Garcia's many experiences inspired him to become a leader who today is transforming community health care with a focus on the health of minorities, the underserved and women.
He put on hold his second year of medical school to work on a research project comparing the diets of women who develop breast cancer with those who remain cancer-free. After finishing his degree and a four-year residency at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, Garcia completed a fellowship at Johns Hopkins before returning to the UA in 1999 to take on a series of leadership roles in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the UA Hispanic Center of Excellence, the UA Center of Excellence in Women’s Health and the Arizona Cancer Center’s Cancer Disparities Institute. Garcia also served on national and international working groups addressing health equity and disparities as well as cervical cancer and sexually transmitted disease prevention.
In 2013, Garcia was asked to be the director and chief medical officer of the Pima County Health Department, a prestigious position that puts the responsibility for safeguarding the health of more than 1 million people in his hands.
Garcia, who exemplifies qualities that the College of Medicine cultivates in its students, has been named the college's 2015 Alumnus of the Year.
The UA Alumni Association will honor all recipients of the 2015 Alumni of the Year Awards during an Oct. 23 event to be held 3-5 p.m. in the Grand Ballroom of the Student Union Memorial Center. For more information, contact the Alumni Association at 520-621-7576.