Election 2022 — AMWA Board of Directors

Congratulations to AMWA’s newest Board members for the 2022 – 2023 Board year, including Dr. Elizabeth Garner as President-Elect and Mr. Khawaja Shams at Treasurer.


Board Member Profiles

President-Elect

Elizabeth I. O. Garner, MD, MPH (CV)

Elizabeth Garner, MD, a woman physician leader in women's health.

Reason for Seeking this Position

I believe that AMWA can and should be THE association of choice for women physicians. I also believe that as President-elect, I could contribute to this objective. I bring a background of leadership in large organizations and serve on a number of non-profit boards, where I have had the opportunity to gain a deep understanding of how boards and organizations need to work to achieve their visions.

Helping AMWA Fulfill Its Vision of Creating a Healthier World Where Women Physicians Achieve Equity and Realize Their Full Potential

As a black woman physician, equity is top of mind for me in my daily work and in my life outside of work. As President-elect, seeking ways in which AMWA can work toward this critical vision would be a key area of focus for me as I think about the strategy for the organization. Through my own experiences, I would bring a practical view with regard to steps the organization could take to move closer to fulfilling its vision.

Diverse Experiences and Perspectives That Will Help AMWA Reach Its Full Organizational Potential

I have spent the last 14 years in the pharmaceutical sector of medicine and have learned a tremendous amount about collaboration, leadership, and organizational culture. I also have an international background, having being raised in Nigeria, the daughter of an American mom and a Nigerian dad. I am also biracial, which brings added diversity to my background. All of these experiences would contribute to my perspective as president-elect, both within the organization and as I interact with individuals and organizations outside of AMWA.

Biosketch

Dr. Elizabeth Garner is a women’s health physician with a career-long focus on addressing unsolved issues and conditions that affect women’s physical health and quality of life. She has well over a decade of experience in the pharmaceutical industry and brings wide expertise in drug and vaccine development. She is currently the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of ObsEva, a Swiss-based women’s health company. From 2014 to 2019, Dr. Garner was CMO of Agile Therapeutics, where she led the FDA approval of the Twirla® contraceptive patch. Prior to Agile, Dr. Garner was VP Medical Affairs at Myriad Genetics. Before that, she was Senior Director of Clinical Research at Abbott Laboratories.

From 2007 to 2011, Dr. Garner was on the Clinical Research team at Merck, where she led the Gardasil®9 HPV vaccine program Product Development Team. Dr. Garner’s corporate board positions include Kezar Life Sciences, Sermonix Pharmaceuticals, and Pharm-Olam International. She is also on the boards of the American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA), the Drug Information Association (DIA), and CorStone (a global non-profit focused on resilience in girls). Dr. Garner received M.D. and M.P.H degrees from Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health. She was trained in Ob/Gyn at Brigham and Women’s/Massachusetts General and did a fellowship in gynecologic oncology at Brigham and Women’s and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. She was a 2019 awardee of the PharmaVoice 100 most inspiring individuals in the life-sciences industry and is a frequent speaker and panelist on issues related to women’s health.


Treasurer

Khawaja Shams (CV)

Reason for Seeking this Position

I find AMWA’s vision inspiring. There is a significant amount of work that still needs to be done in regards to gender equality and inclusion. My past experience at Apple and current role at Google allows me to be really close to AMWA’s values of Integrity, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, Collaboration, and Mentorship. These values align well with my personal values, experience, and desire to collaborate and contribute in developing leaders that create a diverse and inclusive environment. These leaders then excel in making the world a better place. I would like to contribute to the advancement of AMWA’s various initiatives by offering guidance on shaping its strategy and execution by introducing and merging new technologies to better position its members and the organization for success. I would like to help AMWA grow financially.

Helping AMWA Fulfill Its Vision of Creating a Healthier World Where Women Physicians Achieve Equity and Realize Their Full Potential

Increase leadership equity among women physicians through mentorship and knowledge sharing. Promote AI applications in medicine among women healthcare practitioners.

Increase gender bias awareness in technology and data used in AI model training and lead towards more inclusive models and technology.

