Madison, Wisconsin - Dr. Laurel Rice, professor and chair of obstetrics and gynecology in the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, was among six leaders honored by the Madison YWCA at last week's Women of Distinction Celebration.

Rice, who cares for women with gynecologic cancers, also is a member of the UW Carbone Cancer Center. She received a "Woman of Distinction" award at a ceremony at the 2014 Moxie Conference at The Monona Terrace.

Other honorees include Sadat Abir, a psychiatric nurse practitioner for William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital; Emily Auerbach, professor of English and originator of the UW Odyssey Project; Dawn Crim, associate dean in the UW-Madison School of Education; Sally Miley, assistant to the mayor; and Teresa Téllez-Girón, of the Dane County Department of Human Services.

The event was part of the larger YWCA's Moxie Conference for Women in Leadership. Rice was asked to speak about what she believes makes an effective leader and gave three examples.

"Surround yourself with people willing to provide you with feedback, particularly negative," Rice said. "Powerful, active listening, allowing yourself time to think, digest and strategize ... Never lose sight of the importance of growing your people. It is a key metric by which you should judge yourself. Once you become a leader of any sort, it is all about developing the lives and careers of those you work with."

In her personal statement submitted after her nomination, Rice said her life is greatly enriched by her patients.

"I am grateful for the privilege I have in caring for women with gynecologic malignancies,'' she wrotes. "It is a gift. Serving women, some who will be cured of their cancer, some of whom will not, is work that I do not take for granted. Observing grace and dignity under duress, and helping in ways that are many times quite intimate, quiets me, and enriches my life in ways that cannot be described."

Rice is president-elect of the Council of University Chairs in Obstetrics and Gynecology, and secretary/treasurer of the American Gynecologic Obstetrics Society. She serves as director, Division of Gynecologic Oncology, American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, as well as a member of the Editorial Board of Gynecologic Oncology.

Published June 10, 2014.

Dr. Laurel W Rice

Laurel W. Rice, MD
Professor & Chair
Obstetrics & Gynecology

University of Wisconsin
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

1010 McConnell Hall
Madison, WI 53715
Tel: 608-417-4213
Fax: 608-417-4269