These days he's one of the hottest dress and jewelry designers. Almost ten years ago when he was at the height of his medical success, he chucked his medical career to pursue his dream in fashion design.
"I was a kid torn between two things," recalls Trusso. "I always wanted to design. I always wanted to be a doctor. I was either making dresses, jewelry or operating on frogs."
Initially, medicine won out. But only for a while. The moment of truth came when he was named the youngest chairman ever at a Cleveland area hospital.
"But that day, on the way home I went out and bought a sewing machine," says Trusso. "I called a good friend of mine who is a psychologist. I told him about it. He said, 'I think we need to talk.'"
Trusso started designing in his spare time and developed a business. He decided to go full time with what made him the happiest.
Since then, his fashions have been worn at the White House and are available nationwide. His income isn't what it was as a doctor but he's doing quite well, thank you. Besides, by following his dream, he says he has discovered truth in an old cliche, true happiness has nothing to do with money.
"If you're lucky, you get to a point when you realize that...listening to your heart is the secret. If you have that secret, you have it all."
Career consultant Kate Dawson observed that Russell Trusso has done things that other people who are interested in changing careers need to do.
"Do what you love," Dawson told CBS Early Show Anchor Bryant Gumbel. "Dr. Trusso is a great example. You have to ask yourself, 'What are my likes, passions? How can I incorporate them or transition to a new career?'"
She says that this is an opportune time to make money from your hobby.
"People are doing it. The opportunity is there, the economy is there."
She points out that it's a good idea to focus on skills not function.
"You should be changing your resume," she says. "You're saying, 'I have great analytical skills. I have communication skills. I'm a good negotiator.'"
"People shouldn't be scared to make a career change, especially for a New Year's resolution. The unemployment rate is at an ultimate low," explains Dawson. "The baby boomers are now getting to retirement. They are starting to retire at a faster pace than we're replenishing the work force population. There are way more jobs than job seekers."
First on Dawson's list of "don'ts" is, "Avoid the corporate ladder."
"We're hearing people saying, "I don't want to move up, from a manager to director to vice president, I want to move across. I might want to take a step back. It's all about getting new experiences. The time is right now. It's a job seeker's market."
Dawson points out ome realistic guidelines, such as: Don't quit your law practice because you want to be the point guard for the New York Knicks.
But do ask yourself, "What are your goals?"