DSA Diversity Outreach Committee

With the DSA Diversity Outreach Committee, the focus on increasing diversity, inclusion, and understanding for families who are culturally and linguistically diverse in DS research is paramount.

As advocates for DS research, we understand the vital role all families have in the development of treatments and therapies that can help people with DS maximize their potential and live the fullest quality of life possible.

Our committee members believe in establishing a supportive culture that continues to nurture this important mission of advocating for diversity, equity, and inclusion for DS community members.


Meet Our Diversity Outreach Committee Members


Rebecca Bowman
Diversity Outreach Committee Co-Chair
DSA Board Chair

Rebecca is also the Director of Customer Operations in North America for the Clorox Company. She wants to continue to help educate others about the importance of diversity and its impact on DSA’s research efforts.


Yvonne Pierre
Diversity Outreach Committee Co-Chair

Yvonne is a writer, producer, advocate, proud wife, and loving mother of two sons, one with Down syndrome (DS). Her son ignited her passion to use her voice to make a difference. She began advocating for positive awareness of Down syndrome in 2004, producing and publishing several passion projects. Yvonne is pursuing her Ph.D. in Human Services to further her advocacy journey.


Jeanette Cordova

Jeanette is an Education Consultant and Advocate for Bright Futures Advocacy and Counseling with over 18 years of experience advocating for children with disabilities. Jeanette is a Puerto Rican American with close relationships in the Spanish-speaking community. She is also the proud mom of a 22-year-old son who is chromosomally enhanced with a lot of charm. She wants to continue to support brighter futures for people with unique abilities through education and advocacy.

Tola Makinde

Tola’s permanent role is acting as a Down syndrome consultant on early intervention and social innovator designing individualized programs in her organization since 2014. She is highly compassionate regarding support for learning, health, and social care for people with Down syndrome. Through the Diversity Outreach Committee, she hopes to reduce inequalities in her community to promote wellness and improve health outcomes.

Why Diversity in Research Participation is Important

Over time, research has shown that a patient’s reaction to medical treatments can vary significantly based on color, ethnicity, culture, and gender. Research is most effective when it embraces the diversity of a community. If research does not prioritize having diverse participants, it limits the effectiveness of research results and those who can benefit. At DSA, we encourage the inclusion of families of diverse cultures when it comes to biospecimen collection for our DSA Biobank. And we make this a reality by prioritizing relationships with diverse communities and advocating for their participation.

Families of Diverse Cultures Can Participate With Confidence

When families donate biospecimens to the DSA Biobank, we make it possible for researchers to discover breakthroughs. We want all families to benefit from the insights gained from DS research. When you participate, you have the legal right to:

Give consent or permission to participate in the research study

● Be told the purpose of the research study

● Be informed of the possible risks or discomforts

With participation from families of diverse cultures, we can uncover better and more effective therapies for DS-related health conditions.

Want to learn more? Please contact us by emailing: dsaBiobank@dsachieves.org

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