Stanford’s Dr. Michele Barry Addresses Women’s Leadership in Global Health, July 12

By Mesa Jones

The Program for Women in Internal Medicine (PWIM) will host Michele Barry, M.D., FACP, FASTMH, the Drs. Ben and A. Jess Shenson Professor of Medicine and Tropical Diseases at Stanford University, for the annual Clipp-Speer Women in Medicine Visiting Professor Grand Rounds lecture. It will be held on Friday, July 12 from 8 to 9 am at the Trent Semans Great Hall. The event will be hybrid, in-person and virtual

Dr. Barry will present “Walking the Talk: Women’s Leadership in Global Health and the Academy”, aiming to highlight how empowering women can lead to more equitable and effective healthcare systems worldwide. Globally, more than half of the workforce in the health sector are women, yet their representation at the decision-making table remains limited.  

This talk provides an overview of the current status of women in global health and academic medicine, examining the barriers to their career advancement and leadership. The systemic biases, policy gaps, and lack of support will all be discussed, and solutions such as gender equity policies, meaningful allyship and supportive networks and mentoring will be explored during the presentation.  

“We are honored to have Dr. Barry join us as this year’s featured speaker for our Clipp-Speer lecture,” said PWIM Chair Daniella Zipkin, MD. “Her impact in supporting the power and influence of women has been instrumental in addressing their lack of representation in leadership positions in global health.” 

Dr. Barry is the director of the Center for Innovation in Global Health and senior associate dean of Global Health at Stanford University. A leading voice for advancing women’s leadership in medicine and global health, Dr. Barry brings a powerful and unique perspective to the presentation. Additionally, she is the founder of the gates-funded international nonprofit “WomenLift Health” with hubs in international regions such as South Africa. Dr. Barry has sent over 1,000 physicians to underserved areas and hundreds of students worldwide to develop innovative global health programs. 

Most recently Dr. Barry’s work has brought her to writing on the exclusion of women climate scientists from COP meetings and leadership roles. She has also published in the areas of climate’s impact on megacities, tropical diseases, human and planetary health as well as global and refugee health. 

The Clipp-Speer Women in Medicine Visiting Professorship honors the memory and contributions of two faculty members who were trailblazers in the Duke Department of Medicine:  Elizabeth "Jody" Clipp, PhD, RN, and Marcy Speer, PhD.  

Jody Clipp was a professor of medicine, associate director for research in the Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center at the Durham VA, and the associate dean for research at the Duke School of Nursing.  She was a nationally recognized researcher in the area of caregiving to the chronically ill and was a dedicated mentor, particularly to female scientists.  

Marcy Speer was a professor of medicine, director of the Duke Center for Human Genetics, chief of the Division of Medical Genetics, and an internationally recognized researcher in neural tube defects, Chiari malformations, muscular dystrophy, and psychiatric disorders. She was devoted to the cause of genetics education at every level, and colleagues speak of her generous and selfless support of their careers.  

The Clipp-Speer Grand Rounds will also be the Department of Medicine’s first of three events in collaboration with Duke University’s Centennial celebration which commemorates Duke’s 100th year of being an established university. More on Duke’s centennial and the celebratory events can be found here: