Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Mission: The University of Chicago Department of Surgery Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Steering Committee is committed to addressing and eliminating discrimination in all forms within our department through continuous self-assessment, targeted programming, advocacy, and creation of an increasingly diverse and culturally competent workforce by embedding diversity and inclusion as an integral component of surgical excellence.

In doing so, we aim to remove barriers to healthcare access, to provide the best care for our community, and to create an optimal and equitable environment to work, conduct research, and train.

View our Surgical Excellence in Action gallery.

DEI Steering Committee Leadership

Upcoming Events

  • October 2, 11:30AM: Third Annual Black Convocation - The mission of the Black Convocation is to expose the richness and breadth of the Black community on the UChicago campus to incoming undergraduate, graduate, and transfer students. The program aims to highlight, celebrate, and establish the culture and expectations of our community at the onset of each academic year. The ceremony will be followed by a reception with food and activities. Students, faculty, alumni, and parents are invited to attend. Attendees are asked to dress in all white.
  • October 7, 3:00PM: Women in Boots - Chicago Booth student Lieutenant Commander (U.S. Coast Guard) Katie Pelkey will moderate a conversation on leadership with author and Lieutenant Commander (Naval Reserves) Caroline Johnson, and servant, leader and author, U.S. Coast Guard Vice Admiral (retired) Sandra Stosz.
  • October 12, 10:00AM: Teaching Inclusively - This session will provide an overview of inclusive teaching and suggest several strategies for acknowledging and activating diversity.


  • UCM Wellness Series, hosted by the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Information here on virtual wellness programming
  • University events
  • From book discussions to talks about anti-racism to events for LGBTQIA+ communities, veterans, and more, the UChicago Diversity and Inclusion calendar has a host of events for every interest.


Along with the Departments of Medicine, Pediatrics, and Orthopedic Surgery, the Department of Surgery is proud to participate in the Pritzker School of Medicine's Underrepresented in Medicine Visiting Clerkship Program. The program is sponsored through the generous support of Peggy A. Montes, a former IL public school system teacher, co-founder of Bronzeville Children’s Museum, and longtime Chicago/Cook County civic leader.

While the Visiting Clerkship Program is suspended indefinitely due to COVID-19, the initiative is aimed at fourth-year medical students from groups who have been traditionally underrepresented in US medical schools – Black/African American, Mexican-American, Native American (American Indian, Alaskan Native, and Native Hawaiians), Puerto Ricans, and Asians (specifically Hmong, Vietnamese, Laotian, and Filipino) who are in good standing at LCME-accredited US medical school. Our department will match visiting students with a resident and assign a faculty advisor for support, networking and mentorship.

Students apply through VSAS and complete a Pritzker-specific supplemental application. The program will pay a $2,000 stipend to students for supporting costs associated with participation at the end of the rotation.

Please use the link above to check on the status of the program as the pandemic develops.

Learn more about where people in our department volunteer.

Our Work

The DEI Steering Committee oversees our commitment to this mission through six domains that are integrated into our everyday work:

  1. Clinical Care, Access, and Continuity: Providing equitable care and integrating social determinants of health into our practice
  2. Communications: Highlighting our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion through formal and informal communications and celebrating our accomplishments within the work environment
  3. Community Engagement and Activism: Building trust with members of our community and advocating for change
  4. Education and Evaluation: Upgrading our curricula for trainees, faculty, and staff, addressing bias in recruitment and evaluation, and teaching anti-racism
  5. Hiring, Career Development, and Promotion: Recruiting diverse clinicians and staff, mentoring, and creating avenues for career development
  6. Wellness: Mitigating psychological distress associated with bias or discrimination

We’re very appreciative of the robust enthusiasm from our amazing DEI subcommittee members; many of our subcommittees have grown substantially within the past few months! Through our educational discussions and significant initiatives, it is our hope that DEI stays embedded in all the work that we do – in the OR, clinic, and beyond. We must remain dedicated to our DEI mission, and understand that the structure needs to evolve like an ecosystem; we’re all in this together. To that end, as we strive to strengthen all aspects of inclusion both within our department and beyond, support from the DOS community is critical.

Email us at if you're interested in joining one of our subcommittees!


Chelsea Dorsey, MD Named Vice-Chair of DEI

Dr. Chelsea Dorsey, MD’10, Associate Professor of Surgery, has been named Vice-Chair of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) for the Department of Surgery.

In no small part due to Dr. Dorsey’s exceptional leadership and tireless dedication as our Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion over the past year, we have made remarkable progress together; however, we know we are only at the beginning of our transformational journey. One of our key goals has been to embed the work of DEI into the routine day-in, day-out activities of our department, across all our missions. In her new capacity as Vice-Chair, Dr. Dorsey will engage more deeply in operations and administration within our overall departmental leadership structure. Congratulations, Dr. Dorsey!


Dr. Selwyn O. Rogers Jr. named the first James E. Bowman Jr. Professor

Selwyn Rogers, MD, MPH has been named the first James E. Bowman Jr. Professor in the Biological Sciences in the Department of Medicine. This new professorship honors Bowman, a distinguished faculty member in the Department of Pathology and the first African American to earn tenure in the Biological Sciences Division.

Dr. Rogers is a widely respected surgeon and public health expert. As founding director of our adult trauma center, he has built an interdisciplinary team of specialists to treat patients who suffer injury from life-threatening events, such as car crashes, serious falls and gun violence. As executive vice president for community health engagement, he works with the Urban Health Initiative and across the University to develop a multidisciplinary approach to trauma care and health disparities.

Congratulations, Dr. Rogers!


Faculty Spotlight - Brian H. Williams, MD

The National Academy of Medicine (NAM) and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) have officially announced their 2021-2022 class of RWJF Health Policy Fellows, and we are pleased and proud that Brian Williams, MD is one of them! 

Congratulations to Dr. Williams on winning a 2020 Black Leaders Worth Watching award from Profiles in Diversity Journal

Dr. Williams was also named one of Medscape's 20 Top Black Physician Social Media Influencers.

Q&A: Dr. Brian H. Williams Discusses Racial Disparities in Healthcare – and a Groundbreaking New Harris Course

OpEd Workshop 5.13.21 - presented by Brian Williams, MD

Watch this space for more faculty features!