– The first black person to chair the American Board of Internal Medicine cardiovascular disease board is Nigerian
– The Nigerian doctor, Olakunle Akinboboye is an alumnus of the University of Ibadan
– He will now be responsible for certifying all deserving cardiologists in the United States
For the first time, since its inception, 81 years ago, the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) has appointed a black person as head of its cardiovascular disease board.
And not only is he black, he is also a Nigerian doctor. Dr Olakunle Akinboboye as chair of the board will now be in charge of certifying cardiologists in the United States.
The board which has 12 members across the United States will be headed by Dr Akinboboye, who will also have to carry out periodic knowledge assessments of all practising cardiologists in the US.
Dr Olakunle Akinboboye has now made medical history Source: Top Heart Doctors
According to The Cable, he said: “I am proud to have the opportunity to chair this very important board.
“Unfortunately I am taking over the mantle of leadership at a point in time in which many cardiologists are openly revolting because of what they perceive as high handedness of the board over the years.”
He also said his goal is “to work with other board members to come up with assessments for practicing cardiologists that are fair, and not unduly burdensome."
Richard Baron, president and CEO of ABIM, welcomed the new chair and said in a press release:
"We are honored to have Dr Berns, Dr Akinboboye and Dr Udden—three highly regarded physicians with significant clinical experience to serve the community in their disciplines and across specialties to offer more choice, relevance and convenience as they help to set the standards for excellent patient care."
Below is some background information on Dr Akinboboye.
Akinboboye received his medical degree from the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and later finished his internal medicine residency and part of his cardiology fellowship at the Nassau County Medical Center, State University of Stony Brook.
He has masters degrees in public health from Columbia University and business administration from Columbia Business School.
He completed his fellowship in cardiology with two years of dedicated training in nuclear cardiology and advanced echocardiography, when he moved to Columbia University.
Certified in cardiovascular disease, hypertension and sleep medicine, this won’t be his first board appointment. Akinboboye serves as chair of the clinical trials committee of the organisation and also on the international board of governors of the American college of cardiology as the liaison for Africa.
He is an associate professor of clinical medicine at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York, the medical director of Queens Heart Institute/Laurelton Heart specialist in Rosedale, Queens, New York and a past-president of the National Association of Black Cardiologists’ (ABC).
He won an award for “exemplary professional services and outstanding contributions to cardiovascular medicine” while serving as president of the Ibadan College of Medicine alumni association, North America, between 2004-2005.