OB-GYN Faculty Chair Honors Pioneering Leader

Fay O. Redwine, M.D.

Fay O. Redwine, M.D., was a force for women.

In the early 1970s, Dr. Redwine challenged successfully the then-prevailing notion that women could not handle a career in obstetrics and gynecology. She became only the second female resident in the history of the VCU School of Medicine’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Her intellect and curiosity, coupled with a caring, giving spirit, enabled her to play a major role in the development of new techniques in the field of maternal fetal medicine. Dr. Redwine was a pioneer in using ultrasound to diagnose and treat conditions prior to birth. In 1982, The New York Times reported how Dr. Redwine and her MCV colleague Dr. Robert Petres used ultrasound to safely place needles into fetuses to drain dangerous accumulations of fluid before the fluid could cause organ damage. A triple graduate of the School of Medicine, she joined the faculty in 1977 as associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology and human genetics until 1994, when she entered private practice focusing on perinatology.

Funding the endowment to create a chair honoring Fay’s memory is a great endeavor that can achieve a lot of good.

Tom Williamson

Dr. Redwine succumbed to complications of breast cancer treatment in 2004. Shortly after her death, her husband, Tom Williamson, established the Fay O. Redwine, M.D., Endowment Fund to honor her legacy.

By 2022, the endowment had grown, thanks in part to contributions from friends, colleagues and others who were impacted by Dr. Redwine. Then, Williamson, with the aid of a matching grant, increased the endowment to a size where his aspiration of establishing a chair now verges on reality, and the ripple effect could impact lives for years to come.

“So many bases are touched with this type of gift,” Mr. Williamson said. “It’s going to create an opportunity to enhance the stature of the obstetrics and gynecology department through the recruiting of a rising star or an established authority in the field of maternal fetal medicine.”

The new endowed chair could bring invaluable research funding opportunities and enhance the quality of education for the department's residents, fellows and students — some who are likely to remain in Richmond to practice. Ultimately, the cumulative effect equals superior patient care and healthier outcomes for women and babies.

Williamson said his late wife, Dr. Redwine, could find the good in everyone and that she’d be proud that a fund in her honor could move the needle forward in women’s health at a place that was such a big part of her life.

“It’s wonderful for the community right here in Richmond to have cutting-edge maternal fetal care,” he said. “Funding the endowment to create a chair honoring Fay’s memory is a great endeavor that can achieve a lot of good.”

If you would like to support the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology within the VCU School of Medicine, please contact Nathan Bick, senior director of development in the Office of Medical Philanthropy and Alumni Relations, at 804-827-4937 or nathan.bick@vcuhealth.org.