October 03, 2017

2017 Citizen of the Year, Dr. Pedro Jose Greer, spoke at the Bob Graham Center on October 3 at 6 p.m. in the Pugh Hall Ocora.

Greer, the associate dean for community engagement at Florida International University’s Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, has spent decades delivering medical care to Florida’s homeless and developing the next generation of culturally competent physicians at FIU. Greer oversees a unique educational program that develops highly-skilled doctors who are also socially accountable to their communities.

Greer is the founder of Camillus Health, a private, not-for-profit organization that provides comprehensive health care, behavioral health and social services to the homeless and poor in Miami-Dade County. He is also the founder of the St. John Bosco Clinic, which has helped to meet the health care needs of undocumented immigrants in the Miami area for more than 20 years.

Greer has advised Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton on health care and poverty and has been honored by several U.S. presidents with some of the nation’s highest honors, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009. Additionally, he has received three Papal Medals and was a 1993 recipient of the prestigious MacArthur Foundation “genius grant.”

His autobiography, Waking Up in America: How One Doctor Brings Hope to Those Who Need it Most, co-written with FIU alumna and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Liz Balmaseda, details his early years as a physician delivering care to patients living under highway overpasses in Miami. His story has been featured on ABC, CBS, NBC and HBO, among others.