They’re among the best and brightest in medicine. Collectively, these physicians have saved millions of lives through revolutionary treatments of diseases ranging from cancer and diabetes to heart attacks and HIV/AIDS. Many have been responsible for major medical breakthroughs and have participated in the creation of drugs that have improved the quality of life of patients at home and abroad.
This is the caliber of medical professional who can be found on BLACK ENTERPRISE’s list of America’s Leading Doctors. The roster boasts 140 African American physicians and surgeons located in various parts of the country and running practices in a range of specialties, including neurology, obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN), dermatology, urology, cardiology, pediatrics, and oncology. The following served as the criteria for inclusion on the list:
All physicians are leaders in their respective fields.
All have been confirmed as being certified (as of March 21, 2008) in accordance with the American Board of Medical Specialties, a nonprofit organization that represents the “gold standard” in physician certification and helps 24 approved medical specialty boards in the creation and use of standards in the evaluation of doctors. While medical licensure sets the minimum competency requirements to diagnose and treat patients, it is not as comprehensive as board certification.
We did not include physicians who are retired, engaged purely in medical research, no longer treat patients, or no longer have an affiliation with the medical profession.
In the development of this list, our editors spent more than six months engaged in research, consulting organizations such as the National Medical Association, American Medical Association, Association of Black Cardiologists, American Cancer Society, Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, American Diabetes Association, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We also contacted top-ranked physicians as well as the nation’s leading medical schools, including Johns Hopkins University, Harvard University, Meharry Medical College, Howard University College of Medicine, Morehouse School of Medicine, Duke University School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons Weill Medical College of Cornell University, and Mayo Medical School. These institutions provided our research team with a list of physicians who they viewed as a cut above in service and reputation. Moreover, experts supported their choices, supplying us with the details of their colleagues’ experience, reputation, background, and training. What sets this year’s list apart from previous rosters-BE developed similar listings in 1988 and 2001-is that we gave a stronger weighting to innovative doctors who have been involved in medical breakthroughs across specialties. (See “A Legacy of Medical Excellence,” About This Issue.)
With the current national focus on health, BE took this opportunity to once again compile our exclusive list. It not only reveals top-rated physicians advancing medicine but it also provides access to doctors you can trust with your life and the well-being of your family.
Keith Black, M.D., Specialty: Neurosurgery
Chairman, Department of Neurosurgery; Director, Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical Institute at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Early in his medical career, Black became fascinated with the inner workings of the human brain. This interest led him