April 20, 2023

Theobald appointed Chief of Staff for Corporate Clinical Affairs and SVP for Clinical Affairs

Cecelia Theobald, MD, MPH, has been appointed as Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Chief of Staff for Corporate Clinical Affairs and Senior Vice President for Clinical Affairs.

Cecelia Theobald, MD, MPH

Cecelia Theobald, MD, MPH, associate professor of Medicine and executive vice chair for Clinical Affairs in the Department of Medicine, has been appointed as Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Chief of Staff for Corporate Clinical Affairs and Senior Vice President for Clinical Affairs. Theobald’s appointment is effective July 1.

Theobald will assume a number of responsibilities held by David Raiford, MD, who is retiring from the Chief of Clinical Staff role on June 30. She will report to C. Wright Pinson, MBA, MD, Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Chief Health System Officer for VUMC. Most of Raiford’s prior responsibilities as Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs are now assigned to Donald Brady, MD, in his role as Executive Vice Dean for Academic Affairs for the School of Medicine.

Theobald’s new responsibilities include leading activities involving VUMC Medical Staff Bylaws and Policies in coordination with Brady. In collaboration with facility chiefs of staff and department chairs, she will lead cross-entity policy development and implementation involving medical staff, physician credentialing services, and a range of activities supporting regulatory compliance, billing and coding, and clinical quality and performance. For these responsibilities, Theobald will be joining multiple committees related to institutional operations and governance.

“I am pleased to appoint Dr. Theobald to this important leadership role serving our health system,” Pinson said. “As Chief of Staff for Corporate Clinical Affairs she will have broad responsibilities and play a vital leadership role facilitating inpatient operational, as well as quality and safety, matters across the clinical enterprise.”

Warren Sandberg, MD, PhD, John Thomas, MD, Nathaniel Clark, MD, and Adam Huggins, MD, MMHC, chiefs of staff of VUH, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, the Vanderbilt Psychiatric Hospital, and VUMC’s regional hospitals (respectively), will report jointly to Pinson and to the presidents of their hospital facilities.

“We are fortunate to have talented leaders ready to assume such responsibilities that are integral to our health system’s continued growth and success. And I again thank Dr. David Raiford for his exceptional service over the past decade as Chief of Clinical Staff, as well as all our chiefs of staff for the dedication and commitment they bring to these roles every day,” said Pinson.

In addition to fulfilling broad administrative responsibilities, Theobald is a general internist who manages a busy primary care outpatient practice with a special focus on Women’s Health and LGBTQ Health. In addition, she precepts resident primary care clinic and serves as an attending physician on the general medicine wards and at the student-run Shade Tree Clinic.

Within the Department of Medicine, a portion of her role has been to ensure the department maintains and enhances high standards of quality, preserves its culture and sense of community, and continues to support the growth and resiliency of the clinicians and teams.

“It is both a tremendous honor and incredibly humbling to succeed Dr. Raiford in this role. Through his years at VUMC, he has been tirelessly dedicated to our patients, and I look forward to continuing that legacy of service. The quality of care we deliver at Vanderbilt is rivaled only by the dedication of our clinicians, and I am eager to support them in those efforts,” Theobald said.

During the COVID pandemic, Theobald served as the primary support for Department of Medicine faculty in their efforts to open several new clinical programs at a fast pace, including the rapid deployment of widespread telemedicine and the successful launch of the Post-Acute COVID Clinic. In addition, she oversaw clinician COVID staffing plans, managing at various times the staffing of the COVID ICU, stepdown wards, assessment sites, and walk-in clinics, and coordinated and executed the department’s communications plan.

Theobald received both BA and BS degrees from the University of Richmond, and her MD from the Medical College of Virginia, Richmond. She earned a Master of Public Health from Vanderbilt University. She completed her residency and chief residency in Internal Medicine at VUMC, followed by a VA National Quality Scholars Fellowship with the Tennessee Valley VA Healthcare System in Nashville.

She is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and a member of the Society of General Internal Medicine.