Dr. Jeffrey Hess is from Buffalo, New York. He did his undergraduate studies at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York, where he majored in Biomedical Sciences and Molecular Biotechnology with a minor in American Sign Language and Deaf Cultural Studies. He obtained his DVM degree from the University of Illinois in 2019. While in veterinary school, he was heavily involved in leadership activities, representing the University of Illinois nationally within the student AVMA and as a delegate for the Omega Tau Sigma professional veterinary fraternity. This involvement fostered a love for educating others about the veterinary profession. He is also a member of the Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians, the Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians, and the Association of Avian Veterinarians. He completed several externships prior to graduation working in various zoos, wildlife hospitals, and exotic animal practices. He hopes to become board certified in exotic animal practice and would like to own his own clinic one day. His favorite exotic pet is a close tie between macaws and monitor lizards of all kinds. He shares his home with a green-cheek conure named Zucchini and two dogs; a Rottweiler named Bumi and an Australian Cattle Dog named Apache, and two cats; Bug and Bilbo. In his free time, Dr. Hess enjoys spending time outdoors hiking, kayaking, or riding his motorcycle with his girlfriend.