Barbara Lee Bass, MD, Honored by Mayor Muriel Bowser at Annual Washington Women of Excellence Awards

The annual event celebrated the power and influence of top women leaders across Washington, D.C.

Barbara Lee Bass, MD, RESD ’86, was among nine area women leaders honored by Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Office on Women’s Policy and Initiatives at the annual Washington Women of Excellence Awards, March 28, 2024.

Each year, honorees are nominated by members of the DC Commission for Women, Office on Women’s Policy and Initiatives, and Mayor Bowser’s senior staff. Final selections were made by Mayor Bowser. This year’s event was hosted by Autumn Joi and featured performances by comedian Angelina Spicer, poet Lemonade Dream, and women-only band Be’la Dona. 

“Together, we are honoring nine women who are not only moving big ideas forward, but are also empowering and uplifting other women with their work,” said Mayor Bowser. “This year’s honorees are leaders in their fields, they all play an important role in D.C.’s Comeback, and they are role models for the next generation of women and girls in D.C.”

Bass is in her fourth year serving as dean of George Washington University (GW) School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS), professor of surgery, vice president for health affairs, and CEO of The GW Medical Faculty Associates (GW MFA), as well as the Walter A. Bloedorn Chair of Administrative Medicine.

Not only was she the first woman at GW selected to serve as dean of the medical school, she’s also the first person to simultaneously hold the titles of dean, vice president for health affairs, and CEO of the GW MFA.

Soon after her arrival on the Foggy Bottom Campus in January 2020, Bass was in the midst of three significant events in the history of the school: negotiations on a new affiliation agreement between SMHS, the GW MFA, and the GW Hospital; planning for the creation of Cedar Hill Regional Medical Center to provide care for historically underserved communities in Ward 7 and 8; and leading GW’s emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, GW SMHS has successfully emerged from the darkest days of the pandemic as a premier integrated health system and academic medical enterprise serving all of the communities of the nation’s capital city.

Joining Dean Bass as this year’s honorees:

  • Melanie Adams, interim director of Smithsonian American Women’s History Museum;
  • Beverly J. Anderson, PhD, clinical director and administrator, Metropolitan Police Employee Assistance Program;
  • Lena Bradley, businesswoman and owner of Capitol Coiffure;
  • Madia Brown, founder of D.C.-based a creative marketing studio Brandire;
  • Delia Gonçalves, reporter and weekend anchor at WUSA9;
  • Anita L.A. Jenkins, MBA, chief executive officer, Howard University Hospital;
  • Tonya Kinlow, MPA, vice president for community engagement, advocacy and government affairs, Children’s National Hospital; and 
  • Jade Womack, economist and founder of Clockout DC.

“The District has a rich history of women taking necessary steps to improve the status of our shared realities,” said Natasha Dupee, director of the Mayor’s Office of Women’s Policy and Initiatives. “Women’s History Month serves as an opportunity for revival such that all D.C. women may be reminded of opportunities for them to stand for something. May it be through the arts, small business, or community advocacy, women are actively supporting D.C.’s comeback.”

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