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A Plan for Change

Thursday, August 5, 2021
By Bernadette Gillis
Amy Porter-Tacoronte, MBA; Coral May, MPA, SHRM-SCP; and Annise Weaver, MSEd, CRC, are leaders of a new employee resource group aimed at empowering Black staff members in the School of Medicine.

Like many, Annise Weaver, MSEd, CRC, found herself feeling powerless in 2020. As she watched news reports of racial injustices occurring in the country that in turn prompted worldwide protests, Weaver wondered if it was truly possible for her to make a meaningful, lasting difference in the fight to dismantle racism.

After months of conversations about racism and racial inequity with colleagues and others across the Duke campus, she knew deep down that action, rather than conversation, was needed. Participating in a Duke educational series called Teaching & Leading Equity Now and listening to a presentation that was part of the Duke University School of Medicine’s anti-racism initiative Moments to Movement gave her a renewed sense of hope. It was the spark she needed to take action to help bring about change. 

“I wanted to be a part of the movement in some way,” says Weaver, associate director of diversity, equity, and inclusion and director of clinical operations for the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. “I want to do anything that I can to contribute to upward movement for staff.”

Weaver partnered with Coral May, MPA, SHRM-SCP, co-chair of the school’s Moments to Movement Staff Stakeholder Committee and director of the School of Medicine’s Human Resources Service Center, to launch the ME² (Motivate, Mentor, Educate & Empower) Black Employee Resource Group (ERG). Members of the group aim to empower Black staff members in the School of Medicine, who often experience being overlooked and unheard, and to offer them resources for support and professional development. 

Read the full article on the Duke School of Medicine blog to learn more about the ME² Black Employee Resource Group and other initiatives related to the School of Medicine's new strategic plan for addressing systemic racism.