August 4, 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio – As the National Medical Association celebrates 125 years as the oldest and largest collective voice for parity and justice for African American physicians, Dr. Leon McDougle, associate dean of Diversity and Inclusion at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, is installed as its 121st president.

McDougleLeonMcDougle, who is also chief diversity officer and professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, will champion the National Medical Association’s efforts to eliminate health disparities, improve access to care and increase diversity in medicine.

“For more than a century, the National Medical Association has been advocating for African American physicians and the communities we serve,” McDougle said. “Now more than ever, we must take a stand against the systemic racism in our nation’s health care delivery system that negatively impacts the Black community and other underserved populations.”

The National Medical Association’s mission is to promote the interests of both doctors and patients of not only African descent, but also of other races, to foster the utmost quality of care for all Americans. The association also aims to help the United States' health care system prevent and manage disease effectively.

“I commend Dr. McDougle for his leadership in diversity and inclusion at Ohio State,” said Dr. Hal Paz, executive vice president and chancellor for Health Affairs at The Ohio State University and CEO of Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. “This new role is a great opportunity to make strides in addressing racism as a social determinant of health across the country as we work to create the academic health model of the future.” 

McDougle is Ohio State Wexner Medical Center’s first chief diversity and inclusion officer. He directs several workforce diversity programs including the MEDPATH Post-baccalaureate Program at the Ohio State College of Medicine. McDougle is a family physician and believes that lifestyle must be a focus of both the treatment and prevention of chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure. His research is focused on diversity and inclusion and eliminating health disparities.

A graduate of the University of Toledo and the Ohio State College of Medicine, McDougle completed a family medicine residency at the Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton, California, and earned a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Michigan School of Public Health, Department of Health Management and Policy. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Family Medicine, a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians and a member of the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States.


Media Contact: Serena Smith, Wexner Medical Center Media Relations, 614-293-3737,


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