Dr. Lisako McKyer, associate dean for climate and diversity at the Texas A&M School of Public Health, has been named the executive director of the Health Disparities, Education, Awareness Research & Training Consortium (HDEART-C).
The Consortium’s ongoing mission is to develop and maintain an alliance of academic universities and health-related institutions to access and utilize the expertise of it members in addressing health disparities through collaboration and education. With 47 academic institutions and health organizations in the United States and affiliated member institutions in Nigeria and Mexico, HDEART-C seeks to bring the strengths of member institutions together to address health inequities as a unit rather than silos. Their hallmark event is the “Disparities in America: Working Toward Social Justice” summer workshop now in its 16th year, and known as the largest of its kind nationally.
The HDEART-C was founded in 2002 with several institutions in Houston’s Medical Center, including the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at Houston, Baylor College of Medicine, Prairie View A&M University, Rice University, Texas Southern University and the University of Houston. Dr. McKyer replaces Dr. Lovell Jones, who helped found the organization and is the first African American to be awarded the Emeritus Professor status at both the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and the University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences in Houston.
“I first attended the workshop as a student, and the experience validated my interests in pursuing this line of research. More recently, working closely with Dr. Jones cemented my commitment. He lives gargantuan shoes to fill, as well as a priceless legacy. I consider it an honor to lead this organization as we enter a new phase,” said Dr. McKyer.
[Photo: Dr. Lisako McKyer]
Dr. Kirk Calhoun, vhair of HDEART-C’s Presidents Council and president of the University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler states “Dr. McKyer’s leadership style, while markedly different from Dr Jones, best suite the needs of the HDEART Consortium as we move forward with renewed vigor.”
Dr. McKyer is a professor in the School of Public Health’s department of promotion and community health sciences and holds joint appointments in the College of Medicine and Education and Human Development. She is the former director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities-funded Transdisciplinary Center for Health Equity Research at Texas A&M.