University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) graduate Dr. Carroll McLeod and his wife, Lorie, hope their major gift to Ole Miss Athletics will help UM sports programs continue to grow.
The McLeods made a $125,000 gift to the Vaught Society, the Ole Miss Athletics Foundation’s (OMAF) fundraising level that provides financial assistance to student-athletes in the form of scholarships, academic guidance and wellness support. This latest gift builds on a $50,000 gift the couple made as founding members of the Vaught Society in 2011.
“We are huge football and baseball fans. We go to all the home games. And while football, baseball and basketball are the headliners, it’s nice for athletes in other disciplines to be able to enjoy the benefits that private gifts bring,” said Dr. McLeod whose gift is unrestricted. “That’s why we didn’t designate this gift as having to go to football or baseball. We just want it to go to Athletics in general.
“If you’re a tennis player, then tennis is the most important thing in your life. If you’re a golfer, golf is the most important thing, and we have just as strong of athletes in all those disciplines as we do in the headliners,” he continued. “So I think private support is important because it helps bring better student-athletes to Ole Miss in all sports and supports their education.”
Born in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Dr. McLeod is a pain medicine specialist in Jackson, Mississippi, and has over 34 years of experience in the medical field. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1984 after studying chemistry for two years at Millsaps College. He earned his MD from UMMC in 1988.
Lorie McLeod, a native of Collins, Mississippi, graduated from the UM School of Business Administration in 1985. The two met in Hattiesburg where a mutual love of waterskiing brought them together. Their son, Carey McLeod, attended Ole Miss and is now an assistant chef at the High Hampton Resort in North Carolina.
Matt McLaughlin, OMAF chief development officer, expressed gratitude for the McLeods’ gift.
“Lorie and Carroll have been longtime supporters of Ole Miss Athletics through our Vaught Society. Their gifts have directly helped our student-athletes by underwriting scholarships and facility improvements, helping to keep the Rebels competitive in their respective sports and high-achieving in their classes,” McLaughlin said.
“We are extremely grateful for their dedication to the success of our student-athletes and programs.”
Dr. McLeod said he was raised a Rebel fan.
“When I was growing up, my family and I would go to every Ole Miss ballgame. We would go to the games in Jackson and Oxford and the out-of-town games,” he said, adding that he especially enjoyed watching renowned Rebel quarterback Archie Manning during his best seasons.
After graduating from UMMC, Dr. McLeod took an internal medicine residency at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, Louisiana, before transferring to the University of Texas medical branch in Galveston for a residency in anesthesiology and to the University of Houston for a pain fellowship.
He then returned to Jackson, where he practiced with an anesthesia and pain management group for 14 years followed by another 15 years in private pain management practice. In 2020, he sold his practice to Mississippi Sports Medicine, the state’s largest orthopedic group, but continues to work for that company. Additionally, he served on the Governor’s Task Force for Opiate Addiction.
After graduating from Ole Miss, Lorie McLeod sold insurance for about a year before her wedding. When the couple moved to Texas, she managed a billing office for three physicians and currently volunteers with Southern Christian Services, a Mississippi-based organization that serves and equips vulnerable children and youth.
In their free time, the McLeods still enjoy waterskiing together and traveling, often taking weekend trips to New Orleans. Additionally, Dr. McLeod enjoys golf and hunting.
The McLeods’ gift will also be credited to CHAMPIONS. NOW., an ongoing fundraising campaign designed to support the expansion and renovation of the Olivia and Archie Manning Athletics Performance Center; the Ole Miss golf, softball and soccer complexes; and Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.
To make a gift to CHAMPIONS. NOW. or the Vaught Society, contact Matt McLaughlin at email@example.com or 662-915-6684.
By Bill Dabney/UM Foundation