2nd Annual Advocacy event
Bio-social Factors of Health:
A Holistic Approach to Global Health Equity

Tuesday, March 28, 2017
6-8 PM + Reception
Bernanth Auditorium - UGL

Kavya Davuluri & Sergio Rodriguez


Speaker Line-up


Dr. De'Andrea Matthews - Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at WSU SOM


As director of the SOM Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI), Dr. De'Andrea Matthews provides leadership and strategic direction for the department's initiatives, programs and courses to increase the diversity of students, faculty, and staff at the medical school. The scope of services offered include outreach and recruitment from K-12 through application to medical school. Her goal is to assist students in becoming competitive medical school applicants and, ultimately, licensed physicians. Dr. Matthews is a native Detroiter who specializes in helping first-generation and, or low-income students realize their dreams.Dr. Matthews is a member of the Diversity Advisory Council to the dean for the WSU School of Medicine which leads the design and implementation of the diversity plan for faculty, staff and students. 


Jonathan Stillo - Instructor of Medical Anthropology


Professor Stillo is an instructor of Medical Anthropology at WSU and a medical anthropology doctoral candidate at the City University of New York Graduate Center (Expected June 2017).  Stillo was based in Bucharest Romania as an International Fellow at the New Europe College. With grants from the US National Science Foundation, The US Fulbright Hays Commission, the International Research and Exchanges Board, the Social Science Research Council and others, his work over the last six years focused on tuberculosis prevention and treatment in Romania. His research focuses on the social, economic and political barriers to curing TB at the level of individual patients as well as systemic problems like drug procurement and distribution and social supports. Much of his time was spent surveying and interviewing MDR-TB patients at a Romanian hospital and sanatorium where he lived for a number of months. Stillo is a member of the TB Europe Coalition and one of the founding members of Romania's STOP TB Partnership.


Dr. Jennifer Mendez - Director the Co-Curricular Program at WSU SOM


Jennifer C. Mendez, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in the department of Internal Medicine and the Director the Co-Curricular Program at Wayne State University School of Medicine. Dr. Mendez serves on various boards and committees that focus on aging, health and social issues in the Metro Detroit area. Her training projects have emphasized Interprofessional education; Ethnogeriatrics; End of Life Care and Managing Difficult Behaviors in Dementia. Dr. Mendez has received numerous grant awards for her development of training programs for health and social service providers and faculty continuing education courses in geriatrics and gerontology. She conducts assessments with students’ and faculty with whom, she publishes and presents at national meetings so that others may develop similar programs. Prior to her current position she was the Director of Education and Graduate Certificate in Gerontology as well as Co-Director Pre-Doctoral NIH Training Program at the Institute of Gerontology at Wayne State University.


Dr. Keith Whitfield - Wayne State University Provost

WSU Profile

Keith E. Whitfield became provost of Wayne State University on June 1, 2016.  Previously, he was vice provost for academic affairs at Duke University, and held appointments as professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, research professor in the Department of Geriatric Medicine at Duke University Medical Center, and senior fellow at the Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development. He also was the co-director of the Center on Biobehavioral Health Disparities Research. An expert on aging among African Americans, Dr. Whitfield has published 200 articles, books and book chapters on cognition, health, and individual development and aging. He is a longtime member of the advisory board of Wayne State’s Institute on Gerontology, has participated in a number of committees for the National Academies of Sciences and Medicine, and has served on several study sections for the National Institutes of Health.  


Dr. Gwendolyn Norman - Research Associate for the Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Dr. Norman has a strong academic and research interest in health equity, health promotion and health care access both nationally and at the community level. Of particular concern are social determinants of health, particularly as they relate to the disproportionately poorer outcomes for African Americans in this society. Dr. Norman serves as the Maternal Child Health Consultant for Wayne Children’s Healthcare Access Program. In this role she convened and led the Perinatal to Pediatric Transitions Think Tank, formed to tackle the abiding disparities in birth outcomes in the Wayne County region. She coordinates a major initiative of the Detroit Institute for Equity in Birth Outcomes (DIEBO), in collaboration with the Detroit Health Department, the Institute for Population Health, and Henry Ford Health System, to promote breast feeding and make Detroit the first major city in the country that is Baby Friendly. 


Dr. Chih Chuang - Director of Global Health and Education at WSU SOM


Dr. Chih Chuang, is a Class of 2006 graduate of the Wayne State University School of Medicine. As a student, Dr. Chuang earned the 2006 Gold Humanism Honor Society’s Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award. After graduation, he completed a combined residency in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, and then served as a fifth-year chief resident. He was named Resident Teacher of the Year, and received the Excellence in Teaching Award. Dr. Chuang also completed a fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Medicine.