Meet Michael DeVenny, M.D., Private Practice Radiologist at The Radiology Clinic Group in Tuscaloosa. We asked him questions about his past, future, and what working in Radiology means to him. 

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What is your background at UAB?

I attended college at Auburn University earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Afterwards, I worked at the East Alabama Medical Center in the Medical Intensive Care Unit in Opelika for three years. This was followed by completing medical school, Radiology residency and a fellowship at UAB. I have been working in Private Practice at The Radiology Clinic Group in Tuscaloosa since July of 1996 and will be retiring in September of this year. 

Why did you choose UAB?

I was a state resident and UAB was a very good medical school. After completing medical school, I interviewed at 11 or 12 Radiology residency programs including some of the best programs in the country. At the end of the day, I couldn’t find any that had an advantage over UAB. If you have the best at home, why leave?

What encouraged you to become a physician?

I was a practicing RN in the Medical Intensive Care Unit when I decided I wanted to do more. I wanted to expand on what I knew about medicine and then practice at a higher level. During medical school, I realized that Radiology was one of the few medical specialties that offered an in-depth education about all parts of the body. Additionally, the people in Radiology were happy and inviting. The constant interactions between my medical school clinical teams and the UAB radiologists, residents and fellows were a very positive experience. I didn’t quite understand everything radiologists did at first, but when I interacted with the team, they had answers and I wanted to be the one who had the answers. I wanted to be the person to help guide treatment and provide answers that would help the patient.

What do you consider the biggest success of your career?

Relationships.

During my residency, I was a chief resident which allowed me to participate in the interview process and eventually the recruitment of Dr. Cheri Canon. Dr. Canon was considering other programs. After she interviewed, I made multiple phone calls that were a combination of selling UAB and Birmingham and, at times, pleading. I felt that she was a remarkable candidate who was also a remarkable person. As a chief resident, I worked extensively with Dr. Canon in her first year and she was always prepared and excelled. She took to Radiology very readily and it was a joy to work with her during my time there. Although not entirely true, I claim all the credit for her residency choice. The rest is history.

Over the years, I have been in many leadership roles with our local hospitals and my group, but those are not accomplishments that I cherish. The greatest accomplishments in my professional career were developing collegiate relationships with physicians in other specialties who would call me to review cases, often complicated, and ask what I saw and what to do next. That contribution to patient care is not always evident to the patient, but it makes a difference. I have been able to develop those relationships over 25 plus years. I think that is the highlight of my career. As I retire, that aspect is something that I will miss the most.

What do you look forward to most with your upcoming retirement?

When you practice medicine full-time, it is to the exclusion of many other things. That, mostly being family. I look forward to the opportunity to spend much more time with my parents and family. “To whom much is given, much is expected.” I have been given a lot. I look forward to spending more time with my wife and spending more time with our church, community volunteering and traveling.