Key thoughts from Dr. Kristy Weber, AAOS' 1st vice president

Written by Shayna Korol | April 18, 2018 | Print  |

On March 8, Kristy Weber, MD, became the 2018 1st vice-president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Her new role is the second in a four-year term of volunteer service. She will serve as AAOS' first female president in 2019 and 2020.

Dr. Weber is the chief of orthopedic oncology at Philadelphia-based University of Pennsylvania's orthopedic surgery department and director of the sarcoma program at Penn's Abramson Cancer Center in Philadelphia. 

"I am aware that I am the first person to give this incoming Academy first vice-presidential speech in high heels," Dr. Weber told the AAOS Annual Meeting audience.
"I do not take that honor or responsibility lightly."

She highlighted the fact that the field of orthopedics is the least diverse of all medical specialties. Dr. Weber stressed her commitment to ensuring there are no barriers to women and minorities entering orthopedics, "because physicians who mirror the larger society provide optimal patient care. We must make an intentional effort to recruit and mentor new talent and understand how implicit bias and harassment discourage talented individuals from pursuing orthopedics or rising to leadership roles in their institutions, the Academy, or other medical societies."

Dr. Weber advised members of underrepresented groups to participate in change by serving on a committee, teaching an instructional course, lobbying in Washington, D.C. and to "be so good they cannot ignore you."

According to Dr. Weber, AAOS' most recent strategic plan is out of alignment with the organization's current priorities in patient registries, certification maintenance and a new digital learning management system. She anticipates AAOS will end the year with a crystallized vision and plan of action for the future.

More articles on orthopedics:

Orthopedic surgeon to know: Dr. Kevin Black of Penn State Health/Milton S. Hershey Medical Center

Orthopedic surgeon to know: Dr. Dan Cooper of The Carrell Clinic

CNN political analyst David Gergen spoke at AAOS — Here's what he said

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