AOGME Member Spotlight: Karen B. Mitchell, MD, FAAFP

Published April 24, 2024

GME Blog

Karen B. Mitchell, MD, is the Vice President of Student & Resident Initiatives at the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). She oversees the AAFP's efforts to increase the number of students choosing family medicine and to support and increase family medicine residency positions. 

 After 28 years of teaching in residency faculty positions, including a decade as a program director where she taught over 300 residents, Dr. Mitchell transitioned to a national role focused on strengthening the primary care and family medicine workforce. Her leadership has extended to serving as the Chair of the American Board of Family Medicine and as President of the Association of Family Medicine Residency Directors.  

 Dr. Mitchell’s current projects include the Family Medicine Champions project and the National Conference for Medical Students and Family Medicine Residents. She also facilitates discussions on the transition to residency and improvements in residency programs through the Residency Leadership Summit conference and Residency Program Solutions consultations. Dr. Mitchell also facilitated the Starfield IV Summit, which gathered residency experts from across the nation to provide input on revisions to the ACGME family medicine program requirements. 

 Dr. Mitchell's time as an AOGME member has been marked by meaningful connections with other educators who share her commitment to improving medical education. Dr. Mitchell was a program director in a dually accredited program (both AOA and ACGME) and one of the first programs with Osteopathic Recognition and states, “it was important to me as a Program Director and supporting osteopathic education remains important in the residency learning environment”. 

 Outside of her professional endeavors, Mitchell cherishes her role as a mother and grandmother. Her hobbies include handbell ringing and running. The words "Have fun. Be productive. Think important. Make a difference," quoted by her son during her busy schedule, serve as her guiding principles.