Jon Karnes, MD

Medical School: James H. Quillen College of Medicine
Family Medicine Residency: Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency
Dermatology Fellowship: University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio

I grew up in East Tennessee—about a thousand miles from Maine-Dartmouth. I attended Furman University and was lucky enough to take a course in medical ethics and sociology that clarified a fuzzy interest in medicine as a tool for social good. Back in Tennessee, at ETSU’s James H. Quillen College of Medicine, I was surrounded by passionate family docs practicing skillfully in rural Appalachia. Wanting that same breadth of skill and usefulness, and at the same time ready for adventure, I interviewed far and wide. Maine-Dartmouth felt right.

During residency, I enjoyed the breadth of procedural training under Bill Alto, Harry Colt, and others. We had (and still have) a shortage of dermatologists in the area and I took on more complex and more interesting dermatology cases early on. This became a passion and niche for me as a resident. When it came time to figure out what family medicine practice would look like, I had a gnawing sense that I was not done training. I discovered a unique two-year dermatology fellowship at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio geared toward treating the underserved. There, a couple hundred yards from the largest homeless shelter in the country and with an uninsured population unmatched in the country, I was able to both learn and serve. In San Antonio, I managed the range of medical and surgical dermatology from splinters to syphilis and from acne to leprosy under the mentorship of Dr. Richard Usatine–a force of compassion and skill in the family medicine, humanities, and dermatology communities.  Following my training, I returned to MDFP to meet the dermatology needs of the community.

It is a joy to work in a teaching environment and get to do good work in the community.  I’m thankful for the partnership I have with my wife who has loved me and adventured all over the country with me these last few years. I’m also thankful for the warmth and support of the medical community at Maine-Dartmouth and MaineGeneral who has supported my long, unusual path. Every day I get to care for patients in a practice that I love, teach residents and students what I can, and go home to my family in a quintessential New England town where each season is filled with its own wonder.