Chairman's Welcome and Executive Staff

Chairman's Welcome

Sean Francis, MDFor 186 years, the University of Louisville School of Medicine Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health has provided excellence in patient care, education, and clinical / basic science research. Throughout name changes, we have continued to provide the best care offered for the women of Louisville and surrounding areas. We share a rich history of scientific inquiry and innovation.

In 1833 as the Louisville Medical Institute, advances in obstetrical care centered on the use of anesthesia and the vaginal speculum. By 1913, the obstetrical training course was a formalized written one that occurred in the third and fourth years of medical school: In the third year, students learned the
“anatomical, mechanical, and clinical features of normal labor, and the signs and diagnosis of pregnancy”; two lectures per week employed “lantern slides, charts, maps, and demonstrations on the manikin.” There were weekly quizzes. The sequence of study during the fourth year taught “abnormal conditions occurring during pregnancy, labor, and puerperium; the application of forceps; and performance of obstetrical operations.” Students witnessed surgery at the Louisville Public Hospital, and attended hour-long rounds twice daily in the mornings and afternoons. Resident physicians lived in the hospital and attended “Maternity Dispensary” neighborhood clinics. Until World War I, deliveries occurred at home; medical students were dispatched with a “house officer” for supervision; only complicated cases came to the hospital, and even then, cesarean sections were avoided if at all possible, with forceps used instead.  The cesarean rate was 3%. An active home delivery service was maintained by the department until 1955.

Today, residents retain their name and there remains a remnant structure of the early curriculum, but our department has expanded to include eight divisions - obstetrics and gynecology, maternal fetal medicine, gynecologic oncology, reproductive endocrine and infertility, family planning, female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, advanced laparoscopic surgery, and research – and we are governed by national accrediting organizations. Our faculty attending serve a diverse population presenting with a range of complex problems that we successfully treat, such as pelvic disease, infertility, cancer, and congenital anomalies.

Although the specialty of obstetrics and gynecology and its sub-specialties have experienced much change throughout the years, our department still follows its original mission and remains committed to providing comprehensive gynecologic and obstetric care and education. The following four years will provide vast opportunities for learning, for clinical experience, for expert consultation, for research. Thank you for choosing the University of Louisville for your residency training. You now become part of our inspiring history.

Welcome to the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health!

Sean Francis, MD, MBA, FPMRS
Chairman, Department of OB/GYN and Women’s Health 
Professor, Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery
University of Louisville School of Medicine


Executive Assistant to the Chair
Phone: 502-561-7441
Fax: 502-561-7447

Executive Staff

ZHENMIN LEI, PhD, MD
Vice Chair of Research

Dr. Lei Picture


Administrative Assistant, Research
Phone: 502-561-7252


Executive Director, Department of OB/GYN & Women's Health

Administrative Assistant
502-561-7451

Department Address
University of Louisville School of Medicine
Department of Obstetric, Gynecology & Women's Health
Ambulatory Care Building, OBGYN 2nd Floor
550 South Jackson Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202