Yvette Lynn Broadnax, MD, has spent a lot of her life surprising people. Raised by her educator mother, she started to read at age two, took college courses at 10, and earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Pittsburgh at 15. In her 20s, as a student at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, she turned her medical textbooks into bedtime reading for her first son.
Now the longtime UPMC Shadyside family practice physician is the new president of the Medical Staff — and the first African American female president in the hospital’s history.
Dr. Broadnax is the solo physician at PEFHA Health & Wellness Center in Penn Hills, where she cares for about 3,500 devoted patients ranging in age from newborns to the elderly. This is truly a family business. With UPMC Shadyside’s support, she started the practice in 2001 and purchased it from the hospital in 2004. Her husband, Laurie Broadnax, manages the office. When her older sons, Emmanuel and Ian Benjamin, were teenagers (also taking college courses like their mom), they helped out in the office after school.
“I wanted the boys to learn that this is how their college tuition gets paid. I work hard, and they work hard,” says the upbeat, accomplished doctor — whose family includes two younger sons, Braxton, 11, and Laurence Broadnax, 6. “We also home-school our boys and are very active in our church,” she adds. “God makes a way for it all to get done.”
She considers UPMC Shadyside family, as well. “I first came to Shadyside as an intern when I was in medical school, served as chief resident in family practice, and stayed. I feel at home here. I used to take my older boys with me to round at the hospital when they were little. There is a very strong camaraderie among the physicians, the nurses, and the administration. Many of these people have watched my kids grow up.”