Dr. Brian H. Williams is a first-generation college graduate who earned a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the United States Air Force Academy. After six years of active duty military service, he followed a different call to serve, and enrolled in medical school at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine.
He did his general surgery residency at Harvard Medical School/Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, MA, and a fellowship in trauma surgery and surgical critical care at Emory University/Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, GA. Upon completion of his training Dr. Williams served on the faculty at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, TX where he taught and mentored students, residents, and fellows.
Dr. Williams is well-known for his role in treating victims of the July 7, 2016, Dallas police shooting. He was the trauma surgeon working the night seven injured officers were urgently transported to Parkland Memorial Hospital. At a press conference following the tragedy, his heartfelt comments about racism, gun violence, and policing touched thousands. Unbeknownst to Dr. Williams, his impromptu speech became a viral media event - and his life of comfortable anonymity ended.
In addition to his work as a trauma surgeon, Dr. Williams travels the country as a thought-provoking speaker sharing his unique insight on resilience, gun violence, and racial justice. He is also an opinion writer featured in the Dallas Morning News, and hosts the podcast Race, Violence & Medicine.
Recognizing his many community contributions, in 2017 Mayor Rawlings appointed him as Chairman of the Dallas Citizens Police Review Board. His leadership helped unite the Dallas Police Department, community activists, police associations and City Council to revamp the role Dallas civilians play in police oversight.
Dr. Williams now serves as an Associate Professor of Surgery at the University of Chicago, Division of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. He continues his community service on Chicago's South Side while training students and future surgeon-activists. He believes that a better world is possible with honest conversations about the legacy of racism, embracing diversity, and fighting for healthcare equity.