The Collective – Affiliate Institutions

Saint Luke’s Health System

Department of Surgery Grand Rounds – Michael L. Weaver, MD, FACEP, CDM, Medical Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, and Nikki Beard, Director of Strategic Diversity Initiatives, presented The Journey of Diversity to Equity during the Department of Surgery Grand Rounds Jan. 14. Attendees of the one-hour virtual presentation received CME credits.

Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration – Saint Luke’s celebrated the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by sharing a series of articles internally for all employees, in addition to connecting them with a new library of resources, courtesy of the Saint Luke’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council. All employees and providers were encouraged to share what they have learned or what inspires them about Dr. King. Digital displays and waiting room display in Saint Luke’s hospitals shared inspirational quotes from Dr. King’s messages.

Enhanced Care of LGBTQ Patients Training – Saint Luke’s provided information to all employees on online training courses available to all staff through the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. Many of Saint Luke’s senior leaders have completed training courses, and Saint Luke’ encourages all employees to schedule time to participate in this valuable training to enhance care for our LGBTQ patients.

Children’s Mercy Hospital

Equity and Diversity Education Sessions

Children’s Mercy Equity and Diversity Education Series is focused on educating faculty, students, and health professionals about ways to address diversity, equity, anti-racism, and inclusion. It contributes to more effective strategies for improving health for individuals and communities of color, reduce barriers to quality healthcare access, and increase social equity for all.

Upcoming Sessions:

  • Topic: Berry Sisters Vision and Dr. John Perry’s Mission: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Children’s Mercy Date: Thursday, 2/23 Time: 12 – 1 PM
  • Not-So-Journal Club Topic: The Gifts Within Our Walls: A Conversation About the Experiences of Our Multicultural Faculty Members Date: Tuesday, 3/16/2021 Time: Noon – 1 PM

Overview: The not-so-journal club series aims to cultivate conversations that inspire personal and system change through examination of articles and other media that are particularly relevant to achieving equity in the healthcare environment.

– Discuss among faculty, trainees, researchers, and healthcare professionals in regard to improving equity in the health care environment
– Discuss with a panel of leaders how to address systems and structures, confront implicit bias and racism, and foster equity and inclusion in the workplace.
-Examine articles and personal feelings/behaviors in order to build a culture of inclusion Identify solutions that can make Children’s Mercy more equitable and inclusive.

The Office of Faculty Development (OFD) and the Office of Equity and Diversity (OED) sponsored a Faculty Evening Event: A History of Black Healthcare in Kansas City on Feb. 11 via zoom in celebration of Black History month. In partnership with the African American Heritage Trail, the program presented information about the history of Black health care in Kansas City. Presenter Geri Sanders led a discussion of the history of black hospitals in Kansas City, talked about the leaders of the hospital movement and examined where they succeeded including major hospitals such Wheatley-Provident, General Hospital No. 2 and Children’s Mercy.

CM Pride Employee Resource Group (ERG) is a group of Children’s Mercy LGBTQIA employees dedicated to fostering a welcoming culture of diversity and inclusion for our patients, families, employees, and community. It strives to provide education, awareness, and support around gender and sexual orientation as an intentional and strategic partner within Children’s Mercy. Through these efforts, we aim to improve the safety and care of our patients and families.

African American Advancement (A3) ERG is geared toward the support and advancement of Black and African American employees and the education of the entire Children’s Mercy (CM) family in matters relevant to Black and African American employees, patients, and families.   It envisions influencing CM policy and programming as well as promoting recruitment and retention of Black and African American individuals.   By focusing on these objectives, we hope to create a community where employees feel uplifted and encouraged, thereby allowing them to be great ambassadors to CM patients, families, and the greater community. A3, in partnership with the CM Child Life team, hosted a Black History Month fun programming activity on February 11th on CCTV. The activity was filmed in the Lisa Barth Chapel.


