An Extraordinary Meeting of the Minds: The SOCS Meeting the Challenge Summit

December 12, 2023
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An extraordinary meeting of the minds convened in Washington, D.C. this past weekend for the SOCS Meeting the Challenge Summit: Population Descriptors in Dermatology Research Studies.

This groundbreaking Summit brought together a highly esteemed, diverse group of stakeholders, including skin of color dermatology leaders, researchers, clinicians, regulators, dermatologists-in-training, industry representatives, geneticists, a dermatology journal editor, and an anthropologist!

Representing many key facets of the dermatology, scientific, and healthcare landscape, attendees contributed fascinating perspectives and insights into a vitally important—and BIG—conversation.

Through thought-provoking presentations and interactive sessions, attendees examined critical issues in dermatology and looked deeply into ways to better use demographic descriptors to ultimately lead to better outcomes for patients of color and better science.

This second SOCS Summit came to life beautifully thanks to the vision and dedication of the SOCS Diversity in Dermatology Clinical Trials Task Force, expertly co-chaired by Valerie D. Callender, MD, FAAD and Valerie M. Harvey, MD, MPH, FAAD (shown in the photo above, seated on either side of Andrew F. Alexis, MD, MPH, FAAD, SOCS President). As pictured above, from left: Kimberly Miller, SOCS Executive Director, Task Force members Stafford G. Brown, III, MS, Tarannum Jaleel, MD, Jane Yoo, MD, FAAD, Jonathan S. Weiss, MD, FAAD, Amy McMichael, MD, FAAD, Seemal R. Desai, MD, FAAD, Dr. Candrice R. Heath, MD, FAAD, Caryn Cobb, BA, Lynn McKinley-Grant, MD, FAAD, Junko Takeshita, MD, PhD, MSCE, FAAD, Dr. Shawn Kwatra, and Janice Ayargoitia, SOCS Project Manager. Task Force members not shown include: Cheryl Marie Burgess, MD, FAAD, Angel Byrd, MD, PhD, Roxana Daneshjou, MD, PhD, FAAD, Pearl E. Grimes, MD, FAAD, Yvette Miller-Monthrope, MD, MSc, FRCPC, FAAD, Chidubem A. V. Okeke, BS, Hema A. Sundaram, MD, FAAD, and Susan C. Taylor, MD, FAAD.

We gratefully recognize the following Sponsors for their generous support, which made this important program possible:


Janssen / J&J | L’Oréal Research & Innovation


Bristol Myers Squibb | Eli Lilly, Inc. | Incyte Corporation


AbbVie | Arcutis Biotherapeutics | Google Health | Sanofi / Regeneron