Diverse Experiences and Perspectives That Will Help AMWA Reach Its Full Organizational Potential

Have twenty plus years of Global leadership experience at Apple & Google consisting of inclusive and diverse team building, strategic thinking, and delivering multi-billion dollar impacting innovative products. My diverse tenure has allowed me to work with Global and diverse teams and industries ranging from Healthcare, Manufacturing, Banking, and Technology. The expertise in applying Engineering, Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Behavioral Analytics in digital health, precision medicine, multi-modal sensors, social media, fraud detection, cyber security, mobile application ecosystem, and privacy will help me contribute towards achieving AMWA’s missions. While Artificial Intelligence has many applications and benefits in medicine, I believe the data used to train ML models are susceptible to bias. One area I would like to help is increase awareness and reduce gender bias in AI models and mobile technology.

Biosketch

A leader in the high-tech industry for the last 25 years, Khawaja has moved industries forward by creating innovative products with his distinct management and leadership style. He holds multiple patents in mobile wireless technologies at Apple, where he founded the Applied Machine Learning team. Khawaja has created multiple organizations from scratch focused on applying Machine Learning and behavioral analytics in fraud detection, Apple hardware diagnostics, risk management, mobile payments, cyber security & threat intelligence, healthcare, digital health, privacy, search and recommendations. He has developed teams of hundreds of people, serving billions of users and creating multi-billion dollars per year in value. He has broad industry experience ranging from Manufacturing, Media, Retail, Banking, HealthCare, and Technology. He is currently a Senior Director of Engineering at Google where he leads multiple teams applying ML to benefit billions of users. Khawaja has brought his ML and engineering expertise and vision to be a key driver for the advancement of consumer health ML, security, and privacy.

He is married with two children whom he encourages to pursue their own creative ventures, in addition to a network of mentees and partners he sponsors to fulfill their own potential.


Members at Large

Adebisi (Bisi) Alli, DO, MS (CV)

Adebisi (Bisi) Alli, DO, MS

Reason for Seeking this Position

AMWA has a track record of innovation and empowerment, driving important policy. As a Black female physician and daughter of immigrant parents, the mission of AMWA aligns with my upbringing and career. From a young age, I have been a natural advocate, identifying ways to complement and amplify the voices of my industrious parents with their “thick accents without thick brains”–a common saying from my father. During my year as chief resident through my role as Associate Program Director, I taught my peers and worked with faculty to promote safer, more equitable patient care through formalization of a quality improvement and patient safety education curriculum across two hospital systems recognized by AAMC and IHI. Through my mentorship program, my female medical students as mentees have successfully matriculated and graduated to become successful attending physicians over the last several years and now help others. Within my current role as a Mayo physician in Women’s Health Internal Medicine, I teach my patients validated tools to improve self-advocacy to navigate the healthcare system and routinely prioritize discussions about advance care planning and mental health. I am grateful for the breadth of experiences that have prepared me to be a candidate for the AMWA Board of Directors and confident of my ability to continue this strong legacy.

Helping AMWA Fulfill Its Vision of Creating a Healthier World Where Women Physicians Achieve Equity and Realize Their Full Potential

I am one of the proud representatives for American College of Physicians (ACP)–Women’s Wellness Equity and Leadership (WEL) Program with Dr. Sue Hingle and Dr. Fan Tait as stand-out leaders. WEL embodies the AMWA vision. In fact, WEL & the Physician Foundation awarded my subgroup a grant to promote wellness activity for women physicians of color, as leaders in equitable healthcare. My team endeavors to change the culture around wellness and promote approaches that uniquely address the stressors of women physicians of color. This forthcoming grant-funded innovation complements the mission of AMWA.

Diverse Experiences and Perspectives That Will Help AMWA Reach Its Full Organizational Potential

Uniquely, I am a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt with great passion for quality improvement and patient safety (QI/PS) through causal analysis and change management. Prior to Mayo Clinic, I established and directed the Phoenix VA outpatient residency clinic, as well as a separate hospital-wide QI/PS curriculum at two hospital systems. Through my guidance, our residents, faculty, and hospital employees launched over 130 QI projects—both inpatient and outpatient– through this three-legged curriculum. These projects were cost-saving through simple and systemic practice redesign with excellent support from our hospital and residency leadership. I am especially proud of the culture change that became apparent, with more interprofessional collaboration among staff, faculty, and Internal Medicine residents and medical students. We garnered national acknowledgements through AAMC, IHI, Joint Commission, VA, and ACP.

