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

  • July 7, 2021, 6:30AM: Q1 DOS Departmental M&M Conference and Faculty Meeting - In addition to departmental updates, a comprehensive review of the DEI Steering Committee's progress will be presented.
  • July 14, 2021, 7:15AM: General Surgery Grand Rounds - “Keeping Our Pledge to Health Equity and Antiracism” – presented by: Monica B. Vela, MD, Professor of Medicine, Associate Dean for Multicultural Affairs for Pritzker School of Medicine and James N. Woodruff, MD, Professor of Medicine, Associate Dean for Students for Pritzker School of Medicine, Vice Chair, Education for the Department of Medicine. We’re excited to have Drs. Vela and Woodruff join us for the unveiling of our new Alcove Display depicting the legacy of Southside surgical care.  Please plan to attend this important event.
  • July 29, 2021, 5:00PM: Bowman Society Lecture - “The State of Diversity in Medical Education” – presented by Dowin Boatright, MD, MBA, MHS. Dr. Boatright's research addresses the impact of bias and discrimination in medical and explores interventions to improve diversity in the healthcare and physician-scientist workforce.


  • 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
Patricia Turner, MD

Dr. Patricia L. Turner, Executive Director, American College of Surgeons

We are thrilled to announce that Patricia L. Turner, MD, MBA, FACS, Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Chicago, has been named the next Executive Director of the American College of Surgeons, which is one of the most significant and powerful leadership roles in American surgery.

Among her many achievements while on our faculty, Dr. Turner was elected the first female President of the Society of Black Academic Surgeons in 2017 and held that title when our Department hosted the SBAS annual meeting at the University of Chicago. 

Congratulations, Dr. Turner! Please check out the ACS press release.



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!