Our Dean

Dr. Michael Hocker

Michael B. Hocker, MD, MHS

Dean, UTRGV School of Medicine
Senior Vice President, UT Health RGV



Dr. Hocker is an academic medical physician and servant leader. He joined UTRGV in 2021 and serves as dean of the School of Medicine and senior vice president for UT Health RGV, the school’s clinical practice. Outside of his leadership roles at UTRGV, he is a professor of Emergency Medicine in the UTRGV School of Medicine’s Department of Surgery, where he works with medical students and residents.

Dr. Hocker is a master clinician board-certified in Emergency Medicine. He completed his internship at the UC Davis East Bay Surgical Program in Oakland, CA, and his residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Massachusetts.

A former U.S. Navy flight surgeon, Dr. Hocker graduated from Ft. Lewis College in Durango, CO, and earned his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

As dean at the UTGV School of Medicine, he oversees all medical education and research programs in the Rio Grande Valley. This work is vital to providing future generations of physicians, healthcare professionals, and scientists who will contribute life-changing discoveries and treatments to their communities.

During this tenure, Dr. Hocker led the UTRGV School of Medicine to receive full accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education in 2023. This accreditation is significant for the Rio Grande Valley because, moving forward, the School of Medicine will be allowed to plan for an increase in the number of students it can admit each year and enable the institution to continue to address the shortage of medical providers throughout the region.

In his continued leadership in helping guide the School of Medicine to reach new milestones, Dr. Hocker has also played an instrumental role in the UTRGV School of Medicine’s physician training program being granted continued accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, charged with evaluating and accrediting Graduate Medical Education (GME) programs across the United States. 

Under his leadership, the academic medical institution now oversees and sponsors several residency and fellowship programs in the Rio Grande Valley, with more than 500 medical students and residents having graduated as healthcare professionals.  

Dr. Hocker has also led the clinical strategy for developing the new UT Health RGV Cancer and Surgery Center, slated to open to patients in early 2025 as part of the new oncology medical center planned in McAllen, TX. In addition, he is a strong advocate for patient and family-centered, high-quality health care. He has been instrumental in improving the clinical functions of UT Health RGV clinics throughout the Rio Grande Valley – proving that Dr. Hocker is dedicated to transforming how health care is delivered in the border region.

Before joining UTRGV, he was the senior associate dean and designated institutional official (DIO) of GME at the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) at Augusta University. Here, Dr. Hocker oversaw 51 residency and fellowship programs in that role and was the vice-chair of Operations for Emergency Medicine and assistant DIO for GME.

Prior to MCG, he spent 14 years at Duke University School of Medicine, where he helped start what is now considered one of the country’s top Emergency Medicine training programs. There, Dr. Hocker earned a Master of Health Science in Clinical Leadership from Duke.

Earlier, in 2016, the Duke Division of Emergency Medicine honored his leadership by naming the Michael B. Hocker, MD, Duke Emergency Medicine Division Leadership and Service Award.

He and his family have made the Rio Grande Valley their home, and they love being part of the UTRGV community, where they are now closer to his parents, who currently reside in Harlingen, TX.