News & Updates from NOAO

Dr. Eve Higginbotham

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Born here in New Orleans in 1953, Dr. Eve Higginbotham was the first woman to head an ophthalmology department of an academic medical center in the US and is the inaugural Vice Dean for Inclusion and Diversity of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a shining example of black…
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Dr. Daniel Hale Williams: Pioneer of Heart Surgery

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Dr. Daniel Hale Williams, born in 1856, was an American general surgeon, who in 1893 performed the first documented, successful operation on a human heart. He also founded Chicago’s Provident Hospital, the first non-segregated hospital in the United States. In 1913, Williams was elected as the only African-American charter member of the American College of…
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Register Now for the 2021 Annual Symposium!

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Don’t forget to register for Going Global: Adventures in Retina, Oculoplastics, and Anterior Segment on April 15-18, 2021! Visit our website to sign up, and join us either live or virtually. We’ve got a brand new date, a brand new place, and brand new opportunities! For the first time ever, join us on the evening…
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Dr. David Kearney McDonough: First Black Ophthalmologist

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Born an enslaved person in Louisiana in 1821, Dr. David Kearney McDonough was the first black ophthalmology specialist. While he studied at Columbia, he was not awarded his medical degree due to his race. However, in 2018, his posthumous degree was given to his great-great-granddaughter, Patricia Worthy- 170 years later. The National Medical Fellowships established…
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Onesimus: Smallpox Savior

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Onesimus (real name unknown) was an African-born man who was integral in mitigating the impact of a smallpox outbreak in Boston in 1721. Enslaved and given to Puritan minister Cotton Mather in 1706, he used his knowledge of African medicine to introduce Mather to the principle and procedure of inoculation. Mather then used this knowledge…
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