AAIM Member Spotlight
Jose A. Perez Jr., MD
Professor of Clinical Medicine
Weill Cornell Medicine
Vice Chair of Education, Residency Program Director
Medical Director Main 5 NW
Department of Medicine, Houston Methodist Hospital
How long have you been a member of AAIM?
I’ve been a member for 20 years. I joined when I first became a program director in 1997 in Bakersfield, CA.
Describe your typical day.
I came to Houston Medical in 2007 to develop a brand new residency and help in the development of fellowship programs. We now have 51 residents and six fellowship training programs. We’ve also developed education programs with three major medical schools including Texas A&M University, Weill Cornell Medicine in NY and UT Medical Branch.
What is your favorite part of the job?
My favorite part of the job remains morning report discussions with residents and faculty and being on the floor teaching. These face to face meetings are a lot of fun.
How has the AAIM membership been of value to you and your career?
It’s been very good to see that challenges and issues that I face also come up for other people. I’ve benefited from other members sharing with me their creative solutions to some of the same issues that we have had at the institutions where I’ve worked.
What's your favorite moment of your career so far?
The greatest moment is when my PGY3 class is highly successful in matching with fellowship training at the end of the year. We’ve had great success in placing people in great places and this has been very rewarding. I think part of my job is to make people successful. Also, I was honored to be promoted to Professor last year.
What was your childhood dream job?
Out of all my siblings I expressed the most interest in becoming a physician. My dad and his two brothers are physicians. I never thought of doing anything else. I had a few moments of wanting to be a musician and at one point, I was convinced I was going to be a priest, but that didn’t last long.
How do you spend your free time?
I have a lot of outside interests, including running, reading and cooking, which are important to me. I start each day with a run about five days a week. I play the piano and actually went back to take lessons in 2009 after a very long time. I have three children ages 29, 25, and 22 and one grandson. One of my sons studies in France, and so my wife and I decided to take French lessons. We try to visit often!
What’s one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I was born in Mexico and grew up in the US since I was three years old. It was surprising to recently learn that one of my ancestors on my dad’s side (my great-great grandfather) was actually from Whiteville, Tennessee. He apparently went to Coahuila, Mexico and became a physician and I have a certificate indicating that he was the town physician for Sierra Mojada in the state of Coahuila for a time in the 1880’s.