Today’s Google doodle pays tribute to Dr. Helen Rodríguez Trías, a physician, educator, and staunch advocate for women’s and children’s right to healthcare.
Originally from New York City, Trías and her family moved to Puerto Rico when she was still a child. She earned her medical degree from the University of Puerto Rico’s medical school, and eventually returned to New York City to open her practice.
During her career, she served as the director of the pediatrics department at the South Bronx Lincoln Hospital, creating programs for abused children, as well as HIV and AIDS patients. She was the founder of the New York Latino Commission on AIDS, and a founding member of the Women’s Caucus of the American Public Health Association.
In 1993, she was the first Hispanic American woman to serve as the president of the American Public Health Association. President Clinton awarded Trías the Presidential Citizens Medal in 2001 for her work and advocacy efforts.
“Over time Dr. Rodríguez Trías expanded her efforts on an international scale, working tirelessly to improve health care for families in Central and South America, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East,” writes Google on the Google Doodle blog.
Here is the Helen Rodríguez Trías doodle currently on Google’s US homepage:
According to Google, Trías said she became a doctor because it combined the things she loved most: science and people.
“I hope I’ll see in my lifetime a growing realization that we are one world,” said Trías, “No one is going to have quality of life unless we support everyone’s quality of life.”
Today marks what would have been Trías’ 89th birthday.