Ann Poindexter
1934 - 2021

Dr. Ann Graves Robbins Poindexter, of Conway, was born on Jan. 5, 1934, in Gentry, and passed away on Sept. 30, 2021, in Conway.

Ann was a loving and devoted wife, mother and grandmother. She was a true servant leader and gave her time, resources and energy to her family, church, community and profession. While she was trained as a pediatrician, she was a pioneer in the treatment and care for people with intellectual disabilities. She was a passionate advocate for her patients in her effort to discover more effective and humane treatments.

Ann was an active and involved mother committed to her three children's pursuits and interests. She was a Sunday School teacher, Cub Scout den mother, Girl Scout troop leader, Hendrix Aquakids swim meet organizer and tootsie roll distributor at buddy/little league baseball games.

She welcomed into her home two AFS students, Urs Picco of Switzerland and Hilde Peeters of Belgium, and loved them as if they were her own. She was an avid runner for years and competed in 10k road races across the state. She was a voracious reader and wrote non-fiction mystery novels about medical professionals that she submitted to writing competitions.

She baked bread and cookies for the weekly food pantry and baked bread for the bread of the month club auction at First United Methodist Church. She was a devout member of First United Methodist Church, The Conway District Council of Ministries, the Conway League of Women Voters, the Democratic Party of Arkansas, the American Field Services, the Sierra Club and the American Camping Association.

She was the former First Vice President and President for the Conway branch of American Association of University Women (AAUW) and her name was entered as an honoree of a named fellowship in the AAUW annual Names Honored booklet. She was a lay preacher for the United Methodist Church helping to spread the gospel to Methodist Churches in Arkansas who did not have full time pastors.

Ann was a 1951 graduate of Conway High School, received her bachelor's degree in Natural Sciences from Hendrix College in 1954, and graduated with her MD from the University of Tennessee College of Medicine in 1957. After graduating from medical school she completed her residency in pediatrics first at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas, and then at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga., as the first female chief resident at Egleston Children's Hospital, now Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

In 1969 she began a 25 year career working for the state of Arkansas assisting adults and children with developmental disabilities as a physician and ultimately as the Medical Director at Conway Human Development Center. She continued her work in this field as the Medical Director at the Human Development Center in Grafton, ND. As part of her on-going research and work, she wrote and developed training materials primarily for non-medical workers who work with individuals with developmental disabilities or behavioral problems.

She facilitated health care for persons with intellectual disabilities, particularly those with behavioral/psychiatric problems. She made presentations at local, regional, national, and international conferences, wrote extensively on behavioral/psychiatric and general medical conditions, and authored extensive multimodal staff training materials.

She was certified by the American Board of Pediatrics, was a fellow with the American Academy of Pediatrics, and held membership in the Central Arkansas Pediatrics Society. She was an instructor at Emory University Medical School and was a faculty member at the University of Arkansas Medical Sciences Campus in Little Rock.

Ann was an Officer, Board Member, and Member of the Advisory Council for the National Association of Dual Diagnosis (NADD) from 1992 through 2009. She was the Editor of the NADD Bulletin from 2000 through 2005 and received the NADD Frank J. Menolascino Award for Excellence for Outstanding Leadership in Oct. 2005.

NADD's mission is to promote leadership in the expansion of knowledge, training, policy, and advocacy for mental health practices that promote a quality life for individuals with dual diagnosis (IDD/MI) in their communities. She served on the Board of Trustees for the Baddour Center in Senatobia, MS from 1997 through 2005.

In 2007 Ann received Hendrix College's Distinguished Alumna Award 25 years after her father, Dr. Joe G. Robbins (class of '28), received the same honor. The award is given to alumni who have distinguished themselves in their vocations, service to humanity, and service to the College.

Ann is preceded in death by her parents, Iva May and Dr. Joe G. Robbins of Conway; her brother, Dr. Joe C. Robbins of Charlevoix, Mich.; and her son, Andrew Stratton Poindexter of Houston, Texas.

Ann is survived by her husband of 62 years, Dr. Doug Poindexter of Conway; her son, Joe Poindexter (Mary Ellen) of Atlanta, Ga.; her daughter, Ruth Johnson (Darren) of LIttle Rock; her granddaughter, Elaine Robbins Poindexter of Atlanta, Ga.; and her grandson, Parke Stratton Poindexter, III of Atlanta, Ga.

A service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday Oct. 23, 2021 at First United Methodist Church, 1610 Prince Street, Conway, AR 72034. Friends are encouraged to make a memorial donation in Ann's name to First United Methodist Church.

Published by Log Cabin Democrat on Oct. 7, 2021.
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First United Methodist Church
1610 Prince Street, Conway, AR
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3 Entries
October 29, 2021
Delta LIT Team
October 19, 2021
Dr. Doug, Ruth, Joe, and family, we are so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. Our family memories included a lot to the AquaKids swim meets with Ann always encouraging kids to do their best!
Joyce & John Christopher
October 7, 2021
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