Biosketch

Dr. Adebisi (Bisi) Alli is a board-certified Internal Medicine physician and quality improvement and patient safety expert as a LEAN Six Sigma Black Belt. She is passionate about providing equitable, preventative healthcare for people and will launch related initiatives this year. Formerly, she was an Assistant Professor for the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine and Consultant for the Division of Women’s Health Internal Medicine. 
As a Michigan native, she moved to Arizona for residency training. In continuation of her chief resident year, she served as medical director for the residency clinic she launched through the Phoenix VA Healthcare System & Associate Program Director for the University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix Internal Medicine Residency Program.
Dr. Alli earned her LEAN Six Sigma Black Belt for efforts in spreading multi-hospital quality improvement and patient safety innovations, including a resident-directed curriculum with system-level interventions and promotion of just and fair culture. This program was recognized by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Association of American Medical Colleges, Joint Commission, VA, and American College of Physicians. Similarly, she has developed advance care planning initiatives with clinicians across the state of Arizona to prioritize outpatient discussions about goals of care with related peer-reviewed publications, talks, and workshops.
Previous awards include the 2021 Women in Medicine I Stand with Her Award, 2020 AMWA Exceptional Mentor Award, 2019 AMA Inspiration Award, and 2017 ACP Early Career Physician.
Dr. Alli serves as a coach and mentor for underrepresented medical students, residents, and attendings to promote successful career navigation and wellness.
She proudly joins the 2022 Board of Directors for the American Medical Women’s Association and represents the American College of Physicians in the national Women’s Wellness through Equity and Leadership (WEL) Program.

Eileen Barrett, MD, MPH, SFHM, MACP (CV)

Eileen Barrett, MD, MPH, SFHM, MACP

Reason for Seeking this Position

I respectfully request your support of my candidacy for the AMWA Board of Directors. If elected, I would use this opportunity to further our mission of improving the careers of women and restoring our sense of purpose and community within our profession.

The next few years offer an amazing opportunity to focus on synergies between clinician wellbeing, grassroots organizational development, equity, and advocacy. Medicine is undergoing rapid change and disruption, and it would be a privilege to work with AMWA on embracing change while remaining committed to advocacy for high quality, person-centered care and also fulfilling medical careers. I am passionate about opportunities for bidirectional communication between members and senior leadership to most effectively leverage AMWA activities and engage members at every level.

Member-based organizations face many challenges, and I believe that person-centered approaches that are respectful of divergent opinions and viewpoints provide the path to meaningful solutions. Practicing relationship-based, consensus-oriented leadership that I’ve learned from serving on the AMWA Governance Committee and ACP Board of Regents have helped me advance commonsense firearms legislation, updates to our medical license application, and Medicaid expansion in my state. Serving on the Board would provide an opportunity to use my skills identifying common ground and building consensus.

I am immeasurably grateful for AMWA’s leadership that is helping transform women’s lives and I would be profoundly grateful to be elected to the Board of Directors to be a part of this work. Thank you for your consideration.

Helping AMWA Fulfill Its Vision of Creating a Healthier World Where Women Physicians Achieve Equity and Realize Their Full Potential

If elected to the Board, I will use my knowledge, skills, and tools afforded through my previous leadership positions and the existing network of colleagues in AMWA to strengthen relationships between the academia where I work as a hospitalist and Director for CME, the Patient and Family Advisory Council where I’m a member, and connections with rural community clinicians to develop mutually beneficial career acceleration opportunities and recognition for women learners and physicians. Together we can review inequitable policies and structures in our clinics and hospitals for what we can change on our own and what will need change at the state and national level.

If elected to the Board, I would also like to leverage existing connections and relationships to further enhance AMWA’s robust advocacy agenda to embed gender equity in all that we do, so that we can democratize knowledge of resources and strategies for change. Harmonizing work between professional societies provides an underdeveloped opportunity to create an escalator to leadership and professional fulfillment for women in all stages of their careers, and I am eager to accelerate that work.

Diverse Experiences and Perspectives That Will Help AMWA Reach Its Full Organizational Potential

I have a lot of privilege and am aware of that and grateful for all that has given me – including the duty of understanding my privilege and facilitating justice and equity in and outside medicine. Diversity I can bring to the Board (and the resulting diverse perspectives) are that I am a first generation physician, and after residency practiced in rural New Mexico for almost ten years. (One of my clinics was in a double wide trailer at the end of a dirt road on the Navajo Nation.) I have also worked in another country (Sierra Leone) and have citizenship in another country. I hope to be selected for the Board so that I can bring the experiences of being a women in medicine, and how that has taught me about building psychological safety and understanding psychological size. Having lived and working in rural areas provides me experience with understanding health inequities such as lack of paved roads, lack of plumbing and electricity, and lack of internet access – and how all these affect health and healthcare. Working in another country during and outside of disasters has taught me a lot about cultural humility, also about preparing clinicians for navigating ethical quandaries with preparation, transparency, and robust policies.

