In the spring of 2013, Dr. Richard Treadway, a foundational Nashville health care leader, approached Dr. Robert Fisher, president of Belmont University, about an idea to support the education of future health care leaders in our community, city, state, nation and world. This idea grew into the formation of a giving society to support Belmont’s three health care-related academic programs: the Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences & Nursing, the College of Pharmacy and the Health Care MBA program.
Dr. Treadway wanted to name the group for an inspirational leader deemed most appropriate as a namesake. He chose R. Clayton McWhorter.
From Left: Belmont College of Pharmacy Dean Phil Johnston, Clayton and Michelle McWhorter
In an era characterized by accounting scandals and questionable ethics, McWhorter carved a legacy of deep integrity, dynamic leadership and notable success. His leadership in the development of health care industry giants HealthTrust, Inc. and Hospital Corporation of America made him a legend in his field. His ability to garner support for meaningful health care reform is well known and earned him respect from across the political spectrum as well as in his home city, where he earned an iconic and affectionate reputation as the “godfather of Nashville health care.”
While McWhorter’s many achievements were based on sound business principles and deep ethical standards, in the end it was his commitment to making a difference in the lives of others and giving back to the community that sealed his enduring legacy.
In the late 1980s, McWhorter became involved with Belmont University, a relationship that spanned more than two decades. Belmont named its pharmacy building “McWhorter Hall” to pay tribute to his philanthropy and service to the University.
The McWhorter Society was created to provide financial support for health care education at Belmont University. The Society aims to provide scholarships for students, endowed professorships and support for innovative educational efforts.
Through the commitment of the Society’s members, Belmont’s health care-related programs continue to provide the next generation of health care leaders for our community and beyond.