AMWA Initiatives

The American Medical Women’s Association advocates to bring under-addressed issues to the forefront of the national agenda. Join our initiatives now.

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About Us Connect With Us Heritage Months News & Publications Data &Reports Trending in D & I Collaborations Scorecard Global Education Grants Get Involved Programming Meet Our Team Signature Initiatives Diversity, Inclusion, & Innovation Research & Scholarships Awards Resources Education & Training

Join us for a webinar – The Heart & Brain Connection – on Monday, February 27, hosted by our Racial & Ethnic Minority Subcommittee! Register here!



Diversity and Inclusion at AMWA

About Us

A Message from Our Chief

Welcome to AMWA’s Section of Diversity and Inclusion (D and I) webpage. We are an evolving and constantly innovative section at AMWA, as we process change, development, and transformation, not only within the work of the Section, but also in our other initiatives within and outside of AMWA. Officially instituted by AMWA in 2014 we have experienced numerous successes, thanks to a strong, and supportive Board of Directors, highly motivated and talented staff and leadership team.

As a Section, our diversity values are:
• A diverse AMWA membership and leadership team,
• A women’s health-centered organization that acknowledges members and leaders from multiple healthcare organizations, stakeholders, students and residents focusing on their success as a top priority
• The pursuit of knowledge and applicability of this knowledge through diverse traditions and inclusive efforts
• Accountability and action towards the success and management of diversity
• A welcoming environment that encourages diversity and inclusion of ideas, continuous personal and professional growth and academic attainment for all AMWA members and their partners
• Engagement and collaboration across difference
• A focus on INCLUSIVE excellence in everything that we do

Neelum T. Aggarwal, MD, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, AMWA

Mission Statement

AMWA is dedicated to increasing the participation and fostering the leadership of women and minorities within the organization and in the broader medical community. Consistent with our founding principles, we recognize that our newly trained physicians and patients that we serve are from increasingly diverse ethnic backgrounds and communities. We actively promote a diverse culture through chapters and programs to a diverse group of pre medical, allied health and STEM students, medical students and residents and are committed to mentoring, training, professional development and community and public service programs. We are proud to have diverse professionals at all levels, from our Chief Diversity Officer, our Board of Directors and Executive Director to our resident and student leadership.

The charge of the Diversity and Inclusion (D & I) Section of AMWA is to guide leadership in implementing strategies to increase, enhance and sustain diversity and inclusion within the organization and serve as the primary advisory body to the organization’s chapters and other affinity groups. Our members are encouraged to actively participate in all of AMWA’s activities and programming that include the Gender Equity Task Force, the Advocacy Committee, Mentoring Task Force and program activities at the AMWA Annual Meeting.

We encourage all members to expand their involvement and advocacy at all levels by:

diversity● Identifying emerging issues and concerns of women in medicine and health;
● Exchanging relevant information between the AMWA-D and I Section to the AMA-Women Physician Section (WPS) and the Associate partner organizations;
● Participate in efforts to advance women into leadership positions that promote diversity and inclusion in medicine and
● Implement programming and activities with partner organizations to enhance their programming of D and I healthcare and medical Initiatives.

Read about the AMWA D and I Section announcement here


Connect with the Section on Diversity and Inclusion

contact us

AMWA National Office

National AMWA Office
1100 E. Woodfield Rd.
Suite 350
Schaumburg IL 60173

Phone: (847) 517-2801

D & I Social Media

We want to hear your voice and also keep you up to date with Section on Diversity and Inclusion.
Use the social links below to connect:

Email_IconChief Diversity Officer, Dr. Neelum Aggarwal:
Medical Student Chair: Gabriella M. Reyes,


ChieTwitterbirdf Diversity Officer, Dr. Neelum Aggarwal: @doctorADDA
AMWA D&I committee: @AMWA_diversity



AMWA D&I committee: @AMWA_diversity



Gabriella M. Reyes, Medical Student Chair


Heritage Months

Throughout the year the Diversity & Inclusion members celebrate these following heritage months and highlight programs of interest to our members. We encourage our members to email us, tweet us, or post on Facebook about their activities and send us updates so we can highlight these activities in AMWA’s Newsflash and Connections publications.

Black History Month – February

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month – May

Hispanic Heritage Month — September/October

National Native American Heritage Month – November

News & Publications

us against alz

 AMWA Partners with the Women Against Alzheimer’s Disease (WAAD) Network to Raise Awareness About the Impact of Women and AD on Families and Caregiving

Listen to important testimony given in Washington, DC here 

We Won’t Wait

Press Release: Access it here

Fact Sheet: Access it here

AMWA Leadership participating at the “Out of the Shadow’s Dinner” in Washington DC.

Learn more here

Previous Out of the Shadows Dinner. Watch footage here

UsAgainstAlzheimer’s 2016 National Summit and Out of the Shadows Dinner from The Carlin Company on Vimeo.

