Renée Jenkins, MD, FAAP
Professor and Chair Emerita at Howard University College of Medicine

Dr. Jenkins a Professor and Chair Emerita at Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, D.C. Dr. Jenkins served as the inaugural director of the adolescent medicine program from 1976 to 1994 when she was appointed department chair of Pediatrics and Child Health, serving in this capacity until March 2007. In the latter part of her tenure at Howard, Dr. Jenkins established the College of Medicine (COM) Office of Faculty Development and participated in the Clinical and Translational Science (CTSA) grant. She was also appointed by the University Provost to co-chair the University-wide Committee on Faculty Development. Dr. Jenkins served as national president of the American Academy of Pediatrics from 2007 -2008. She is a past Chair of the Pediatric Section of the National Medical Association and a national past-president of the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine (SAHM). Dr. Jenkins is also a member of the National Academy of Medicine (formerly Institute of Medicine) and she served on the Board on Children, Youth and Families of the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Jenkins is a graduate of the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) for Women program. In the 2013 the Federation of Pediatric Organizations awarded Dr. Jenkins the prestigious Joseph W. St. Geme, Jr. Leadership Award which is given to a pediatrician who has contributed to the development of pediatrics over many years, and as one who has “created a future” for pediatrics.

Dr. Jenkins graduated from Wayne State University School of Medicine and completed her residency at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Jacobi Hospital in New York City. She completed a fellowship in Adolescent Medicine at Montefiore Hospital also in New York City. As a faculty and hospital staff member Dr. Jenkins participated and chaired multiple committees including search committees for senior leadership, the COM Appointment, Promotion and Tenure committee and the University-wide Institutional Review Board.

The servant leader philosophy embodies the characteristics Dr. Jenkins feels are important for effective leadership. She believes a servant leader listens more than he/she speaks, shares power rather than uses his/her power to drive growth and understands it is not about them but it’s about the organization, be it the department, lab, or university. Transparency in decision-making builds trust of leadership and the feeling that the leader has their interest and success at heart. As a mentor to young and mid-career faculty one of Dr. Jenkins’ greatest joys is seeing the mentees grow and succeed in their careers. Dr. Jenkins believes the challenges facing leaders today are unprecedented because of the surrounding events with Covid-19 and racial tensions. The expectation is that the institution that the leader oversees will assign resources and make decisions that benefit the greater good and that communication of the greater good will be explicit.

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