We recently connected with Soyini Hawkins and have shared our conversation below.
Soyini, thanks for joining us, excited to have you contributing your stories and insights. If you had a defining moment that you feel really changed the trajectory of your career, we’d love to hear the story and details.
The defining moment in my career was when I decided to take a leap of faith and venture out on my own and into the world of private practice. In my very first job out of training, I felt I had hit the lottery. I found a work home that was willing to take a risk on me, even though I came highly recommended with demonstrable exceptional surgical and interpersonal skills. I know they felt assured that they found a good fit in me for their practice and as a new hire. I began in a position that was welcoming and immediately hit the ground running and proving my skills and work ethics. I joined a very successful practices with some of the best surgeons in their field, and they graciously taught me as I continuously sharpened my skills and techniques with a diverse set of patient cases. That paved the way for me to continually hone my confidence, be successful in their plans for me, and my expectations of myself. I was able to learn from their over 20 years of knowledge in being both good physicians and even better businessmen. For that, I am eternally grateful.
Over time, I began to become restless as I could feel a healthy tension with my complacency and comfort as I became more and more successful. Their business and my reputation grew. With my growing success and productivity as a part of their busy practice I began to yarn for a seat at the table with true ownership in that success. I also began to question what long term plans I had for myself.
COVID impacted the business and me in particular as an employee rather than a co-owner of the practice in a profound and scary way. I had to quickly react and pivot, like many, as business in my case patient surgeries were all cancelled. Yet the operating expenses for the business were steadily rising. As a surgeon, if I don’t operate, I don’t eat, that simple. I was unexpectedly and immediately caught off guard as many were, and though it seemed like the riskiest thing to do, at that moment, I seized the opportunity to spring into action and began acting on my longer-term plans to start my own business.
I started my own private practice on July 1st, 2020 at the height of COVID. I leveraged my network, relationships and patient loyalty to transition the Fibroid and Pelvic Wellness Center of Georgia from an owned entity to my very own entity. With the support of my husband and my gynecologist. This was literally an intersection of a crisis and an opportunity. I was able to accelerate the acquisition of her practice as she was already taking steps towards retirement and selling her practice. She was gracious in enabling me to have a smoother transition than could have been anticipated. It had its fair share of risk because until that moment, my back was against the wall as it had only been a desire. I also realized the divine providence of God’s plans for my life and how he orchestrates that perfectly. My gynecologist, though she was not ready to go at that moment, made room for me. Another opportunity and accommodation I will be eternally thankful for. I was able to share her space and share expenses as I figured out how to position myself to transition earlier than expected to a sole business ownership reality. I am now a full-fledged business owner! This to me was my defining moment simply because it was a leap of faith and it paid off. There were no guarantees other than my reliance on God’s promise and provision for me. He began to make me so uncomfortable and at the same time began to place opportunities in my path (like my own Gyn unsolicited and way before COVID happened, asked me to take over her practice one day) and I believe my success today is because it was always in the works! I am proud of my obedience to that faith walk, my courage to accept the challenge for myself and others, and I am so happy for my success.
Soyini, love having you share your insights with us. Before we ask you more questions, maybe you can take a moment to introduce yourself to our readers who might have missed our earlier conversations?
I am a board-certified Gynecologist, and fellowship-trained Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgeon. I attended undergrad at Xavier University of Louisiana, a Master of Public Health in health systems management at Tulane University, and received my Medical Degree in Georgia at Morehouse School of Medicine. I completed my Internship and Residency training at the University of Maryland Medical Center Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences as well as a 2-year fellowship program in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery and Pelvic Reconstruction at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, MD. I am now the owner and medical director of Fibroid and Pelvic Wellness Center of Georgia.
My goal in starting a practice as an employee in 2014 and branching off on my own to achieve full ownership in 2020 was to build on a genuine passion for the physical, emotional, and overall health and wellbeing of women. I have dedicated myself to caring for the whole person by creating a partnering relationship with my patients. I strive to assist individuals in making informed health decisions through teaching and ensuring the understanding of one’s health status. I believe all woman deserve options in their care and minimally invasive surgical management should be the norm not the exception. My skillset and style allow patients to become proactive partners in their healthcare.
I come from very humble beginnings. I was born in the parish of Manchester, Jamaica W.I. to the daughter of a businesswoman and a farmer and the son of a civil engineer. My parents moved to America to attend college, and to prepare the way for me and my older brother. We came to the US when I was four to join our parents and we have been role modeled by the examples of very hardworking and ambitious parents since.
Outside of work I am a wife, mother, and an advocate. My husband Osei and I met and wed in Atlanta. We moved to Baltimore after the wedding where I completed my medical training then returned to Atlanta in 2014 to raise our two sons near extended family. We are active in our church and community and are members of several societies as well as participants in numerous outreach endeavors. I am a beloved member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., and Jack and Jill of America, Inc. and serve on the board of The White Dress Project and as an advisor to several industry powerhouses speaking to the state of women’s healthcare.
As a fibroid and endometriosis survival warrior myself, I have remained passionate not only about treating women but empowering, advocating, and educating the masses to gain a better understanding of female afflictions. I feel my wellness journey is a true testament to life beyond these ailments and encouraged all women to live THEIR best healthy lives!
If you could go back in time, do you think you would have chosen a different profession or specialty?
Absolutely! I truly feel connected to my field. Going into the specialty of obstetrics and gynecology, there are so many sub-specialties to choose from. I could have focused on fertility or oncology or had been a generalist and mainly taken care of pregnant women, however from the beginning of my training I felt that my heart was in the operating room. I was told by many of my professors and attending physicians that I was naturally talented and gifted as a surgeon and possessed “good hands”. That left an impact of confidence and allowed me to immerse into what truly felt very natural. When I was an actual patient for a brief few years early in my training, I gained an even deeper appreciation for my future subspecialty. I had both fibroids and endometriosis and had to have significant surgery. After my experience I consciously decided that becoming a minimally invasive gynecologic surgeon was what I wanted to do. I wanted to be able to offer women surgical options to alleviate their pains and distress different than the maximally invasive option I had to go through. I wanted to learn how to do surgery in the least invasive way, giving my patients options that would be appealing, meet them where they were in their desired treatment goals, and minimize their pain and time in healing. Because my disease process was so far gone, I didn’t have that as an option for myself, but truly could appreciate what being able to offer better options to my patients would mean. I absolutely love what I do and get great joy in helping and healing so many women!
How’d you build such a strong reputation within your market?
I think reputation builds itself. In being genuine in everything I do and literally always striving to be my best, my reputation was self fulfilled in a very organic and again, providential manner. It helps that I am a rarity in my market because with a unique and in demand niche, combined with my passion and laser focus on caring for women with fibroids and pelvic pain. I take on the surgical cases many physicians shy away from or would otherwise prefer someone else do. I chose that and am grateful I love doing it. I am unapologetic about myopically focusing on that subset of women with that disease state, because in my opinion they need the extra care, and I can relate to them. I began as a self-proclaimed expert in the field and in a short period of time, was able to manifest that in the work I was able to do in the community and how I have performed for the women I have taken care of. My patient’s reviews of my care for them are genuine. The referrals I receive from community physicians that want the best for their patients are genuine. It is a continuous process and I do not take it for granted. I have to answer to my community and continue to improve my skills and return on those expectations and my reputation daily.
- Website: www.getfibroidhelp.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/soyinihawkinsmd/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/fibroidandpelvicwellness/
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