Best of the West: Erin Fernandez

Your name, title and department. How long have you worked here?
Erin Fernandez, Ambulatory Manager, Orthopedics and Sports Medicine Community Outreach. I have worked at Texas Children’s for just over five years.

Tell us how you found out you won the Best of the West award.
I was told by my assistant director, Robert Gilpin, that we had a meeting for community relationships and working to grow the awareness of the Texas Children’s Orthopedics and Sports Medicine services. I was very surprised to learn otherwise.

What does it mean to be recognized for the hard work you do? How has the organization helped you achieve your personal and professional goals?
It was very unexpected to receive the Best of the West award and very humbling. I do feel that it is important to recognize hard work efforts, and equally want to recognize everyone who is working hard and sacrificing to ensure the quality of care and service to our families and community is upheld. Working at Texas Children’s has allowed me to grow and develop into a better person and leader with opportunities that allow me to step outside of my comfort zone and push the limits. My motivation is ‘the challenge’ and I hope to never be stagnant or settle because you never know where those opportunities will take you and teach you. My career passion is working with people, serving in any way possible, and youth sports; being an athletic trainer and representing Texas Children’s hospital in our community is truly remarkable because I am able to marry all three.

What do you think makes someone at Texas Children’s, The Best of the West?
Above and beyond is an accurate traditional expectation. It is also being dependable, collaborative, having perseverance, not taking the shortcut, being compassionate, but mostly having a willingness; a willingness to be all of those things at any given time.

What is your motivation for going above and beyond every day at work?
My work ethic comes from my parents. I grew up on a farm and if there was a job to do, you get it done. I have carried that with me, I owe a lot to my parents and am thankful for their guidance and support. My husband provides the continual drive to ensure we both lead by example for our kids and each day provides us the opportunity to do just that.

What is the best thing about working at Texas Children’s?
My team. I have recently been fortunate to be a part of many teams, labor pool, hurricane ride-out, and community outreach for our Orthopedics and Sports Medicine. The quality of ALL of the team members I have had the pleasure and privilege of working with has been truly sensational. The freedom to lead with my style and receive support from both, the team members and leadership keeps everyday enjoyable. In a business of caring for people, it is our #OneAmazingTeam that is the best thing.

What does it mean to you that everyone at Texas Children’s is considered a leader? What is your leadership definition?
Leadership is a verb. It is an entrustment that you will do what you are asking your team to do, to encourage and support with fortitude and grace; providing a guiding light. By that definition, everyone has the capacity and ability to be a leader; willingness is the key ingredient.

Anything else you want to share?
Writing about one’s self is tougher than leading labor pool.