All of these have helped me understand the unique assets and strengths that are provided by listening to patients and clinicians in all that we do so we can have the best possible outcomes.

Biosketch

Eileen Barrett, MD, MPH, SFHM, MACP, is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Continuing Medical Education at the University of New Mexico. She earned her MPH from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her MD at Georgetown University, and completed internal medicine residency at Oregon Health Sciences University Hospital.

She is a former Regent of the American College of Physicians, is a former Governor of the New Mexico Chapter of the American College of Physicians, and the recipient of New Mexico ACP chapter awards for advocacy and for leadership. Dr Barrett is a multi-state District Chair and past President of the New Mexico Chapter of the Society of Hospital Medicine, and in 2020 received the Chapter’s Physician of the Year Award. Dr Barrett is also an elected member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society, received a 2019 Exceptional Mentor Award from the American Medical Women’s Association, and received the 2021 Award of Excellence in Humanitarian Services from the Society of Hospital Medicine.

Arghavan Salles, MD, MP (CV)

Arghavan Salles, MD, MP

Reason for Seeking this Position

AMWA is the premier medical society looking out for women physicians and medical trainees. The women I’ve had the honor of working with through AMWA are brilliant, talented, and passionate people committed to fighting the systemic injustices we face in our careers. The AMWA community is progressive, open-minded, and inclusive. I have been impressed by the vigor with which the organization has taken on physician fertility, and it has been a privilege to lead some of the research efforts on this front. In addition to these efforts, AMWA brings many women physicians and trainees together and enables mentorship. As a previous winner of the AMWA Mentorship award, I really appreciate this aspect of AMWA’s work and would love to continue to facilitate those relationships. After several years of involvement with AMWA, I would be honored to have an opportunity to serve on the board and contribute more broadly to the mission of the organization.

Helping AMWA Fulfill Its Vision of Creating a Healthier World Where Women Physicians Achieve Equity and Realize Their Full Potential

As a woman surgeon, I have personally experienced the harassment and bullying that push women out of medicine. As a researcher, I studied gender stereotypes in surgery for my PhD and have continued to study the impact of implicit bias and other factors on women’s careers for the last decade. I frequently speak on these topics, and I use social media to advocate for women and underrepresented minorities in medicine. I believe part of AMWA’s role is to help create more inclusive environments within medicine and to prevent women from being marginalized. In my current role as the Special Advisor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Department of Medicine at Stanford, these are exactly the issues I work on. I would bring my experiences from this role and other diversity-related roles to my service on the AMWA Board. I am a vocal advocate who is passionate about helping women overcome the systemic barriers to our success, and I would bring my research expertise, lived experience, and passion to working with AMWA to do just that.

Diverse Experiences and Perspectives That Will Help AMWA Reach Its Full Organizational Potential

As an immigrant woman, I have never felt like I belong. Growing up in the Midwest during the Gulf War, I was asked, at 10 years old, whether I was a terrorist. Applying to medical school in the fall of 2001, I was asked whether I knew anyone in the Taliban. When I was a faculty member in 2017 heading back to Iran to visit family, the Muslim ban made me anxious about whether I would be able to come back to the US afterward. Even though I speak without a discernible accent, my name and features are clearly foreign. In addition to that, as a woman engineer and physician, I have experienced first-hand how people have different expectations of women and the way those expectations limit our opportunities for advancement and even just employment. Finally, social psychology was the foundation of my doctoral studies, so I bring insights from social science to the work I do as well. It would be an honor to bring these experiences to bear on the work that AMWA is doing.

Biosketch

Dr. Salles is a national leader in diversity, inclusion, and equity, having earned a PhD studying these topics at Stanford University. Dr. Salles is also a surgeon and has extensive lived experience as a woman of color working in a male-dominated environment. Dr. Salles completed medical school and residency in general surgery at Stanford prior to completing a fellowship in minimally invasive surgery at Washington University in St. Louis. After staying on faculty in St. Louis for a few years, Dr. Salles moved back to Stanford in 2019 to work with the medical school on issues related to diversity and inclusion. Her research focuses broadly on gender equity, implicit bias, diversity, inclusion, and physician well-being. During the pandemic, Dr. Salles has served as a disaster relief physician, caring for patients with COVID in the ICU. She is a sought-after speaker and has given over 80 national and international invited talks related to gender equity and sexual harassment in medicine.

