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In Memoriam of MaryAnn Black

March 27, 2020 Message from A. Eugene Washington, MD, Chancellor for Health Affairs, President & CEO, Duke University Health System

To: All Duke Health team members

It is with great sadness that we share that MaryAnn Black passed away on Thursday, March 26, 2020. MaryAnn served the Durham community for more than 45 years advocating for health and human services as a social worker, through her lengthy tenure as a Durham County Commissioner and more recently as a State Representative. “It is difficult to quantify MaryAnn’s significant contributions to our organization and to our community,” said Dr. A. Eugene Washington, Chancellor for Health Affairs at Duke University and President and CEO of the Duke University Health System. “The legacy she built as a social worker, a leader and community servant will long enhance our community.”

MaryAnn established a tremendous legacy built over her many years of matchless contributions to the University and to the community, serving as an invaluable link between the health system and the diverse populations we serve – benefiting every citizen regardless of race, background or financial status. “MaryAnn was a protective steward of our community—a leading advocate for strategies to enhance Duke’s relationship with community leaders, faith communities and other groups that support the health and human service needs for the people of Durham,” said Dr. William J. Fulkerson, Jr., Executive Vice President for Duke University Health System.

A trailblazer in her own right, MaryAnn’s impact has been immeasurable. Her deep and thoughtful commitment to public service was evident through her lengthy tenure with the Durham County Board of Commissioners and her service as State Representative with the North Carolina General Assembly. “MaryAnn was known for the extraordinary relationships she built through dialogue, compromise and steady leadership,” said Duke University President Vincent E. Price. “We are so very grateful for MaryAnn’s many years of service to Duke and to the Durham community. She was a true pillar of the community, and her strength and compassion will be greatly missed.”

“MaryAnn was an example of leadership, grace and compassion for humanity. She was a champion for healthcare, a stalwart in political office, and dedicated in her lifelong service to the community,” said Dr. Stelfanie Williams, Duke Health’s Vice President of Regional and Durham Affairs. “Those who worked with her deeply valued her and she will be greatly missed.”

The recipient of numerous awards, including the Samuel DuBois Cook Society and Distinguished Service Award, Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce Circle of Influence Diversity Award, Women-In-Action Elna B. Spaulding Founder’s Award, and Triangle Business Journal Top 25 Outstanding Women in Business, to name a few. An accomplished clinical social worker, MaryAnn was also named “Social Worker of the Year” by the National Association of Social Workers, and she served on several boards and committees.

In honor of MaryAnn, Duke flags will be lowered.

Duke Today: "All Flags Lowered: Community Leader and DUHS Associate Vice President MaryAnn Black Dies"