The inception of the Reede Scholars, Inc. organization was inspired by its founding director who is an exemplar of excellence in healthcare leadership, Dr. Joan Reede, Dean for Diversity and Community Partnership at Harvard Medical School. We are the combined alumni of the Commonwealth Fund/Harvard University Minority Health Policy Fellowship, the California Endowment Scholars in Health Policy Fellowship, and the Joseph L. Henry Oral Health Fellowship at Harvard Medical School. The fellows of these three programs earned Master of Public Health (MPH) degree from the T. H. Chan School of Public Health, or the Master in Public Administration (MPA) degree from the Harvard Kennedy School. Some alumni earned additional degrees and certificates in other disciplines including epidemiology and dental public health.
In 2005 and 2006, Dr. Reede challenged the Fellows with developing a sustainable activity or project. Eager to meet Dr. Reede’s expectations, the group organized and held the inaugural Annual Health Equity Symposium on May 6, 2010. Sponsorship for the symposium was provided by DentaQuest. Each year since that time, we have convened a panel of experts to engage diverse perspectives around issues of social justice, health and health equity, and technology and innovation. The symposium has become the organization’s flagship annual event.
After earning their MPH and MPA degrees from Harvard Medical School and Harvard Kennedy School, respectively, the three fellowship alumni recognized the need to unite all fellows into a singular alumni association. They also sought to institutionalize the legacy that began with Dr. Reede’s initial challenge. After careful thought and consideration, the founding group chose to honor Dr. Reede by establishing The Reede Scholars, Inc., which was made official in 2009. The organization was incorporated and obtained 501(c)3 status in 2010.
Since 2010, The Reede Scholars, Inc. organization has made significant gains in sponsoring several mission-forward initiatives. In 2019, a video commemorating the organization’s 10th year anniversary, entitled The Reede Scholars, Inc. Annual Health Equity Symposium 2010 – 2019, debuted. During the same year, the organization began hosting a popular podcast series. The Reede Scholars, Inc. also issued their first position statement in 2020, and the first charitable gifts were distributed to support communities disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.
The Reede Scholars, Inc. continues to grow and expand, providing many benefits to its members and services to communities nationally and internationally. In 2021 alone, the organization issued the first Joseph L. Henry Oral Health Fellowship in Minority Health Policy Scholarship, made charitable gifts, secured two Platinum sponsorships, and established an ad hoc research committee. As the organization continues to grow, its members remain committed to advancing the mission of attaining health equity for all.
The Reede Scholars, Inc. aims to embody the skills, integrity, and commitment of our phenomenal program director, Dr. Joan Reede, Dean for Diversity and Community Partnership, Harvard Medical School. Among other leadership development programs, Dr. Reede facilitates the administration of the Commonwealth Fund/Harvard University Minority Health Policy Fellowship, the California Endowment Scholars in Health Policy Fellowship, and the Joseph L. Henry Oral Health Fellowship at Harvard Medical School. The fellows of these three programs are primarily graduates of the Master of Public Health (MPH), T. H. Chan School of Public Health or the Master in Public Administration (MPA), Harvard Kennedy School degree programs.
As a preeminent medical professional, Dr. Reede instills within her fellows a respect for global, diverse, and inclusive perspectives on health and health policy. Ultimately, The Reede Scholars, Inc. aim to positively impact the health and healthcare outcomes experienced by individuals, families, and communities that we serve in the US and beyond. Our collective efforts and achievement, in that regard, stand as a tribute to Dr. Reede.