Please join us in extending our congratulations to Drs. Jennifer Dominguez and Adeyemi Olufolabi on their new diversity and inclusion leadership roles within Duke Anesthesiology, effective October 1.
Dominguez now serves as chair of our Anesthesiology Inclusivity Committee (AIC). Olufolabi serves as the committee’s senior advisor. They transitioned into these leadership roles previously held by Dr. Mandisa-Maia Jones, who has been with our department for six years and has accepted an opportunity at Cornell. We would like to express our gratitude for her dedication and commitment to launching and leading this departmental program.
Diversity and inclusion are essential components of academic medicine, both to promote equity and fairness among us, and to fulfill our School of Medicine’s mission for excellence in education, research, and clinical care. Our Diversity and Inclusion Program within Duke Anesthesiology is a group of faculty and trainees that works on various initiatives to promote the recruitment, retention, and career development of faculty and trainees who identify as women, LGBTQ or with racial and ethnic groups that are underrepresented in medicine. The AIC accomplishes these goals through recruitment, education, outreach, advocacy, and by promoting an inclusive culture within the department that positively impacts how we teach, learn and serve. We are committed to building an environment where we all feel we belong, and are engaged and productive.
Dominguez joined our department in 2013 as an assistant professor of anesthesiology. She graduated from the Yale School of Medicine, where she also completed residency training, followed by a fellowship here at Duke. She currently serves as the director of our Obstetric Anesthesiology Fellowship Program.
“I have enjoyed being a member of the AIC for several years, and am also grateful to Dr. Jones for her leadership. I look forward to working with Dr. Olufolabi and this committed and vibrant group of faculty, residents and fellows to move these vital initiatives forward,” says Dominguez. “Recent events from the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on communities of color, to heinous acts of police brutality have prompted an openness to acknowledge and dialogue about systemic race, ethnic and gender based discrimination that I have not seen previously in my lifetime. I hope that this momentum will continue so that we can make impactful and lasting changes that will benefit our profession, our patients, and our communities.”
Olufolabi joined our department in 1997 as a visiting associate. He received his MBBS at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria and went on to complete his specialist registrar training at the University of Southampton. He has served as an affiliate for the Duke Global Health Institute for the past decade, and leads our department’s Global Health Program.
“I believe the country is birthing a new fair and equitable society for all Americans. And like natural birth, it is fraught with pain and a prolonged period of uncertainty. But history tells us that we will evolve and will get there,” says Olufolabi. “We just need to keep banging on the door and believing in the creed that we all are created equal.”
On behalf of our department, we wish Drs. Dominguez, Jones and Olufolabi the best in their new roles and future endeavors.