The Brain and Spine Institute is made up of experts in the field of neuroscience in order to bring patients the best healthcare in East Tennessee for a full range of neurological diseases and disorders.
Dr. Zite was born and raised in the Chicago area. She completed her medical school education at Northwestern University and then headed south for her OB/GYN training in Memphis at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. She met her husband while in Memphis and he convinced her to stay in the South, but not before going back to Chicago for her Fellowship in Family Planning and her Master’s in Public Health at the University of Illinois. She joined Women’s Specialty Care and the faculty at UT Medical Center in 2004. In 2008-2009 she and her family moved to Cleveland, Ohio for her husband’s fellowship and then returned to Knoxville.
Nikki is a Professor in the Department of OB/GYN and serves as the Residency Program Director, a position she has held since 2010. She practices general obstetrics and gynecology with expertise and research interests in contraception and family planning. She is a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology Long Acting Reversible Contraceptive work group and is the Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Society of Family Planning.
When she is not working, Nikki is typically with her 2 boys at one of their numerous activities or cheering for the Chicago Cubs. She and her husband love to travel and hope to do more of it someday!
A native of Kentucky, Dr. van Nes completed her B.S. in Biology and M.D. from the University of Kentucky (go Wildcats!) She then moved to Knoxville and completed her OB/GYN residency at the University of Tennessee Medical Center Knoxville, graduating with CREOG exam awards as well as the Chairman's award. After residency, she joined Women's Specialty Care in 2008 where she has been in practice since. In 2016, she obtained her M.B.A. degree from the University of Tennessee and is the Medical Director of Women's Specialty Care.
Dr. van Nes enjoys the challenge of being a specialist in general obstetrics and gynecology. Her primary interest is preventative care throughout a woman's life, including pregnancy and menopause. She also enjoys teaching future physicians and is an Assistant Professor with the Department of OB/GYN and is the Director of the OB/GYN Simulation program. She has presented in numerous national conferences about resident education.
In her spare time, Dr. van Nes enjoys spending time with her husband and three children as well as running half marathons and reading fiction.
EDUCATION & TRAINING
Catherine Kingery, WHNP-BC, a southwest Virginia native, received a BSN from the University of Tennessee with a minor in psychology. Upon graduation, she worked in Labor and Delivery at UT Medical Center and completed a MSN from UT with a master's minor in nursing education. She has worked as a nurse practitioner at Women's Specialty Care for 10 years in December 2016. She is married and has two boys, Will and Grant (8yo and 4yo). She has a love for UT football while spending her time on the baseball field with her boys. Catherine is a barre enthusiast and loves to read.
Medical Student Clerkship Director
Clinical Assistant Professor
Dr. Welch-Charles, originally from Nashville,TN, has been at UT Medical Center since 2015. She graduated from Tennessee State University in 2011 magna cum laude prior to matriculation into medical school. She attended Meharry Medical College and graduated in 2011 with academic honors and was also the recipient of the Leonard B. Tow Humanism award. She remained at Meharry Medical College to complete her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology and served as chief resident during her last year.
Following residency, she moved to northern Virginia where she worked private practice. Her ultimate love and dedication to her roots, brought her back to Tennessee to be near her family. Dr. Welch-Charles is married and has one daughter. She enjoys crafting, dancing, and fitness. She is board certified and a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Pryor Baird is a board certified Women's Health nurse practitioner with experience in mental health. She has a Bachelor's degree from Clemson University and a Master's degree from Vanderbilt University. Her nursing experience includes three years as a nurse on a liver and kidney transplant unit in San Francisco and two years as an obstetrical nurse at the University of Tennessee Medical Center. She is a Knoxville native and has been at Women's Specialty Care since 2014. She lives with her husband (Gregg), two kids (Graham and Abby), and border collie (Max). In her spare time, Pryor enjoys running, reading, and traveling.
A Tennessee native, Dr. Cross completed her B.S. in Chemistry at Tennessee Technological University. She attended medical school at the University of Tennessee Center for Health Sciences in Memphis, Tennessee. She completed her OB/GYN residency at the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville. Dr. Cross has been engaged as a part of the teaching faculty at UT and private practice throughout her career. She is an Assistant Professor with the Department of OB/GYN and is the Director of the Division of Benign Gynecology. She has a special focus in robotic/minimally invasive surgery.
Outside the hospital, Dr. Cross enjoys spending time with her husband and her three children. She is an avid golfer and enjoys reading, UT sports, and traveling.