518-489-8945 fp@nysafp.org

Diversity Equity & Inclusion

Welcome to the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Commission, a part of the NYSAFP.


Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Commission (DEIC) is a standing commission of the New York State Academy of Family Physicians. Participation from the six standing commissions will be essential in this cross-commission committee. All commissions have up to twelve (12) members, a Past President, Resident, and Student member appointed by the president. The Past President, Resident and Student members are appointed for one-year terms at the discretion of the President, in consultation with the respective commission chairs. All other members are appointed for three-year terms and those terms are staggered so that each year one-third of the Commission’s members are up for appointment.

The DEIC is comprised of 6 de novo members and 6 members from other commissions. DEIC members who are liaisons from other commissions will be appointed for a one-year term and may be reappointed for additional one-year terms at the discretion of the President, in consultation with the respective commission chairs. The commission will meet in person at the Winter (Feb/Mar) and Summer (Jul/Aug) Clusters as well as virtually in the Fall. Commission members are reimbursed for travel expenses related to attending meetings. There may also be some commission work in between meetings.

So please, join the NYSAFP Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Commission and share your ideas. Email donna@nysafp.org if you would like to be a part of this team. The first step will be to joining the NYSAFP, but we are happy to answer questions you might have before doing so. Thank you in advance!

Chair & Vice-Chair of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Commission

Further duties of the DEIC include

Iterative reviews or assessments of the NYSAFP (e.g. policies and procedures) to eliminate structural barriers preventing equitable representation and leadership opportunities for members, regardless of race, age, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability, religion, or other underrepresented groups in medicine.

Make recommendations to the BOD and president regarding organizational best practices around DEI-related issues.
Provide recommendations to address structural barriers identified as well as ongoing discussions and training, as needed, to address interpersonal biases of its members.

Mapping a strategic plan to improve representation and diversity within the Academy, identifying key priorities and implementing programs that drive engagement and retention and improving inclusivity of BIPOC members, those who have a disability, self-identify as LGBTQA+, or are otherwise underrepresented within the Academy.

Collaborate and influence key stakeholders to create actionable insights, provide recommendations, and influence process and program improvements to enhance membership experience and leadership opportunities for aforementioned members.

Work with other commissions to develop and implement pipeline program(s) and enhanced leadership-training activities for underrepresented groups in medicine (URM) within the organization and earlier in the educational pathways.

Other activities/initiatives that move forward, monitor, and drive the successful work of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the NYSAFP.


Goal: The primary goal of the DEIC is to have AFP members and staff be informed and have knowledge on what Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion entails and how we can continue our work.

Mission: To provide vision, make recommendations and action plans and oversee efforts at a high level in terms of diversity, inclusion, and equity.



  • To be proactive, making proposals before problems arise
  • Support AFP member needs related to education on DEI topics (e.g. implicit bias training, racism in healthcare, social determinants of health)
  • Create a network of AFP physicians committed to DEI work
  • Recognize ways in which racism affects the health of the public
  • Establish strategies to identify examples of microaggressions and overt racism experienced by patients and physicians of color on a daily basis.

Suggested readings for more information

Commission Members

Vice Chair: Michelle Love, MD
Advisor – Past President: Jason Matuszak, MD
Member Adv – liaison:
Member Edu – liaison:
Member Lea – liaison:
Member Mem – liaison:
Member Ops – liaison:
Member PHC – liaison:
Member (3rd year): Hima Ekanadham, MD
Member (3rd year): Scott Darling, MD
Member (3rd year): Stella King-Turner, MD
Member (2nd year): Mary Ellis, MD
Member (2nd year): Jada Hamilton, MD
Member (2nd year): Ivonne McLean, MD
Member (1st year): Resident George Alvarez, MD
Member (1st year): Jessica Mitter Pardo, DO
Member (1st year): Resident Melissa (Mel) Encarnacion, MD
Resident: Aerial Petty, DO
Resident: Karol Serafin, MD
Student: Cameron Clarke, MS2
Student: Aiden Gorby
Student: Mina Yuan
Student: Phoebe Ilevbare
Student: Quinn Matos
Student: Helen Ding
Staff: Vito Grasso
Staff: Donna Denley