Amy Holthouser, left, and Susan Sawning, right
Amy Holthouser, left, and Susan Sawning, right

Two medical faculty members who are actively working to infuse LGBT-DSD competencies into the medical school curriculum have been named 2015 HSC Faculty/Staff Ally Award winners by the LGBT Center.

Stacie Steinbock, director of the LGBT Center’s Health Sciences Center (HSC) Satellite Office, surprised Drs. Amy Holthouser and Susan Sawning with their awards October 12 during a LGBT Health and Wellness Certificate Series workshop.

Both Holthouser and Sawning are founding members of the steering committee for the eQuality project, an effort that has brought national attention to the University of Louisville and made it the first school in the country to infuse the LGBT competencies developed by the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) into the curriculum.  The year-long effort has meant long hours and extended strategy sessions for Sawning and Holthouser, and Steinbock credits both with the success of the effort.   “They both believe deeply this is the right thing to do.  Amy and Susan have worked tirelessly to help us make this vision a reality, and are champions for the eQuality project.”

Additionally, Sawning serves on a national AAMC committee dedicated to promoting the organization’s newly drafted LGBT competencies to other medical colleges.  And Holthouser participated this year in the LGBT Center’s “Making Change” effort, which won her a spot in the line-up for PINK, its annual student-run drag show.  She has also become a resource person to transgender community members who are trying to access competent healthcare.

The LGBT Center introduced ally awards in 2008 to honor the work of faculty and staff who have helped create an environment of inclusion for LGBT people.  Candidates for the award can include any U of L faculty or staff member—LGBT, straight/cisgender, questioning, or those whose orientation/gender identity is unknown—who is making positive decisions and speaking for LGBT people at U of L.  This is the first year that the Center has given separate awards for those working at the HSC.  Past winners include:

2008    Provost Shirley Willihganz and Vice Provost Mordean Taylor-Archer

2009    Nancy Theriot and Julie Onnembo

2010    Michael Anthony

2011    George Howe

2012    Michelle Clemons

2013    David Wiegman

2014    Laine Lopez

Professor Sam Marcosson of the Law School was the ally award honoree from the Belknap Campus this year.