College of


Dean Marsha Rappley honored as 2010 Athena Award recipient

September 30, 2010

College of Human Medicine Dean Marsha D. Rappley, M.D., will be honored as the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce's 2010 ATHENA® Award recipient at a luncheon at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. The Chamber’s ATHENA Award Celebration will also feature the presentation of the ATHENA Young Professional Award.

The prestigious ATHENA Award honors an individual who has demonstrated leadership in her or his field, mentored and opened doors of opportunities for women, and contributed time and talent to the community. Fourteen women were nominated for the award this year, the twenty-first year the award has been presented in the greater Grand Rapids community.

“Dr. Rappley's path from nurse’s aide to MD is a wonderful model of the variety of paths that women take to leadership,” says Jeanne Englehart, President & CEO of the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce.

Over the past 30 years of practicing and teaching medicine, Dr. Rappley has used her insight and experience to advise and mentor more than sixty women from all walks of life, helping them to understand that sometimes others see more in us than we see in ourselves.

"My work now focuses on shaping a work environment that creates opportunities for women to
cultivate the skills, knowledge and experiences necessary to successfully compete for leadership positions," she says. "I have learned that the solutions to the challenges of ‘women’s issues’ actually elevate morale for all and result in a highly desirable work environment for women and men alike."

In addition to her duties as Dean of the MSU College of Human Medicine, Dr. Rappley serves onAssociation of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Administrative Board of the Council of Deans, the AAMC Advisory Panel on Research, the Pediatric Subspecialty Board of the American Board of Pediatrics, and on the boards of directors of several Grand Rapids community organizations including the YMCA and Economic Club. In addition, she still sees patients each week and actively teaches medical students, lecturing multiple times throughout each school year.

The twenty women nominated for the ATHENA Young Professional Award will be on the edge of
their seats at the luncheon, as the recipient will not be announced until the event. Nominees for both awards will be honored at a private reception prior to the luncheon event, as well as recognized at the luncheon.


Dr. Marsha Rappley

Dr. Marsha Rappley

2010 ATHENA Award Recipient