Wake Forest Baptist Names New Director for Maya Angelou Center

September 17, 2018

Noted professor and researcher Goldie S. Byrd, Ph.D., has been named director of the Maya Angelou Center for Health Equity (MACHE), part of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

In her new role, Byrd will help MACHE support Wake Forest Baptist’s learning health care system by advancing health care equity research, transforming how health and wellness are delivered to communities, fostering partnerships among researchers, community members and health systems, encouraging career development of minority faculty and students and increasing the number of minority college and high school students who join health care careers.

“Goldie brings with her a strong and extensive background in research, leadership and collaboration with organizations across the country,” said Julie Ann Freischlag, M.D., CEO of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and dean of Wake Forest School of Medicine. “We look forward to her vision helping guide us in our goal to reduce health disparities among minorities and rural populations and to improve the quality of life for those in underserved communities.”

In 2003, Byrd joined the faculty at North Carolina A&T State University, where she was the first female chair of the Department of Biology and the first permanent female dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

She most recently served as professor of biology and interim executive director of N.C. A&T’s Center for Outreach in Alzheimer’s Aging and Community Health. Under Byrd’s leadership, the center has received more than $5 million in National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation grants and personal and corporate gifts.

She also has held faculty appointments at Duke University Medical Center, North Carolina Central University and Tennessee State University.

Byrd’s extensive research on Alzheimer’s disease has been recognized by the Alzheimer’s Association and has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals.

Byrd earned two bachelor’s degrees from N.C. A&T and her Ph.D. in microbiology from Meharry Medical College in Nashville.

Byrd has served on numerous national and state advisory boards and is a member of the National Black College Hall of Fame.


Media Contacts: 

Joe McCloskey, jmcclosk@wakehealth.edu, 336-716-1273

Eryn Johnson, eryjohns@wakehealth.edu, 336-713-8228