Although Krystal Tomei, MD, MPH, is early in her neurosurgical career, she already has shown what brilliance and diligence can achieve. Even during the earliest stages of her career, she sacrificed beyond the grueling work of a neurosurgical resident through her commitment to organized neurosurgery and medicine. She has tirelessly extended these efforts as a rising star within academic neurosurgery. Those of us that have observed her up close can attest to her skill, dedication, knowledge and effectiveness. Krystal clearly embodies all the many components of service to patients and society that neurosurgery’s founders extolled.
A native of Florida, Dr. Tomei graduated from University of Florida and then its College of Medicine. She completed her neurosurgical residency at the New Jersey Medical School, which included a year dedicated to receiving an MPH from Harvard. Her residency was followed by a fellowship in Pediatric Neurosurgery at the Barrow Institute, Phoenix Children’s Hospital, and additional fellowship training in Pediatric Spinal Deformity at the Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia.
In 2015, Dr. Tomei was named the Reinberger Endowed Director of Pediatric Neurological Surgery at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital in Cleveland. In the past year alone, she has been awarded the Anton Fellowship (Cleveland Medical Center), has received an American Medical Association (AMA) Excellence in Medicine Award and the University of Florida College of Medicine Young Alumni Award.
A leader in both pediatric neurosurgery and in public health policy, she serves as editor of Clinical Neurosurgery and is an editorial board member of Operative Neurosurgery. In the AMA, she was recently elected to the AMA Council on Medical Education (having previously served as the resident member of the Council) and is a member of the Neurosurgical Delegation, representing the Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS) in the AMA House of Delegates.
I am both pleased and proud to have contributed to Dr. Tomei’s training and to have had the opportunity to observe her neurosurgical expertise and her many contributions beyond. In acknowledging the remarkable success defining her early career trajectory, her equally impressive intangible qualities, which include generosity of spirit and grace, are shown by her own words,
“In neurosurgery, WINS is filled with fantastic women mentors who have paved the path for us. Equally important are those male mentors who have served as champions in our career development. All of these neurosurgeons serve to cultivate the future of neurosurgery.”
Dr. Tomei is a friend, colleague and neurosurgeon par excellence. She serves as an outstanding ambassador for all of neurosurgery.