This post is from one of the Inspiring Hospice and Palliative Medicine Leaders Under 40. Arif Kamal, MD, was selected based on his involvement in AAHPM, educating others about hospice and palliative medicine, participation in charitable work, and mentoring of students or residents. The honoree was then asked who inspired him over the course of his career. We are sharing some of his answers in this post. Check back regularly for posts from other leaders.

Who has most influenced your work in hospice and palliative medicine and what impact has he or she had?
My work in Hospice and Palliative Medicine is most influenced by the memory of my mother. It was my experiences taking care of her that inspired me to shift my career towards this discipline, and it is her lasting memory and influence that keeps me passionate about improving the lives of others with serious illness and their loved ones. Secondly, Amy Abernethy, my longtime mentor and friend has shown me how to translate that passion and inspiration into meaningful research, effective leadership, and compassionate clinical care.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In five years, I see myself furthering the quality of palliative care delivery across the discipline through research and leadership activities.

What is the best advice you have ever received?
My favorite advice is about the role of a leader – “The role of a leader is to define reality, and in the end say thank you. Otherwise, the leader is a servant” – Max Planck.