2020 AASLD President: Jorge Bezerra

One of the first articles that I read this year (2021) was “Introducing Jorge A Bezerra, MD, Our 2020 AASLD President” (WF Balistreri. Hepatology 2020; 72: 801-806).

I have a deep admiration and fondness for Jorge. When I first did a gastroenterology rotation during my pediatric residency, he was the first person who handed me an endoscope and showed me how to handle it. During my training as a resident and as a fellow (1991-1997), I had the opportunity to get to know Jorge; for some of that time, he was completing his training as he started his GI fellowship in 1990.

I really enjoyed reading this introduction to learn a lot more about Jorge, because I don’t remember Jorge speaking about himself. Of course, he has been part of some very important advances in pediatric hepatology including the very useful MMP-7 assay, the ‘Jaundice chip’ and the START study.

The article delves into some personal attributes including the description of Jorge being ‘the Pele of pediatric hepatology’ (per Dr. Ronald Sokol). It also describes his family and some characteristics. “He has inspired us with his calm demeanor, decency, humor, positivity, and kindness.”

It is a personal thrill for me to read about one of my heroes in our field.

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