Dr. Salles is a prolific researcher and writer, having had her work published in prominent medical journals such as JAMA Network Open and JAMA Surgery. She also writes for broad audiences through outlets such as USA Today, TIME Magazine, and Scientific American. She is passionate about helping women and under-represented minorities achieve their full potential at work.

Chung Sang Tse, MD

Reason for seeking this position and your interest in AMWA.

Serving AMWA’s Residents and Fellows’ Division for the past 5 years has been a tremendous honor and I hope to continue in AMWA leadership as I progress through my medical career. Currently, I am the Immediate Past-President of the National AMWA Residents’ and Fellows’ Division and an active AMWA Ignite Core Faculty member.

I first became involved with AMWA Leadership after winning 1st Place for the Case Poster Presentation in the AMWA Residents’ Division (Miami, FL). I served as the AMWA-American Medical Association Resident Representation (2017-2018), MWIA Centennial Congress Resident Co-Chair (2018-2019), Resident President-Elect (2019-2020), and most recently as the Resident President (2020-2021).

How I can help AMWA fulfill its vision of creating a healthier world where women physicians achieve equity and realize their full potential.

My personal and career goals align with AMWA’s mission and vision. In my medical subspecialty (Gastroenterology), I am conducting research on gender parity within gastroenterology Graduate Medical Education, with mentorship from Dr. Anjali Bhagra and Dr. Steven Moss. Our work was accepted for a podium presentation at the premiere gastroenterology meeting of the American
Gastroenterologic Association in 2020 (link below).

Through academic scholarship and research, I aim to help AMWA fulfill its vision to create a healthier world where there is equity for women physicians in a healthcare environment where women
physicians and realize their full potential alongside men physicians.

Tse, Chung Sang, et al. “885 DIVERSITY OFFICES’ IMPACT ON GENDER PARITY IN GASTROENTEROLOGY TRAINING: A DECADE-LONG ANALYSIS OF GASTROENTEROLOGY FELLOWSHIPS’ LEADERSHIP, TRAINEES, AND APPLICANTS IN NORTH AMERICA FROM 2009 – 2018.” Gastrointestinal Endoscopy 91.6 (2020): AB75.

The diverse experiences and perspectives I bring that will help AMWA reach its full organizational potential.

I hope that my leadership and scholarship experiences can serve as assets to AMWA’s Board of Directors. Moreover, I represent diversity as a first-generation immigrant, ethnic minority, and a women physician in a male-dominated procedural specialty (women represent only 18% of practicing gastroenterologists).

I have leadership experience within AMWA and at external organizations, including the American Medical Association, Connecticut State Medical Society, American College of Gastroenterology, American Gastroenterological Association, Asian Paci c American Medical Student Association. I am training as a physician-scientist, with 25 peer-review publications, 2 book chapters, and over 50 national and international presentations.

Biosketch

Chung Sang Tse, M.D. is an Inflammatory Bowel Disease Fellow at the University of California, San Diego. She graduated as a Farr Scholar from the Yale School of Medicine, where her educational research on hospice and palliative care was recognized by the John P. Peters Commencement Award. At Yale, she served as the Co-President of the Internal Medicine Interest Group, Women In Medicine group, American Medical Association (AMA) Yale Chapter, and as a Medical Student Council Member at the Connecticut State Medical Society. Following medical school, Dr. Tse pursued Internal Medicine residency training at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, and Gastroenterology fellowship at Brown University.

Dr. Tse has stayed active in AMWA throughout her medical training in medical school, residency, and fellowship. She served as the AMWA National President of the Residents’ and Fellows’ Division from 2020-2021 and the MWIA Centennial Congress Residents’ Co-Chair in 2019-2020. She is a Core Faculty Member for AMWA Ignite. She is honored as a recipient of the AMWA Charlotte Edwards Maguire, MD Outstanding Resident Mentor Award (2017), AMWA Susan Love Resident Writing Competition (2017, 2nd place), and the AMWA Young Women in Science Award (2016).

She continues to serve as a mentor for undergraduate students, medical students, and residents. She hopes to advance women in medicine through mentorship, networking, leadership, and academic scholarship.