Heersink School of Medicine, Written by Alex Isaacs, February 7, 2023
The Heersink School of Medicine Office for Diversity and Inclusion (Heersink ODI) recently held its virtual Diversity Grand Rounds, featuring Alan T. N Tita, M.D., Ph.D. as the keynote speaker. The annual event, held virtually during Second Look Weekend, was open to current faculty, staff, and potential UAB residents.
Mona Fouad, M.D., MPH—Associate Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Senior Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion at the Heersink School of Medicine—gave a warm welcome to attendees and emphasized the importance of creating a diverse and inclusive environment for students, trainees, faculty, and staff.
The Professional Excellence Awards
Before the keynote speaker, Fouad highlighted one way in which the successes of our diverse faculty at Heersink School of Medicine are recognized– the Professional Excellence Awards. The award recognizes one member from each of the four faculty associations who have excelled in research, teaching, and service within the past three years. Nominations are submitted by department chairs and division directors and then judged by the Heersink ODI Advisory Council.
This year, Heersink ODI received 33 nominees from 14 departments, the highest in the award program’s three-year existence. After review, the council selected four outstanding individuals as recipients of the 2023 Professional Excellence Award: Tamera Coyne-Beasley, M.D., MPH; Isabel Scarinci, Ph.D., MPH; Michele Kong, M.D., and Rodney O. Tucker, M.D., MMM, as the winners.
Fouad concluded the announcement by reiterating the importance of awards and events, such as this one, in continuing growth and understanding of the diverse world around us.
Fouad then turned the program over to Raegan Durant, M.D., MPH, associate dean for Diversity and Inclusion at the Heersink School of Medicine, to introduce the day’s speaker.