MaryAnn Black 2024

MaryAnn Black Distinguished Health Equity Lecture Symposium

In honor of the late MaryAnn Black, former State Representative and Associate Vice President for Community Relations for Duke University Health System. This symposium honors her extraordinary leadership, enduring impact, and powerful advocacy across our community.

Call for Abstracts

The annual MaryAnn Black Distinguished Health Equity Symposium is hosted by the Duke Cancer Institute’s Community Outreach, Engagement, and Equity (COEE) office in honor of the late MaryAnn Black. Representative Black was a powerful advocate for health equity on behalf of Duke University, the Duke Health System and Duke Cancer Institute. She was instrumental in the establishment of the office that paved the way for DCI’s robust COEE program, and in providing mentorship and support for numerous individuals across Duke who are today’s leaders in advancing community engagement and health equity. MaryAnn left behind a legacy of excellence in serving the needs of our patients, faculty, students, employees, and community members.

The MaryAnn Black Distinguished Health Equity Symposium reinforces Duke’s longstanding history and unwavering commitment to meaningful community engagement, by working collaboratively with communities in our backyard to understand and address the root causes of health disparities.

We are very excited to invite individuals from the community conducting work that exemplifies the legacy of MaryAnn Black to submit an abstract for presentation during the Poster Symposium! The goal is to highlight exceptional work that advances health equity in our community. Submissions from students/trainees, community organizations, researchers, and healthcare professionals are welcome.

Join us for a dynamic learning experience that will expand our collective impact in advancing health equity and promote understanding of ways to address barriers to quality care across the communities we serve! 

  • Abstracts may be submitted under the following categories:
    • Youth (work led by youth <25 years that advances health equity)
    • Policy (work to advance healthcare policy to improve health and reduce disparities)
    • Community Health (work that reduces the burden of disease for communities)

Abstracts will be reviewed and evaluated for the quality and impact of their work to advance health equity in the community and among resource constrained populations.

  • Submissions by individuals or organizations working in NC communities are welcome.
  • Abstracts will be scored based on the body of work’s potential and impact in meeting the needs of the community as well as demonstrated commitment to advancing health equity over the next century.
  • The presenting author MUST register to attend the MaryAnn Black Health Equity Symposium if accepted for a poster presentation.
  • Word count for abstract text must be 250 or less.
  • Presenting authors are responsible for ensuring that all authors listed in the submission have been notified of the abstract submission.
  • Each submitted abstract will be evaluated by the Review Committee, and final selections will be made by the MaryAnn Black Health Equity Symposium Planning Committee.
Abstract Submission Opens: Oct. 16, 2023, AT 11:59 PM (ET)
Abstract Submission Closes:
Dec. 4, 2023, AT 11:59 PM (ET)
Abstract Acceptance Notification: Jan. 8, 2024
Acceptance of Poster Presentation Due: Jan.15, 2023, AT 11:59 PM (ET)
Final Electronic Poster Presentation Due: Jan. 29, 2024, AT 11:59 PM (ET)
Poster Symposium: Feb. 9, 2024


Mary T. Bassett, MD, MPH, is director of the François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB) Center for Health and Human Rights and FXB Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights in the department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. From December 1, 2021 to December 31, 2022 Dr. Bassett served as New York State’s Health Commissioner. With more than 30 years of experience devoted to promoting health equity and social justice, both in the United States and abroad, Dr. Bassett’s career has spanned academia, government, and not-for-profit work.

Dr. Bassett’s many awards and honors include the prestigious Frank A. Calderone Prize in Public Health, a Kenneth A. Forde Lifetime Achievement Award from Columbia University, a Victoria J. Mastrobuono Award for Women’s Health, and the National Organization for Women’s Champion of Public Health Award. Her recent publications include articles in The Lancet and in the New England Journal of Medicine addressing structural racism and health inequities in the United States

February 9, 2024 at 3:00-6:30 p.m. at durham convention center


To register, scan the QR code,, or click here

Past MaryAnn Black Events