Dr Brock Happy To Inspire Next Generation

February 26, 2024 | 0 Comments

[Written by Stephen Wright]

Dr Malcolm Brock has stressed the importance of persistence in the face of adversity after being recognised by the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club as part of their Black History Month celebrations.

A professor of surgery and oncology at the world-renowned Johns Hopkins University of Medicine, Dr Brock was honoured alongside fellow prominent Black Bermudians in the scientific and medical field, Dr Carika Weldon and Dr Terry-Lynne Emery.

Dr Brock said it was an “honour to be associated with such an illustrious group of individuals” and was thrilled to learn he had inspired Dr Weldon to join the medical profession.

“They [the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club] have done a great job recognising Black Bermudians who have contributed to the community,” Dr Brock told Bernews. “I was pleasantly surprised to receive the invitation to be honoured.”

He added: “Dr Weldon and I are both former Warwick Academy students. I first met her when I returned to the island to give a talk at my alma mater earlier in my career.

“I didn’t realise I had inspired her until very recently. She was in the audience when I gave the talk. I was just trying to motivate people to go into something exciting and interesting.”

Dr Brock graduated from the Ivy League Princeton University and pursued a Master of Letters in East Asian studies as a Rhodes scholar.

He went on to earn a medical degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1991 and completed a general surgery residency and a fellowship in cardiothoracic surgery at the university hospital.

He has been awarded honours, including a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Bermuda Healthcare Foundation and the prestigious James IV Association of Surgeons Award.

A member of several US medical societies and a former president of the Society of Black Academic Surgeons, Dr Brock said his journey to excellence did not come without obstacles.

“There’s never a straight path towards anything,” he said. “As a Bermudian, I had some difficulty convincing some US medical schools that they should train me.

“Harvard University actually returned my application with the $50! However, other medical schools were interested in my place of origin. Some had policies against taking people from outside the US, and others were more receptive.

“That was 1985 – things have changed considerably. You must accept the obstacles and challenges and forge onwards.

“What I’m most proud of is never giving up. You have to figure out a way to overcome those challenges.”

Dr Brock was appointed the EF Gordon Professor of Thoracic Surgery at Johns Hopkins in 2020.

Dr Gordon is regarded as the father of the labour movement in Bermuda and is the father of Dame Pamela Gordon-Banks – the island’s first woman Premier.

He also helped save the life of Dr Brock’s father, who was taken to Dr Gordon as a five-year-old after his condition had confounded other doctors.

“[The professorship] allows me to tell people about Dr Gordon, his accomplishments, political activism, and clinical activity in Bermuda,” Dr Brock added.

“As a Black Bermudian, Dr Gordon epitomises excellence.”

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