The National Medical Fellowships organization will present its NMF Distinguished Alumni Award to Herman Gray, M.D., M.B.A., chair of the Wayne State University Department of Pediatrics, at the Champions of Health Awards ceremony Dec. 3 in Chicago.
The award honors past NMF scholars who exemplify the organization’s tradition of excellence through their personal accomplishments, professional achievement and humanitarian service.
“Your dedication over the years in numerous capacities to improving public wellbeing and addressing social determinants of health makes you the kind of leader that we hope young scholars emulate in their professional careers,” said NMF President and Chief Executive Officer Esther Dryer, of Dr. Gray.
The National Medical Fellowships is a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the number of underrepresented minority physicians and other professionals in the health care workforce. It is the only national organization solely dedicated to providing scholarships and support to medical and health professions students in all groups that are underrepresented in health care. The organization is supported by a national network of alumni. NMF has distributed $45 million in scholarships and support to more than 30,000 physicians and other health care professionals.
“I am quite honored and humbled to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award from National Medical Fellowships,” Dr. Gray said. “When I was a financially struggling medical student, the support from NMF was very helpful. It was also inspiring to know that a national organization existed primarily to help students like me to be successful in the field of medicine. By helping students of color to be successful, NMF has positively impacted the health of underserved communities in our country for more than 70 years. I will always be grateful for their support and encouragement.”
Dr. Gray, former president and chief executive officer of the DMC Children’s Hospital of Michigan, is a former WSU associate dean for Graduate Medical Education. Dr. Gray’s history with Children's Hospital of Michigan dates to the late 1970s, when he served as chief pediatric resident. While with CHM, he also served as vice president of Graduate Medical Education, pediatric residency program director, chief of staff and chief operating officer. Under his leadership, the residency program developed several innovative programs and successfully recruited a significant number of minorities.
He was named president and chief executive officer of CHM in 2005. He left that position in September 2015 to become president and chief executive officer of United Way for Southeastern Michigan.
He has served as chief medical consultant for the Michigan Department of Community Health - Children's Special Health Services and as vice president and medical director of Clinical Affairs for Blue Care Network.
Dr. Gray has been honored numerous times for his humanitarian efforts related to pediatric health care, particularly with children with special needs. He has served on a variety of state and national committees and organizations, and is one of the founding commissioners on the U.S. Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission.