Convocation 2022

Scenes from the 147th Convocation

Convocation can also be viewed online via Facebook Live at

or via YouTube’s MeharryTube channel at

Click on the image below to download a PDF
of the 2022 Convocation program book.

2022 Convocation Program Book cover

For more than 55 years, Billy R. Ballard, D.D.S. ’65, M.D. ’80, pathology professor and associate dean for continuing medical education at Meharry Medical College, has been a pioneering force.


Ballard earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and doctoral degrees in both dental surgery and medicine from Meharry, with postdoctoral studies and residency training in anatomic and surgical pathology, cytopathology and oral pathology, and fellowships in surgery and cytopathology.


An assistant professor of pathology and oral pathology in the schools of medicine and dentistry at State University of New York at Buffalo, he received tenure in 1971. Tenured appointments continued at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB) and Meharry, where positions included Department of Pathology professor and chair, School of Dentistry interim dean, Graduate Medical Education associate dean, School of Medicine interim dean and vice president for health affairs.


He was the first full-time African American faculty member at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and the first to achieve tenure in the University of Mississippi System and UTMB where he received associate dean and associate vice president appointments.


Leadership positions include both Southern region chair and national chair of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Group on Student Affairs, and member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation Professionalism Advisory Committee. He has served on accrediting bodies including the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the AAMC-AMA Liaison Committee on Medical Education. He has numerous publications—peer-reviewed journal articles, abstracts, book chapters and national and international presentations.


The first African American diplomate of the American Board of Oral Pathology and diplomate of the American Board of Pathology, honors include election to Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society; Omicron Kappa Upsilon National Dental Honor Society; and fellow of the American Society of Clinical Pathologists, the College of American Pathologists and the American Academy of Oral Pathology.


Recipient of the Harris L. Kempner and Martin Luther King awards at UTMB and the Arnold P. Gold Foundation’s Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award, he received the Faculty of the Year award from both the Meharry Pre-Alumni and Meharry National Alumni associations. He was awarded the National Medical Association Scroll of Merit for contributions to medicine and leadership in medical education, and the NMA Lifetime Service Award for 30 years as pathology section chair, serving from 1990-2020. He is a member of Meharry’s “Guardians of Our Legacy”—alumni who champion their alma mater, contributing $100,000 or more to the College.


At UTMB, Dr. Ballard was instrumental in efforts to defend and preserve affirmative action for minority health professional students. The Texas Legislature and the UTMB Alumni Committee honored him for his leadership in the admissions and graduation of students from disadvantaged backgrounds.


Dr.Ballard has generated more than $100 million in funding from the National Cancer Institute, the National Institutes of Health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the U. S. Department of Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). Since 1982, he has received continuous grant funding from HRSA at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, UTMB and Meharry. In 2005, the HRSA Bureau of Health Professions honored Ballard for leadership and achievement in improving the nation’s health workforce diversity.

Dr. Heather Moman Brown is a philanthropist, a business owner, mentor, educator and a multifaceted woman with a heart for helping others. She is currently the owner of Dr. Heather Brown Orthodontics, a private orthodontic practice in Houston, Texas, where she has been practicing for 19 years.


Dr. Brown is a 1996 graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi. She earned her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from Meharry Medical College in 2001. Dr. Brown embraced her true passion in dentistry when she completed her post-doctoral residency in orthodontics from Howard University in 2003 and graduated as valedictorian of her class.


After completing her residency, she began her career in Houston, Texas where she made an enormous impact in the community. In 2012, she founded the Houston Chapter of the Smile for a Lifetime Foundation, a charitable non-profit organization that provides free orthodontic services to underserved children. Dr. Brown’s chapter has donated close to a million dollars in services since it was founded.


Dr. Brown’s heart for mentorship led her to start a summer internship program for high school and college students interested in pursuing a career in dentistry. She has witnessed the fruits of her labor as many of her former interns have been accepted into dental schools and orthodontic residencies throughout the country. Dr. Brown’s most prized achievement was the founding of The Academy of Orthodontic Assistants in 2021, a first-of-its-kind career school in Texas to offer students an opportunity to train to become a certified orthodontic assistant.