Increasing Diversity and Inclusion in Clinical Trials – Why it Matters for Women

A4 study
Drs. Sperling ( PI), Dr. Aggarwal and Weintraub ( Chicago)

Insulin Study
Drs. Craft ( PI), Dr. Aggarwal (Chicago)

How to Engage, Recruit, and Retain Women in Clinical Research
Dr. Clayton

NIH Outreach Toolkit

 Clinical Trials and Women

Women In Clinical Trials Fact Sheet 2016

How Sex and Gender Influence Health and Disease

SWHRSociety For Women’s Health Research Network

The Intersection of Sex and Gender, Neuroimaging Data and Medical Education as it relates to Alzheimer’s Disease

Check out the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) Newsletter here

Check out the SGME Poster — Gender differences in Alzheimer’s Disease onset and progression: Taking Research Findings and applying them to Medical Education  here

Data and Reports


The Section of Diversity, and Inclusion is working with our partners in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine) to develop an Assessment & Research Core (ARC), to gather data for interpretation and reporting, as it relates to diversity and inclusion topics. ARC is planning to conduct annual assessments that align with the Section’s mission, goals, and objectives.

ARC will engage all AMWA Committees and its members in ongoing review of diversity assessments (e.g., AMWA D & I Progress Report, Diversity Scorecard Assessment).
The Project Leaders for ARC will provide support to the Chief Diversity Officer in various tasks related to diversity assessment, strategy planning, and research management. If you are interested in participating in ARC please contact

Diversity and Inclusion Reports

Each of the links below contains a separate report developed by or in collaboration with the Section on Diversity & Inclusion:
AMWA D & I Progress Report
Coming Soon
Diversity Scorecard Report
Coming Soon

Trending in Diversity, Inclusion, & Innovation (D & I²)

Diversity Dialogues is designed to build awareness and understanding of individuals’ live experience in the fields of medicine, social sciences and global health. It allows our physicians, residents and medical students, to engage in meaningful conversations on key points from featured books selected by the D & I committee and all of our participants are encouraged to post comments on the AMWA blog.

Featured Book:

150 Years of Obamacare by Daniel E. Dawes

Other Media:

Road Map for Innovation in Women from the FDA: Access it here

AMWA member – Dr. Nancy Church, talks about Innovation in Medicine:

Diversity & Inclusion Collaborations 

Partnership Diversity:
The Diversity & Inclusion partnership database is designed to present the names, expert abilities, skills and contact information of minority- and women-owned medical and healthcare practices, businesses, and startups to AMWA members who are actively seeking to have a more inclusive environment in their practices, work or initiatives. The Database is presently being developed. If you would like to be added to the database, please contact us at


CHI-LogoAMWA’s Diversity and Inclusion Chief Participates on a Panel Discussion About AMWA and its D & I Initiatives for Women in the Healthcare Field and Medicine

D & I Scorecard

AMWA’s Diversity and Inclusion Scorecard is a document for tracking and disseminating the status of the organization’s Diversity and Inclusion goals, over time. It also provides the criteria for evaluating the organization’s progress toward closing gaps in D and I initiatives. The Scorecard is completed yearly and will be posted in December 2016.

D & I Perspective on Global Education

AMWA has a long history of supporting an increasingly diverse membership and outreach to diverse populations through its global health programs and AWHS. Our members, and partnerships include students, residents, physicians, and healthcare providers representing many countries, ethnicities and cultures. AWHS and the Section on Diversity and Inclusion will promote the development of multicultural competence among members of AMWA community.

Multicultural Competence

Multicultural competence = Intercultural competence or global competence.
It represents awareness, knowledge and skills necessary to function successfully in a multicultural society. In order to support the development of multicultural competence, the following efforts are being developed:
1. Creation of an AMWA wide program to build awareness, knowledge and skills pertaining to multiculturalism from both a domestic and global perspective.
2. Administration of the Intercultural Development Inventory (link coming soon) to member physicians, residents, students, and allied groups to assess current levels of intercultural sensitivity and develop strategies for increasing sensitivity over an appropriate time span.
3. Organize a series of webinars and/or podcasts by professionals from the diversity and inclusion space.

Read more about the importance of Social Determinants of Health,Global issues and Health Equity from the WHO here

Grant Opportunities

The Section on D & I is developing a new and exciting opportunity for the AMWA membership. The Section plans to offer seed grant funding up to the amount of $1,500 to AMWA members, physicians, students, residents and allied partners, for teaching, research and/or service projects. We will fund one (1) seed grant per year and request that the following criteria be satisfied:

-Scholarship of teaching, research and discovery related to diversity, and inclusion topics.

