William G. Anderson, D.O.56, FACOS

William G. Anderson, D.O.56, FACOS, addressed students at the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine (VCOM) in Blacksburg, VA, on Feb. 28 as part of Black History Month. After his talk, the college announced the event was the inaugural William G. Anderson, D.O., Black History Month Series, which will occur annually. A founding member of VCOM’s board of directors, Anderson and his late wife, Norma, led the Albany Movement for civil rights alongside their friends Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy in Georgia in the early 1960s. The grandson of slaves, Anderson was the first black surgical resident at a segregated hospital, the first African American certified by the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons and the first to serve as president of the American Osteopathic Association, among many “firsts.” In 1973 he became the first black person to serve on the DMU Board of Trustees; in 2009, DMU honored him as a Pioneer in Osteopathic Medicine and Public Service. He resides in Michigan.

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