Elena Olson has worked with the Center for Diversity & Inclusion (CDI) team for over two decades. Under her leadership the CDI is now a full-service central resource for clinical and research students, trainees and faculty, as well as patient care staff; and works with hospital and Harvard Medical School (HMS) leadership, graduate medical education, and clinical and research departments across Mass General. Ms. Olson is currently co-leading the implementation of the Mass General Structural Equity 10 Point Plan, which docks into the Mass General Brigham United Against Racism campaign. In this role, she is spearheading initiatives focused on policy review and external advocacy through an anti-racism and equity lens, as well as workforce diversity. During the COVID pandemic, she served on the Mass General and Mass General Brigham COVID Equity and Community Health Response teams, which were created to ensure the hospital’s and Mass General Brigham’s COVID-19 response efforts to equity and community health issues for patients and staff.
Ms. Olson serves on various Mass General, Mass General Brigham HMS leadership committees, including the Mass General Advisory Councils for the Center for Faculty Development and Office for Women’s Careers, the Executive Committee on Community Health, the Executive Committee on Diversity, the Clinical Policy and Record Committee; Mass General Brigham United Against Racism committees on reporting, policy and a Diversity Summit; and the HMS Dean’s Taskforce on Diversity and Inclusion. She also has helped lead Mass General’s strategic planning efforts focused on community health, equity and workforce diversity; and has helped design and facilitate trainings in cross-cultural teamwork and communication for residents, nurses and physicians.
Ms. Olson practiced as a civil and commercial litigator for eight years before joining CDI. She received a BA in international affairs with a minor in biology from Goucher College, a JD degree from Santa Clara University School of Law, and a certificate from the International Institute for Human Rights in Strasbourg, France. She was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is trilingual in English, Spanish and French. Ms. Olson is passionate about championing social justice and equity issues, especially in education and healthcare. Among her many activities outside the hospital, she served on the board of directors of the YWCA Boston and led a strategic planning effort to improve health and nutrition in the Brookline Public Schools.