Jacob was the first Australian neurosurgeon to apply for and receive the Fellowship at our Centre. Given the disdain with which my fellow neurosurgeons treat me and anyone associated with me, this was an incredibly courageous and admirable step. I had the pleasure of working with Jacob several years ago when he rotated through the public hospital as a junior registrar. He impressed me then. I had briefly contemplated seducing him back to the Centre one day in the hope that he may wish to specialise in brain tumours. Over the last 6 months he did not disappoint us. Jacob is an exceptional human being. He has warmth and compassion, immeasurable professionalism, a great depth of knowledge, surgical courage and dexterity and superb communication skills…… and a wicked sense of humour! He became an immediate team member and was liked by all with whom he made contact. Jacob will be furthering his training in Canada in the field of neurovascular surgery with the plan of becoming both a brain tumour and a vascular neurosurgeon. I couldn’t think of a more worthy colleague in whom I would place the care of my patients and hope that he will consider returning to our Centre in 2012. We wish him and his wonderful family the best of luck in Toronto.
Bledi is quietly spoken and reserved both socially and professionally. I noticed his manner on our first interview and was secretly a little worried that we may not click in both arenas, at work and at play. Within a week of working closely with Bledi, any reservation I had was dispelled. He typifies the expression, still waters run deep. He demonstrated warmth and compassion to all patients but especially those who needed a bit more time to accept post-operative deficits or a terminal diagnosis. He’s a great listener but his paucity of words doesn’t mean he doesn’t contribute to clinical decision making and complex clinical scenarios. On the contrary, when Bledi has something to say, people listen. In the operating room, he showed exceptional dexterity and sound insight into controversial situations.
My running joke with Bledi was that he was the only fellow who refused to reduce his meat intake in deference to my veganism. While I was a little upset with him…. for the animals sake…. it is illustrative of Bledi’s strong personality and conviction….. sad for the animals but comforting for his patients who can be reassured he will be uncompromising in their care.
I really enjoyed my time with Bledi. He was a stable force during some trying times for me personally and professionally. He was fun to be around, incredibly trustworthy and a compassionate clinician. We wish him the best of luck for the future and look forward to hearing great things.