  • Walk the Talk with Michelle Wimes – Michelle Wimes, new SVP and Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer invites CM staff and faculty to take part in “Walking the Talk,” a new video series that will educate and engage staff and faculty around issues on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Click here to hear more from Michelle!
  • CMH, KU Med, TMC and UMKC collaborated on a community forum on vaccine safety on Feb. 4. This virtual forum provided an opportunity to learn the truth about the COVID-19 vaccine from KC-area physicians and experts. Over 100 people attended and were able to receive great info and helpful resources regarding the COVID-19 Pandemic. A big thanks to our moderator and panelists.
  • The Office of Equity and Diversity wants to share some new resources that have been developed to help our communities of color gain confidence and trust in the Covid 19 vaccines. Please help us to share with community partners and use your platforms to help spread these video messages.
  • A Message to the Black Community about the Covid-19 Vaccine
  • Spanish video on Telemundo

Acknowledgements from CMH

  • Michelle Wimes shared a hopeful message at CM Interfaith Prayer Service on January 21st, 2021! It was a powerful moment for us to reflect and share on good news to come.
  • The Equity and Diversity Council is excited to announce the upcoming publication of a quarterly newsletter to include information from all diversity related workgroups, committees and endeavors throughout the hospital.
  • The 2019-2020 Equity and Diversity Report has been released. Check out what your amazing colleagues and outstanding Children’s Mercy leadership have been up to. Colorful captions and stories of success highlight our shared vision of diversity, health equity, inclusion, and service on every page. Thank you, Tiffany Chow, MA, MS, Project Manager & Health Science Summer Internship Supervisor for OED on her leadership and creative direction a beautiful report.

Additional Comments from CMH

On January 12th, 2021, OED and CM Spiritual Services Today continued to promote Dr. King’s vision of love as a potent social and political force for change. As our country struggles today, the message and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King are increasingly important and applicable to us all. A small group of faculty and staff from across the organization addressed the question: How would Dr. King’s teachings from the 60’s help us transform into a more just and peaceful country today?  Martin Luther King Jr. Program 2021.

Truman Medical Centers

Truman Medical Center/University Health’s Equity, Diversity & Inclusion department in conjunction with the Diversity & Inclusion Council, had two exciting virtual programs for February, Black History Month.

A virtual conversation with Academy Award winner Kevin Willmott took place on Feb. 23. Willmott, is the creator of From Separate to Equal: The Creation of Truman Medical Center. He  discussed the groundbreaking documentary as it relates today in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the historical health inequities that persist in the U.S.

Willmott is an Academy Award and Bafta Award winning screenwriter and filmmaker who has written and directed several feature films including Ninth Street, CSA – Confederate States of America, The Only Good Indian, The Battle for Bunker Hill, Destination Planet Negro! and Jayhawkers. He and Spike Lee co-wrote Blackkklansman, which won the Oscar for best adapted screenplay in 2019.  He teamed with Lee again in 2020 co-writing Da Five Bloods, which was just selected as the best film of 2020 by the National Board of Review.

Willmott recently completed the critically acclaimed The 24th, about the Houston riot of 1917.  He is also a playwright and works as an activist for peace and civil rights issues.  Willmott is a graduate of Marymount College of Kansas and NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. He is a Professor in the Film and Media Studies Department at The University of Kansas.

If you haven’t watched From Separate to Equal, take an opportunity to see it:

A conversation with esteemed poet Glenn North, Executive Director of the Bruce R. Watkins Cultural Heritage Center, took place on Feb. 17.  Glenn, who received his MFA in Creative Writing from UMKC, is the author of City of Song, a collection of poems inspired by Kansas City’s rich jazz tradition and the triumphs and tragedies of the African American experience. He is a Cave Canem fellow, a Callaloo creative writing fellow and a recipient of the Charlotte Street Generative Performing Artist Award and the Crystal Field Poetry Award.

His work has appeared in the Langston Hughes Review, Kansas City Voices, One Shot Deal, The Sixth Surface, Caper Literary Journal, KC Studio, Cave Canem Anthology XII, The African American Review, and American Studies Journal. He collaborated with legendary jazz musician, Bobby Watson, on the critically acclaimed recording project, Check Cashing Day and is currently filling his appointment as the Poet Laureate of the 18th & Vine Historic Jazz District.