Dr. Catherine McGovern became a doctor at the urging of her mother, who was a nurse. And despite her many accomplishments as a physician, Dr. McGovern sometimes envies the one-on-one patient interactions that nurses get to experience. “I’m actually happiest when I’m putting a warm blanket on someone,” she says, adding that she strives, in both her medical practice and volunteer work, to connect in a personal way with the people she cares for. “I went into medicine to use my talents and to honor God by taking care of my fellow man,” she says.
As a board-certified OB/GYN, Dr. McGovern strives to provide excellent medical care while displaying “openness, joy, and compassion.” Her exceptional perspective has been enhanced by her status as a breast cancer survivor. “When I have to give someone a cancer diagnosis, now I can say I lived it; I had treatment; and eight years later, I’m here, and I’m fine.” After being diagnosed, Dr. McGovern limited her practice to gynecology, taking more time for herself, her family, and her philanthropic endeavors.
After Haiti’s devasting earthquake in 2010, Dr. McGovern volunteered at a clinic in the Dominican Republic, providing Haitian refugees with gynecologic health maintenance and pap-smear screenings. She serves on the executive board of Heavenly Productions Foundation and is a frequent volunteer for this nonprofit organization dedicated to helping children in need. She has cooked meals at Ronald McDonald House, collected toys for the pediatric patients at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, and delivered backpacks filled with books and supplies to schools in need.
Dr. McGovern tends to downplay her philanthropic work, modestly saying, “I just want to help when I can.” She explains her philosophy by sharing a favorite quote from Mother Teresa: “Not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.”