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Dr. Chad Taylor: A love for medicine and teaching

Dr. Chad Taylor holds a young patient.

For Chad Taylor, DO, MPH, ’13, chance led to becoming a doctor. Originally a political science major, he was completing his undergraduate studies at Minnesota State University when he finished an Intro to Biology class in the top five – out of 500 classmates.

His biology professor asked him what he was planning to do with a political science degree. Dr. Taylor
said he wanted to help people and make a difference.

Dr. Williams encouraged him to take additional science courses, including chemistry and a higher-level biology course. If Dr. Taylor excelled in those courses, Dr. Williams wanted to follow up and discuss a career path in medicine.

Dr. Taylor did excel, and Dr. Williams helped him get a shadowing position with Ann Barry, MD, the clinical director of a local free clinic.

“It was through Drs. Williams and Barry that I learned to really love medicine, and I learned this was my calling,” Dr. Taylor says.

While shadowing Dr. Barry, Dr. Taylor saw the power a physician had to change a person’s life through education and general wellness, and advocating for patients. This drew him to osteopathic medicine. The mission of ATSU and especially ATSU-SOMA to educate primary care physicians to help underserved
populations was “right up his alley.”

“We learned things from our professors that books can’t teach: how to make eye contact, how to help someone who might be physically struggling to get up on the exam table, and how to create a connection,” says Dr. Taylor.

During his rotations in Kingman, Arizona, Dr. Taylor met a dermatologist who saw promise in Dr. Taylor’s way with patients. He was offered a job at the dermatology practice on the third day.

“It was very bizarre to be offered a job in dermatology,” Dr. Taylor says. “My first love was primary care, but I chose dermatology because this was the only dermatology practice that accepted state-sponsored insurance and offered a sliding scale for cash-pay patients with no insurance.”

After a few years as a partner in the Kingman practice, the practice closed during the pandemic.

Now, Dr. Taylor serves his alma mater as a regional director for medical education in Flagstaff, Arizona, working with second- through fourth-year medical students. Additionally, Dr. Taylor practices family medicine and dermatology in a small clinic setting.

“It is so wonderful serving my home community of Flagstaff,” Dr. Taylor says. “I am very happy and fulfilled in these two positions; I love to teach, and it suits me well!”


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