2020 Tillman Scholar

Mackenzie Shribbs

Air Force
University of Colorado

“Global health and security are synergistically linked. As a military physician, I possess the unique perspective of how military and global health systems intersect, and aim to strengthen this relationship.”

Mackenzie is the daughter of an Italian-born mother and Navy pilot father, inheriting a sense of adventure and civic responsibility. She signed her name to her country at age 18 with the dream to be involved in the global humanitarian efforts afforded by the U.S. military. Mackenzie earned her commission through ROTC while studying mathematics at Loyola Marymount University. She later became a physician and began serving those who served after graduating from Georgetown University School of Medicine. Having a Jesuit education for most of her life strongly shaped her core values of service toward others.

Completing her emergency medicine residency at San Antonio Military Medical Center, Mackenzie deployed overseas to provide care to U.S. soldiers, coalition forces and local civilians. She has provided medical care in Ghana, India, Dominican Republic and Mexico as well as her recent deployment to Niger as part of the tactical critical care evacuation team. There, she provided care to Special Forces as the sole physician in an austere military outpost.

Immediately after returning from her deployment, she separated from the military to specialize in global health and earn her master of public health. Mackenzie will return to active duty to advance public health at an international level in a responsible and efficient manner while still maintaining global security. She aims to lead U.S. military global health programs, make a positive footprint worldwide in the operational setting and strategically highlight the important role public health has within security.