ACS hosts the Promoting DEI & Anti-Racism Professional Surgical Society Retreat

Leaders from surgical organizations came together to attend the virtual American College of Surgeons (ACS) Promoting DEI & Anti-Racism: Professional Surgical Society Retreat June 23, 2021. This retreat convened the House of Surgery and included an address from Prof. Ibram X. Kendi, director, Boston University Center for Antiracist Research, MA, and best-selling author of Stamped from the Beginning and How To Be an Antiracist, and a discussion with Prof. Wayne A. I. Frederick, MD, MBA, FACS, President, Howard University, Washington, DC. Following the address, attendees transitioned to breakout sessions to discuss diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) and anti-racism initiatives across all organizations, share best practices, and determine initiatives that can have the greatest impact.

In all, 54 organizations, 13 ACS Advisory Council Chairs, and 17 surgical board leaders, Regents, Officers, and ACS executive leadership staff participated in the retreat.

ACS members can view select videos from the conference on the ACS website at (member login required).

The videos are as follows:

  • Opening Remarks and Goals of the Day
  • Survey of Surgical Organizations and Workgroup Report-Outs

The ACS thanks all members, participants, and organizations involved in this important and timely event and will have more to share on this topic in the future.

Hear from retreat participants

Hear thoughts from some retreat participants in Bulletin Brief Surgeon Voices interviews, led by Steven D. Wexner, MD, FACS, FRCSEng, FRCSEd, FRCSI(Hon), FRCSGlasg(Hon), Vice-Chair, American College of Surgeons Board of Regents, and Director, Digestive Disease Institute at Cleveland Clinic Florida in Weston, FL.

The first interview, available at, includes the following participants:

  • Nancy Gantt, MD, FACS, Chair, ACS Board of Governors Diversity Pillar
  • John D. Mellinger, MD, FACS, representing The American Board of Surgery
  • William Chapman, MD, FACS, representing the Southern Surgical Association
  • Sandra L. Wong, MD, MS, FACS, representing the Society of Surgical Chairs

The second interview, available at, includes the following participants:

  • Andre Campbell, MD, FACS, FACP, FCCM, Secretary, ACS Board of Governors Executive Committee
  • John H. Stewart IV, MD, MBA, FACS, Chair of the ACS Advisory Council Chairs

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