Want to apply? The application checklist includes:

Contact information for your project team (one Principal Investigator /Lead Investigator)
2-page CVs for each investigator
Brief description of the PI/ Lead Investigator research interests
Project Summary document, 1 page maximum (PDF recommended)
Proposal Narrative document, 3 pages maximum (PDF recommended)
Proposal budget

Please use the following link (coming soon) to apply for D and I grant before December 31, 2016.

Questions- If you have any questions concerning this application form or proposal opportunity, please email and

Like what you’ve read so far?… Want to Get Involved?

Diversity (1)The Diversity and Inclusion Section is organized into three (3) sub committees, each of which has a physician, resident and student chair that work together to achieve the committee goals.

Racial and Ethnic Diversity Subcommittee

The Subcommittee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity identifies health policy issues affecting minorities, develops initiatives to promote the success of minorities in the field of medicine, and works to create an environment best suited to capitalize on the strengths of AMWA’s minority physician, resident and student members.
Members of AMWA including Susan Ivey, PhD, a past AMWA President and Neelum T. Aggarwal, MD, AMWA’s Chief Diversity Officer were proud to serve on the AMA Commission to End Health Disparities. The Commission to End Health Care Disparities, was established in 2004 by the American Medical Association and the National Medical Association, and the National Hispanic Medical Association in response to the Institute of Medicine’s report “Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care”.

Read more about how the Commission started here

Read more about the importance of collecting Race/ Ethnicity and Language data in Ambulatory Settings here 
Read more about Promoting appropriate use of physicians’ non-English language skills in clinical care here
Read more about the importance of Social Determinants of Health,Global issues and Health Equity from the WHO here

Presentations and key reports from the work of the Commission can be found on our members only page (coming soon!)

Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Queer Subcommittee

The LGBTQ Subcommittee helps the organization foster an inclusive environment for physicians, residents, and students who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender by providing educational and mentorship opportunities and supporting organizations that work toward equal rights for LGBTQ individuals and families in the broader community.

Members of this subcommittee are involved in many activities. Some presentations can be found here (coming soon). Check out other committee activities here (coming soon!)

Byne, W. (2017). Sustaining Progress Toward LGBT Health Equity: A Time for Vigilance, Advocacy, and Scientific Inquiry. Access the paper here.

Military and Veteran Affairs Subcommittee

Join us for our first webinar of 2017 hosted by the Military & VA Subcommittee on January 30th! Register here!

This Committee provides the cultural connect for those who have served and continue to serve our Country, through peer support, mentoring, team building, and other methods of engagement to learn how military service informs clinical practice and research. Check out their webpage here.

For more information on the National Veteran Equity Report click here

Mankowski, Mariann, and Joyce E. Everett. “Women service members, veterans, and their families: What we know now.” Nurse education today(2016). Access the paper here

Want more information on how to serve on our Section or Subcommittees?

Please email our Medical Student Chair and Chief Diversity Officer, or join our monthly conference calls where our members deliver updates on their committees and activities. For a schedule of the monthly call and call in information, please check out our Google Calendar ( HTML version, iCal version )



*** Denotes events where AMWA members will be in attendance

On our monthly calls, we embark on D and I Cross Talks, an opportunity for members from the various AMWA wide Initiatives to join the call and give us their updates and we discuss how our Section can give a D and I perspective to their committee.

Check out the D and I Cross Talk Schedule here:

July 25, 2016
Human Trafficking

August 29, 2016
Preventative Medicine Task Force

September 26, 2016
Gun Violence Prevention Task Force

October 24, 2016
Gender Equity Task Force

November 28, 2016
Sex and Gender Women’s Health

December 19, 2016
Networking Alliance

January 23, 2017
Prevention of Childhood Obesity

February 27, 2017
Breast Cancer Task Force

March 27, 2017
Mentorship Committee

April 24, 2017
Alcohol Awareness
We are looking for members interested in serving as liaisons between existing AMWA Initiatives and the Diversity and Inclusion Section- Become a D and I Cross Talk Liaison! If you are interested in serving, please fill out this form.


Calling all AMWA artists to enter this competition and attend the conference .

Meet Our Team

Coming soon!

Signature Initiatives

The following list contains current and past initiatives in which the Section of Diversity and Inclusion is currently engaged.
The Section is committed to developing leading practices to aid in increasing the recruitment and retention of medical students/ residents/ allied students, from underrepresented groups to AMWA and empowering them with the tools to develop into leaders in their respective fields.

Diversity Scorecard

The diversity scorecard approach represents a strategic method for achieving inclusive excellence in AMWA. AMWA’s diversity scorecard focuses on recruitment and retention of members, development of programming that is inclusive and involvement of members in AMWA wide initiatives.

D & I + AAMC

AMWA’s D & I Section works with the AAMC and Center for Healthcare Innovation to discuss issues related to workforce development, programming and clinical trial participation in minority populations. For more information click here.

