John McDonald, M.D.
Medical Director, Women and Children’s Services Providence, Oregon
Education and training
- College: Stanford University
- Medical school: University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Pediatric residency: OHSU
- Neonatal fellowship: CVRI at UCSF/Mt. Zion Hospital
Where did you grow up?
Chippewa Falls in west central Wisconsin.
Why did you build your career at Providence?
I began part time at Providence St. Vincent in 1986 and then went to Providence Portland as an advisor on newborn care. Later I helped establish the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Providence St. Vincent and regional newborn services. Today I’m medical director for women and children’s health. Throughout my Providence career, I’ve been honored to help lead programs that serve our patients and fulfill our vision of serving all with excellence and compassion.
What is your dream for Providence in Oregon?
I feel strongly that we should never lose our focus of caring for those who are unable to speak for themselves – especially babies and children.
What are your hobbies?
Gardening. I like helping children and plants grow and develop!
What’s a great experience you’ve had while working at Providence?
Several come to mind: The first time we had seven languages spoken in our new NICU, our work to eliminate the risk of brain damage in babies from jaundice, and learning together as a NICU team to create a program recognized nationally for our clinical quality.
Who were your mentors?
Jane Smith, RN, Greg Van Pelt, Fr. John Tuohey and Nancy Church, RN, are a few who immediately come to mind. I have been blessed with many long-lasting relationships here, with people whom I admire for their kindness and thoughtful service to our community.
Philanthropy has been and continues to be the wellspring of our innovation. Many of our initiatives wouldn’t have gotten off the ground without generous donors. The clinicians we attract today want to participate in clinical research – something we could never do without philanthropy. I believe strongly in our philanthropy and have made a commitment to it myself.