Associate Dean of Health Equity Research and physician leader Marcella Nunez-Smith, MD, MHS, has recently received two honors from the New Haven community that recognize her long dedication to health equity for people not only in the Elm City, but across the country. With Yale appointments in the Schools of Medicine, Public Health, and Management, Nunez-Smith is C.N.H. Long Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology and professor of management.
On October 7, Nunez-Smith will receive the Greater New Haven NAACP’s highest honor, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Award. “Because of your efforts, work, and service, you have earned not only this award, but also the respect and gratitude of our Branch and the Greater New Haven Community,” said the Greater New Haven NAACP executive board president Doris Dumas. The award will be presented at the organization’s 104th annual Freedom Fund event, which will be held virtually.
Additionally, Nunez-Smith was honored in March by New Haven’s International Festival of Arts & Ideas with its 11th Annual Visionary Leadership Award. The award recognizes individuals in New Haven whose visionary work has extended beyond the city to impact people on a broad scale.
Most recently, Nunez-Smith received national recognition when she was called upon to serve as Senior Advisor to the White House COVID-19 Response Team and Chair of the Presidential COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force. She has long been known for her dedication to community-engaged research that seeks to improve the health and healthcare equity of structurally marginalized populations. She is the founding director of the Equity Research and Innovation Center (ERIC) at Yale, which spearheads actionable research on improving global health disparities, patient care experiences, and health care workforce diversity. Nunez-Smith has extensive expertise in examining the effects of social and structural determinants of health, systemic influences contributing to health disparities, health equity improvement, and community-academic partnered scholarship.
“Dr. Nunez-Smith is an amazing leader who is committed to reducing health disparities and inequities through research in collaboration with the community. I am delighted that her expertise and dedication are being recognized by these two awards,” said Nancy J. Brown, MD, Jean and David W. Wallace Dean of Medicine.