Alumna Spotlight: Leigh Anne Pickup, ’01


Leigh Anne Pickup, MMSc, PA-C, DFAAPA, is an associate professor and director of clinical education in the Department of Physician Assistant Studies in the College of Medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC).

Pickup has been a physician assistant (PA) since 2003. She attended Brevard College as an athlete on a basketball scholarship and graduated as valedictorian in 2001.  She served as President of the College of Ambassadors for Admissions, member of the Voice of the Rivers team to Argentina, and leader of Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA).  She entered PA school at Emory University, and graduated Summa Cum Laude with her Master’s Degree in 2003.

Her PA career began in general surgery, but quickly transitioned to emergency medicine, her concentration since 2005. She has worked in the Level One Trauma Center at Carolinas HealthCare System in Charlotte, North Carolina; Tristar HCA Centennial ER in Nashville, Tennessee and Maury Regional ER in Columbia, Tennessee. Pickup earned her Certificate of Added Qualification in Emergency Medicine in March 2014, at which time less than 10 physician assistants in Tennessee had earned this certificate. She was selected as a Distinguished Fellow of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (DFAAPA) in 2016 and the Tennessee Physician Assistant of the Year in 2020.

Pickup has served on the board of the Tennessee Academy of Physician Assistants, the Fellowship of Christian Physician Assistants, and is currently serving on the Trustee Board of Brevard College.  She is the mom of two boys, ten and twelve.  In her spare time, she coaches boys’ and girls’ basketball teams, cheers on her boys at baseball games, and gets out in her Jeep as often as possible.  Brevard College, the community, and the mountains have stirred Pickup’s soul since she attended college. She was forever impacted and ensures anyone she meets hears about this special place.