Highlands University honoring John Reid, sports medicine director for Taos Orthopaedic Institute

Reid received homecoming spirit award for his dedication to volunteering as the team physician for Highlands’ athletic teams

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John Barlow Reid III, sports medicine director for Taos Orthopaedic Institute, earned the New Mexico Highlands University (NMHU) Spirit Award for his dedication to volunteering as the team physician for Highlands’ athletic teams for more than 13 years.

Reid provides sideline coverage for all the Cowboy home football games, evaluating and treating athlete injuries. Early Thursday mornings before he begins his Las Vegas clinic, Reid works with the sports trainers at Highlands, helping evaluate, treat and make recommendations for injured Cowgirl and Cowboy athletes.

Carol Linder, Highlands associate vice president of academic affairs, nominated Reid for the award, calling him a dedicated community partner.

“Dr. Reid is one of our biggest supporters and has continued this support through many athletic directors and coaches,” Linder said. “He has boundless energy and enthusiasm, continuing his support with no thought of recognition or thanks.”

Linder said despite his busy schedule with practices in Taos, Las Vegas, Santa Fe and Los Alamos, Reid somehow carves out time to help Highlands athletes.

Reid, who is also the team physician for the U.S. Ski Team, said it’s a privilege to treat Highlands athletes.

“Anyone who goes into sports medicine wants to work with the most elite athletes, and the Highlands athletes are the most elite in Northern New Mexico,” Reid said. “I enjoy getting to know them as young adults pursuing their athletic and academic dreams.”

Reid said it’s rewarding – and fun – to watch athletes return to the field or court after an injury.

“When college athletes return to their sport, it helps restore their quality of life, as well as their sense of identity and purpose. It also helps maintain their scholarships so they can achieve their degrees and academic goals. That’s what keeps getting me up early to help,” Reid said.

Reid, who is past chairman of the Department of Surgery at Holy Cross Hospital in Taos, also performs surgeries Highlands athletes need at Holy Cross or Alta Vista Regional Hospital in Las Vegas. The most common surgeries are knee and shoulder reconstructions.

“Most of the surgeries are minimally invasive using arthroscopy, surgery done using a scope and camera as opposed to open incisions. To treat fractures, we use open incisions,” Reid said.

Reid said sports played a key role in his life since he was a young football player and downhill skiing racer. He is a big believer in giving back to sports as a volunteer and donor.

“Through giving to the Highlands athletics program, I’m helping support the athletes’ needs and donating to their future,” Reid said.

Reid, still an avid skier and mountain biker, said he became interested in sports medicine when he was injured working on the ski patrol at Squaw Valley in Lake Tahoe, California.

He graduatedcum laudefrom Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU) as a doctor of medicine in 1998. He also completed an orthopaedic surgery residency at OHSU. Reid joined Taos Orthopaedic Institute in 2003, directing Sports Medicine Services since 2005.

Reid directs the institute’s Research Foundation and is widely published in medical journals, such as Arthroscopy and Journal of Biomechanics.

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