Dr. Andrea Hayes Dixon (Courtesy of Howard University)
Dr. Andrea Hayes Dixon (Courtesy of Howard University)

Howard University President Wayne A.I. Frederick announced Thursday the appointment of Dr. Andrea A. Hayes Dixon as the first female dean of the university’s medical school.

Hayes Dixon will start effective Oct. 3. She will succeed Dr. Hugh Mighty, who has served as dean of the medical college since 2015.

“I am overjoyed to have the honor of announcing that for the first time in the college’s 154-year history, a Black woman will serve as the dean of the Howard University College of Medicine,” Frederick said. “If you look at the data on women’s leadership in medicine, it shows there is still much progress to be made. With the appointment of Dr. Hayes Dixon, Howard University not only gains an incredible leader but we move the university and the field of medicine forward.”

With Hayes Dixon’s appointment, the number of women serving as academic deans at Howard University jumps to 11. Nationally, only 22% of medical schools are led by women, according to statistics from the Association of American Medical Colleges.

Hayes Dixon has experience with “firsts.” She was the first Black woman in the nation to become a board-certified pediatric surgeon.

In 2006, Hayes Dixon became the first surgeon in the world to perform a high-risk life-saving procedure on teenagers with rare forms of abdominal cancer. Last year, she became the first woman chair of the Department of Surgery at Howard.

“I am truly honored and humbled to lead the outstanding Howard University College of Medicine,” said Hayes Dixon. “The responsibility of educating the nation’s next generation of leaders in medicine is an enormous responsibility that I take very seriously. I am excited to engender allies and friends to join me in the journey of moving Howard forward.”  

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