I was born at Magee Women’s Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA, when Pittsburgh was still known as “the Smoky City”, from the grit of the Steel Mills that made the city famous. I grew up in the "Friendliest City in America" , in the shadow of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, home of the Salk Vaccine , and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, where liver transplants and breast cancer research took up daily headlines. “The City of Champions” spawned numerous football legends and, to this day, cheering for The Pittsburgh Steelers remains my heartfelt passion. My family moved just north of the city near Mars, PA, in 1964. At Mars High School, I was “team trainer” on most of the high school sports teams, lettering in 6 different sports due to my managerial positions. In 1976 I was awarded the Arno H. Thompson Outstanding Character Award, and as Class President, gave the welcoming speech at the bicentennial graduation exercises.
In 1976, I began my journey toward becoming a physician with undergraduate education at the University of Pittsburgh. Along the way I was inducted in each year's honor society, including Phi Eta Sigma (Freshman), Lambda Sigma (Sophomore), Druids (Junior), and Phi Beta Kappa (Excellence in Arts and Sciences). In Alpha Epsilon Delta, the pre-med honor society, I was the first female president at the University of Pittsburgh chapter, and was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" by its 1979/80 members.
In 1977, I got together with a small group of like-minded scholars and we established an “Intra-Honorary Council” that paralleled the networking and promotional activities for leadership that until that time only the Intra-Fraternity Council had enjoyed. This program became a staple at Pitt for the promotion of scholarship on campus. For my role as the founding President of IHC, I was awarded the honor of Valedictorian of the Class of 1980 at the University of Pittsburgh convocation ceremony.
From 1980 to 1985 I attended the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. I represented Pitt on the American Medical Association- Medical Student Section. During this time my father’s failing health provided constant motivation for me to become a physician to aid others to live life to the fullest. He lost his life to brittle diabetes not long after my graduation in Spring of 1985.
I was proud to be selected in 1980 for a Health Professions Scholarship Program position, and began my active duty 'tour' while in medical school in Pittsburgh, with the rank of Second Lieutenant. Upon graduation, I reported to the David Grant USAF Medical Center at Travis Air Force Base, CA for training in Obstetrics and Gynecology, at the rank of Captain. At graduation in June of 1989, I was awarded the “Boots Bodin Memorial Award”, given to the DGMC Resident "Who In The Course of Training Has Exhibited The Most Humanistic and Compassionate Caring of Patients as ‘Total Persons’ .” After completing my four year residency, I was transferred to join the staff at Scott USAF Base Medical Center, in Illinois. I was promoted to Major in 1991, and was involved in the military’s readiness campaign during Desert Storm and Desert Shield. In 1992 I was appointed Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Scott AFB. My efforts at reorganizing the department in a way to optimize limited resources were recognized with the prestigious Meritorious Service Award, presented in 1993. Several months later I resigned my commission to begin life in California in private practice.
In 1993, I bought an established Ob/Gyn practice in Fair Oaks, CA and stepped into a very busy solo-practice in suburban Sacramento. The practice was primarily associated with Mercy San Juan Hospital. After 4 years, I served on the Peer Review Committee of the MSJ Ob/Gyn Department . The next year I was elected to represent the department on the Medical Executive Committee. In 1997, I sold my practice to become an employee of The University of California Davis, and was relocated to their satellite office in Folsom, CA. Since 2000 my practice has been solely allied with Mercy Hospital of Folsom (now ‘Dignity Health’). In 2008 I resigned from UCD and established a solo practice once more. “Ruth Haskins, MD, Inc.” is a very busy general Ob/Gyn practice on Creekside Drive, Folsom, Ca.
Dr. Benjamin Berry was an established Obstetrician/Gynecologist whose associate left their Fair Oaks practice in 1993, having sold his practice to me. Dr. Berry became a wonderful friend and inspirational mentor to me. He introduced me to his good friend, Dr. Vivien Dickerson, then Vice Chair of District 9 ACOG and Chair of their Committee on Legislation. A place was promptly found for me on the ACOG COL committee, leading to a career of women’s health advocacy. Additionally, Dr. Berry knew of a position on the Board of Trustees of the Sacramento Sierra Valley Medical Society just created for a ‘young physician’. This was when CMA had just divided its representation into modes of practice and practice fora. I subsequently served on the Board of Directors from 1996 through 1998, and then dedicated my political attention to promoting women’s health through various positions with ACOG District 9, including serving as chair of its Legislative Committee for 11 years. During this time I represented ACOG on the Specialty Delegation at the CMA House of Delegates - ultimately chairing this delegation for 7 years.
In 2001 I was selected as a McCain Fellow, where I externed with the Government Relations Department at ACOG in Washington, DC. I was present in the US Capitol during “9/11” and my political and patriotic perspectives were forever deepened by that experience.
I have been a public figure in many campaigns, especially during my tenure as Chair of the CMA Council on Legislation from 2010 through 2013. I have testified in front of the legislature, have been interviewed by news outlets locally and nationally, have met with state and federal policymakers and legislators, and have campaigned for physicians and candidates supportive of public health who are running for public office. For five years I served as Vice Chair of the ‘Midwife Advisory Commmittee’ of the Medical Board of CA. In 2013 I was appointed by the State Senate to represent the CMA on the Emergency Medical Services Commission. I was elected an executive officer on that Board in 2014. In my local medical society I have served for over a decade on the Committee on Nominations and also on the Utilization and Review Committee. In recognition of my role as “A Leading Advocate for Patients and Physicians on Healthcare Issues” I was presented with “The Medical Honor Award” of 2008.
Ruth Rollings became Ruth Haskins in July of 1987, marrying Christopher Haskins in a Quaker ceremony on the grounds of Hartwood Acres, a state owned mansion near Pittsburgh. While I was establishing myself in practice in Sacramento, Chris was attending McGeorge School of Law, from which he graduated in 1996. In 1994 we had our first child, John Marshall, now a Junior at San Diego State University. He aspires to be a Marriage and Family Therapist. In 1996 our younger son, Nicholas Scott, was born. Nick will graduate from Oak Ridge High School in May 2015. He is a champion debator and plans to major in Political Science and Communications. He will be attending the University of Oregon in the Fall of 2015. The influence of having a political activist for a Mother and an attorney for a Father has made for many heated conversations in the Haskins household, and both boys have a sharpened skill for negotiation and mediation that will serve them well.
In my spare time, I am an insatiable reader and practice yoga religiously. My passion for my Pittsburgh Steelers is legendary!