Welcome to this edition of the FSP member spotlight. Every month we will highlight a different FSP member who is doing exciting things in the field of pathology. This month we are featuring Lizardo Cerezo, MD, FCAP. Dr. Cerezo was awarded the FSP President’s Service Award earlier this year at the FSP Annual Pathology Conference in Orlando. Dr. Cerezo has been an active member of the FSP for many years and is currently serving on the Board of Directors.
Lizardo Cerezo, MD, FCAP
Senior Staff Pathologist and Hematopathologist
Medical Director, Clinical Laboratory and Medical Staff Leadership Physician
Dr. P. Phillips Hospital
What is your current role?
I am the most senior pathologist in a group of 15 affiliated with a 1,500-bed community and teaching hospital system in Central Florida. Though I have transferred many administrative responsibilities to more junior members, I am still laboratory Medical Director of one of our most active and profitable hospitals‒Dr. P Phillips Hospital‒and active in its medical leadership. Since I have 40 years of hematopathology experience, I am also my group’s senior hemepath consultant. I previously chaired the Blood Use Committee for the entire hospital system and currently still contribute to transfusion medicine development as Blood Bank Medical Director.
What is the best part of your occupation?
One of the most enjoyable parts of my job is the opportunity to continue to teach pathology to our residents. After 40 years of teaching, I still look forward to observing them marvel as they discover the amazing spectrum of the field and bearing witness to their progress. Not to mention that you can never predict the personalities and interesting backgrounds.
How did you become interested in pathology?
I was a Pediatric resident and very unhappy. Though I always loved microscopy, studying the cellular and tissue basis of biology, I never connected that with Pathology (in medical school pathology was never presented as a clinical specialty). Once I made the connection, it was one of those life-changing, “light-bulb” moments that showed me the professional path for the rest of my life, and I have never regretted the choice.
How did you become involved with the FSP?
I always went to the FSP meeting in Orlando but was not active until I realized that the FSP was the only group that was the true advocate for pathologists in Florida. I was impressed by the fact that the leadership group were experienced people like me‒busy with their own daily practice yet volunteering to put in the work on behalf of the profession.
How do you benefit from being a member of FSP?
I feel I benefit most from the FSP from interacting with colleagues from all parts of the state that I otherwise will never get a chance to talk to both socially and professionally.
What would you like to see occur in the field of pathology (i.e., scientific advances, greater awareness of the field, etc.) during your career?
Though pathology will always be a very selective field within medicine, I would like to see greater awareness in the general population of the important daily contributions pathologists make to health care. I would like to see pathologists become even more active within their hospitals and medical communities as proponents and stewards of quality evidence-based health care.
What are your hobbies outside of the office?
My “hobbies” are very simple. I really enjoy exercising and work out with a personal trainer. At home, my super hero alter ego is Captain Weed Killer (never a shortage of weed carnage opportunities in our yard). I love the beauty and tranquility of our Florida beaches, especially listening to the waves talk to me. I once was an active car guy and still enjoy doing the old timer thing with some buddies hitting the big car shows and auctions (my 1980 MGB is a prize winner and still rates thumbs ups when I’m riding around).
What is something surprising that most people do not know about you?
Though I don’t play any musical instruments (occasional conga and bongos don’t really count), I love all types of music. Music instantly affects me in a wonderful way, and I have always tried to have music in the background no matter what I’m doing. Maybe that has something to do with the fact that two of our children have musical careers: one a promoter and owner of a music label and the other a recording artist rock musician who tours internationally with her own band.
Want to be in the spotlight?
Nominate yourself or another FSP member to participate in our member spotlight program to get to know your fellow colleagues and connect with other pathology professionals. To learn more and participate, email FSP Membership Manager Lacey Clayton at email@example.com.
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