Naudia L. Jonassaint, MD, was recently named to Poets&Quants’ 2021 Best and Brightest Executive MBA list—a series that features the top executive MBA students from across the world’s leading business schools.
Jonassaint currently serves in a variety of roles at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, including her roles as medical director of hematology, vice-chair of diversity, equity, and inclusion for the department of medicine, and associate dean of clinical affairs.
She also serves on numerous committees and task forces for the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease, UPMC Vaccine Collaborative, and UPMC Wolff Center’s Health Outcomes. Jonassaint notes that the extracurricular activity she’s most proud of is her role with the UPMC Vaccine Collaborative.
“The goal of the collaborative is to partner with community stakeholders and meet the needs of the community with vaccine availability, community education, and staffing of community vaccination clinics,” says Jonassaint. “To live in a community and to be able to give back to the community in this way has been extremely gratifying during this time of social isolation and national fear.”
Jonassaint says that her greatest achievement to this point in her career has been her role in leading her subdivision through the COVID-19 crisis. At the very beginning of the pandemic, she quickly met with her colleagues to quickly pivot to telemedicine and create a plan that would keep both clinical staff and patients safe.
“Simultaneously, we had to figure out how we would continue to provide clinical support for one of the largest liver transplant programs in the country,” says Jonassaint. “The decision was made not to stop transplantation, which had been halted in many cities throughout the world. I was able to transition our subdivision to 95 percent telemedicine with remaining 5 percent reserved for in-person care and transplantation services. To see everyone band together to learn, iterate, and lead was wonderful.”
She credits her favorite executive MBA course, Leading People in a Healthcare Organization, with helping to recognize potential weaknesses and strengthening her leadership skills.
“Naudia not only performs highly at an individual level, but she also creates a positive learning environment for her fellow classmates,” says Carrie R. Leana, George H. Love Professor of Organizations and Management and Academic Director of the Executive MBA in Healthcare. “She is articulate, thoughtful, and constructive, with a leadership style that welcomes others’ contributions. Naudia has earned a reputation in the class as a team player who is curious, caring, and has the ability to juggle many different roles without compromising quality. She is someone who continues to give back to the community, which has won the admiration of the faculty and her classmates alike.”