NASHVILLE, TN — Meharry Medical College, one of the nation’s oldest and largest historically Black academic health science centers, announced today that Michelle Nichols, M.D., M.S., MBA, FAAFP, has been named as senior vice president of clinical affairs. Nichols will lead Meharry’s clinical enterprise, collaborating with the College’s clinicians and overseeing its Graduate Medical Education programs. She will spearhead efforts to advance health equity and reduce disparities among those in underserved communities.
“We’re delighted to welcome Dr. Nichols to the Meharry family,” said James E.K. Hildreth, Ph.D., M.D., president and CEO of Meharry Medical College. “In addition to her extensive clinical affairs experience and passion for mentoring young physicians, Dr. Nichols is a true champion for patients and dedicated to ensuring that all people have access to the care they need. We look forward to working with her to advance Meharry’s mission of achieving equitable health outcomes for all and creating new educational opportunities that will benefit all Meharrians and the people we serve.”
In her new role, Nichols will enhance and grow Meharry’s six residency programs within the School of Medicine. These include programs in internal medicine, psychiatry, family medicine, preventive medicine, obstetrics and gynecology and occupational medicine. She will serve as the College’s designated institutional official for the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.
Nichols joins Meharry from Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Ga., where she served as associate dean for clinical affairs and medical director for Morehouse Healthcare. A talented educator and advocate for health equity, Nichols worked on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19, directing the Morehouse School of Medicine/Morehouse College Community COVID-19 Vaccination Program in Atlanta.
In 2021, Nichols testified before the United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) hearing on “Vaccines: America’s Shot at Ending the COVID-19 Pandemic.” She was profiled by Becker’s Hospital Review in its feature “Six Black women who have been on the frontlines of the fight against COVID-19.”
“Meharry has a rich legacy of championing heath equity and an unmatched commitment to ensuring that our nation’s underserved communities have access to the health care service and support they need,” said Nichols. “I’m excited to join the faculty and students at Meharry who, for more than a century, have been improving the well-being of humankind through transformative research, education and leadership. We have great opportunities ahead of us to build on this exciting work and reach and impact more lives.”
Nichols earned her medical degree and completed residency training in family medicine at the University of Mississippi School of Medicine in Jackson, Miss. She completed her faculty development fellowship at Duke University and received a physician executive MBA from the University of Tennessee. She is board certified in family medicine by the American Board of Family Physicians.