EP56: Being an Immigrant-Doctor-Mom-Activist: One Amazing Woman’s Story with Sanam Roder DeWan - Sage B. Hobbs

EP56: Being an Immigrant-Doctor-Mom-Activist: One Amazing Woman’s Story with Sanam Roder DeWan


Today’s guest is truly one of my favorite people in the world.  We’ve been friends since we were neighbors in the dorms our first year in college.  She captured my heart quickly with her brilliance and passion for service (as well as her humor). She’s always been fiercely courageous in her pursuit to make a positive impact through trying to answer some of the world’s hardest questions.  She speaks 5 languages, is a family doctor, and has a doctoral degree in public health.  She’s also a mom of two, living in Tanzania and working to make quality health care accessible to all.  I love and respect this woman deeply – enjoy!

Some key talking points in today’s conversation:

  • How being an immigrant shaped her work and life choices
  • Her dream impact to reduce the number of women and children who die in childbirth
  • Her Muslim faith and how it impacts her courageous work
  • How being raised in a multicultural family informed how she sees the world
  • Silencing the inner voices of doubt and fear in order to do meaningful work
  • Living in the communities in which she works, which is now Tanzania
  • Humility and arrogance
  • Re-designing the way health systems function
  • Being a health activist

More about Sanam:

Dr. Roder-DeWan is Health Specialist with the UNICEF Tanzania Country Office, a family physician and health systems researcher with expertise in maternal and child health and improving quality of care. She was the lead researcher and writer on improving quality for the Lancet Global Health Commission on High Quality Health Systems in the SDG Era. She is currently a collaborating researcher at Ifakara Health Institute in Dar es Salaam. Dr. Roder-DeWan completed her Doctorate in Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, her Doctorate in Public Health at Harvard and her postgraduate training at Lawrence Family Medicine.

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