Dr. Brown remains dedicated to the mission of Meharry Medical College. She has returned to Meharry to share her expertise as a guest lecturer in the School of Dentistry and keynote speaker for the Cusp of Carabelli Ball. Most recently she was appointed to serve in Meharry’s School of Dentistry as an adjunct assistant professor.


Dr. Brown is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. Her outstanding achievements have been recognized across the nation. She has been featured in O, The Oprah Magazine and Entrepreneur magazine. She has headlined the covers of Orthotown and Orthodontic Products magazines as well as Living Magazine. She has been celebrated as one of Houston’s Most Influential Women.


Dr. Brown keeps God at the center of her life and feels blessed to be a mom to her amazing sons, Jaxon and Jace.

Natalie M. Williams-Bouyer, Ph.D. ’97, D (ABMM) is a tenured associate professor in the Department of Pathology and adjunct associate professor in the Department of Clinical Laboratory Sciences at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston, Texas. A native of New Iberia, Louisiana, she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology in 1989 from the University of Southwestern Louisiana in Lafayette, Louisiana (now known as University of Louisiana at Lafayette). In 1997, she earned her Doctor of Philosophy degree in Biomedical Sciences with a concentration in medical microbiology from Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tennessee. Following matriculation at Meharry, Dr. Williams-Bouyer studied and completed service as a clinical postdoctoral fellow in the UTMB Medical and Public Health Microbiology Laboratory Postdoctoral Fellowship Program in 1999.


Dr. Williams-Bouyer is a certified diplomate of the American Board of Medical Microbiology (ABMM) and has 25 years of experience in the field of clinical microbiology. She is currently the medical director of the Division of Clinical Microbiology at UTMB, where she provides technical, clinical and administrative oversight of the division’s infectious disease laboratory diagnostic services. Earlier in her career, Dr. Williams-Bouyer served as an assistant director in the Laboratory Services Division of the Houston Health Department, where she assisted with public health microbiology program initiatives. She also previously served as director of the Shriners Hospitals for Children-Texas, Department of Clinical Laboratory Services, in Galveston, Texas where she currently serves as clinical consultant.


As a clinical microbiologist, Dr. Williams-Bouyer has published several papers in peer-reviewed journals and has been a co-author of multiple book chapters. She has also been an invited speaker at local, national and international meetings and conferences. As an educator, she has served as instructor and mentor to medical, graduate and clinical laboratory sciences students as well as fellows and residents in the UTMB John Sealy School of Medicine, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and School of Health Professions. Since 2018 she has also served as director of the nationally recognized, Subcommittee for Postgraduate Educational Programs of the American Society for Microbiology-accredited UTMB Medical and Public Health Microbiology Laboratory Fellowship Program.

To be announced at Convocation

Henry A. Moses, Ph.D., a beloved professor of biochemistry and executive director of the Meharry National Alumni Association, Inc., has touched the lives of a myriad of students, alumni, faculty, staff and employees throughout his long and distinguished 58-year career at Meharry Medical College. He has fulfilled the role of teacher, counselor, financier, confidant and father figure to countless individuals.


Dr. Moses began his tenure at Meharry on September 1, 1964 as an assistant professor of biochemistry, soon becoming a full professor. He served as associate vice president of college relations and lifelong learning. In 1999, he obtained the status of professor emeritus of biochemistry. In 2007, Dr. Moses was appointed executive director of the Meharry National Alumni Association, Inc., a position he only recently retired from.


Dr. Moses is a member of the Guardians of Our Legacy, a donor group established to recognize individuals who have taken it upon themselves to champion the support of Meharry.


Dr. Moses lives and breathes the Meharry motto, “Worship of God Through Service to Mankind.” Because of his longstanding, deep commitment and love for Meharry and its students, the Henry A. Moses Ph.D. Alumni Hall was dedicated and named in his honor in 2013.


