My career has been a tale of two cities – my home town, Cleveland, and my new home, Atlanta. My life and my career blend the rock-solid Midwestern Christian values that so clearly exemplify Cleveland, with the always-charging-ahead vibrancy of Atlanta, another faith-based city that is also one of the fastest-growing cities on earth. Even my book, The Art of Practicing Passion – which reflects my career and service in both cities, was created with six other amazing women who all have ties to Cleveland.
My family, my community, my friends, my church, and my schools all worked to shape my core values. Together they created a legacy of decency, integrity, and faith that are ever-lasting. For instance, through my high school principal, I was afforded a dream experience and my first introduction to a great medical mentoring program as a student intern at Mount Sinai Hospital, where I learned and served in their Surgical Intensive Care Unit. I was also able to perform community service through such organizations such as Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Greater Cleveland Alumnae Chapter Teen Lift and Xinos Alpha Xi Chapter of The National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa, Inc.
By the same token, my experiences in Atlanta, beginning with my undergraduate college – Spelman College – along with my profession, my career and my vibrant faith have kept me on course to a career and a life that puts faith and service to others ahead of personal rewards. While at Spelman during summer break, I was able to experience another opportunity for exposure to the medical field as a participant in Case Western Reserve University of Medicine Health Careers Enrichment Program for Minorities (HCEM). This program was founded by former Surgeon General David Satcher, M.D. I was also able to serve as a mentor at several elementary schools, including Clara Pitts Elementary School Saturday program.
The path to becoming a skilled and successful physician is never a short, straight path. Upon graduating from Spelman College, I began actively pursuing my dream of a career of service in medicine, earning my Medical Doctor degree from Wright State University School of Medicine in Dayton, where I became the first medical student to become a certified substance abuse counselor in Wright State’s Weekend Intervention Program (WIP). In addition, I became a pathology lecturer in the program. Despite the intensive time demands of medical school, I also “gave back” by serving as a Big Sister in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program throughout my tenure at Wright State.
I completed my medical internship in the dual Obstetrics and Gynecology (OB/GYN) and Family Practice program at Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News, Virginia, and completed my Obstetrics and Gynecology Residency Program at The Ohio State University in Columbus. During this time, I mentored several medical students, as well as young women in high school who had aspirations for a medical career. Upon completing my residency, I went into private practice as an OB/GYN, and later served as an independent contractor who provided medical care to women in the Army and to Army dependents.
Moving back to Atlanta and re-establishing my medical career here, I currently serve as Center Medical Director for U.S. HealthWorks Marietta, as well as being the founder of The Nation’s Bedside Doctor, an innovative new approach designed to help individuals obtain the highest quality healthcare from a system that is locked into the “production line” of HMO- and PPO-based medicine.
I am an active executive board member and medical coordinator of the life-changing Covenant Community, a faith-based life stabilization program. My work with Covenant Community has allowed me to continue my work in the substance abuse field that I began in medical school. I am proud of the work that is done at Covenant Community and I am proud to be a part of this unique organization.
I have been guest speaker a growing number of events including Legendary Women’s Empowerment Brunch, The PINKpreneur Network PINK Talks, career day at many schools, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Cleveland Alumnae Chapter Teen Lift, and Kamp Kizzy. I have also been an on-camera medical correspondent on Focus Atlanta CW69 and Fox 5 News Atlanta as well as being featured in a number of medical segments on the radio. I provide much needed accurate medical information for online publications such as Insider, Romper, Elite Daily, Bustle, and MSN. I have also been a judge for the impromptu speaking final at the Georgia Future Business Leaders of America State Conference (FBLA), allowing me to help shape the leadership skills of our youth.
It is through my church that I have performed mission work in disaster-wracked Haiti. I was able to participate in building a source of clean water for the community of Dondon as well as providing medical care. This opportunity allowed me to serve some of the poorest people in the Western Hemisphere with my faith, love, skill, and healing power.
My family and I live in Atlanta, but I will always call Cleveland my home. While I work hard, I enjoy life to the fullest. When I’m not caring for patients or serving my church, I am an active supporter of the arts. I also enjoy traveling the world especially to discover how medicine is practiced in other parts of the world as well as submersion into other cultures. I will always be a lifelong eager student.