Bellevue woman next president of Ohio State Medical Association

Dr. Mary Jean Wall wanted to be a doctor when she was growing up, but she was also interested in being an attorney.
Tom Jackson
May 6, 2013

So now she does both.

As an attorney, Wall, 56, consults on medical malpractice cases. She’s also a medical doctor specializing in radiology, and she has had a long list of other titles, including “mom” and “major in the United States Army.”

The Bellevue resident has now added another title. She is president-elect of the Ohio State Medical Association, a 20,000-member physician group. It’s the largest of its kind in the state.

Wall is “almost a Renaissance woman,” said Brent Mulgrew, executive director of the Ohio State Medical Association.

Mulgrew said, in his experience, an attorney becoming a doctor — or vice versa — is trying to make a career change. Wall has struck a balance between the two.

She is intelligent, she works to aid the goals of the group, and she collaborates well with others, Mulgrew said.

“She’s not arbitrary and capricious,” he said.

Wall doesn’t take over the post until April 2014, but her duties have already begun. It’s kind of like being a vice president, Wall said in an interview in her downtown Bellevue office. When the president can’t make an appearance, she fills in.

On Friday night, she was booked to attend an event in Cleveland. On Saturday, she was off to Grand Rapids, Mich., where she was booked to appear on a panel of the Michigan State Medical Association.

While Wall has apparently never had trouble finding something to do — she sewed her own clothes in high school, she collects hat pins, attends meetings of the Firelands Antique Club and volunteers at the Air National Guard wing in Mansfield — she has also been active in medical associations ever since she and her husband, recently retired obstetrician Dr. Frank Komorowski, arrived in Bellevue in 1990. 

Wall said that when she began work in this area, her boss gave her applications for the Huron County Medical Association and state medical association. The boss told her to join and promised to pay her dues. She’s been active in both groups for years. 

Her post as the incoming medical association president involves her in the sweeping changes taking place in health care. Ohio Gov. John Kasich is currently trying to persuade lawmakers to expand Ohio’s Medicaid system. Next year, the health care exchanges set up by Obama Care are supposed to begin.

Wall said her organization has come out in favor of expanding Medicaid.

“Someone has to be a voice for the patients. We need to take care of the population of Ohio,” she said.

Many working people cannot afford insurance, she said. When they become sick, they have to go to the emergency room — an expensive way of providing medical care.

“If they can see a regular doctor, it’s better for them,” she said. “Their health is maintained.”

Wall is a native of Ingomar, Pa. She attended Drexel University School of Medicine in Philadelphia. While she was in medical school she was in the Army Reserve, and after graduating she served four years active duty at various U.S. locations, leaving active duty as a major.

She studied Supreme Court cases as a high school student, and her interest in law never left her. Several years ago, when she was unhappy with her work situation, her husband suggested she take the admissions test for law school.

“I didn’t tell anybody what I was doing. I was not sure what I was doing,” she said.

She earned a law degree from Case Western Reserve University and was admitted to the Ohio Bar. When she finishes her medical association duties, Wall wants to get her legal medicine boards and devote herself to veterans causes.

Her family has a variety of interests and occupations.

“My husband was an aeronautical engineer before he went to medical school and he speaks three languages,” Wall said.

Her 25-year-old son is a rare wine appraiser in White Plains, N.Y.

“There are a lot of fakes in the rare wine world,” Wall explained.

Another son, 22, is a finance major at Ohio University.

When she has time to relax by watching TV, Wall shuns medical shows, which annoy her because they aren’t realistic. 

“I watch a lot of crime and investigative shows,” she said.

 

Comments

Kelly

Busy lady