Minority Affairs

About the Committee

The Minority Affairs Committee assesses the status of minorities in the profession, the role of the College in promoting increased minority representation in epidemiology and in the College, and recommends actions to increase research on health concerns of minority populations. The committee is composed of five Fellows or Members appointed by the President to serve three-year terms.

Committee Members

  • Bertha Hidalgo, Chair (2020)*
  • Julie Smith-Gagen, Vice Chair 
  • Peter Buzzacott (2020)
  • Charles Oke,  (ex-officio)
  • Victor Schoenbach (ex-officio)
  • Jorge Ibarra (ex-officio)
  • Vickie Mays (ex-officio)


  1. Enhance an active and engaged membership (both in terms of numbers as well as diversity) with a special focus on recruiting junior epidemiologists. (Goal IA, section 6)
  2. Re-vamp our annual workshop by including speakers and topics that will draw larger participation and aid in the training of epidemiologists in topics relevant to minority affairs and health disparities. (Goal IB and Goal II, section 1 and 3)
  3. Plan a workshop (and/or roundtables, plenary sessions) for the 2016 Epi Congress, which focuses on identifying international factors which influence disparities in the US. (Goal IB and Goal II)
  4. Implement a travel award program to facilitate attendance at the MAC workshop for students invited to give oral presentations. Attending the MAC workshop a full day before the conference can be cost prohibitive, particularly for students. We hope that implementing a travel award program will help alleviate this financial burden for students hoping to attend, but otherwise unable. (Goal 3)
  5. Continue promoting, developing and disseminating educational tools pertinent to minority affairs health disparity. This may, for instance, require collaboration with the Publication Committee in order to draft/submit a submission on the status of Minority Affairs and its opportunities and challenges faced in the new era of epidemiology and population health. (Goal 1)


Minority Affairs Committee Materials


2014 ACE MAC Workshop - Factors Affecting Policies that Influence Minority Health

     Saturday, September 6       

     Previous Presentations and Workshops

  • The Epidemiology of Diversity in Epidemiology
  • Enhancing the Epidemiologist’s Research Toolbox: An Introduction to Systems Science (2013)
  • “Factors Impacting the Translation of Epidemiological Findings into Policies Affecting Health Disparities” Saturday, September 8, 2012, 1:00-5:00 pm, Chicago, IL
  • The Minority Affairs Committee (MAC) 2012 workshop on “Factors that impact the Translation of Epidemiological Findings into Action/Policy for Health Disparities focused on specific issues that facilitate or impede the translation of findings and conclusions from epidemiological research into policy action among minority populations.  In medical, clinical, and epidemiology research minority populations face several challenges that include inadequate sample size, low recruitment and retention of study participants, and underrepresentation of minority investigators.  Translating results of research into policy action remains the foremost challenge in all types of research. The recently established National Institutes of Health National Center for Advancing Translation Sciences seeks to “reduce, remove or bypass costly and time-consuming bottlenecks” to the early, innovative use of research findings through effective partnerships between public, private, academic and community stakeholders as well as effective use of targeted training programs.  Translating research findings into policy action among minority populations requires attention to disproportionate impediments such as access to care, inadequate infrastructure and poor socioeconomic indices (e.g. low median household income and high unemployment).  The MAC 2012 workshop included an overview of epidemiological research challenges among minority populations.  A discussion regarding  the disconnect between epidemiological research findings among minority population and gaps in subsequent policy action along with strategies to reduce bottlenecks to effective translation of researching findings into policy action was presented. The MAC 2012 workshop featured a nationally known keynote speaker and panel discussions. The Workshop also included opportunities for interactive sessions between prospective and early career epidemiologists and ACE Fellows and MAC members.