FARE Leadership Spotlight - March 2021
Meet Dr. Milton L. Brown, a member of FARE’s Board of Directors, and learn a little more about him!
Dr. Milton L. Brown serves as Professor of Practice and Director for the Center for Drug Discovery for Rare and Underserved Diseases at George Mason University, and as Fellow at the National Academy of Inventors (FNAI). Dr. Brown is a physician-scientist who has expertise in the design, synthesis and evaluation of new drugs and is one of only a handful of physician-scientists in the U.S. to hold a PhD in synthetic chemistry and an MD. He received the 2015 Percy Julian Award by the National Organization of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers for significant contributions in pure and/or applied research in science.
- What's your name, where are you from, and what is your food allergy connection?
Milton L. Brown, MD, PhD, FNAI. I was born in Baltimore and currently live in Maryland, but I was raised in Alabama. My connection to food allergy is very personal. My motivation includes the fact that several of my children have very significant food allergies, and it took a long time for us to figure out the triggers.
- What drew you to FARE? Why do you support FARE?
I was drawn to FARE because of the leadership of Lisa Gable, CEO of FARE. I support FARE because of the more than 30 million individuals in the United States suffering from food allergies. I believe that this grave spectrum of diseases termed food allergies can be greatly impacted and, in many cases, eliminated. I believe with our galvanized and carefully executed efforts we can win this fight against food allergies. I also believe that change starts with education, awareness and high-quality research. I also know that there are serious health disparities in the diagnosis, treatment and outcomes of food allergies among communities of color. When I did my homework on the institution of FARE, I realized what a wonderful foundation it was, and that its mission aligned with my mission of relieving suffering in the world. People are suffering from food allergies. I learned that FARE is an outstanding foundation both from a mission- and leadership-driven perspective. I am convinced that the individuals that lead and work for FARE are exceptionally caring, open to ideas, committed to fairness, extremely smart and progressive, and dedicated to eliminating food allergies in all communities.
- When you think of FARE, what first comes to mind?
Excellence, advocacy and dedication to the detection and treatment of food allergy. I am also amazed at its commitment to diversity that comes from FARE's leadership.
- What is one thing you would tell any food-allergic person or parent/guardian of a food-allergic person?
Get help, find a good allergist, find your triggers and eliminate them. Also plug into the resources of FARE, get involved your community with advocacy, education and research, and let's eliminate food allergies together.
- What is your favorite hobby or pastime?
I am a long-range fisherman and stay out on the ocean for as long as 10 days before returning home.
- Can you reflect on your experience as part of the FARE Roundtable Series on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access (DEIA)?
First, I was amazed at the incredible commitment and support of FARE leaders to be inclusive. It is a true desire to make FARE a national example of the power of DEIA. The roundtable was both informative and innovative in developing strategies for improving DEIA, educating on the struggle of minorities present and throughout the history of our country. The roundtable included a range of perspectives, and the commentary provided real insight into the issues. What are the key takeaways from the Blueprint for Access for FARE and other organizations regarding access to care and research in Black, Latino and Indigenous communities? Change is needed. Black, Latino and Indigenous communities are suffering and in need of real help. For FARE, the Blueprint for Access is not just a collage of ideas documenting a meeting, but a plan to address DEIA in the corporate body, leadership, resource allocation and community engagement of FARE. This is an honest, measured and intentional effort by FARE leaders to address a disparity from a corporate perspective.