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In the late 1970s, Dr. Will Ross was told to stay away when applying for medical school in St. Louis. He was told the city was too racist and that he’d be better off on the east coast.But Dr. Ross decided to dig in, and he’s spent a career trying to alleviate massive racial disparities in health outcomes. He’s convinced that the only way to clear a path toward meaningful policy changes is by unifying fractured governmental structures in St. Louis City and County. And a couple of years ago, that belief landed him at a crossroads. He would join powerful people who wanted to create a new way to govern a divided region. But things didn’t exactly go as planned. We tell the story of how Dr. Ross’ recommendations and his criticisms were received, because it says a lot about how race and power continue to work in one of the nation’s most segregated cities.

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