Lucy Nell Culpepper M.D.1

Female, #61187
Father*L. C. Culpepper of Clarke Co., AL (1 Sep 1921 - 4 Oct 1995)
Mother*Lucy Lee Davis
Last Edited1 Mar 2010


  1. Lucy Nell Culpepper, M.D. - Pediatrician
    “Personally, we have come to regard her as a warm and caring physician with good working relations with people at all levels,” says Ben Weinstein, executive director of the local Tuscaloosa chapter of the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America of Dr. Lucy N. Culpepper.

    “Many of her original patients are now bringing their children to see her as their first doctor, who they know as a kind and gentle soul. I am pleased to have such a person as part of our executive team,” declares Deborah Tucker, CEO of Whatley Health Services, of Culpepper.

    These are but two of the numerous, heartfelt testimonials supporting Culpepper's nomination by Representative Artur Davis [D–AL–7] as a Local Legend of Medicine. Clearly, Lucy Culpepper has made an indelible mark on the West Alabama community she has served since her arrival in 1980 as a newly–minted pediatrician in the National Health Service Corps, attached to the West Tuscaloosa Community Health Center.

    Despite being born to humble circumstances in rural Thomasville, in Clarke County, Culpepper excelled in her studies throughout school and caught the attention of a professor at Alabama A&M University, who ultimately facilitated her acceptance into Meharry Medical School, from which she earned her M.D. degree in 1977. Following Meharry, she interned in pediatrics at Martin Luther King, Jr. General Hospital, in Los Angeles, where she also completed her pediatric residency prior to joining the National Health Service Corps and going to Tuscaloosa in 1980.

    Even though she had her own private practice, from 1982 through 1988, Culpepper's dedication to serving the medically underserved did not waiver and she maintained her working relationship with Whatley, continuing to tend to Whatley's pediatric patients. In mid–1988, she finally chose in favor of Whatley completely, closed her practice and assumed the titles Pediatrician and Medical Services Director she holds to this day.

    Like so many community health centers, Whatley has gone through some turbulent times, including near–financial ruin in the mid–1990s. Through it all, Culpepper persevered, enduring salary cuts and community strife to take care of her true concern—her patients. Self–effacing and humble, but tenacious and caring, Culpepper, in the opinion of her colleague and friend Deborah Tucker, has come to "personify the spirit of community based health care."

    First and foremost has been her pediatrics. Not only is she a skilled clinician, consultant and training specialist, as Whatley's medical head, she has helped to devise programs and services that have had a dramatic, positive effect on the lives of children and youngsters throughout West Alabama. She has provided free services to area churches, colleges and universities by coordinating health screenings, health fairs and focus group sessions on health issues with college sororities and fraternities.

    A member of the Board of Directors of the Tuscaloosa Department of Human Resources, the Tuscaloosa Family Counseling Services and the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America–West Alabama Chapter, Culpepper was named Outstanding Black Woman of the Year 1983, and Outstanding Young Women of America.

    Source: (21 Feb 2010)

    Who’s Who in the South and Southwest, 1984 – 1985. Physician, pediatrician; b. Awin, Ala., 1951; daughter of L.C. Culpepper and Lucy Lee (Davis) Culpepper. B.S., Ala. A & M U., 1973; M.D., Meharry Mod. Coll., 1977. Med. lic. Calif. 1979, Ala., 1980. Intern in pediatrics Martin Luther King, Jr. Gen. Hosp., Los Angeles, 1977-78, resident pediatrics, 1978-80; gen. med. officer Nat. Health Service Corps, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 1980-82, practice specializing in pediatrics, Tuscaloosa, 1982-; pediatrician Tuscaloosa County Health Dept., 1982-; cons. Pickens County Hosp., Carrolton, Ala., 1983-. Mem. adv. bd. Christian Study Ctr. Child Abuse Prevention Program, 1982-; bd. dirs. Big Brothers/Big Sisters Tuscaloosa County, 1983-; Recipient 1973 Class Achievement award Ala. A&M U., 1978; named Woman of Yr., Christian Study Ctr. Ala., 1983. Mem. Druid City Hosp. Med. Staff (pediatric sect. sec. 1982-83), Tuscaloosa County Med. Soc., Ale. State Med. Soc., Hale Meml. Hosp. Med. Staff, Zeta Phi Beta (corres. sec. 1983-84). Baptist. Office: Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine 609 28th Ave Tuscaloosa AL 35401.

    Who’s Who Among African Americans, 12th edition, 1999
    : Physician. Personal: Born 1951, Awin, AL: daughter of Lucy Lee Davis Culpepper and L C Culpepper; married Joseph Williams, Jun 30, 1984. Educ: AL A&M Univ, BS 1973; Meharry Medical Coll, MD 1977. Career: Martin Luther King Jr. General Hosp, intern, resident 1977-80: NHSC, pediatrician medical director 1980-82; private practice, pediatrician 1982-87; Maude Whatley Health Center, pediatrician, 1988-, medical director, 1989-. Organizations: Member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc 1972-; active staff mere DCH Regional Medical Center 1980-; member of the Tuscaloosa County Medical Society 1982-. Medical Association of the State of AL 1982-; youth director of the First Baptist Church 1984-90; member of the West AL Pediatric Soc 1984-, West AL Medical Association 1985-, AL State Medical Association 1985-; Honors/Awards: Woman of the Year Christian Study Center of AL 1983. Home Address: 4415 Maple Lane, Northport. AL 35476. Business Address: Medical Director, Maude Whatley Health Center, 2731 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Tuscaloosa. AL 35401, Phone 205-758-6647.