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Theresa Greene Reed MD

Born on 12-9-1923. She was born in Baltimore, MD.
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Theresa Greene Reed was born on December 9, 1923, in Baltimore, Maryland, and moved to her mother's home, Buffalo, New York, when she was an infant. She attended P.S. #17 and was graduated with distinction from Buffalo Lafayette High School in 1941. During World War II, she attended Virginia State College (now Virginia State University) and was a 1945 graduate cum laude. She received a B.S. degree in chemistry, but her first love was music. She came from a family that loved music, and she had been assistant organist of Michigan Avenue Baptist Church. She was a member of the choir there, and in college, was a four-year member of the a capella choir.

With the aid of scholarships, she went to medical school by chance. She enrolled as a freshman at Meharry Medical College with no intention of becoming a physician, and planned to stay there just one year. This was because she was engaged to marry a former member of the choir and former chemistry major at Virginia State College who was, at the time, serving in the Army Medical Corps and who wanted to study medicine at Meharry when his Army service ended. She wanted to be near him when he came to the school. However, things went wrong, and when he came, the engagement was broken. She finally directed her attention to a career in medicine when she was a sophomore, and with the sacrifices and support of her parents, Mrs. Theresa Greene Evans and Mr. William James Greene, she was graduated in the class of 1949.

Dr. Reed moved to St. Louis, Missouri, for further training at the world-famous 600-bed Homer G. Phillips Hospital (City Hospital #2), then, one of the leading training hospitals in the United States, and because of hospital segregation, one that trained, at the time, approximately 50% of all African-American physicians in the country. The hospital, a historical treasure, was closed over 30 years ago because of hospital integration. It was there that she was trained in internal medicine and where she met and, in 1950, married Mr. Hermas Reed, a city health inspector, the owner of Bridgeton Country Club, and a man who was very active in the community.

Dr. Reed never believed it was right to charge a patient for being sick - that it was not right to charge him for receiving medical care. She always felt that a patient was entitled to free medical care. The patient did not ask to be sick. Her career reflects that view. She served on the medical staff of Homer G. Phillips Hospital for 18 years, first as a clinic physician giving direct patient care, then as assistant director of the hospital's outpatient department. She served as an instructor in the School of Nursing and held a number of professional positions in planning and in administration. She was the founder and first president of the first Black female medical society in 1963, the Mound City Women Physicians, and she was an officer of the Homer G. Phillips Alumni Association. She was one of the first members of the St. Louis Medical Society (an American Medical Association affiliate) when membership was opened to Blacks. Through the years, she became a member and served as a member of the choir and one of the organists of All Saints Episcopal Church in St. Louis.

In 1966, when it became clear that hospital integration was imminent, and that Homer G. Phillips Hospital was to close, she left St. Louis to continue her training. She was granted a two-year fellowship at The Johns Hopkins University in the field of Preventive Medicine. She specialized in infectious disease epidemiology and earned her Masters of Public Health degree.

In 1968, she relocated to the Metropolitan Washington, DC area and was employed for 25 years as a medical officer/Group Leader in the Division of Anti-Infective Drug Products of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research of the Food and Drug Administration. Later as Group Leader directing other physicians and scientific disciplines, she had primary responsibility for major prescriptions drug classes such as the aminoglycosides and quinolones, drug classes which have multiple safety issues from which the public must be protected and which are needed for the treatment of serious and life-threatening infections. Recommendations were made by her group regarding FDA's approval of these products for marketing. She taught pharmacology classes on aminoglycosides and quinolones at the US Department of Agriculture.

Dr. Reed is a former Associate Professor of Community Medicine at Howard University's College of Medicine. She is a life member of the Delta Omega Honorary Public Health Society and The Johns Hopkins University. She was the recipient of the 1991 Public Health Service Supervisor Service Award for sustained superior leadership and accomplishment in the Food and Drug Administration, and the same year was awarded the Equal Opportunity Achievement Award for her outstanding commitment in advocating and encouraging pharmacokinetic and efficacy studies in a variety of ethnic populations to identify inter-ethnic variation in drug responses. She invented the term "Pharmacogenetics," a term widely used in the field today. She continues to audit courses of interest to her at local universities, particularly the Foundation for Advanced Education in the Sciences and graduate courses at the staff college of the FDA. She is the first Black female epidemiologist in the United States. She is the past secretary-treasurer of the Daniel Hale Williams Medical Reading Club.

Dr. Reed is a 54-year member of the National Medical Association, and has held a variety of positions. She was a member and officer of the Mound City Physicians in St. Louis, and NMA affiliate there, and is the immediate past president of the Medico-Chirurgical Society of the District of Columbia, Inc., the NMA affiliate in Washington, DC. She currently serves as the NMA historian, and is editor of its Calendar of Events. She has served as Chairman of NMA's Region II, and one of NMA's Vice presidents, as Chairman of CAFA (Committee on Administration and Financial Affairs), and continuously as a delegate to NMA's House of Delegates. During the 1980s, Dr. Reed was the national chairman of NMA's Project Identify, a project through which almost one thousand graduates of majority medical schools were identified as potential NMA members and were invited to join the NMA. It was through her work in Project Identify that Physicians in Delaware were identified. This led to the formation and chartering of the First State Chapter. In 1989, she received the highest award NMA grants to one of its members, the Distinguished Service Award.

Dr. Reed is the recipient of the 1992 Community Service Award of the American Medical Women's Association.

Dr. Reed is a member of Trinity Episcopal Church where she helps out with the choir periodically. She is an avid genealogist, is conducting genealogical research, is the historian for her family, and is in the midst of writing a book on the subject. She developed a 19-foot genealogical chart depicting eight generations of her family. she is a past president of AAHGS (African American Historical and Genealogical Society): James Dent Walker Chapter, past president of the ROOTS Users Group of Arlington, VA, and an active member of approximately 44 genealogical societies.

Dr. Reed is a life member and a 62-year member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, and is an active member of Xi Zeta Omega Chapter. She is a life member of the NAACP. She is an author, newsletter editor, epidemic project manager, and lecturer.

Dr. Reed is related to three other Uncrowned Queens: Mrs. Bettie Spencer Anderson, her grandmother; Mrs. Theresa Greene Evans, her mother; and Ms. Gwendolyn Greene, her sister.