JEMS Editor Emeritus A.J. Heightman is proud to report that Rear Admiral (Ret.) Ronny L. Jackson, former White House physician who was the recipient of a JEMS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017, emerged victorious from a GOP runoff for a seat representing in the northern Texas 13th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives this week.
Jackson, who served Presidents Trump, Obama and Bush, was presented with his JEMS Lifetime Award at EMS Today in Salt Lake City for his decades of support of emergency medical services and close coordination of presidential and Secret Service planning, and medical logistics planning with local EMS agencies throughout his career.
“It is exciting and encouraging to now have a true EMS physician, an EMS physician who truly understands the needs and dilemmas of the EMS community, in Congress,” Heightman said. “His support of Operation Iraqi Freedom as the emergency medicine physician in charge of resuscitative medicine for a forward deployed surgical shock trauma platoon in Taqaddum, Iraq, gave Ronny a true perspective of what can be done in trauma and medical resuscitation and I believe he will help us transfer that level of expertise and innovation to our U.S. prehospital EMS systems. I know Ronny well and am certain he will keep prehospital EMS in his sights and vision as discussions and legislation occur in Congress.”
Jackson beat Josh Winegarner, who was endorsed by the retiring incumbent, Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas). Jackson was endorsed by President Donald Trump, Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
Texas’s 13th Congressional District is rated as “solid Republican” or “safe Republican” by political handicappers, meaning his win in the primary essentially secured the seat.
A native of Levelland, Texas, Jackson graduated from Texas A&M University in 1991 with a Bachelor of Science in marine biology.
He then went on to attend medical school at the University of Texas Medical Branch, graduating in 1995 with his Doctor of Medicine degree.
He began his active duty naval service in 1995 at the Portsmouth Naval Medical Center in Virginia, where he completed his internship in transitional medicine.
After completing his first year of residency training in 1996, he went on to become the honor graduate of the Navy’s Undersea Medical Officer Program in Groton, Connecticut.
Uniquely qualified in submarine and hyperbaric medicine, his subsequent operational assignments included, instructor at the Naval Diving and Salvage Training Center in Panama City, Florida; det. Officer in charge and diving medical officer at Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 8 in Sigonella, Italy; and diving safety officer at the Naval Safety Center in Norfolk, Virginia.
In 2001, Jackson returned to Portsmouth Naval Medical Center to begin his residency in emergency medicine, finishing at the top of his class and receiving the honor graduate designation.
Upon completing his residency in 2004, he was assigned as clinical faculty in the Emergency Medicine Residency Program at the Naval Hospital in Portsmouth, Virginia.
In 2005 he joined the 2nd Marines, Combat Logistics Regiment 25, in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. From there he deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom as the emergency medicine physician in charge of resuscitative medicine for a forward deployed Surgical Shock Trauma Platoon in Taqaddum, Iraq.
In 2006, while still in Iraq, Jackson was selected as a White House physician.
At the White House, Jackson directed the Executive Health Care for the President’s Cabinet and Senior Staff, served as physician supervisor for the Camp David Presidential Retreat, held the position of physician to the White House and led the White House Medical Unit as its director.
His awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards), as well as other individual, unit and campaign awards.
He is also designated as a diving and undersea medical officer, naval parachutist, Fleet Marine Force Warfare qualified officer, and submarine warfare qualified medical officer.
Dr. Jackson is a board-certified diplomate of the American Board of Emergency Medicine and is designated as a fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine.
He has also held faculty clinical appointments with the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and the Harvard School of Medicine-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Disaster Medicine Fellowship Program.