Always interested in psychiatry, Terresa Stallworth, MD, received a scholarship to study piano in New York. While in school, she became very homesick and had a discussion with her father about what she should do. Her father suggested medical school and it turned out to be the best decision for her. When she walked into medical school for her first class, it was almost as if a voice in her head told her “This is where you belong.” Dr. Stallworth began her professional career as an intern at the University of Tennessee Memorial Hospital and Research Center in 1963, completing this position in one year before completing two residencies in neurology at the City of Memphis Hospital from 1964 to 1965 and in psychiatry at the University of Missouri-St. Louis from 1966 to 1968, respectively, later moving up the ranks to chief resident at the latter in 1968.
Continuing on her professional path, Dr. Stallworth joined the Lakeshore Mental Health Institute in Knoxville, Tennessee, as clinical director, assistant superintendent and acting superintendent in 1969, remaining in these roles for five years before directing the community programs and special units at San Antonio State Hospital, where she has worked since 1974. Additionally, she has been the clinical director of the hospital since 1997. On top of this tenure, Dr. Stallworth chaired the professional advisory board of the Department of Behavioral and Mental Health at Bexar County Mental Health from 1979 to 1981. She also directed the Camino Real State-Operated Community Mental Health Center from 1993 to 1995, as well as served as executive director of its MH/MR services from 1995 to 1997. Today, she serves the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in San Antonio as an associate professor in psychiatry since 1974 and a clinical professor in psychiatry since 1995.
Prior to the start of her career, Dr. Stallworth pursued a formal education at Virginia Intermont College in Bristol, studying there from 1954 to 1955. She then matriculated at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, earning a Bachelor of Music in 1959. Some years later, she went on to attain an MD from the university’s Memphis campus in 1963. Since graduating, Dr. Stallworth has participated in numerous civic endeavors. Since 1975, she has been a concert pianist at Trinity University, St. Mary’s University and Incarnate Word College. She has also played at the San Antonio Symphony, San Antonio State Hospital and the University of Tennessee in Knoxville in 1989 and the Austrian Embassy in Washington in 1996. Likewise, she premiered her own piano sonata in 1980 and was commissioned to compose the “Yellow Rose of Texas” in 1997.
Outside of her primary trade, Dr. Stallworth maintains involvement with numerous organizations related to her field. A fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, she served the Bexar County Medical Society as chairman of the board of censors and member on the board of directors from 2003 to 2004. Furthermore, Dr. Stallworth was active with the American Medical Association, the National Organization of Women, the committee on women of the Texas Psychiatric Association, the Texas Medical Association, the Chopin Foundation, the Tuesday Music Club, Alpha Omega Alpha and the Sigma Kappa Alumnae, among others.
Recognized for her unique contributions, Dr. Stallworth was awarded First Prize at the Memphis and Mid-South Piano Contest in 1958, and was selected to play in the First Annual Van Cliburn International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs in 1999. She also received the Distinguished Service Award from the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in 1997, the Bob Polunski Award in 2002 and the Special Service Award from the Texas Society of Psychiatric Physicians in 2004. Notably, Dr. Stallworth was selected for inclusion in the first edition of Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare, the seventh edition of Who’s Who in American Education, the ninth edition of Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, and several editions of Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in the World.