December 2018 - A veteran researcher known for her efforts to diversify the biomedical community was honored by Wake Forest School of Medicine as a distinguished mentor. Debra Diz, PhD, Professor of Surgery, Physiology & Pharmacology, received the 2018 James Edwin Byrum, Jr., MD, Distinguished Faculty Mentor Award in the Researcher category at the Faculty Executive Council meeting on December 12, 2018.
Dr. Diz is a professor of surgery, physiology and pharmacology and directs Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center's Hypertension & Vascular Research Center. A faculty member since 1992, she is a prominent and prolific researcher who is nationally known and highly respected as an exemplary mentor. Prior to this recognition, she received the Mentor of the Year Award through the Women in Medicine and Science (2015).
She focuses her time on the needs of her students (undergraduate, graduate, medical) and faculty - ensuring they all receive fair educational and training opportunities. Dr. Diz's commitment and dedication reaches far beyond the borders of Wake Forest Baptist Health, extending into other institutions, including Wake Forest School of Medicine, Wright State University, Winston-Salem State University, University of Florida, North Carolina Central University and Salem College.
"Mentoring and developing students and young faculty is one of Dr. Diz's core values, apparent in the way that she talks about her mentees not only in a formal setting but also in casual conversation," her nominators wrote.