Tonita R. Cheatham, a Chicago native, has been recently appointed group director of communications at the Detroit Medical Center (DMC). The hospital is a leading regional healthcare provider with a mission of excellence in clinical care, research and medical education. This announcement follows the recent news of restructuring and realignment efforts taking place within the healthcare institution. In her new role as group director, Tonita will serve DMC by streamlining all communications needs across the organization’s eight hospitals and institutes.
“I am extremely excited and honored to take on this new position as our hospital system continues its patient-centered mission to provide the best possible care,” said Cheatham. “My previous roles have prepared me with a keen sense of how to structure and communicate impactful messaging to various audiences through multiple delivery channels, and I plan to continue that legacy by ensuring DMC communications are timely, effective and transparent both internally and externally.”
As an effectual African-American marketing and communications professional, Tonita has demonstrated expertise in operational leadership within the highly complex healthcare organization for more than a decade. Since 2005, Ms. Cheatham served as the director of public relations, marketing and business development for DMC’s Harper University Hospital, Detroit Receiving Hospital and Hutzel Women’s Hospital.
Throughout the years, she has also showcased a strong dedication to Metro Detroit as a driving force for the implementation and integration of various community programs such as DMC’s 61 Day Challenge – a local health campaign focused on fitness, nutrition, health education and commitment to living a healthier life, and RiverWalkers – a senior walking program dedicated to promoting health and wellness, and more. In this new position, Tonita will continue to provide guidance from a communications perspective and showcase DMC’s firm position as a dedicated community stakeholder.
Prior to DMC, Cheatham’s professional experience has placed her in key marketing and communications leadership roles within media (television and newspaper), finance, political and non-profit organizations. She has also actively volunteered for many professional organizations including the American Heart Association and the Black Public Relations Society of America, as well as other social and civic organizations.
Tonia received a master’s of science degree in integrated marketing communications from Roosevelt University in Chicago, Ill., and a bachelor of arts degree in English and journalism from Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Miss.
Cheatham grew up on Chicago’s South Side. While working in the Chicago area, her first professional journalist job was as an editor and reporter at the Chicago Citizen Newspaper Group, the premier South Side African American weekly. She served under the leadership of William “Bill” Garth, publisher and prominent leader within the National Newspaper Publishers Association. She has been a Michigan resident since 2005. In addition to her current work, she continues to be in demand as a speaker on a wide range of issues, including diversity, the communications profession, health and social justice issues and more.
About the Detroit Medical Center
The Detroit Medical Center operates eight hospitals and institutes, including Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Detroit Receiving Hospital, Harper University Hospital, Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital, Hutzel Women’s Hospital, Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan, Sinai-Grace Hospital, and DMC Heart Hospital. The Detroit Medical Center is a leading regional health care system with a mission of excellence in clinical care, research and medical education. The Detroit Medical Center is proud to be the Official Healthcare Services Provider of the Detroit Tigers, Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Pistons.
For more information, visit www.dmc.org.