Leading in Ortho

the surgeon's path Sep 16, 2019

I’m honored to have Dr. Jennifer Weiss, orthopaedic surgeon as my guest blogger today. Her list of accolades is long, and I am pleased to call her a colleague and a friend. Below, Dr. Weiss discusses her role in leadership in our field.


Less than 1 in 10 practicing orthopaedic surgeons are women. In my group of partners in Los Angeles, out of 15 orthopaedists, I am the only woman.  From 2013-2015, I served as Junior Member at Large on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS.)  At that time I spent the first year as the only woman on that board, until Dr. Lisa Cannada joined in 2014.  In 2018, I was appointed Chair of the AAOS Communications Cabinet.  Although this is not a position that is on the Board of Directors, I spent last year attending many of the board meetings as the leader of my cabinet.  The shift in the representation of women in the boardroom was tremendous.  I work(ed) alongside Amy Ladd, Kristy Weber (first woman president of the AAOS), Elizabeth Matzkin, and Rachel Goldstein.  (in order of appearance in photo, also in height order :)) 
 
Serving on a board of directors as the only woman (or the only anything) brought a tremendous pressure to represent all of my kind.  And we all know that all women don’t agree on all things!  Shifting to a group with healthier representation of the diversity of thought of all of these women was of tremendous benefit to me, and much more importantly, to our entire organization.  
 
Serving alone, as one woman, feels like a checkbox filled for diversity.  It is important to move beyond that lone check mark.  We are not pulling the ladder up after ourselves.  "You can’t be what you can’t see.”  (Kristy Weber)  Here is to all of the strong and capable women who we hope will choose orthopaedics.  
 

You can follow Dr. Weiss on Twitter or Instagram and she can be found on the web here

#facesoforrhopaedics #ioperatelikeagirl #youcantbewhatyoucantsee #weareallortho #ilooklikeasurgeon @aaos1 @smarsdoc 

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