Kind Heart, Healing Touch: Rose Ann Rigby Weaver makes a decision she is both happy and sad about

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Since receiving her medical degree from the Medical University of South Carolina and completing her residency program at Emory, VA, and Grady Hospitals in Atlanta, Dr. Weaver has had an extremely successful and full medical career. She served as an Associate Professor of Medicine at Emory University for seven years before she opened her Madison office in 1976. She is a member of the Medical Association of Georgia, the past president of the Oconee Medical Society, a lifetime member of the Southern Medical Association, and is on the medical staffs of Morgan Memorial Hospital and St. Mary’s Hospital. Weaver has also published several articles in medical journals and has served as the Medical Director of the local chapter of the American Cancer Association and the American Heart Association. In addition to these accomplishments, Weaver has acted as the Medical Director of the Madison Health and Rehab Nursing Home and the Director of the Morgan County Health Department Board. These opportunities and leadership positions enabled her to meet many other healthcare providers over the years, something she is incredibly grateful for. “The medical professionals I have worked with all these many years are so excellent,” she said.

Despite being incredibly active in the medical field Dr. Weaver did not forget to make time to give back to the local community. She has served on the Board of the Madison Morgan Cultural Center, is a lifelong member and previous secretary of the Historical Society, is member of the Blue Stockings Book Club, and is a lifelong member of Landmarks. She is also a member and first lady elder of Madison Presbyterian Church where she has taught Sunday School for the majority of her time in Madison.

These many achievements did not come without struggle. Dr. Weaver admitted that she occasionally found being a woman difficult during her time in medical school. “The boys weren’t discriminatory or anything like that. We were as close as siblings. They were my brothers,” she said. “But, you know, there was some kind-hearted teasing and I always just felt so grateful that, as a girl, I had been allowed to even be there.” She laughed at the idea of something like that being the case now and said, “People would think that was crazy if it happened now. Women make up a large number of the people in medical school. It wasn’t always that way, but I always thought, ‘Why not?’”

As a woman in a largely male dominated field in the 1970’s, Dr. Weaver also faced challenges raising children and balancing her career. Again, however, she decided to do the unbelievable. “I decided I could do it. I could balance everything,” she said. “I just asked myself ‘Why not?’ There was never a good enough answer for me to say that I couldn’t.” She attributed a majority of her success to the people who helped her in keeping that balance. “Back then women were expected to raise our families and cook and clean and do it all,” Weaver said. “And I did, with help, of course, but it took a lot of work from a lot of us.”

When asked which of her many accomplishments she takes the most pride in, Dr. Weaver claimed that she has been the most proud of organizing and directing the community wellness program every fall for nearly 20 years. The free program was open to all and was among the first of its kind offered in the area. “Again, back then we didn’t talk about wellness the way we do now,” she said. “So, I guess I am pretty proud to have helped start that conversation.”

Now that she has reached the end of her hard-won and incredibly successful career Dr. Weaver said that she will enjoy getting to have more down time to try out new things and develop new hobbies. She also said that she is happy about the idea of spending more time with her grandchildren. “I look forward to getting to spend more time with them,” she said. “It is going to be a lot of fun.” Ultimately, Weaver said she is excited to move into the next chapter of her life, but also quite sad. “My patients are my dear friends,” she said. “I include them in my prayers.”

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