Catherine Robilio Womack, MD ’95

Author: UTHSC


Category: Featured | Medicine

2023 Outstanding Alumna Award Winner

Catherine Womack

Catherine Womack, MD, FACP, was born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee. Her initial career path was accounting. She attended the University of Mississippi and met the love of her life, her husband Marlin. After college they returned to Memphis. She was employed as a staff accountant at Ernst & Whinney. She did not find this job fulfilling and after her daughter Elizabeth was born, she decided to go back to school and complete all the prerequisites needed for medical school. She was accepted at UT and her daughter who was two attended UT Day Care. She had her son Chip was born third year. She did well with the help of her husband and family. During medical school, she was able to use her accounting skills by serving as the class treasurer for the class of 1995.

After medical school, she completed an internship and residency in Internal Medicine here at UTHSC. During residency, she received the prestigious Gerald Plitman Award as the Outstanding Endocrine Resident. She was taught by some of our greatest academic physicians, Dr. Beverly Williams-Cleaves, Dr. Sol Solomon, and Dr. Joseph Fisher, to name a few. After residency in 1998, Catherine joined the faculty here at UTHSC. She has served in numerous leadership and service roles: Site Director for Internal Medicine and Med/Peds training Program at Baptist Memorial Hospital; Associate Internal Medicine Residency Program Director; elected MetroCare Board Member and Vice Chair; General Internal Medicine Co-Division Chief; TN ACP Board of Governors; Memphis Medical Society Board as secretary and now vice president; and Director of the Preventive Medicine Clinical Trials Unit. While serving in these roles, she was selected by the Dean/Chancellor to serve as the Interim Chair of the Department of Preventive Medicine in 2017–2018. She was one of a few select UTHSC faculty chosen to participate in the UTHSC Executive Leadership Initiative. She also is a graduate of the Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare Physician Leadership Academy. At the national level, she was elected to the AAMC Careers in Medicine Advisory Committee and the AAMC GSA member-at-large position. Also on the national front, Dr. Womack has presented on behalf of the American College of Physicians to discuss patient needs and delivering their care to congressmen and senators in Washington. She has a passion for advocacy and enjoys sharing this with students and residents. She is a frequent attendee at TMA Day on the Hill and works to educate our state legislators about important medical issues regarding healthcare with our students, residents, and other TMA and ACP members.

Catherine has won several awards during her tenure at UTHSC. She was a Top Twenty Internal Medicine Teacher for many years. The American College of Physicians Tennessee Chapter selected her for the Laureate Award in 2017. She was nominated and then selected for induction into Alpha Omega Alpha and was last year was awarded the American Medical Women’s Association Inspire Award.

At the COM level, Catherine has served our faculty and students, as well as the medical profession, through her role on over 40 committees. She has been a passionate and respected educator of medical students and residents since 1998. As a medical educator, she’s served, as attending physician for Medicine and Med-Peds residents in the hospital and on ambulatory rotation clinics, as preceptor for Principles of Clinical Medicine (Ml-2 students) and in other teaching venues. She is a passionate student mentor and advocate, and leads the UTHSC Learning Community, Mentoring, Professionalism, Opportunity, Wellness, Excellence and Research (MPOWER) Program.

In addition to clinical duties, she spent time here at UTHSC working with the Department of Preventive Medicine under the leadership of Dr. Karen Johnson. Her research interests include metabolic bone, osteoporosis prevention, and other preventable conditions like smoking, diabetes, and hypertension. She worked a Co-Investigator of the SPRINT clinical trial which resulted in changed guidelines for hypertension in the US and Canada. As Principal Investigator, she participated in the multisite ASPREE trial which investigated aspirin in the elderly leading to a change in the guidelines for its use in the elderly. These studies and others resulted in 43 peer reviewed publications. She has given 48 invited local and national seminars.

Catherine is currently serving as Associate Dean of Student Affairs and Admissions. She feels fortunate to still teach and serve her patients in her UT-Baptist outpatient clinic. For her clinical work, she has been named a “Top Doctor” and an “Exceptional Woman in Medicine” annually since 2016 and 2019, respectively, and ranks in the 99th percentile for quality and patient experience according to Press Ganey surveys this past year. Dr. Womack teaches concurrently with her clinical duties. Recently she has been named an Outstanding Primary Care Provider for UTBMG (2022). She feels fortunate to be able to serve UTHSC in her current roles and looks forward to whatever comes next in her tenure here at UTHSC.