AMA Honors Dr. Richard Allen Wiliams


The American Medical Association Foundation hosted a Testimonial Dinner and Gala recognizing the 50 years of medical service and leadership of Dr. Richard Allen Williams,  a physician who championed efforts to improve cardiovascular health in black community and for decades has been a major force in minority healthcare. He has dedicated his life to paving the way for diversity and inclusion in the practice of medicine and delivery of care. He has advocated for the inclusion in the standard medical school curriculum of patient-centered initiatives such a women’s health, health care for disparities, biomedical ethics, nutrition and end-of-life management. An internationally recognized authority on hypertension and other cardiac issues, Dr. Williams has authored numerous publications.

His outstanding leadership and significant accomplishments toward improving patient health includes the following: Founder of the Association of Black Cardiologists, author of the Textbook of Black Related Diseases, recipient of the Distinguished Award for Leadership in Diversity & Inclusion from the American College of Cardiology, receipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Harvard Medical School and he was the first black person to hold a full professorship in the Department of Medicine at UCLA School of Medicine.

In honor of Dr. Williams, the IMA played a special tribute video at the event.

In 2013, Dr. Williams and Genita, in collaboration with the Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC), partnered with the AMA Foundation to create the Dr. Richard Allen Williams & Genita Evangelista Johnson/ABC Scholarship to create a larger pipeline of black physicians specializing in cardiology.

Dr. Williams has received many honors including the Scroll of Merit from the National Medical Association, their highest award. He was given the legendary Louis B. Russell, Jr. Memorial Award by the American Heart Association for outstanding service in the minority community. He also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from Harvard Medical School in 2004 in recognition of his successful efforts to increase diversity at that institution when he was on the faculty there. He was the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Minority Quality Forum in 2009, and he was recently inducted into fellowship with the American College of Cardiology, the American Heart Association, and the American College of Physicians. Furthermore, Dr. Williams was named as one of the 100 Best Doctors in America by Black Enterprise Magazine, and in 2012, he was honored as the Ethnic Physician of the Year by the California Medical Association Foundation. Recently Dr. Williams served as the 117th President of the 50,000-member National Medical Association. He also received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Delaware State University on May 13, 2017 and he also received the President’s Medal from Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science on June 5, 2017.

At the event, Grammy-nominated Clayton-Hamilton’s Jazz Orchestra entertained the guests. It was indeed, brininging medicine and music together!

Cardiology Magazine