The AWS strategic plan defines our vision as "equity, diversity, and inclusion for all surgeons" with a mission "to inspire, encourage, and enable women surgeons to realize their professional and personal goals." To support this mission, AWS has developed an exciting program to develop and promote mid-career female surgeons. The 
AWS Signature Speaker Series continues to develop a cadre of dynamic women speakers who will represent AWS and serve as a resource for Departments of Surgery, surgical societies, and conference panels. The goal of this program is to enhance the visibility of women surgeons as experts in their fields and to accelerate their path to promotion.

Applications for the 2024-2025 Signature Speaker Series are now closed. 

Congratulations to the 2024-2025 Signature Speakers!

Signature Speaker Directory


Selected AWS Signature Speakers will attend two 2-hour virtual sessions, where they will receive coaching from Patrick Combs, a Hall of Fame inspirational speaker, a Best Selling Author, and a highly acclaimed comedic entertainer. 

During the sessions, new AWS Signature Speakers will develop their presentation skills, their individual branding and increase their marketability. This small group workshop will be enhanced by 1-on-1 sessions with Patrick Combs to provide feedback and suggestions after reviewing a recorded session. The program also includes exclusive group training from a graphics and slide expert.   

AWS will also provide funding up to $1000 towards defraying travel costs for a sponsored speaking engagement at either a national or regional event outside the speaker’s current location. Additionally, a database of AWS Signature Speakers will be made available to the surgical community in order to promote long-standing speaking opportunities.


  • All surgical specialties who are AWS members in good standing.

  • Must be at Assistant (more than five years out of training) or Associate Professor level, or have been in private practice for 5 to 10 years.

  • Applicants must be able to attend all three virtual training sessions.

  • Applicants must be committed to obtaining at least one national or regional speaking engagement.

  • Applicants will be asked to provide feedback at the conclusion of the program

Applications are now closed.

For any questions, please contact Leah Tatebe, MD FACS, AWS Grants & Fellowship Committee Chair, at [email protected]

Signature Speaker Directory