AMWA D & I Intercultural Development Inventory

More information coming soon!

Diversity, Inclusion, and Innovation (D & I²)

Broadening the Participation of Women and Under-represented Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM) Education and Research

For women to attain excellence in global leadership and competitiveness in STEMM fields, AMWA must become a leader in this area, and explore the intersection of diversity and its impact on future success in STEMM.  African-American, Latino and Native American women are underrepresented amongst STEM fields and medicine.

The Section has begun collaborative efforts with STEMM organizations and health incubators, with the goals to increase the diversity of higher education in STEM fields through a variety of initiatives, supporting the education and professional advancement of highly talented women from underrepresented groups.  Two programs presently under development include:

  1. Establishing a STEMM student academy to increase awareness of opportunities in STEMM  (internships, study/work at incubators/ healthcare startups, career, conferences, and research);
  2. Establishing opportunities for women in STEMM to network with AMWA members and exchange ideas regarding healthcare innovation.

innovation lightbulb

Here are some examples of opportunities to link up with the AMWA D & I Innovation Lead:

  • WeTechUP – TechUP seek women, people of color, LGBTQ individuals, veterans, and people who live with a disability to engage in technology initiatives.
  • Women in Bio – Mentorship & Sponsorship in LifeSciences & Innovation
  • Innovation Ecosystems – Chicago

We hope to provide awareness and resources to inspire and educate the next generation of entrepreneurs and physicians. We are not going to just inspire those in STEMM but also link them to key people in sectors to inspire and create new solutions.   The Section has already collaborated with Health and Technology Innovation/ Incubators and Accelerators throughout the US. Under the leadership of our AMWA member, and Innovation Lead: Dima Elissa, a Chicago based CEO Vis Med-3D,  healthcare innovator, this program is poised to bring network resources together in one, centralized gateway through AMWA. Presently, the Midwest network provides a broad healthcare community that will facilitate commitments from AMWA partners and members to accelerate access to the resources entrepreneurs need to vet and prove their concepts.  In addition, the Women in STEMM program will create a platform for both professional mentorship and sponsorship of innovations in healthcare.

Check out the Road Map for Innovation in Women from the FDA here

Got an Innovative idea? Need to pair up with a tech professional? Contact us at

Research and Scholarship Grant Assistance

The Section collaborates and/or provides support to its members with research, scholarship and grant proposals and works with D & I members to make sure that their proposals have a D & I perspective focusing on the inclusion of men/women in analyses, separately reporting out analyses and interpretation of data as it relates to D & I core components.
Read more about NIH guidelines here about Sex and Gender reporting in Research here (coming soon!)

Poster and Research Conducted by D &I Members





AMWA’s –Trailblazer Award for Performing Arts In Health Education
This award recognizes the contributions of any non for profit organization dedicated to the performing arts (musical and plays, visual media, music ) that demonstrates significant contributions in the areas of delivering health care messaging, education and engagement to diverse patient / family audiences.
The Award for Diversity honors these organizations for their commitment to implementing diversity and inclusion initiatives in their own work.

For more information contact us

D & I Resources

Diversity and Inclusion Section Cultural Cookbook in Honor of the Centennial Meeting- Chicago 2015.

The cultural cookbook has over 100 cultural recipes as well as informative food articles on the history of traditional foods and ways to maintain a healthy, balanced diet. All the recipes and articles have been submitted by AMWA members and partners and MWIA members. If you missed purchasing a delicious piece of AMWA history at the meeting or just wanted more copies to give to family and friends as a gift, please click here to purchase the book. This cookbook is something that everyone can enjoy!

Health Disparities-Related Organizations & Individual Database
From the D&I Section survey 2014, participants have stated that they would like to be connected to D&I and health disparities-related organizations and individuals. In order to help members with this, our section wanted to create a database that contained free and community health clinics, health fair, and other community organizations from each state. We seek the help of our members to gather information of their activities within their area/state. Please click here for more information.

Public Engagement and Clinical Trials – Access it here

Minority Women in STEMMAccess it here

Clinical Trials and Disparities – Access it here

Education & Training

The Division of Diversity & Inclusion plans to offer several training opportunities, facilitated dialogues, workshops, and podcasts to assist initiatives and interested parties develop diversity and inclusion within their areas.
These programs are offered on a quarterly basis and are open to all members of AMWA and led by our Section members. We will make every attempt to include our wide network of physicians in the space to share their expertise and experience in their fields.

Below is a list of our current offerings and areas of expertise :

Cultural Competency Series
• Part I: Leadership Fitness & Multicultural Teams
• Part II: Cultural Competency Basics & Awareness
• Part III: Understanding Unconscious Biases

Managing in Diverse Environments

Creating an Inclusive Environment for Better Leadership