Stephanie Bachas-Daunert, Shawna Follis and Soumaya Zlitni were recently honored with JEDI Champion Awards at the Second Annual Stanford Postdoc JEDI Champion Awards Ceremony on September 20, 2022. The three DoM postdocs were among 16 Stanford postdocs recognized for their contributions to advancing equity, equity, diversity, and inclusion at Stanford and beyond.
David Relman, MD, Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor of Medicine, commended Bachas-Daunert’s work. “Stephanie is one of the most determined, positive forces for good that I know. She has faced adversity with unrelenting optimism, focusing her energy on helping those who otherwise have few advocates. She is empathetic, tireless and fully committed to creating opportunities for others, especially in STEM fields.” Bachas-Daunert incorporates DEI principles into her research, in which she investigates the effects of environmental pollutants on the human gut microbiome underserved population groups in Bangladesh. She is also a member of the SURPAS JEDI committee and mentor for PhD students from underrepresented groups.
Shawna Follis is an epidemiologist at Stanford Prevention Research Center, studying the social determinants of health, racial/ethnic health disparities, body composition, and aging. “As an epidemiologist, I work for equitable representation through mentoring and advocacy to improve the dissemination of research and science that restores confidence in medicine and improves the vast inequalities of racial health,” she explained. dr Follis was nominated by Christopher Gardner, PhD, professor of medicine and director of the center’s clinical and translational core.
Soumaya Zlitni is a fundamental life researcher in the Department of Hematology mentoring STEM students from underrepresented communities including women, first generation students and economically disadvantaged students. “Soumaya is an exceptional scientist who has made every effort to provide research opportunities to promising undergraduate students,” noted her faculty mentor, Ami Bhatt, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Genetics and Director of Global Oncology at Center for Innovation in Global Health. Bhatt added, “Soumaya has opened up many opportunities for those who might not otherwise have had a chance and has worked diligently to ensure they are ideally trained to succeed in their future careers.”
“Soumaya, Stephanie and Shawna have done everything as leaders in advancing equity, equity, diversity and inclusion.” -Chairman Bob A. Harrington, MD
Congratulating the latest JEDI champions, Medical Division Chair Bob Harrington, MD said, “Soumaya, Stephanie and Shawna have done everything as leaders in promoting equity, equity, diversity and inclusion.”
The Stanford Office of Postdoctoral Affairs hosts the JEDI Champion Awards competition each year, and winners are announced during National Postdoc Appreciation Week.