Whether wearing blue scrubs in a hospital hallway or toting a camera around his neck, Dr. Elsburgh Clarke gives a new meaning to the word multi-task. The chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Methodist Medical Center, owner of Elsburgh Clarke Photography and CEO of Comprehensive Emergency Solutions, he does it all—quite successfully.

Showcasing both business savvy and creativity, Dr. Clarke splits his time between medical aspirations and camera snapshots, exercising his talents all over central Illinois and the nation. His freelance photography includes shots of NASCAR, college football and NFL teams, and he has been published in a number of national magazines, in addition to art & society. He has also written a chapter on medical photojournalism for the Handbook of Medical Photography. A native of New England, Clarke and his wife, Patricia, love living in Peoria because of the people, its arts community and its close proximity to Chicago. They have three children, Elsburgh III, Brandon and Alison.

1 My favorite vacation spot: Cat Cay, Bahamas.

2 The proudest moment in my career: Establishing with my partner our own emergency medicine group: Comprehensive Emergency Solutions.


Because of my respect for the EMS and Fire Service, I enjoy doing ridealongs—so much so that I spend literally an 18-hour day riding several times a month with the Peoria Fire Department. This helps me to see what these men and women are up against when they are on the scene of accidents, fires, etc. We in the ER only see the result of what they have done in the field.

3 My most humbling moment: As a third-year Emergency Medicine resident in California, I was riding with the L.A. County Paramedics and convinced a man not to jump off a bridge and commit suicide.

4 No one in the office knows… my childhood nickname.

5 Favorite splurge: Photographic equipment.

6 My secret ambition is to… become a Sports Illustrated photographer.

7 My greatest fear is… to lose compassion for people and to lose my ability to forgive.

8 My favorite subject to photograph: People.

9 My favorite movie: The Godfather.

10 The most unusual emergency case I have seen: There are many, but one in particular stands out. When I was a resident at USC Medical Center I had a patient that came into the Emergency Department with a 3-foot 2 x 2 piece of wood impaled through his chest. By the way, he went to surgery and did well! a&s