Ruby Mendenhall is the assistant dean for diversity and democratization of health innovation at the Carle Illinois College of Medicine. Mendenhall is also an associate professor of sociology, African American studies, urban and regional planning, gender and women’s studies and social work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is also an affiliate of the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, Women and Gender in Global Perspectives, the Cline Center for Advanced Social Research, Epstein Health Law and Policy Program, Family Law and Policy Program and the Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences. Mendenhall received her Ph.D. in Human Development and Social Policy program from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. For her dissertation, Black Women in Gautreaux’s Housing Desegregation Program: The Role of Neighborhoods and Networks in Economic Independence, she used administrative welfare and employment data, census information, and in-depth interviews to examine the long-run effects of placement neighborhood conditions/resources on economic independence.