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Allegheny Health Network Appoints VP of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Analysis  |  By Melanie Blackman  
   December 15, 2020

Veronica Villalobos, J.D., will work alongside the health system's new chief diversity officer, Dr. Margaret Larkins-Pettigrew, "to champion DEI efforts" for the health system.

Allegheny Health Network (AHN) announced the appointment of Veronica Villalobos, J.D. as vice president of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) late last week.

As part of the new role, Villalobos will work alongside with Dr. Margaret Larkins-Pettigrew, who was appointed chief clinical diversity and inclusion officer, effective this month, to "champion DEI efforts," for the Pittsburgh-based academic medical system.

Dr. Larkins-Pettigrew is the health system's first chief clinical diversity and inclusion officer, appointed to further the advancement of AHN's commitment "to be open, inclusive, and supportive to all.”

"Ms. Villalobos has spent decades opening doors for minoritized individuals by fighting institutional hiring biases, and by helping all voices to be heard and represented within the federal government," Dr. Larkins-Pettigrew said in the press release. "We are thrilled she will now continue her work as a diversity champion at AHN, ensuring that we are a forward-thinking, culturally diverse and competent organization that seeks health equity for its patients, and treats its workforce and prospective employees with dignity at all times."

Villalobos previously served as principal deputy associate director of the employee services division for the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. She was also appointed as one of the first Honor Program Attorneys for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, where she served as chair of the Federal Hispanic Work Group.

"I am excited to be joining AHN, where we have the full support of leadership to continue to create an inclusive environment where each team member and patient is valued and experiences a sense of well-being and belonging," Villalobos said in the press release. "Together, we will identify innovative ways to advance equity and cultural competency to further enable world class health care."

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Melanie Blackman is a contributing editor for strategy, marketing, and human resources at HealthLeaders, an HCPro brand.

Photo credit: Milan, Italy - August 10, 2017: Allegheny health network website homepage. It is an academic medical center located in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. Allegheny logo visible. / Editorial credit: Casimiro PT /

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