Dr. Valerie Montgomery Rice is president and dean of Morehouse School of Medicine and the first woman at its helm.
She entered medicine because she wanted to use her love for math and science to impact people. Becoming a doctor, she says, “seemed like an obvious choice.”
Armed with a medical degree from Harvard Medical School, Montgomery Rice had a successful career as a fertility specialist and researcher before moving into medical leadership.
While Montgomery Rice says more women and women of color are getting into medical school, there’s still not enough representation when it comes to the highest levels of medical leadership. “When we get to the level of dean, we still see a significant gap,” she says.
Diversity matters in medical leadership (and board rooms everywhere) she says, because people with different life experiences help organizations see the big picture and make better decisions. “Those life experiences, combined with your formal education and your career, allow you to solve problems.”
As part of her efforts to raise gender equity in public health, Montgomery Rice serves on the board of CARE.