Executive Director, Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance
Karen Winkfield, MD, PhD is the Executive Director of the Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance, a strategic partnership between Meharry Medical College and Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Her primary responsibilities include working closely with Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Meharry Medical College to ensure their investigators have access to expert faculty collaborators, core resources and services to catalyze innovative research.
Previously, she was an associate professor of Radiation Oncology at Wake Forest University, associate director for Community Outreach and Engagement and director of the Office of Cancer Health Equity at Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Prior to joining Wake Forest in August 2016, Winkfield was a radiation oncologist at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center. She specializes in the use of radiation therapy in the treatment of hematologic malignancies (lymphoma, leukemia, multiple myeloma, bone marrow transplantation) and breast cancer.
She developed the first comprehensive clinical program focused on hematologic malignancies in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital.
With support of collaborating oncologists, she also established the first multidisciplinary clinic for patients with hematologic disorders.
She’s a national expert in community engagement with research focused on the design and implementation of programming to reduce sociocultural and economic barriers that contribute to disparate health outcomes for racial/ethnic minorities and underserved populations.
While at Massachusetts General, Winkfield was a co-principal investigator of a $3 million grant that established the Lazarex-MGH Cancer Care Equity Program, a program designed to improve clinical trial access and enrollment in vulnerable populations. She was responsible for the community outreach and education component of the grant. She has continued this work at Wake Forest.