Photo by Vince Mincey

Dr. Carolina Perez

Surgical Podiatrist, Thomas E. Creek Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center

The best advice I ever heard is: “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love” (Mother Teresa). “Work hard! If work was easy, no one would pay you to do it” (my mother, Dorys Caballero).

My three most recommended books are: The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, by Deepak Chopra, a transformative read that delves deep into the essence of personal growth. My other recommendations are simply the books that were a part of my education. Even though I spent days and nights of unpleasant reading, they’ve shaped my life in profound ways. Twelve years of dedication to these books has not only elevated my professional trajectory, but has also paved a brighter financial future for my family. My kids are next in line to reap the benefits!

To me, success means: uplifting others. Beyond personal achievements, helping others alleviates feelings of depression and loneliness and breaks the chains of stagnation. Like-minded individuals gravitate toward each other. So, if you’re out there making a difference in someone’s life, trust that the universe will send someone to do the same for you.

People who know me might be surprised that I: once made my husband swap our cozy home for a tent in national forests—for three whole months! From learning to bathe in a river to mastering the art of whipping up a four-course meal on a camp stove, it was quite the transformative journey for him. (And yes, he survived to tell the tale.)

My biggest pet peeve is: Life’s too short to sweat the small stuff. Whenever I feel a pet peeve creeping up, I take a moment to zoom out and appreciate the bigger picture. 

Everyone in Amarillo needs to experience: Immerse yourself in a day on a farm. Beyond the fresh air, it’s a deep dive into the grit, sweat and relentless hard work that powers the heart of Amarillo and the Panhandle. Everyone should also experience the breathtaking beauty of Palo Duro Canyon at sunrise. 

If I could change any one local thing it would be: More art, please! Art isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s a catalyst for city growth. Take Støex Design Gallery, for instance. They’re not just showcasing art; they’re spotlighting Amarillo’s vibrant creative community, helping to attract talent, small businesses and professionals while nurturing a sense of belonging. 

This city is amazing at: raising children, thanks to Amarillo’s nurturing environment and community.

My favorite place in Amarillo is: Wildcat Bluff Discovery Center. This hidden gem is just waiting to be explored by runners and hikers. 

A local organization I love right now: Amarillo Veterans Affairs, whose unwavering commitment to our heroes is commendable. Assisting and supporting our Veterans, they ensure that those who’ve served our country receive the care and respect they so rightfully deserve.