American Diabetes Association Prioritizes Women Leadership in Diabetes Care and Research

Press release

American Diabetes Association Prioritizes Women Leadership in Diabetes Care and Research

ADA’s Diabetes Care® journal highlights significant focus on women in leadership and research in organization.

Today, the American Diabetes Association® (ADA) released commentary, available online in Diabetes Care, a peer-reviewed journal of the ADA, that studied the historical and present-day female representation in the diabetes field, and within the ADA. The authors conclude that though there is increasing recognition of gender imbalance in research and medicine, and while disparities in the field of diabetes persist, there has been progress made in the pursuit of equal treatment of all people.

The article and commentary, published in the Diabetes Care journal, finds that equitable gender distribution in groups is vital for ensuring the diversity in care and research that is necessary to elevate health outcomes. While there has been necessary pressure to increase female representation and leadership across all fields of research, the gender disparities, even within the ADA, still exist in this crucial field. These pressures are still a critical first step, the research found, to ending the substantial underrepresentation of women in most categories that were evaluated with respect to the field of diabetes and the ADA.

The commentary highlights significant advancements for women within the field of diabetes and the ADA:

  • Currently, the ADA staff composition is made up of 73% women, with 68% of the vice presidents and above as women.
     
  • The year 2021 started with the establishment of the new ADA Science and Health Care Council. The executive committee of this council is charged with oversight of our national committees and to better communicate with and engage the organization’s professional members. The inaugural members of this council’s executive committee are 67% women, and this committee is chaired by two female presidents.
     
  • Among ADA’s most notable contributions to women in science is the conceptualization and development of the Women's Interprofessional Network of the American Diabetes Association (WIN ADA). This network comprises more than 3,000 female clinicians, researchers, educators, and other health professionals derived from the ADA professional membership. This group works to recognize the accomplishments of women in the field of diabetes.
     
  • ADA clinical journals are the organization’s most public representations of the science generated in diabetes. At this time, 39% of the Diabetes Care editorial board, 24% of the Diabetes editorial board, 92% of the Diabetes Spectrum editorial board, and 65% of the Clinical Diabetes editorial board are women. Similarly, 38% of the Diabetes Care associate editors, 25% of the Diabetes associate editors, 89% of the Diabetes Spectrum associate editors, and 44% of the Clinical Diabetes associate editors are women.

“While a focus on increasing women leadership at all levels of the diabetes care and research field has always been a priority for the ADA, it is with pride that we celebrate the value of women in science and health care in pursuit of our mission to prevent and cure diabetes and improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes,” Tracey D. Brown, CEO of the American Diabetes Association, said. “While we have made progress, there is still more work to do. I am proud that we are leading the charge to drive diversity, equity, and inclusion and advancing women within the field of diabetes.” 

“Many women associated with ADA are trailblazers. With these unique women we identify opportunities to care, connect, and innovate,” said Cynthia Muñoz, President of Health Care and Education. “The ADA is taking actionable steps to build opportunities for all people within and connected to our organization.” 

“I am well-aware of the barriers to advancement faced by women historically, but am happy and proud to state that the present leadership of the American Diabetes Association has made diversity, equity, and inclusion priorities, and significant progress has been made. I am optimistic for the future of women as leaders within the field of diabetes,” said Dr. Ruth Weinstock, President of Medicine and Science for the ADA. 

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About the American Diabetes Association
Every day more than 4,000 people are newly diagnosed with diabetes in America. More than 122 million Americans have diabetes or prediabetes and are striving to manage their lives while living with the disease. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization fighting to bend the curve on the diabetes epidemic and help people living with diabetes thrive. For 80 years the ADA has been driving discovery and research to treat, manage and prevent diabetes, while working relentlessly for a cure. We help people with diabetes thrive by fighting for their rights and developing programs, advocacy and education designed to improve their quality of life. Diabetes has brought us together. What we do next will make us Connected for Life. To learn more or to get involved, visit us at diabetes.org or call 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383). Join the fight with us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn).