Amanda Williams, MD, MPH, FACOG
“My responsibility is not for residents to become adequate physicians. My goal is for them to be excellent, so that I could ultimately refer a colleague or family member to them with utmost confidence.”
If you ask students and colleagues of Dr. Williams to describe her impact as an educator, the outpouring of praise is nearly overwhelming. Commendations range from “one of the most impressive clinician-educators I have ever worked with” and “a paragon of intentional teaching,” to “the kind of teacher who models excellence for all those around her and brings everyone along for the ride.”
“There are precious few people who shine as brightly as Dr. Williams in so many realms,” says Matthew Schechter, MD, an ob-gyn hospitalist at KP Oakland who trained as a resident under Dr. Williams. “She combines impeccable clinical skills with a remarkable ability to adapt her communication to the needs of her learners. She models deep compassion and empathy in every patient encounter. And she brings an art to her role as a teacher, effectively unpacking the ‘hidden curriculum’ of medical education and helping residents embody their growing identities as capable and well-rounded physicians.”
Dr. Williams has been teaching and mentoring residents ever since joining The Permanente Medical Group in 2005. She says being an educator is very much a part of who she is.
“I love teaching — I find it incredibly rewarding,” says Dr. Williams. “When I hear residents correcting me or counseling a patient using language that they likely heard from me, it brings me great joy because it means I’ve created a safe space for people to learn and grow.”
Dr. Williams, who is also the director of maternity services at KP Oakland, is especially passionate about supporting diversity and inclusion in medicine. She coaches learners on perinatal equity, cultural humility, and implicit bias in clinical care to promote the safety and well-being of all women in the birth experience. Rather than prescribing a fixed approach, she takes the time to discuss with residents their personal connections to equity and inclusion, encouraging them to authentically embrace this value and bring their whole selves to the care they provide.
“Dr. William’s teaching style is simply superb,” says Rita Ng, MD, physician-in-chief at KP Oakland. “She’s open, inquisitive, and challenging in all the best ways to help residents realize their full potential. She is a model of the self-humility, care, and compassion that’s essential in an extraordinary teacher and physician.”