TheGrio's 100: Dr. Valerie Montgomery Rice, Dean of Morehouse School of Medicine

theGRIO's 100 - founder of the Center for Women's Health Research at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, devoted to studying diseases that are most prevalent in women of color...

Luther Vandross was outed as gay after his death.

Dr. Valerie Montgomery Rice is a celebrated infertility specialist and reproductive endocrinologist. She’s also the dean and executive vice president of the Morehouse School House of Medicine, a position she assumed last year.

Previously, Rice was director of the Center for Women’s Health Research and gynecology, obstetrics, endocrinology and infertility at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee. She was also the dean of Meharry’s medical school.

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Among Rice’s many achievements is her founding of Meharry’s Center for Women’s Health Research. The research center has been praised as one of the first of its kind in the U.S. that is devoted to studying diseases that are most prevalent in women of color.

Dr. Valerie Montgomery Rice is making history … as a renowned expert in infertility research and for her contributions to creating a center that is committed to studying diseases that affect minority women.

What’s next for Rice?

Rice continues to oversee the recruitment and training of medical students at the Morehouse School of Medicine.

For more information, click here.


Q: What’s next for you?

A:To lead a not for profit global agency focused on creating equity in women’s health.

Q: What’s a fact about you that many people don’t know?

A: I’m a wonderful cook and mixologist. If I didn’t wear a physician’s coat, I’d probably be wearing a different white coat – a chef’s coat! I would own a quaint restaurant, known for scrumptious food, specialty martinis, and wonderful jazz.

Q: What’s your favorite quote?

A: “What would you do if you knew you could not fail”

Q: Where do you get your inspiration?

A: I have been most inspired by the multitude of strong women who have been a part of my life. During my training I was heavily influenced however by two of my male mentors whom I thought paid women the highest compliment in their excellent delivery…

Now that I have a few more years behind me, and I’m a mother, my children are my greatest inspiration, along with the wonderful students who so eagerly wait to change the world. They help me to not take life so seriously and to remember that even though I’m the Dean and EVP of one of the most prestigious medical schools in the country, sometimes I have to unplug, look into their eyes and just talk.

Q: Who are/were your mentors?

A: I have been fortunate to have had many. Beginning with my mother, Annette Alexander, and high school principal, Ms. Gloria Washington, who both taught me to think without limits. Through college and medical school I engaged several for advice, but a few have been there throughout, such as Beverly Brown-Hinckley, Brenda Lee Hargraves and Ann Kiessling. They are the permanent members of my personal board of advisor’s team.

Q: What advice would you give to anyone who’s craving to achieve their dreams?

A: Go for it! I’ve never been one to listen to the naysayers or people who told me I couldn’t do something. My sisters and I were just always told by our mother that we could do and achieve whatever we were willing to set our minds to and worked hard for.