Howard University College of Medicine has appointed the school’s first Black woman dean in its 154-year history.
Andrea A. Hayes Dixon, M.D., FACS, FAAP will succeed Hugh Mighty, M.D., MBA, FACOG, who served as dean of the College of Medicine since 2015.
In 2021, Hayes Dixon became the first woman chair of the Department of Surgery at Howard University. She will now oversee all aspects of academic and administrative affairs for the College of Medicine.
This move has increased the number of women serving as academic deans at Howard University to 11.
“I am overjoyed to have the honor of announcing that for the first time in the college’s 154-year history, a Black woman will serve as the dean of the Howard University College of Medicine,” Howard University President Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick said in a statement to Afro News. “If you look at the data on women’s leadership in medicine, it shows there is still much progress to be made.”
In 2004, Hayes Dixon became the first African-American woman in the nation to become a board-certified pediatric surgeon. Two years later, she became the first surgeon in the world to perform a high-risk, life-saving procedure in teens with rare forms of abdominal cancer.
In a statement, Hayes Dixon said, “I am truly honored and humbled to lead the outstanding Howard University College of Medicine. The responsibility of educating the nation’s next generation of leaders in medicine is an enormous responsibility that I take very seriously. I am excited to engender allies and friends to join me in the journey of moving Howard forward.”
Hayes Dixon previously served as the surgeon-in-chief and division chief of pediatric surgery at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Children’s Hospital was a professor of pediatric surgery and surgical oncology at UNC.
According to 2021 data by the Association of American Medical Colleges, only 22% of medical school deans in the nation are women.