I’m blessed to have reached a high level of success in my professional career, and I have made it my duty to give back to the community that has yielded these great rewards and success. I’m eager to share my involvement with the United Way, Health Care for the Homeless, and Special Olympics, all organizations near and dear to my heart.
The Big Brothers & Big Sisters program of United Way is a mentorship program that believes every child has the ability to succeed in life. They partner with parents, guardians, volunteers, and others in the community (called Bigs) to make meaningful matches with children from the ages of 6 through 18 (called Littles).
For a number of years, I was a Big Brother for the United Way. In this role, I had the opportunity to help shape a child’s future for the better. I made weekly visits to my Little Brother to help him with tough things like homework, but also went to the park to throw the ball around or grabbed some ice cream together.
This experience helped me develop a deeper understanding of the importance of caring for children that are in need of love and support, while also fostering their leadership skills and helping them realize their full potential. If you’re interested in becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister, you can find more information here.
Health Care for the Homeless
At one point in my career, I was motivated to explore a side of medicine that I had less familiarity with. My training at the Mayo Clinic involved caring for individuals who were generally more socioeconomically fortunate, and that inspired me to join Health Care for the Homeless in Phoenix.
Health Care for the Homeless delivers quality healthcare to homeless people through street outreach and integrated primary care. It provides mental health services, substance abuse services, case management, nutrition services, and more.
As a staff physician, I gained a better understanding of the homeless plight and their lack of access to basic healthcare. It was an enriching and rewarding experience to be able to care for those who needed it the most, but most importantly, I gained compassion for all mankind regardless of circumstance. It was profoundly humbling to gain insight into the backgrounds of many homeless people, including those with advanced degrees.
I played football, basketball, and track when I was in high school. Given my sports’ background and love of children, I jumped at the opportunity to spearhead the medical program for Special Olympics Minnesota.
Special Olympics is a leader in raising awareness about the abilities of people with intellectual disabilities. Through the power of sports, people with intellectual disabilities have the opportunity to discover new strengths, abilities, and skills to achieve success.
Since I believe every child, even those with disabilities, deserves a safe and secure foundation to realize their full potential in life, Special Olympics became the perfect opportunity for me to put my experience as an athlete and physician to use.