My experience as a surgeon who left clinical practice because of mental illness makes me an ideal speaker about burnout and mental health, both for the medical profession and for society in general.

ABOUT

I am a fully trained, fully licensed, fully retired vascular surgeon. After 4 years of college at Yale University, 4 years at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, 3 years of laboratory research, 7 years of residency both at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Washington, AND 10 years of clinical practice, I hung up my scalpel and picked up a keyboard instead. I traded O.R. Lights for stage lights. To be clear, my clinical career was cut short by mental illness, but I remain ever willing to help others. Only now instead of sutures and stents, I use words and the power of talk. I speak on the issues of mental illness in society, particularly in the medical profession, and I strive to start conversations about mental illness. My background, while clearly steeped in medicine, also includes experience with stage such as with dancing in a local production of the Nutcracker, to Improv Comedy, and small episodes of trying Stand-Up Comedy. Other pursuits include sketching, watercolors, cooking, and amateur photography. My home is full of love, my wife, two children (one in college) and a large dog.

Performance

IT'S TIME TO PUT ON MAKE-UP

My daughter, the dancer, danced in a full student production of the Nutcracker. The company used volunteers for the adult actors...so I volunteered

Watercolors/Art

A. FOSS & SWIFTSURE

I have always enjoyed sketching and doing watercolors.

Performance

HAM

 

As Herr Drosselmeyer in the Nutcracker I had one job: to act as big and overly dramatic as possible. I willingly obliged.

Photography

RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT TIME

Taken in Mexico, 2010 on a fishing trip

Comedy

STAND-UP and IMPROV

Humor is a pillar of all of my conversations. I've explored this part of my craft on various stages.

NAME

ENLIGHTENED

Taken in Taiwan, 2013