From promoting higher education among Native American youth during her years at the University of Oklahoma to founding the first chapter of the Association of Native American Medical Students (ANAMS) at the University of Minnesota-Duluth Medical School, Dr. Socia Love-Thurman (Cherokee/Yuchi/Delaware) has always shown her passion for education and care for her community. It was through ANAMS that she developed a mentorship program for Native medical students and physicians across the country.
Pursuing her specialty training in Family Medicine at the Seattle Indian Health Board (SIHB), a non-profit community health clinic whose mission statement is “For the Love of Native People,” was a natural next step. Following her training, she served as SIHB’s residency director for 4 years, coupling her enthusiasm in recruiting and retaining doctors who share the organization’s love and commitment to the diverse, underserved communities which visit the clinic. Dr. Love-Thurman is now Chief Health Officer for SIHB, a position which allows her to further advocate for equitable health care. At SIHB, she provides care to all ages, including obstetrics and hospital medicine. In her free time, Dr. Love-Thurman enjoys exploring the PNW with her husband and two young children, dancing traditional southern buckskin at pow wows, cycling and swimming, and engaging in social justice work.