AAIM Member Spotlight
Craig DeGarmo, MBA, MHA
Chief Administrative Officer— Department of Medicine
Baylor College of Medicine
Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine (AAIM) Board of Directors
How long have you been a member of AAIM?
My introduction to the Alliance was in 2011 when became the Division Administrator for the Division of Nephrology at University of Florida. I am now Chief Administrative Officer at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston Texas.
I thought the Alliance was important for professional development. I attended a conference—AIM week—in 2012 and went through the new administrator pre-course. I was so excited to have great mentorship and leadership. I loved the fact that at AIM week I could be in a room with 10 other nephrology administrators and collaborate with them.
After that conference I self-nominated to become an AIM council member and was voted in to be on the Council. My background is real diverse compared to others, but the Alliance helped me from a mentorship perspective. I just started my fourth year and am now president of AIM.
Describe your typical day.
What I like is that there is no typical day! It is complete pandemonium everyday—organized chaos with so many moving parts. I have 12 sections in my department and just under 2200 faculty, staff and trainees. Baylor has the largest residency program in the country. I love that my job is tri-partisan and includes clinical, education, and research.
I work with business, finance, and our group practice on fine tuning the patient experience and ensuring our physicians have everything they need to be successful.
What is your favorite part of the job?
My favorite part is the people. I get to work with the brightest administrators and physicians in the world. I love the fast pace environment and knowing every day is completely different.
How has the AAIM membership been of value to you and your career?
The Alliance put me in front of other administrators who I could collaborate with instead of doing things on my own. We all have similar problems and we realize we are not competitors and need to work together.
I have taken suggestions from Duke, Stanford, and Mount Sinai, and put all different elements together to build the most efficient program possible. I have the Alliance to thank for that.
What's your favorite moment of your career so far?
It’s right now! To be at the Baylor College of Medicine is such a big opportunity—to be in the most saturated healthcare market in the world. You can’t have complacency in this type of market or people would go somewhere else. My big objective is getting back to patient-centric care.
The Alliance has helped set me up for success, to learn from the top people in the industry and change the way we do healthcare.
What was your childhood dream job?
I wanted to be an anesthesiologist.
How do you spend your free time?
I don’t have a lot of free time, but every free moment is spent with my wife and our 15-month-old son. We like to be outdoors, exploring our new city.
What’s one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
For me there are two things. Professionally, most wouldn’t know I’ve been in healthcare for 16 years. The first 8 years were spent in the United States Navy. I was stationed with the Marine Corps as a Corpsman. Personally, I met my wife boarding an airplane at JFK. I was flying back home to Florida and my wife was flying to visit her parents. She and I were standing next to one another, five months later we were engaged, five months after that we were married and now we have a beautiful, happy baby boy.