The Association of Women Surgeons relies on the generosity of the members serving as volunteers. It is only through this dedication of time and expertise that AWS can meet its mission, to inspire, encourage, and enable women surgeons to realize their professional and personal goals. AWS would like to thank the many volunteers who make our organization what it is today. It is greatly appreciated!

Call for Committee Volunteers

Looking for ways to get involved with AWS and make a difference in the world of surgery? Apply to be an AWS committee volunteer! The Call for 2024-2025 Committee Members will open in August 2024Committee descriptions are below. 

AWS committees run for one year and typically meet 3-6 times via 30-60 minute conference calls. Committee participation is limited, and therefore all applicants will be asked to identify up to three committees you would like to join. Please note that the Medical Student Committee will send a separate call for volunteers in spring.

Apply to Volunteer

Conference Planning Committee

This committee is responsible for theme development of the AWS Annual Conference, to be held in Boston, MA, as well as the conference program in terms of content, sessions, and speakers. A subcommittee is also responsible for the fundraising to support the conference.

Chair: Dr. Salewa Oseni
Co Vice-Chairs: Dr. Heather Yeo


Clinical Practice Committee

This committee focuses on assessing the needs of and developing resources to support and promote women in various types of surgical practice, including academic, private, rural, and military. While some challenges faced by women surgeons are nearly universal, we recognize that each type of practice has its own unique hurdles. This committee explores some of the challenges faced in each area and helps create lasting resources for members. Members of this committee come from all variations of practice, and hearing the perspectives and input is enlightening!

Learn more about the CPC and see their list of tools and resources.

Chair: Dr. Lisa Reid
Vice-Chair: Dr. Mary Maniscalco-Theberge


Communications Committee

The Communications Committee creates content for the social media communications of AWS on several platforms. We are divided into subcommittees: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Blog, Dear Pat, and Podcast. We invite members of all training and practice levels to join if you are interested in participating on social media. We participate year-round in elevating the exposure of the organization and of the accomplishments of women surgeons on social media and offer opportunities for engagement among members via social media.

Chairs: Drs. Katie Romanowski and Rachel Lovano
Vice-Chair: Dr. Erin King-Mullins

Grants and Fellowship Committee

The Grants and Fellowship Committee reviews applications and selects the recipient for the Ethicon AWS Fellowship Grant. Committee members will also be tasked with reviewing applicants for combined Visiting Professorships with other societies. In addition, we are involved in developing new sources of funding for grants and speaker series, in collaboration with the AWS leadership. Students, Residents, or Fellows are ex-officio Grants and Fellowship committee members. 

The Grants and Fellowship Committee is recruiting volunteers interested in supporting the research and career development of AWS members. Responsibilities will include screening and evaluating applications for a variety of awards. Members will be asked to complete bias training prior to reviewing applications. The Committee also welcomes those who have ideas for additional initiatives that AWS can support.

Chair: Dr. Leah Tatebe
Vice-Chair: Dr. Emily Keung


#HeForShe Committee

The #HeForShe Committee focuses on identifying ways in which we can support and promote diversity, equity and inclusion in surgery. We are looking forward to collaborating with key stakeholders in actionable outcomes to mitigate marginalization of women and underrepresented minorities in surgery.

Objectives:

  • To collate best gender equity practices and resources
  • Curate tools to ensure a safe environment for all surgeons
  • Curate tools to teach best practices in mentoring women surgeons
  • Curate tools to teach best practices in sponsoring women surgeons
  • Develop tools to teach men and women surgeons to be allies in the pursuit of gender equity
  • Disseminate effective strategies to promote gender equity in surgery

Chair: Dr. Emilia Diego
Vice-Chair: Dr. Cherisse Berry


Medical Student Committee

Comprised of medical students, this committee works on student programs, including, but not limited to, resource development, mentorship opportunities, and research initiatives. Please note: committee members must be members of AWS and serve from May to May. Applications for this committee are sent out to the membership and posted on the AWS website.

Chair: Charlotte Blythe Smith
Vice-Chair: Gopika SenthilKumar


Member Services Committee

This committee provides feedback and participates in activities designed to support membership recruitment, retention, and engagement. Areas of work include, but are not limited to: institutional membership engagement, regional membership development, mentor/ambassador program engagement, and general recruitment and retention outreach. This is an active and engaged committee that is eager to grow in numbers and ideas. We welcome committee members with diverse backgrounds of practice, training, geography, and more.

Chair: Dr. Gayle DiLalla
Vice-Chair: Dr. Deepika Koganti


Outreach Committee

As AWS continues to grow and build its national and international reputation, we are looking to strengthen our collaborations and partnerships with other specialty societies and surgical organizations. This task force has been built in order to start coordinating these efforts so that we can have a larger impact and work collaboratively to support increasing gender and racial diversity in surgery.

The key aims of the AWS Outreach Taskforce will be:

  • To work with the key national surgical and subspecialty societies to combine efforts to promote women/minorities (will work with council and membership)
  • To work with international groups (will start slowly and build) to increase AWS presence (will work with membership)
  • To work with Chairs of Departments and the American Surgical Association to help set guidelines for institutional equity (will work with council)
  • To develop strategies to partner effectively with industry

Chair: Dr. Toni Beninato
Vice-Chair: Dr. Christen Russo


Publications Committee

The publications committee has a main goal of identifying and fostering research and publication opportunities relevant to the organization. The committee produces an AWS Annual Report, is responsible for updates to AWS publications such as the Pocket Mentor and Career Resource Guides and updates the AWS Wikipedia site annually. Additionally, members of the committee provide assistance to the American Journal of Surgery editors in producing the AJS/AWS annual issue by assisting with the submission review process. The committee assists with the Scientific Session at Annual Conference and helps foster the development of manuscript review skills for trainees and junior faculty. Committee meeting attendance (at least 60%), sign up to be an AJS reviewer and review AT LEAST one paper for the editors, active involvement in ongoing projects.

Chair: Dr. Lisa Cannada
Co Vice-Chairs: Dr. Caitlin Hicks


Resident and Fellows Committee

The AWS Resident and Fellow Committee is focused on addressing surgical trainee programs and issues, with an emphasis on engaging residents and fellows in the AWS at an early stage in their careers. Committee members work closely with many of the other additional AWS committees, with a significant level of interaction with the Medical Student committee.

Chair: Dr. Brianna Spencer
Vice-Chair: Dr. Camila Guetter


 

For any questions regarding committee involvement, please contact [email protected].