LAS VEGAS (March 15, 2019)—Philadelphia orthopaedic surgeon Kristy L. Weber, MD, became the first female president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) Board of Directors today at the organization’s 2019 Annual Meeting. Her presidency marks the third year of a four-year term of volunteer service, after serving as vice president of the Academy for the previous two years.
Kristy L. Weber, MD
“I was told that women couldn’t get into orthopaedics when considering several different subspecialties in medical school during the late 80s,” said Dr. Weber. “You can bet that’s all I needed to hear to solidify my choice, and I am proud to be a woman in a profession that is currently 94 percent male. While my gender does not define me, I know that reducing barriers and embracing gender, ethnic and racial diversity in our field only stands to better our culture and better serve patients. By incorporating our unique experiences and perspectives, we can care for a more diverse patient population. Our field is the least diverse of all medical specialties and by maintaining this status quo, we risk losing talented medical professionals who could make significant advancements in orthopaedics.”
As president, Dr. Weber will work with the Board and AAOS leadership to oversee a new five-year strategic plan to transform AAOS to keep pace with the rapidly-changing health care landscape, and ultimately lead the way in musculoskeletal health. This proactive approach includes an improved Academy infrastructure and the development of quality tools, educational resources and advocacy initiatives that will enhance members’ experience and help them better serve their patients.
“As the world’s largest medical association of musculoskeletal specialists, we have a responsibility to evolve the culture and governance of the AAOS Board and volunteer structure to become more strategic, innovative and diverse,” said Dr. Weber. “This will enable us to build a sustainable, successful future for the organization and equip our members to thrive and advance the quality of orthopaedic care.”
Dr. Weber is the chief of orthopaedic oncology in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and director of the Sarcoma Program in Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center. Dr. Weber specializes in diagnosing and treating adults, adolescents and children with bone and soft tissue tumors, and she focuses on complex limb salvage techniques around the hip, knee, shoulder and pelvis.
Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Dr. Weber earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science (Pre-Vet) and graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She earned her medical degree from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland. Dr. Weber completed her orthopaedic residency training at the University of Iowa in Iowa City and a two-year research/clinical fellowship in orthopaedic oncology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.
Dr. Weber started her career as a faculty member at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center where she created a large clinical practice in orthopaedic oncology and developed a basic/translational research program related to cancer metastasis. She then became the Virginia & William Percy professor of orthopaedic surgery and oncology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where she also served as the division chief of orthopaedic oncology and the director of the Sarcoma Program.
In 2006, Dr. Weber received the Kappa Delta Elizabeth Winston Lanier Award for her research in metastatic bone disease, and her continued research initiatives have greatly contributed to the understanding of this disease. Dr. Weber was recruited to the University of Pennsylvania Department of Orthopaedic Surgery in 2013 where she serves as Vice Chair of Faculty Affairs in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and was recently elected to the Penn Academy of Master Clinicians.
For more than 17 years, Dr. Weber has held numerous leadership roles to help advance the orthopaedic profession on both local and national levels. She served as the president of the Maryland Orthopaedic Association in 2009, and chaired the AAOS Council on Research and Quality from 2008-2012, and served on the AAOS Board of Directors. Dr. Weber has also served on the Boards of the American Orthopaedic Association, Orthopaedic Research Society, Musculoskeletal Tumor Society, Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society, and the Connective Tissue Oncology Society.
With more than 39,000 members, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is the world’s largest medical association of musculoskeletal specialists. The AAOS is the trusted leader in advancing musculoskeletal health. It provides the highest quality, most comprehensive education to help orthopaedic surgeons and allied health professionals at every career level best treat patients in their daily practices. The AAOS is the source for information on bone and joint conditions, treatments and related musculoskeletal health care issues and it leads the health care discussion on advancing quality.