Dean’s Message: It takes all of us to advance health for all


We know that, despite gains, women remain under-represented in the top faculty ranks in academic medicine, hovering at less than a quarter of full professors across the basic and clinical sciences.

That’s why I took special pleasure at our Sept. 25 Promotion and Tenure Ceremony in celebrating that 52 percent of our faculty promoted to full professor and 54 percent promoted to associate professor are women. Indeed, our numbers are better than the national average, with women representing 29.6 percent of full professors in our most recent data.

It was especially meaningful to me to recognize the female members of my leadership team who have been promoted to full professor: (left to right in the photo) Andrea Cedfeldt, M.D., professor of medicine and assistant dean for faculty development; Sahana Misra, M.D., professor of psychiatry and associate dean for veterans affairs, and Tracy Bumsted, M.D., professor of pediatrics and associate dean for undergraduate medical education.

Every one of our 107 faculty members promoted or appointed this year are to be commended and congratulated, and the ceremony recognizing them was really a wonderful celebration of their accomplishments and the hard work of the Promotion and Tenure Committee, chaired by Dr. Fran Biagioli.

Starting as students

The path to advancement for faculty begins with developing leadership skills much earlier.

I want to give a special call-out to Megan Furnari, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics and director of medical student wellness in the M.D. program, who leads the Women’s Leadership Development Program (WLDP), and Drs. Bumsted, Esther Choo, Elizabeth Lahti and Alisha Moreland Capuia for their mentorship of young women through this program.

Their investment is paying off: all four of the class presidents elected in the M.D. program this year are women, which is rare if not unheard of in the med school’s history. Three of the four class presidents have been actively involved with the WLDP.

Join me in saluting (from left in the photo) Olivia Curl (Med23), Jessica Blank (Med21), Meghan Vandewettering (Med22) and Monique Hedmann (Med20).

Improving offerings

For our faculty, I hope you know that I have made improving our offerings and the articulation of offerings a top priority.

I am pleased to see how Dr. Cedfeldt, in her new faculty development leadership role for the school, and Nels Carlson, M.D., assistant dean for continuing professional development (CPD), have joined forces along with the CPD staff team, led by Christine Flores, to not only expand and improve offerings but to better assist faculty in packaging professional development work they are already doing to more efficiently meet their maintenance of certification requirements.

Dr. Cedfeldt presented key resources to Basic Science and Clinical Chairs in September, including:

Dr. Cedfeldt has also expanded offerings, including expanding the Education Scholars Program, started in the Department of Medicine, to include faculty school-wide.

In this course, program co-directors Erin Bonura, M.D., M.C.R., associate professor of medicine, and Lainie Yarris, M.D., M.C.R., professor of emergency medicine, lead scholars through an intensive nine-month program. Each week, a two-hour session focuses on education theory and methods including curriculum, assessment, instructional strategies, diagnostic reasoning and education scholarship.

Departments show important initiative

I am also really pleased to see the many ways that departments are thinking creatively and innovatively about faculty development and especially exploring how to improve our climate around diversity, equity and inclusion.

Kudos to the Department of Ophthalmology for mandating Culture of Civility Training. Developed by Leslie Garcia, M.P.A.,assistant chief diversity officer for OHSU, Linda Strahm, director of human resources for the school, and Laura Stadum, J.D., director of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity, this offering focuses on bystander training and how to respectfully but effectively intervene when witnessing acts of racism, sexism or other disrespectful behavior.

What’s more, more than 70 surgeons and advanced practice providers in the Department of Surgery spent a recent Saturday identifying personal biases and mapping a path toward a more inclusive culture within their department. The training was led by skilled facilitator Rosalyn Taylor O’Neale, M.S.W., principal consultant for Cook Ross, Inc., in conjunction with the OHSU Center for Diversity and Inclusion.

Learning opportunity: changed to Oct. 10

A great opportunity for all of us to learn and grow is to attend or view the livestream for Dr. Quinn Capers’ all-campus lecture “The Lack of Diversity in Medicine is a National Emergency: The Way Forward.”

Quinn Capers, M.D., is dean of admissions and professor of medicine at Ohio State University – and mentor to Jason Campbell, M.D., (pictured at his Ohio State Match Day with Dr. Capers) now a second year resident here in anesthesiology and perioperative medicine. Dr. Capers has developed a national reputation for his strategies for confronting implicit bias in admissions processes and diversifying the student body at Ohio State, buoying efforts to also diversify the faculty.

Dr. Capers’ lecture has been moved to Thursday, Oct. 10 at noon in Hospital 8B60 in recognition that the original date, Oct. 9, is Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year in Judaism. We are striving for inclusivity, are glad we could make this important date change and have taken steps to avoid conflicts with major religious holidays in the future.


Another outstanding learning opportunity is the Nov. 6 lecture by Eliseo Perez-Stable, M.D., Director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. He will be speaking on “Minority Health and Health Disparities Research: Promoting Health Equity as Quality Care,” 11:30 am to 1:30 pm at the Knight Cancer Research Building Auditorium. Learn more and register.

Thank you for all that each of you does and brings to the School of Medicine each day.

Sharon Anderson, M.D.
Dean, OHSU School of Medicine