Utibe R. Essien, MD, MPH, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, a general internist and health disparities researcher in the VA Pittsburgh Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion. Dr. Essien’s research focuses on racial disparities in the use of novel therapeutics in the management of chronic diseases including atrial fibrillation and was recently awarded a 5-year, $1 million Career Development Award from the Department of Veterans Affairs. He has applied his health equity research framework to the COVID-19 pandemic, rapidly becoming an expert in examining the disparities that disproportionately affect minority communities with COVID-19. His work has been featured in leading medical journals including JAMA and the NEJM and he has been interviewed by several national news outlets including the New York Times, Washington Post, and NPR. Dr. Essien is a fierce advocate for diversity and equity in medicine, speaking nationally on the topic and co-founding an “Antiracism in Medicine” podcast for the Clinical Problem Solvers podcast. Dr. Essien's leadership in advancing health equity has resulted in several local and national awards including the 2021 AAMC Herbert Nickens Award.