Dr. Mary Ann Contogiannis was born in Latrobe, Pennsylvania to Gus and Eleni Contogiannis. Her parents were immigrants from Greece who came to America to pursue the American Dream. The family moved to Greensboro, NC for a new business opportunity when she was a child so Mary Ann grew up in Greensboro. Her parents eventually opened the Acropolis Restaurant in 1967 in downtown Greensboro and 54 years later her brother, Jimmy, still operates the restaurant. And yes, Mary Ann thinks it is the best Greek food in North Carolina!
Mary Ann’s parents taught their children the values of family, community engagement, religion and a good work ethic. As a family and now as an adult, she grew up attending the Dormition of the Theotokos Greek Orthodox Church in Greensboro. Mary Ann’s faith is especially important to her. She has served her Church as a member of the choir, as a volunteer choir organist, taught Sunday School, served on the Parish Council and has participated in many Greek Food Festivals.
Mary Ann’s mother, Eleni, frequently recalled that Mary Ann told her as a young teenager that she wanted to become a physician. Eleni would ask Mary Ann why and she answered, “I want to be able to help people who are sick.” Eleni told her that she could do anything that she wanted so if she wanted to become a physician she could. With the support of her parents and family Mary Ann was able to achieve the American Dream. After graduating Grimsley High School Mary Ann went to Duke University for her undergraduate degree and East Carolina University for medical school. And she worked at her family’s restaurant all the way through medical school to help finance her education. Mary Ann then trained in General Surgery followed by a Plastic Surgery residency and achieved her American Dream. Mary Ann came back home to Greensboro to practice Plastic Surgery and currently is in a solo private practice. So, Mary Ann is a small businesswoman and feels the economic and inflationary pressures everyone is experiencing.
Early in her career, Mary Ann was attracted to the political side of medicine as she began to realize that advocacy was an important part of providing good healthcare to her patients. Contogiannis has worked hard to not only serve her patients, but to also improve access to quality healthcare for people all across North Carolina and America. She has been advocating for patients in healthcare for over 30 years at both the national and state levels. Mary Ann is confident walking in the halls of the US House and Senate and talking with members about ways to improve quality and access to healthcare.
As she became a member of various medical organizations, Contogiannis soon became involved not only in the advocacy aspects of them but also in the leadership of these organizations. As a resident, Mary Ann broke the glass ceiling when she was elected to the American Medical Association’s Board of Trustees along with another female physician as they were the first females elected to serve on the Board of Trustees. She has served on the Board of Directors of the NC Medical Society (NCMS), and the American Society of Plastic Surgery (ASPS). She also served as the chair of the State Legislative Advocacy Committee for ASPS and on the Legislative Cabinet of the NCMS. Contogiannis has led the NC Society of Plastic Surgeons as its President.
Each of these experiences have helped Mary Ann Contogiannis develop the leadership skills necessary to serve as a Congresswoman. Mary Ann is now ready to proudly represent the citizens of Congressional District 6.
Mary Ann’s husband, Ralph Huey, was born and raised in Burlington, NC. After dating for 4 years, they married in 1997. Ralph was an incredibly supportive husband for 20 years but unfortunately, he died at an early age a few years ago. Mary Ann’s stepdaughter, Ivey, is happily married and has started her family with a beautiful daughter.