practices, leverage points of intersection, and inform resource development that support innovations to UME and GME. His team is also recognized as a leader in holistic review in selection and pre-medical and applicant resources, providing inspiration, resources, data, and tools so that anyone can aspire to a career in medicine.

A consistent thread throughout Geoffrey’s career is the intentional integration of diversity, equity, access, and inclusion principles and practices into policies, services, and programs across the medical education continuum. He brings deep expertise in undergraduate medical education services and continues to serve as a content expert in that area.

Before joining the AAMC in 2011, Geoffrey served in leadership positions in medical school admissions and student affairs at Rutgers University-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, and the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University.  Dr. Young earned his B.A. from Hampton University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the Ohio State University.