Dr. James Tarin: Annelle M. Ahmed, M.D., Women's Health Care Award

By Jan Jarvis

Dr. James Tarin met his wife-to-be when they were both in kindergarten.

Dr. James Tarin
Dr. James Tarin

“I guess that’s one of the benefits of growing up in a small town,” he said. “When you meet someone and hit it off, you have all that time to spend together.”

The downside of coming from the small West Texas town of Balmorhea, he later discovered, was not knowing anyone who went to medical school to guide him on that career path.

“I never really thought it was in the cards for me,” Dr. Tarin said. “Coming from Balmorhea, I wasn’t even thinking of medicine as a career.”

That changed when he headed to UT Permian Basin in Odessa, where his advisor suggested that he consider going into medicine. After being accepted into the Joint Admission Medical Program, he shadowed physicians one summer and realized his desire to practice medicine.

“It took a long path of self-discovery to realize medicine was something I really wanted to do all along,” Dr. Tarin said. “I always knew I was supposed to contribute in life, and medicine is the best way for me to do that.”

The recipient of the Annelle M. Ahmed, M.D., Women’s Health Care Award said he was attracted to the field of obstetrics and gynecology because it offered a tangible way to help women. Dr. Tarin will serve his residency at UT Southwestern.

The award is given annually in honor of Dr. Ahmed, a UT Southwestern Medical Center faculty member in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology who died of breast cancer at age 39.

Dr. James Richardson, Professor of Pathology, Molecular Biology, and Plastic Surgery, described Dr. Tarin as a “personable, caring, and compassionate young man.”

“He was raised in a small town where he learned the importance of women’s health in the stability of the family unit,” Dr. Richardson said. “His patients will immediately sense his enthusiasm to improve their lives.”

During his Ob/Gyn clerkship, Dr. Tarin showed exceptional enthusiasm for the specialty, said Dr. David Rogers, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

“He was one of the most pleasant students with whom I have worked, and I am extremely excited that he decided to remain at Parkland Memorial Hospital and UT Southwestern to continue his training,” Dr. Rogers said.

Dr. Tarin, who married his childhood sweetheart in April, hopes one day to establish a practice in West Texas.

“I saw how underserved West Texas is,” he said. “And helping people is one of the big reasons why I went into medicine.”