Karen Winkfield, MD, PhD
Karen Winkfield, MD, PhD, Executive Director, Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance, and Ingram Professor of Cancer Research, was recently promoted to Professor of Radiation Oncology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC). “Grateful to those who paved the way,” said Dr. Winkfield on Twitter, noting that there are only 27 Black radiation oncologists in faculty positions in the United States and just a handful of Black female professors.
Dr. Winkfield is a national expert in community engagement whose research focuses 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. “There are so many ways to equalize cancer care among underserved communities, as long as we’re willing to partner with them and not be seen as an outside entity,” she told The ASCO Post.
Experience and Education
Dr. Winkfield specializes in the use of radiation therapy for hematologic malignancies and breast cancer. She was previously 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 2016, Dr. Winkfield was a radiation oncologist at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, where she developed the Department of Radiation Oncology’s first comprehensive clinical program to focus on hematologic malignancies. With the support of collaborating oncologists, she also established the first multidisciplinary clinic for patients with hematologic disorders.
A native of Long Island, New York, Dr. Winkfield is a graduate of Binghamton University. She earned her MD and PhD degrees from Duke University and completed her training in radiation oncology at Harvard University.