Dr. Jennifer Williams is a second year pediatric resident at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and serves on the Executive Committee of the Section on Medical Students Residents and Fellowship Trainees (SOMSRFT) as District Coordinator for District IV (DC). She received her medical degree from Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences in 2007, and her undergraduate degree from Samford University, with a double major in International Relations and Political Science. In July, 2010 she will begin her hematology/oncology fellowship at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.
She was bitten by the advocacy bug in October 2007 when she attended the NCE as her program representative and overheard the speeches by Amy Jost Starmer and Christopher Strothers, current Chair and past Chair of SOMSRFT respectively. Each told their own stories of projects they had participated in that improved the lives of their patients. She was elected as state representative for Tennessee that year and became involved in with her state chapter.
This year her love for advocacy, pathology, and cancer research all came together to spark her passion for Target Tobacco, the SOMSRFT annual advocacy project for 2009. She was selected to receive a grant to attend the "Smoke Free Homes" conference sponsored by the AAP Richmond Center of Excellence and the Flight Attendants Research Medical Institute (FAMRI) where she received training on how to educate residents on tobacco cessation counseling, how to implement smoke free campus and multiple other topics. She organized a Smoke Free Day at her campus in which she presented a grand rounds entitled "Target Tobacco" attended by faculty, residents and community pediatricians. The talk educated attendees on the 5 As of tobacco cessation counseling, provided local resources for pediatricians including QUIT NOW cards . This presentation publicized by local media, was opened by the major, and posted on the Chattanooga newspaper Web site. It served as a networking tool for pediatricians, health department officials, and other local representatives for organizations promoting "smoke free homes".
Dr. Williams represented the state of Tennessee at the AAP Annual Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. in March where she was able to discuss with state representatives concerns of pediatricians regarding the states use of tobacco settlement money and regarding reimbursement for tobacco cessation counseling for pediatricians.
In April she was asked to present and oral presentation at the annual FAMRI conference in Boston regarding the results of the dissemination into residency programs effort done by SOMSRFT in conjunction with the AAP Richmond Center of Excellence. It was exciting to report that over 90% of programs reporting, state access to tobacco education literature and that as a result of the Target Tobacco campaign and 22% of programs reporting have made changes in their educational curricula as a result. Other positive results include resident CATCH grants, hospitals that have implemented smoke free campus policies as a result of resident efforts.
Her future plans include continued advocacy efforts with her state chapter and with the AAP as a member of SOMSRFT. She plans to continue tobacco research during her future fellowship at Cincinnati Childrens Hospital.
Jennifer is married and lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee. She enjoys J-22 sailboat racing, foreign languages and travel, hiking outdoors with her husband Richard, and planning treasure hunts for her nieces and nephews.