Samuel R. Ward, PhD


Samuel R. Ward, PhD
Professor, Departments of Orthopaedic Surgery and Radiology
UC San Diego
La Jolla, CA


How has the AAOS helped you throughout your career?
The AAOS has given me a platform to present research from my lab and allows me to keep our research relevant to clinical practice.

As an Affiliated Professional Member, which AAOS resources do you use most and why?
I use AAOS publications routinely, the Annual Meeting, and some educational resources like webinars and online learning modules.

What’s the best advice you were ever given? Who was it from?
This is a tough one.  How about a few very meaningful quotes- the first one from a scientist mentor.

V. Reggie Edgerton (UCLA)- “As a scientist, you are going to have to decide whether you want to plant trees or decorate them”

JJ Watt (Texans)- “Success isn’t owned.  It’s leased and rent is due every day”

Jim Rohn - “We all must suffer from one of two pains, the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The difference is, discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons. Success is found in your daily habits, rituals, and decisions. Choose discipline.” 

What’s your go-to productivity trick?
A few things:
1) Have at least one hobby that you can master and find value in. That will help you “sharpen the sword” at work and maintain a high level of creativity.
2) As one gets more senior, what gets scheduled gets done.
3) Organization and prioritization are pivotal at all career stages- pick 3 things to achieve in a day and celebrate when you complete them well.

What’s one thing you’re currently trying to make a habit?
Saying no to more things.

What hobbies do you enjoy in your spare time?
I build furniture & kitchen knives, photography, and hiking.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself that not many people know?
I’m a car person at heart.  I almost turned down college to pursue the dream of being a crew chief on an NHRA dragster team.