As 87-year-old Dr. Sol Colsky would tell you, everything at his former Miami medical practice on Kendall Drive was old-school. Staff scheduled appointments by hand, used a typewriter to compose letters and even recognized patients by the sound of their voice.
Stepping into his office was like a 1960s time warp — and it stayed that way until the doctor retired in 2008.
“Things have changed in today’s climate,” said Colsky, who lives in Pinecrest. “You don’t even see the same doctors anymore now. It’s a different ballgame out there.”
So when the doctor wanted a reunion to remember his employees after 50 years in practice, he sent his invitations by snail mail:
Never miss a local story.
“Honoring and Welcoming the most amazing people a doctor could ever dream of working with in the practice of his dreams,” his invitation reads. “You have and always will have a special place in my heart. I can hardly wait to see you again!”
As a Miami primary-care doctor, Colsky performed routine health checkups and worked to prevent heart illness. He also was Baptist Health’s chief of staff from 1974 to 1978, charter president of Baptist Health South Foundation, and was a committee member for several medical boards, including Capital Bank of Miami’s board of directors.
His former employees remember him fondly and look forward to the private reunion on Dec. 3.
“It was amazing,” former front-desk staff Jessica Gutierrez said. “I tell him all the time, he spoiled me. I’ll never be able to work for anyone else.”
Gutierrez left her job around the same time Colsky turned his practice over to another doctor in 2008. She worked with him for five years and has been a stay-at-home mom since.
Most of the medical staff worked at his third office at 10661 North Kendall Dr, where his practice was located for 35 years.
One medical assistant, Anita Cravens, who recently died, was with him for the entire 50-year ride.
Cravens’ daughter, Sheryl Veverka, helped him find each new employee. She said she always looked for someone who was caring, loving and good at running a professional office.
“They loved working with him,” Veverka said. “You never saw him angry or upset. He was just not that type of person.”
The Tennessee native was born and raised in Memphis and received his bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University. Colsky later returned to Memphis for his medical degree at the University of Tennessee School of Medicine, and then finished a post-graduate internal medicine fellowship at Johns Hopkins University.
Following his fellowship, Colsky served for two years as internal medical physician in the U.S. Army Medical Corps in Fort Meade, Maryland, and then moved to South Florida to begin his medical practice. Colsky said his brother, Jacob Colsky, was an oncologist at Jackson Memorial Hospital, so when the opportunity came to live and work near his brother, he took it.
Veverka said that her mother was the only office manager the doctor ever had.
“That was the way it was,” she said. “You don’t see that anymore you know.”
Cresonia Hsieh: @CresoniaHsieh