Diversity and Inclusion Awards

Raina Croff community

2020 Diversity and Inclusion Awards

The OHSU Center for Diversity and Inclusion annually amplifies the efforts required to advance diversity, equity and inclusion at OHSU through the Diversity and Inclusion Awards. In spring 2020, the nomination process was disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and upstaged May 25 when George Floyd was killed.

“In so many ways, the year 2020 became a mirror for our country,” said Derick Du Vivier, M.D., M.B.A., OHSU senior vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion. “The pandemic laid bare the disproportionate burden of illness and death too long borne by communities of color. The deaths at the hands of police of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and too many others trumpeted that racism is a public health crisis. And at OHSU, it became clear that it will take ALL of us to change our climate, change our thinking, change our actions, to become an anti-racist institution.

“It is fitting then that for 2020, rather than celebrating a few, we must hold up all who were nominated. Right now, more than anything, we need examples of how to do this work and do it well. Each one of these people, each of these teams deserves our praise and our attention as we forge our path to realize our ideals.”

Please join us in congratulating the 2020 Diversity and Inclusion Award nominees:

Congratulations to the 2020 Nominees

Outstanding student

Trisha Chau, M.D. Class of 2023
Ms. Chau distinguished herself in her leadership with the Latino Medical Student Association (LMSA) and the Student National Medical Association (SNMA), fostering collaborations, organizing events and implementing ideas from other schools.

Outstanding Faculty

Raina Croff, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Neurology
Dr. Croff is recognized for using innovative strategies in her research on aging and dementia to recruit more diverse research subjects and improve access for underserved patients, launching a unique research program to improve the cognitive health of older African Americans in gentrifying neighborhoods, and promoting diversity and inclusion in every aspect of her work, including mentoring students and trainees.

Casey Seideman, M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Urology
Dr. Seideman has committed herself to increasing the support network and visibility for women in urology through mentoring medical students and residents and joining colleagues to create a community of inclusion in this department and in the profession. She partnered with colleague Geolani Dy, M.D., assistant professor of urology, and Shannon Cannon, M.D., a fellow in pediatric urology at Seattle Children’s Hospital and University of Washington, to form Urologists for Equity.  

Donn Spight, M.D., Professor, Department of Surgery
Dr. Spight is honored for launching the Second Look program for surgery residency applicants in the Department of Surgery, inviting prospective trainees who identify with under-represented groups to OHSU to learn more and decide whether OHSU feels like the right choice for them, dramatically increasing the number of trainees of color. Dr. Spight chaired the department’s Diversity Committee, which devised a way to honor past surgery leaders while also depicting the department’s growing diversity. Dr. Spight is a Diversity Navigator in the M.D. program and engaged in local and national diversity and health equity committees and task forces. 

Outstanding Individual
Tamara Goldsmith, Risk Analyst, Risk Management
Ms. Goldsmith supports diversity, equity and inclusion by bringing her positive outlook to everything she does. Over her years at OHSU, she has served on OHSU Pride, the Veterans Employee Resource Group and various diversity and inclusion groups as a volunteer and a leader. Ms. Goldsmith was also an early participant in the unconscious bias trainings and served as an inclusion ambassador.

Outstanding Team
Knight Gender Equity Lunch-n-Learn Program – Rebecca Ruhl, Elaine Huang, Ian Jaquiss, Cristina Tognon and Andre Walcott
In 2019 Rebecca Ruhl, in collaboration with her partners, created the first Knight Cancer Institute employee resource group, focused on increasing gender equity within the Knight. The Gender Equity Lunch-n-Learn planning group holds a monthly, hour-long lunchtime session focused on topics from work/life balance and culture change to sexual harassment and microaggressions, drawing 50 or more attendees and becoming on of the most popular events at the Knight. After each Lunch-n-Learn, Ms. Ruhl and her team send a summary and recommended actions to the Knight leadership team.  

Novel Interventions in Children’s Healthcare (NICH) - Catlin Dennis, Program Manager; Co-Developers Michael Harris and Kim Spiro
NICH is an innovative pediatric program designed to support Oregon’s most vulnerable youth and their families. NICH serves children birth to 18 with complex and/or chronic health conditions from families with limited resources and significant social stressors. Rooted in cultural humility and recognizing the systemic oppression marginalized communities face, the NICH staff gets to know patients in their homes and communities in order to tailor equitable interventions. In the past eight years, the team has shifted from a predominantly white, male staff, to a staff and leadership team diverse in age, gender identity, race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. The team also on-boards and trains a diverse group of employees, interns, medical students, and trainees.

TIDE: Team for Inclusion, Diversity and Equity, Created and Co-directed by Jen Prissel and Nicole Bowles 
The Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences’ Team for Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (TIDE) has taken a holistic approach to providing access to OHSU resources and lectures, materials for both independent reading and as a starting point for group discussion from a bookshelf for self-education to a bulletin board promoting diversity and inclusion events to a monthly meeting focused on thoughtful hiring, retention and a healthy workforce, with 20+ colleagues attending each meeting.


Outstanding Community Partner
On Track OHSU!, Susan Shugerman, Assistant Vice Provost, and Katie Lenahan, Director
Created in 2013, On Track OHSU! works with Oregon middle and high schools to increase the racial diversity in OHSU’s schools and programs and in Oregon's biomedical workforce. Student volunteers from OHSU and other Oregon universities serve as role models and work to increase students' engagement in the sciences. OHSU faculty and staff also volunteer to provide On Track students an authentic view of health science degrees and careers. The On Track program team has been a pillar of OHSU in providing Oregon youth with opportunities to come to OHSU and be introduced to the fields of medicine and scientific research.

Patient Blood Management Program (PBM) - Jeffrey Wagner, Program Manager, and April Ching, Program Coordinator
Jehovah’s Witnesses are an under-served religious community regarding their health care and need for confidence that hospitals will honor their wishes to refuse blood transfusions.  Jehovah’s Witnesses also want to know that their providers fully understand and use all of the latest medications and procedures to preserve their hemostasis. The OHSU Patient Blood Management service is a nationally recognized model for coordination of bloodless surgery and medicine and has earned the trust of the greater Portland area Jehovah’s Witness community.