Background: Surgeons from under-represented backgrounds are less likely to receive academic tenure and obtain leadership positions. Our objective was to query the curriculum vitaes (CVs) of SBAS leadership to develop a benchmarking tool to promote and guide careers in academic surgery. Methods: CVs from academic leaders were reviewed for academic productivity at early career stages—the first 5-and 10-years. Variables queried: peer-reviewed publications, grant funding, surgical societal involvement, invited lectureships and visiting professorships. Results: Of 20 CVs, 41 leadership positions including 13 SBAS Presidents were identified. At 5- and 10-years, respectively, the academic productivity increased: 20.6 and 52.3 publications; 4.7 and 9.7 grants; 18 and 42.6 lectures/professorships. Conclusion: The CV benchmarking tool may be a useful framework for aspiring academic surgeons to track their progress relative to successful SBAS members. Creative strategies like these, paired with faculty mentorship and sponsorship are necessary to improve the ethnic diversity in academic surgery.