Kenneth Stanley Robinson, MD, Mdiv
President and CEO
United Way of the Mid-South

Kenneth Robinson is a native of Nashville, Tennessee. He received a BA, cum laude, from Harvard University in 1975; an MD from Harvard Medical School in 1979; and an MDiv from Vanderbilt Divinity School in 1986. His honors thesis focused on the interrelationship between religious faith and healing. The delivery of health care has been integral to his ministry of healing. He is board certified in internal medicine and initiated his ministry during medical school. He has pursued a professional synthesis of medicine and ministry and focused on the promotion of individual, family, and community health to holistically “heal the land.”

Dr. Robinson recently made history by completing a four-year appointment as the first African American Commissioner of the Department of Health for the state of Tennessee. He is an indefatigable champion of holistic and comprehensive approaches to public health and individual well-being and was appointed by Governor William Haslam to serve as the state’s Chief Health Officer. In this position, he was responsible for the promotion, protection, and improvement of the health of all Tennesseans. He had oversight of a $548 million budget and a staff of 3,300 employees.

Dr. Robinson had numerous responsibilities as the Chief Health Officer: state licensure and regulation of healthcare professionals and institutions; inspections and assurances of food and water safety; collection and retention of vital health statistics and health outcome data; health policy planning and development; environmental and laboratory testing; bioterrorism preparedness; statewide delivery of safety net primary care services; and a broad range of prevention, education, and outreach for various public health services (e.g., maternal and child health, alcohol and drug abuse, community health, immunization, family planning, and communicable diseases).