Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Well-Being

Internal Medicine Office of DEI and Well-Being Team
DEI and Well-Being Team (L to R): Erin Price, Dr. Sarah Gualano, Dr. Michael Lukela, Gretchen O'Hair
Michael Lukela, MD
Michael Lukela, MD, Vice Chair, DEI & Well-Being

The Department of Internal Medicine Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Well-Being team, in alignment with the Michigan Medicine Office for Health Equity and Inclusion and the University of Michigan Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Strategic Plan, works to continually monitor, evaluate, and refine DEI and well-being initiatives. Our team is committed to bringing forth meaningful improvements in diversity, equity, inclusion, and well-being to support the health care workforce, addressing elements of structural racism and sexism that impact health outcomes, and positively impacting future generations. View our IMPOWER Strategic Plan to learn more.

"As vice chair, I am committed to promoting awareness and engaging our faculty and staff around diversity, equity, and well-being issues - both within our walls and beyond." - Michael Lukela, MD

Gretchen O'Hair and Erin Price
Gretchen O'Hair and Erin Price

View the poster “IMPOWER: An Interprofessional Framework for Advancing DEI and Well-Being in Academic Medicine” that was awarded a “Best in Class” designation in the Changing Academy category at the 2023 AAMC Group on Diversity and Inclusion & Group on Faculty Affairs Joint Professional Development Conference. The poster was selected from more than 40 posters from medical schools across the country.

Vision  |  Mission  |  Core Values


The Department of Internal Medicine will be a diverse and inclusive community that provides each person with the opportunities and support they need to thrive.


To cultivate an environment that empowers our faculty, learners, and staff to fulfill their purpose and potential.

Core Values

  • Caring & Well-Being
  • Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion
  • Collaboration & Respect
  • Learning & Innovation
  • Transparency & Accountability

Our Team

Michael Lukela, MD
Michael Lukela, MD
Vice Chair

Dr. Michael Lukela is an internist and pediatrician who currently serves as Director for the combined Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program at Michigan Medicine and Vice Chair for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Well-being in the Department of Internal Medicine.

He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry from Duke University and his Doctor of Medicine degree from Harvard Medical School. He completed his residency training in Medicine-Pediatrics at the University of Michigan, serving as Chief Resident for the Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program followed by an additional year as a Chief Resident in Pediatrics. He is a Professor of Internal Medicine, Professor of Pediatrics, and Senior Fellow in Hospital Medicine.

Dr. Lukela has been inducted into the Gold Humanism (GHHS) and Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) Honor Societies, League of Educational Excellence, and Academiae Laureati Medici (Clinical Excellence Society) at Michigan Medicine. He received the Kaiser Permanente Clinical Teaching Award, the highest award offered by the University for excellence in teaching medical students. He was instrumental in developing the M-Home Learning Community at the University of Michigan Medical School and served as inaugural Director for the William Henry Fitzbutler House.

Nationally, his commitment to medical education has been recognized through his election to the Executive Committee for the Medicine-Pediatrics Program Directors' Association (MPPDA), including a term as President for the organization. He received the national Leadership Award in Medicine-Pediatrics from MPPDA in 2020. He serves as a member of the General Examination Oversight and MOCA Peds Committees for the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) and Core Competency Committee for the Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM).

His academic and research interests are in DEI, well-being, and educational assessment. As a clinician educator, Dr. Lukela works to inspire and empower students and residents to become the next generation of physician leaders to care for the needs of children and adults across our communities.

Outside of the hospital, he coaches competitive soccer (formerly Olympic Development Program and local club; currently local high school), competes in marathons and distance triathlons, and loves spending time with his wife (a primary care physician and Vice Chief for Clinical Strategy in the Division of General Medicine), sons, and doggies (Duke & Ruthie).


Sarah Gualano, MD
Sarah Gualano, MD
Associate Vice Chair

Sarah Gualano, MD is an Associate Professor of Internal Medicine and interventional cardiologist at the Veteran's Affairs Ann Arbor Healthcare System and Michigan Medicine, with a focus in structural heart disease. Dr. Gualano trained at the University of Michigan, then joined the faculty at the University of Texas Southwestern (UTSW) Medical Center and served as the director of the cardiac cath lab at Clements University Hospital in Dallas. She graduated from the executive MBA program at Southern Methodist University with a special interest in organizational behavior. At UTSW, she served on the Dean’s Wellness Committee. After Dr. Gualano's recruitment back to the University of Michigan, she was appointed Co-Director of the Frankel Cardiovascular Center Wellness Committee. Dr. Gualano brings a passion and experience in wellness initiatives that can help faculty and staff experiences in the Department.

Erin Price, MPH
Erin Price, MPH
Program Manager

Erin Price is the Program Manager for the Diversity, Equity, and Well-Being team. Erin has a wealth of experience providing leadership and decision support in executing a variety of projects in administrative, educational, clinical operations/quality improvement, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) spaces. Prior to coming to the Department of Internal Medicine, she was a project manager in the U-M Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology for nearly six years and was responsible for their DEI initiatives and implementation. Additionally, Erin teaches diversity and cultural communication courses, as adjunct faculty, in the University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation. Erin received her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and her master’s degree from the University of Toledo.

Gretchen O'Hair
Gretchen O'Hair
Administrative Specialist

Gretchen O’Hair serves the DOIM as an Administrative Specialist supporting the Office of DEI & Well-Being. Bringing 10 years of experience at U-M in various administrative roles, Gretchen also serves as a facilitator of the U-M Voices of the Staff Striving for Well Being Team, MHealthy Champion, and Planet Blue Ambassador. She has a demonstrated commitment and passion for promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and well-being, breaking down barriers, enriching the climate of our university, and seeks to lead others in understanding the importance of fostering a healthy culture, environment, and positive relationships that engage and support faculty, staff, and our community. Gretchen joined the Office of DEI & Well-Being in April 2022.


Inclusive engagement and representation of faculty and staff from across the Department of Internal Medicine is paramount to achieve our mission. The IMPOWER (Inspiring Medicine to Promote Opportunities for Well-Being, Equity, and Diversity) Council was created to facilitate multidirectional communication and support initiatives to drive culture change around IMPOWER’s five strategic priorities:

  • Leadership Engagement, Development & Accountability
  • Develop People
  • Improve Environment
  • Build Partnerships
  • Track and Communicate Results

Contact Us

For questions relating to diversity, equity, inclusion, and well-being please email [email protected].