TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Dr. Janie Myers is a busy woman, and it takes about ten words to describe why she’s always on the go.

“I am an African-American board-certified Distinguished Fellow surgeon,” Janie said when discussing her accolades.

Janie is not sharing that title to boast – she’s sharing it in reference to the fact that she’s worked hard to achieve the prestige attached to her name.

“If you look at the statistics, I represent less than 1% of United States physicians already,” Janie said. “Just being a surgeon, and then with the organizations and stuff I do, being on American College of Osteopathic Surgeons, being on a couple of committees and things like that.”

Years of schooling and determination led Janie to this place, and she does not take her role lightly, especially when it comes to her historic accomplishments in Vigo County.

In 2020, Janie was elected Vigo County Coroner, becoming the first African-American to hold the title in the county.

She said she enjoyed meeting people during her campaign, which focused on helping fulfill a need.

“It wasn’t about winning,” Janie said. “It was more about being there for my community. It was more about thinking ‘is this something I can help them with?'”

Janie became a Distinguised Fellow of the American College of Surgeons in 2021, has started robotics programs at two different hospitals and has won several awards for her level of patient care.

Her surgical practice, Myers Surgical Associates LLC, is set up on 7th St. in Terre Haute, a city she said she is happy to call home.

“This community might not have been my home I was born in,” Janie said, laughing. “You know, I’m a transplant; I’m a newbie. But you know what; I have really, really embraced this community. Terre Haute is doing some great things.”

Janie said her constant goal setting, and confidence in her ability to achieve those goals, stems from her upbringing.

“My inspiration comes from the values and determination that my parents taught me,” Janie shared. “I’m also kind of person, if someone says ‘well, maybe you shouldn’t do that’, I’m like ‘well, why shouldn’t I?’ That’s just me and my personality. People have told me not to be a surgeon. People have told me other things that just sometimes gave me that resolve. My inner voice is like, ‘well, let’s see it; let’s see what I can do’ So, I do have a little bit of an internal drive.”

And while hers may be the name attached to so many accolades, Janie said her community, from her deputy coroners, to her surgical staff, to her family, are the ones who keep her going.

“People say ‘you’re a role model’; we’re all trying to do things every day,” Janie said, smiling. “I mean, if I’m able to, as I said, give someone a inkling of a possibility that they didn’t have a glimmer of, I’m happy to be that person for them.”

Janie did share her intentions to run for Vigo County Coroner again in the 2024 election.