Dr. Townsend serves as the District Health Director for the West Central Health District, District 7. She earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi, a master's degree in pharmacology and toxicology from Purdue University, and a medical degree from the University of Mississippi School of Medicine. She completed her residency in family medicine in Columbus, Georgia. She also earned a master's degree in business administration from Kennesaw State University. Townsend practiced family medicine in the rural counties of the Chattahoochee Valley area for nearly twenty-five years. She has served on numerous professional societies including serving as treasurer for the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians and president and secretary of the Columbus/Ft. Benning Medical Association. She has two adult sons.