Evelyn Lee Visiting Scholar Lectureship in Cultural Competence and Diversity

The annual Evelyn Lee Visiting Scholar Lecture in Cultural Competency and Diversity is sponsored by the UCSF Department of Psychiatry Diversity Committee and the UCSF Office of Diversity and Outreach in remembrance of Evelyn Lee, EdD, who served as a clinical faculty member for more than twenty years before her passing in 2003. The lectureship aims to further her mission of expanding diversity, equity and inclusion in the field of mental health by bringing prominent experts to share their experiences and expertise with campus trainees, faculty and staff.

The 15th Annual Evelyn Lee Visiting Scholar Lectureship

Our 2019 Evelyn Lee Visiting Scholar was Oregon Health and Science University emergency physician and equity advocate Esther Choo, MD, MPH.

She spoke to UCSF community members at four events, including UCSF Psychiatry Grand Rounds at Parnassus Heights and a round table discussion at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center. Video of these two events can be found below.

About this year's honoree

Esther Choo, MD, MPH

Esther Choo, MD, MPH

Esther Choo, MD, MPH, is an emergency physician and researcher who studies health disparities, substance use disorders, and gender bias. She obtained her MD from Yale University, did her clinical training at Yale-New Haven Hospital and Boston Medical Center, and completed a health services research fellowship at Oregon Health & Sciences University. She has published over 65 research manuscripts on substance use disorders, health disparities, gender bias, and emergency care. She has written on health topics for Quartz.com, KevinMD, and Huffington Post.

She serves on the executive board of FeminEM.org and Women Physicians For Humanity, and started the #DoctorsSpeakOut project capturing the opinions of physicians about the Senate health care bill. She also created the #thatsbias hashtag to advance discussions of gender bias in medicine, and #codehate to raise awareness about racism in the healthcare setting. She is a past president of the Academy of Women in Academic Emergency Medicine, the recipient of the Society of Academic Emergency Medicine's Young Investigator Award, a member of the American Association of Women Emergency Physicians (AAWEP), and the senior associate editor for dissemination for the journal Academic Emergency Medicine.

Previous lectureship honorees

About Evelyn Lee, EdD

Evelyn Yee-Wai Miu Lee Fong, EdD, was born on June 25, 1944, in Macau, China. She received her BA in social work at Chung Chi College of the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 1963. She went on to graduate from Case Western Reserve University with an MSSA in social work in 1968. Lee worked at Boston's South Cove Community Health Center from 1976 to 1980 as the director of mental health, social services and health education before moving on to receive her doctorate in mental health administration at the University of Massachusetts (Amherst) in 1983. Between 1980 and 1982, she served as a social science analyst for the federal government in Washington, D.C. In 1982, she joined the Asian Focus Psychiatric Inpatient Unit at San Francisco General Hospital as program director, as well as being appointed assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). In 1988, she founded the Chinese Family Alliance of Mentally Ill, and in 1992, helped to organize the NICOS Chinese Health Coalition, both in San Francisco.

In 1999, Lee was promoted to clinical professor of psychiatry at UCSF. She served as a consultant on cultural competence and diversity for many community health and mental health organizations, schools, hospitals and local, state, and federal government agencies, such as the National Technical Assistance Center for Children's Mental Health, Georgetown University, the California Department of Mental Health, and Texas Department of Mental Health.

An author of more than 30 publications, Lee wrote and taught io topics such as cross-cultural communication (including the use of interpreters), refugee trauma, immigrant acculturation, intergenerational conflict resolution, the role of religion, and complementary/alternative/integrative medicine approaches. In 1988, she authored the widely used parenting handbook Ten Principles for Raising Chinese American Teens, which was subsequently translated and adapted into Chinese and Vietnamese. She was widely respected and loved in the mental health field and the Asian-American community as a clinician, administrator, teacher, author, community advocate, and humanitarian.