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Diversity In Plastic Surgery Leadership: Analysis Of Presidents Across Eight Plastic Surgery Societies Over 22 Years
Siddhi Upadhyaya1, James Gatherwright, MD2, Rebecca Knackstedt, MD, PhD1.
1Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH, USA, 2MetroHealth, Cleveland, OH, USA.

PURPOSE: Several studies have investigated commonalities among plastic surgery department chairmen and program directors. However, very limited data exists exploring similarities among plastic surgery society presidents. The aim of this study was to analyze trends among presidents of eight academic plastic surgery societies over 22 years.
METHODS: Presidents and presidents-elect (n=167) of eight plastic surgery societies from 1999 to 2021 were identified by each organization, including American Society of Plastic Surgery, American Association of Plastic Surgeons, Plastic Surgery Foundation, Plastic Surgery Research Council, American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Society of Reconstructive Microsurgery, American Society of Craniofacial Surgery, and American Society for Surgery of the Hand.
Gender, academic rank, medical school, residency and fellowship institutions, fellowships, board certification, advanced degrees, chairmanship, and Hirsch (h) index were analyzed.
RESULTS: Of 167 presidents, 94% were male, and 6% were female. Full professor rank was held by 81%. The greatest number completed residency at New York University (7.6%), University of Michigan (5%), and Emory University (5%).
Fellowships were completed by 50%, most commonly hand (21%), followed by craniofacial (11.1%).Twenty individuals served as president in 2 societies, and 3 individuals served in 3 societies. Age-adjusted h-index was a significant predictor of multiple presidencies (p=0.03).
CONCLUSION: Diversity of pedigree, academic position, and publication success exists across presidents of plastic surgery societies. As the field continues to expand its membership and progress toward greater diversity and inclusion, the importance of mentorship and networking for individuals interested in achieving leadership positions is critical for success.


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