FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion – Foundation Imperatives

Last fall my 4-year-old granddaughter needed a significant surgical procedure. To ease her anxiety, I shared that I heard
on a good word from the person who brings presents during December that she would receive an “early holiday gift” for

being brave.

When she woke up from her procedure her reward was nested beside her. My brave snicklefritz discovered “Evette”, one of the first biracial American Girl dolls. She sleepily exclaimed, “Her hair is curly, and she looks just like me!” For the first time my granddaughter saw her image in a doll. Since then, Evette’s imaginary roles include veterinarian, artist, pilot, teacher, mother, chef, therapy dog handler and, yes, physician. My granddaughter’s imagination for Evette’s role is limitless.

Our Foundation trustees are ardent champions for offering scholarships and low interest loans to increase diversity within our medical schools.

The Foundation’s 2021 Impact Report highlights our efforts to increase access to medical school for students representing diverse backgrounds and socio-economic classes. Our focus is to invest in the education of young adults who represent populations marginalized by social indicators that can limit parity in medical school admission and


We cannot achieve this goal without the generous support of our donors. We give special thanks to the families who have munificently created scholarships with the specific intent of changing the composition of a photo featuring the most recent medical school graduates. My hope - as we increase our efforts to support access to medical school, our community members seeking care experience a reassuring moment of familiarity when they encounter a physician who looks like them and understands their religious, economic, and cultural nuances. The road is long and steep, but together we can get to our destination.

Be well,

Heather A. Wilson, MSW, CFRE, CAE
Executive Director,
Foundation of the Pennsylvania Medical Society
Deputy EVP, Pennsylvania Medical Society