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Mayo Clinic Alumni Association – Know Your Board – M. Molly McMahon, M.D.

Provides leadership | Makes policy decisions | Decides strategic direction and vision

M. Molly McMahon, M.D. (ENDO ’87)


  • Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, Metabolism, and Nutrition; Department of Medicine
  • Professor of medicine
  • Mayo Clinic
  • Rochester, Minnesota
  • Fellowships: hospital nutrition, Mayo Foundation Scholar, New England Deaconess Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts; endocrinology, Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education, Rochester, Minnesota
  • Residency: internal medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
  • Medical school: University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison
  • Native of: La Crosse, Wisconsin

Why medicine

My dad was an internal medicine physician in La Crosse, Wisconsin. I accompanied him on hospital rounds and house calls. Beginning at age 12, I came to Mayo Clinic with him for “History of Medicine” lectures at the Foundation House. I have to admit that what I remember most from those visits was stopping in the subway to purchase snacks.

When I was in middle and high school, my dad had several heart surgeries at Mayo Clinic. I was fortunate to see the level of care and relationships he had with his cardiologists and surgeons. Later my mom was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. I’m certain that the combination of growing up with a physician-parent, seeing these illnesses and wanting to help people influenced my career choice. My mom taught my five siblings and me about living with an illness with grace. My parents were both mentors for a career in medicine.

Why Mayo Clinic

I felt Mayo Clinic’s endocrinology fellowship was the best in the country. When I interviewed at Mayo, I was impressed by the staff’s expertise in all areas of the specialty, focus on patient care and trainee education, and the collegial atmosphere. My research in carbohydrate metabolism formed a superb background for hospital nutrition.

I completed a one-year hospital nutrition fellowship as a Mayo Foundation Scholar and was able to bring that expertise back to Mayo.

Your work

I’m medical director of hospital nutrition support services and clinical dietitians, and chair of the hospital nutrition core group. My clinical and research interests focus on nutrition support and healthy nutrition.

It’s believed that 30% of hospital patients are malnourished, yet national surveys show that clinicians are undertrained in nutrition. Malnutrition is associated with poorer outcomes, longer length of stay and higher cost. I’m committed to further educating physicians and other providers about nutrition. Fortunately, Mayo Clinic supports physicians who are interested in nutrition as well as multidisciplinary teams in hospital nutrition. Healthy nutrition also is my passion, and I am co-author of “Encyclopedia of Foods: A Guide to Healthy Nutrition.”

On the education side, I enjoy training and mentoring our residents and fellows. I’m grateful to those who took the time to help and mentor me during my career, and enjoy giving back to the next generation of practicing physicians. I am the co-director of Mayo’s 20th annual CME course “Nutrition and Wellness.”

My most meaningful leadership roles were serving as secretary and president of Officers and Councilors and president of the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition.

Alumni Association

At my first Alumni Association Board meeting, I was struck by the alumni members’ sense of gratitude for mentorship while at Mayo, and for the Mayo Clinic values and culture. It’s inspiring to listen to alumni and be reminded how we’re all shaped by this common culture. I can’t imagine a better place to train or practice, and I look forward to promoting that message and sentiment with our alumni.

Off duty

I love all sports. At a family cabin in northern Wisconsin, I kayak, stand-up paddleboard, golf and ski. I also love reading, playing piano and cooking. I’m an avid fan of the Green Bay Packers and Duke basketball. I exercise every day at an athletic club.

Fun facts

I majored in French and Russian language in college.



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