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From the President

I want to thank the members of the Auxiliary of the National Medical Association, Inc. for entrusting me as your 85th President.  I have been an active member of the ANMA serving nationally and locally.

I shall continue the efforts of our organization tenets set forth by our Board of Directors.   I am ready and poised to lead the ANMA with a constructive view for a quote “bright” future. With my vision, I shall expand last year’s membership efforts and to make the ANMA fun again. I pledge to work side-by-side with The BOD and bring organizational structure, financial expertise, and a technology-driven outlook for furthering a sound entity for sustainability.

I pledge my commitment to continue the great traditions of this fine organization through outreach activities to raise the awareness of health issues through education, prevention, access to quality health care, and to increase membership.

I am grateful to lead this historical organization which has a legacy of great leadership, community service and a commitment to reducing health disparities in the African American Community.

My theme for the 2023-2024 year is:

“Engaging Our Generations: A Call to Action to Preserve Our Legacy”

I have a wonderful agenda for my tenure and look forward to building on the great strides of previous administrations. My first focus will be the mental health challenges amongst the elderly and youth within our community.  These issues were already endemic before the pandemic which only served to magnify the negative consequences. In seeing a decline in our average life expectancy of 4 years during the Covid pandemic, some of this was related to infectious nature, and other parts attributed to the way we reacted to desperate times. Traditionally we can pray for them, but we must also provide the appropriate medical assistance, suggested action plans, and strategies to facilitate their walk towards wellness.  I shall engage our members and partner organizations that have been committed for over 80 years to delivering outreach programs to assist our youth and seniors.

A second focus during my presidency will be on Women Health and/Maternal and Infant mortality. With agencies such as the American Hospital Association and organizations such as the National Birth Equity Collaborative shining light of the disparate outcomes, we shall add our voice to raise further awareness. Through advocacy and education about the impact of the social determinants of health of women of color we shall inform the health professionals and the lay public about the upstream effects enacted by a system that was designed without us in mind.

A third focus will be discussions on our differently able African American population.  Disabled African American often must battle harder to get correct diagnoses and services. This is especially true for “invisible disabilities” such as autism, which educators are more likely to dismiss as behavioral issues in Black children than in white ones. African Americans with disabilities are especially likely to have issues with police officers, who can misinterpret their behavior—such as a deaf person who keeps walking when told to stop—as a threat. A person with Autism with lack of eye contact can be seen – as a threat. When law enforcement assumes a Black person’s failure to comply is because of aggression rather than a disability, the consequences can be deadly. We must educate our community on the invisible disparities and talk about them intentional.

Within my administration, I want to address the aforementioned issues with forums discussing how to move the needle to bring to the forefront our systemic issues. Ladies and Gentlemen, Our legacy is under attack, and we must have people from all facets of life to bring their chair to the table even when there is not a seat.

The ANMA will take a leading role in our communities with “A call for action through education awareness, advocacy and collaboration”.  Our six regions throughout our auxiliaries will serve as champions to plan and execute seminars, and webinars at regional meetings, the ANMA Convention, schools, community centers, and churches to combat these three major issues.

Please consider membership with the ANMA, partner with us, and/or support us as we march with our NMA for Health Equity.

Yours in Service,

Maria Bright

85th President of the Auxiliary To The National Medical Association, Inc.





2024 Annual Convention