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Miriam Kolko

The Power List 2021 – Power List


Professor in Translational Eye Research, Chief Physician, Glaucoma Specialist, and President of the Danish Glaucoma Society; Head of Eye Translational Research Unit (EyeTRU); Head of Personal Medicine Research Cluster at the Department of Ophthalmology, Copenhagen University Hospital, Rigshospitalet-Glostrup and Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

What is your proudest professional achievement?

I sincerely believe that diversity and teamwork are the root of success and it makes me particularly proud when I can help create synergy through teamwork. An example of this is when I manage to gather teams both in clinical work and research. An achievement that has made me proud is to assist in creating a strong Danish Glaucoma Society that works across the country. It also makes me especially proud when I help colleagues and students become more proficient. I love teaching and passing on knowledge. Finally, of course, it also makes me proud when I help make a difference for patients.

What can be done to make the field more diverse?

We must continue to articulate all the prejudices that exist about women in leading positions. We need to grab ourselves by the neck if we are prejudiced against female leaders. We must celebrate talented and ambitious women, just as the 2021 Power List does for women. Last but not least, the ultimate goal must be that we do not need to talk about sex, but can start to talk about excellent leaders and good role models who, regardless of gender, can pave the way for better eye health.

Outside of ophthalmology, what makes you happy?

It goes without saying that I love being with my kids, my husband, and the rest of my family, as well as friends. I also spend time playing sports, especially tennis and beach volleyball. Although it no longer happens that often, I am also happy to paint and play musical instruments, such as the guitar and flute. Last but not least, I am easily excited, so I'm always ready for new adventures.

Why is it important to celebrate women in the field with this list?

The interaction between women and men creates synergy. Unfortunately, it is still difficult for women to find their way to top positions. There are many explanations for this, including culture, history, and expectations from society. That being said, it is very important that we as women are aware of the price to pay if one wants to reach the top. It does not come by itself and we have to help each other in many ways. We must be tolerant of the fact that our gender can also prioritize work, but at the same time, for example, be a good mother and good fun, not to mention, be sensitive and caring. We need to get better at backing each other up. Although I do not like to mention it, and although it obviously does not apply to all women, women are still sometimes their own worst enemies. I am therefore very honored and proud to be chosen to appear on the power list in 2021, along with 99 other insanely cool women. Let's continue to be ambitious and aim for the top, together, but of course also together with our equally ambitious and insanely cool male colleagues.


Part of the Power List 2021

Find out more

One hundred reasons to celebrate women in ophthalmology

Go to The Power List 2021

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