Dear Fellow Auxiliary Members,
I bring you greetings from the office of the 84th President of the Auxiliary to the National Medical Association, Inc. (“ANMA”). As an initial matter, I want to thank all of you for having the confidence in me to serve as the leader of this outstanding organization. I won’t let you down.
This past summer, the National Medical Association (“NMA”) annual convention took place in Atlanta, Georgia. This was our first in-person convention since 2019, as we have been unable to connect due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And while it certainly hasn’t gone anywhere, we are getting vaccinated and staying vigilant to minimize the spread of this deadly disease.
For those of you who were unable to attend the 2022 convention, we missed you. Atlanta was a blast, and we were “doing our thang.” We kicked off the conference with our Walk A Mile with a Child/Project Sun event. In addition to facilitating an excellent community workout, the event fostered some great music curated by a local Atlanta DJ and participation by members of the Atlanta Falcons football team.
The celebratory events continued later that evening with the grand opening of our ANMA Marketplace. All I can say is that you should have been there. We had delicious food and wine to honor our esteemed members and fabulous vendors. And as Barry White would have said,” Oh, what a night for dancing.” Our conference DJ, Mr. Xavier Lewis, supplied the entertainment with guest performer Big Joe. When Big Joe started singing one of Luther Vandross’s songs, the women started screaming. Big Joe, however, was singing his heart out to Mrs. Alice Davis. We all had tears in our eyes, as the gesture was beautiful. I want to recognize Mrs. Delores Dalton, who turned the ANMA Marketplace into one of the most beautiful rooms at the convention.
I am happy to report that the Prayer Breakfast was sold out. Ambassador Andrew Young was our guest speaker and gave a powerful speech on persistence. Thank you, Mrs. Sarita Cathcart-Mc Clarin and the Prayer Breakfast and Convention Committees members, for putting together a beautiful ceremony to honor those who have transitioned.
Our Scholarship-Luncheon and Fashion Show took place on Monday, August 1, 2022. The ladies of ANMA took it to another level. The hats, the dresses, the food, and the band were all exceptional. Congratulations to Dr. Beverly Anderson and the entire committee. The members of ANMA should be proud of all of their hard work. But we can’t stop there.
DJ Jazzy Jeff did a phenomenal job at the NMA President’s Ball. We did the Electric Slide and partied all night long. And after my installation as the 84th President of ANMA on Wednesday, August 3, 2022, ANMA had the people of Atlanta and the Hyatt Hotel rushing into the lobby to see our second line band. We waved our handkerchiefs in the air as we danced from one side of the hotel to the other. The music was vibrant, and it made you feel like you were in New Orleans. Mrs. Delores Dalton created her magic again with her fellow ANMA assistants to help facilitate this event and bring a taste of New Orleans to Atlanta. The room for my President’s luncheon made you think you were in New Orleans. The band continued to play sweet soul music, and Mr. Xavier Lewis showed us why he is truly one of Atlanta’s best singers. ANMA, we salute you for bringing the fun and laughter back after the pandemic.
Now, we have to get back to work. Since the beginning of its existence, ANMA has been guided by specific purposes and objectives that have led them to establish and maintain health-related programs and educational projects. The aim has always been explicitly addressing health-related issues affecting African Americans and other minorities. Our programmatic thrust has been to disseminate information in the African American communities. My theme for my presidency is “Mitigating Healthcare Disparity in a Post-Pandemic World: Let’s Talk About It.” I encourage our members to work diligently within their communities to get people vaccinated and to encourage them to seek proactive care. I want to congratulate the National Medical Association for its work to increase healthcare for everyone. We salute the medical schools for their continued training of African-American physicians.
I want to encourage my fellow ANMA members to have healthcare forums in their communities using my theme, “Mitigating Healthcare Disparities in a Post-Pandemic World: Let’s Talk About It.” Let’s talk about what we have learned about healthcare disparities in our communities. And how we can bring about an effective change. Let’s talk about how many of our friends or relatives died due to a denial of treatment or because they received band-aid treatment and were sent home to die. Let’s talk about the persistent opiate epidemic. Let’s talk about the increasing maternal death rates affecting African-American women. Let’s talk about disparities in treating cancer, diabetes, and multiple myeloma patients. And most of all, let’s talk about mental health issues affecting the African-American population. I want to encourage all of our members to have at least one healthcare forum completed by our mid-year Board of Directors meeting. Keep a journal so we can present the information to our national office of ANMA at our annual convention.
I look forward to seeing you at the 2023 convention in New Orleans, which will take place July 29- August 2, 2023.
Let’s get to work!
Mrs. Marion E. Grace
84th President Auxiliary to the National Medical Association, Inc.
A special thank you to Mrs. Mae Walton, Mrs. Alice Davis, Mrs. Laura Tompkins, and Mrs. Gloria Goodwin.