Our Proust Questionnaire

Virginia Pediatric Group, LtdFairfax, Virginia

Dr. Russell C. Libby answers some candid questions about his practice and life philosophy, answering questions from our version of the Proust Questionnaire.

A Proust Questionnaire is a survey aimed at understanding one’s personality.

To help share your stories, The Independent Pediatrician created our own version of the Proust Questionnaire.  We hope you enjoy this small window into other pediatricians’ personal and professional challenges and aspirations.

When you began practicing:


Reason for working with children:

The best way to make this world a better place is one child at a time.

Your favorite virtue:


Your favorite qualities in a pediatric healthcare provider:

Intelligent, empathetic, and intuitive; showing joy in the practice of the art, with effective communication skills.

Your favorite qualities in a patient:

Earnest and compliant, receptive and gracious.

Your favorite hobbies/after hours pursuits: 

Screaming down mountains with my adrenaline soaring, 12 strings then 6, lead and glass artistry.

Your idea of happiness is:

Being liked; being loved.

What is your biggest fear?

Losing cognitive and emotional function.

With whom you would most enjoy sharing a meal? 

My wife Mary…at Mick Jagger’s place.

If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

Snowmass, Colorado.

Your favorite author(s):

Yuval Noah Harari, for the moment.

Your favorite musician(s) or style of music:

It’s only Rock n Roll.

Your favorite fictional hero(es):

John McClane.

Your hero(es) in real life: 

My brother Howard who is resilient, unassuming, and brilliant.

Your favorite food and drink: 

Aged cheese and vegetables; an oaky Chard.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? 

Just having one thing to change.

What do you consider to be your greatest achievement? 

Finding someone who could love me as much as I love them.

What are your favorite types of patient visits? 

Adolescent well.

What is the most important work you do as a pediatrician? 

Help children raise good parents.

What is the biggest change in pediatrics you have seen in your career?

Really, the impact of vaccines on decreasing the terrible morbidity and mortality of the diseases they prevent. As well, the evolution of the NICU, giving premature babies a likely chance to live a normal life.

What do you like most about being an independent pediatrician?

First is defining your vision and having the setting in which to do that; second is adapting to change in ways that are responsive and responsible; third is seeing that spirit in the people you work with.

What does your practice do best?

Always trying to do better.

What do you believe is the most important business aspect for an independent pediatric office?

Love what you do and model, mentor, and motivate.