17th Annual Skin of Color Society
Virtual Scientific Symposium Recap

March 18, 2021
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Our recent 17th Annual Skin of Color Society Virtual Scientific Symposium was a tremendous success on many levels, with thanks and congratulations to many SOCS members and supporters for their contributions to help make this superb program possible.

We begin our recap by heartily congratulating and thanking SOCS Scientific Committee co-chairs,
Amy McMichael, MD, FAAD and Andrew Alexis, MD, MPH, FAAD along with their committee for putting together such an extraordinary scientific program!

In keeping with the high standards of excellence that they’ve established with this important scientific program, which they’ve co-chaired since 2018, the caliber of this year’s program of invited speakers, oral abstract/scientific iPoster presenters and Next Generation panelists was truly outstanding.

We appreciate all the highly positive feedback informing us that many attendees found the scientific program content to be informative, interesting, and inspiring. We will be sending out a brief survey shortly and will look forward to additional feedback.

In addition, this year’s virtual program featured many enhancements from a production standpoint, which created an enriched and well-produced experience.

We were thrilled to have had such an amazing turnout, with several hundred participants from all over the United States and the world! In fact, 26 different countries were represented, including: Australia, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Colombia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Germany, Guinea, India, Ireland, Malaysia, Morocco, The Netherlands, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States (numerous states).

The program featured eight invited speakers, who shared presentations and participated in live Q & A panels, six abstract presenters and a Next Generation panel discussion about the future of skin of color dermatology. Speakers included the following individuals:


  • Seemal R. Desai, MD, FAAD, SOCS Immediate Past President (2019-2021), who provided a Dermatology Advocacy Update.
  • SOCS Founder Susan C. Taylor, MD, FAAD and SOCS Founding Member Pearl Grimes, MD, FAAD, who presented on the History of Skin of Color Dermatology—beginning with Dr. Grimes’ presentation, “Our Pioneers and Heroes,” followed by Dr. Taylor’s talk, “Historical Aspects of Diversity in Dermatology,” and finishing with a beautiful video tribute, “Founding Father: Dr. John A. Kenney, Jr., Portrait of a Pioneer, Visionary and Champion of Ethnic Dermatology.”
  • Shawn Kwatra, MD, FAAD, who presented “Racial Differences in Itch: From Bedside to Bench.” Dr. Kwatra received his very first research grant for his work from the Skin of Color Society in 2018.
  • Antonella Tosti, MD, who discussed “Trichoscopy in the Diagnosis of Hair Disorders: Why, When and How.”
  • Angel Byrd, BS, MD, PhD, FAAD, who shared, “My Educational and Career Journey from an HBCU to Ivy League and Back: Understanding the Role of Neutrophils in Hidradenitis suppurativa.”
  • Howard Bauchner, MD, JAMA Editor-in-Chief, who spoke about “Evolving Issues in Medical Journalism.”
  • Steven Wang, MD, FAAD, who presented, “Controversies in Sunscreens.”



  • Jadesola Olayinka, BSc, Medical Student from SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University: “What is a Lace Wig? An Update in Hair Care Practices in Women
    with African Ancestry.”
  • Sadia Perveen, MD, Research Fellow from Rawalpindi Medical University in Pakistan: “A Randomized Trial of Oral Tranexamic Acid with Fluocinolone-based Triple Cream Versus Fluocinolone-based Triple Cream Alone for the Treatment of Melasma.”
  • Youkyung Roh, BA, Medical Student from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine: “Racial Differences in Healthcare Utilization and Costs in Pediatric Patients With Atopic Dermatitis and Atopic Triad: Results from the Medical Expenditures Panel From 1996-2015.”
  • Autumn Saizan, BS, Medical Student from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry: “Direct-to-consumer Dermatology-related Advertising Differs in Magazines Targeted to Women of Color: A Cross-sectional Analysis.”
  • Justine Seivright, BS, Medical Student from the University of California Los Angeles David Geffen School of Medicine: “Hidradenitis Suppurativa Research from Africa: A Bibliometric Analysis.”
  • Britney Wilson, BA, MBS, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, “The Role of Reflectance Confocal Microscopy in Anticancer Therapy-induced Pigmentary Changes in Skin of Color Patients – Clinical Histopathologic Correlation.”

In addition to the aforementioned speakers, Lynn McKinley-Grant, MD, FAAD, SOCS President (2019-2021), shared opening and closing remarks. Drs. McMichael and Alexis co-moderated the program and kept the Symposium running beautifully. Behind the scenes, we give thanks to the SOCS headquarters team and event day producer, Rashad Miller. Bravo to all for a seamless and exceptional virtual production!

We would also like to once again thank the following sponsors for their generous support of this program:

Pfizer; Incyte Dermatology; Ortho Dermatologics; Arcutis; UCB; Dermavant; Scientis; Unilever (Dove, Vaseline & MELÉ); Almirall; Sanofi-Genzyme/Regeneron; Beiersdorf; Galderma; Janssen; Medscape Education; Glory Skincare, and SENTÉ.

For all registrants, please note that the Symposium recording will be available by early April. iPosters will be available for viewing online until March 2022. Be sure to save the date for the 18th Annual SOCS Scientific Symposium, scheduled to take place on Thursday, March 24, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts.

Watch for more news and updates!