Dr. Moses is one of few Meharry friends who committed more than $1 million to the College. In 2015, he established “The Henry A. Moses, Ph.D. Endowed Scholarship Fund” for the benefit of students attending Meharry. Dr. Moses is exceptionally sensitive to the plight of students who experience unforeseen obstacles and challenges while pursuing their lifelong dreams of becoming health care professionals. Recognizing the financial hardships students incur, especially as they relocate to other cities for residency and post-doctoral programs, Dr. Moses established a discretionary fund with the sole purpose of assisting them as they transition from Meharry to their post-graduate training.


Dr. Moses is more than a philanthropist. His humanitarian work extends far beyond the halls of Meharry as evidenced by countless other acts of generosity. He personally provides care to others in need and expects nothing in return.


Dr. Moses’ distinctive ability to communicate and listen has helped to foster and maintain the respect of students, faculty and colleagues. Throughout his lengthy tenure, he has assisted generations of students, both academically and financially, and has been a beacon and inspiration to many others. He is consistent in his generosity and caring and gives from a place deep within. Dr. Moses eloquently projects the essence of what it means to be a “Meharrian” – lifelong achievement, leadership, love of humankind, the unwavering call to give back, commitment to family and a deep sense of pride.


Meharry Medical College is proud to present the Doctor of Science honorary degree to Dr. Henry A. Moses for his service and dedication to Meharry and its mission, compassion to others, substantial contributions and his many acts of kindness.

Nelson L. Adams III, M.D. ’78, is the chairman of the Meharry Medical College Board of Trustees and is a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist, a medical leader passionately committed to eliminating racial and ethnic inequality in health.


An exceptional achiever, earning high recognition both scholastically and among medical peers, he is an esteemed alumnus of Howard University. Dr. Adams earned his medical degree at Meharry Medical College in 1978 where he was named student of the year as a freshman and served as president of the Meharry chapter of the Student National Medical Association. He completed his OB-GYN residency at Emory University in 1982, and is an active member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.


In 1992, he founded the Maternal Child Health Initiative, an award-winning model for providing care to at-risk, low-income, pregnant women utilizing a multi-tiered intervention that addressed the psychological, social and medical needs of expectant mothers. Throughout his career, Dr. Adams’s leadership and community service has reached across academic, religious, fraternal and charitable institutions.


A native of Miami, Dr. Adams is a past president of the Dade County Medical Association. After several years on the National Medical Association board of trustees, he served as the organization’s 107th president.


Dr. Adams serves as president and chief of the medical staff at Jackson North Medical Center where he also served as chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology for several years. He has also served as clinical professor in the Department of OB-GYN of the College of Medicine of Florida International University (2010-18). Adams is also president and chairman of Access Health Solutions, a managed care company that provides services in 26 counties in Florida. Under Adams’s leadership, Access Health Solutions has grown to serve more than 94,000 beneficiaries with 525 health care providers. Additionally, he chairs the board of directors of the Sunshine State Health Plan.


Sustained by family ties and guided by spiritual values, Dr. Adams abides by the motto: “To whom much is given, much is required.” Community service has been a major part of Dr. Adams’s career, serving as board chair of the St. John Community Development Corporation focusing on the revitalization of Miami’s Overtown community. He has also served on the board of trustees of the Miami Art Museum. In April 2008, he began the “Walk a Mile with a Child” initiative in Overtown, an annual event to highlight community health education and head off obesity among adolescents toward a healthier adulthood.


Adams is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including an honorary doctor of law from Barry University, the lifetime achievement award from J.W. Bridges Medical Society, the Claude Pepper Community Builders Award and the Boy Scouts of America’s Whitney Young Service Award. He is a member of Sigma Pi Phi fraternity and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. He also currently hosts a weekly radio talk show.

For the first time since the pandemic, Convocation will be held in person and on campus.