Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee

Committee Chair: Nancyanne Schmidt, MD

Dr. Nancyanne Schmidt was most recently a rheumatology fellow at CUIMC, where she developed her clinical interest in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE).  She has a special interest in achieving equity in health outcomes for minority patients with rheumatic diseases, and reducing health disparities in rheumatic disease through quality improvement initiatives. As a resident, she co-led diversity recruitment and retention efforts for her department. As a fellow, her community outreach included work with peer education groups such as Charla de Lupus, a unique national program offering people with lupus and their families peer health support and education in both English and Spanish. Dr. Schmidt is excited to be joining the faculty of the Division of Rheumatology as an Assistant Professor of Medicine where she will continue to advocate for her patients, lead diversity retention and recruitment efforts in the division as Chair of the Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee, and engage in health disparities research.

Committee Members 

Dr. Anca Askanase is a Professor of Medicine who is a nationally and internationally recognized expert in lupus, particularly in the treatment of SLE and in the development of novel outcomes for lupus. Locally, Dr. Askanase built the Columbia University/NYP Lupus Center which is a highly recognized and respected clinical service and research center committed to providing the highest quality of care while working to reduce health disparities in the community. She also has been involved in education programs for SLE patients at NYU, Columbia University and through lupus advocacy groups. A dedicated clinician, patient advocate and trainee mentor, she continues to spearhead clinical studies and ground-breaking research to better understand the mechanisms underlying SLE and investigate novel treatments in order to dismantle disparities in the care of patients with lupus.

Dr. Joan Bathon is the director of the Division of Rheumatology, a Professor of Medicine and a Master of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR). Dr. Bathon’s career has focused on understanding the pathogenesis and functional consequences of inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). She is a longstanding recipient of NIH funding, a member of multiple NIH study sections, and a current member of the NIAMS Advisory Council.

She has maintained an intense and unwavering commitment to mentorship; specifically, of women, trainees and junior faculty throughout her career. At Johns Hopkins, she served as Director of the Dean’s Office of Women in Science and Medicine, Co-Chair of the Women’s Leadership Council, and Chair of the Department of Medicine’s Task Force on Academic Careers of Women in Medicine.

Since joining Columbia University in 2010, she has continued her work in faculty mentorship and promotion in various capacities including membership on the Departmental Promotions Committee, as well as Columbia’s University-wide Tenure Advisory Committee. She is a leader of the Department of Medicine’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee and is currently spearheading efforts to increase diversity in the Department of Medicine at large.

Dr. Laura Geraldino-Pardilla is an Associate Professor of Medicine who originally hails from the Dominican Republic, where she graduated summa cum laude from INTEC University and afterwards moved to New York to complete an internal medicine residency in SUNY Upstate, followed by a rheumatology fellowship at Columbia University where she stayed on as a faculty member. She has been the Lupus Clinic Director at CUMC since 2010 and was awarded a Rheumatology Scientist Development Award from the Rheumatology Research Foundation to study Cardiovascular Disease in lupus patients.

A dedicated clinical researcher, she also remains devoted to providing services that are patient-centered and compassionate. She is an advocate for the Washington Heights Community at large and has worked with various community and health organizations including Charla de Lupus and Get Healthy Heights, an online community that engages people in Washington Heights-Inwood to connect, discover, and share resources to get healthy.

Dr. Jane Kang is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC), Program Director of the Rheumatology Fellowship, and a Bioethicist. She is actively involved in teaching and training medical students, residents and rheumatology fellows at CUIMC. She was named an Ewig Clinical Scholar at CUIMC for her work in teaching and education and received a Fellowship Training Award from the Rheumatology Research Foundation (RRF). She served as Co-Chair of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) In-Training Examination Taskforce/Test Materials Development Committee and Chair of the ACR Ethics and Conflict of Interest Committee. She is currently serving on the Division of Ethics Grand Rounds Steering Committee which aims to transform biomedical research, education and healthcare by catalyzing conversations around issues of social justice and ethics. Dr. Kang was awarded the RRF Clinician Scholar Educator Award, which supported her work in creating a bioethics curriculum for rheumatology fellows, which covers topics such as the recruitment of vulnerable research subjects and the globalization of clinical research. As a founding member of the Division Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee, Dr. Kang is committed to identifying barriers to a diverse physician workforce in rheumatology.

Dr. Adam Mor is an Associate Professor of Medicine and molecular immunologist currently directing a research team which studies the signaling events associated with the function of T lymphocytes, in the hopes of better understanding clinical outcomes of patients suffering from cancer and autoimmune disease. Both in and out of the lab, Dr. Mor has mentored fellows, post-doctoral researchers and junior faculty members from around the world. He recognizes the importance of drawing from a global pool of talent to improve diversity in academia.