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MGH History

Firsts for Historically Marginalized Physicians and Women Physicians at MGH 

Who were the first African American and Latino/Latina physicians at MGH, and in what departments? Who were among the first woman physicians at MGH?

See Finding More on MGH History to locate more information about each individual in medical journals, scholarly and non-scholarly publications, and newspapers.

Firsts for Historically Marginalized Physicians at MGH

African American and Latino/Latina physician “firsts” at MGH, through 2020: The Untold Story: URM Pioneers at MGH (slideshow with images of and brief information about African American and Latino/Latina physicians at MGH)

The following physicians, in the order in which their names first appear in the slideshow PDF, are included: 
Drs. Louis Sullivan, Lloyd Ferguson, Vivian Pinn, Guillermo Sanchez, Jonathan Woodson, William Augustus Hinton, Theodore Kenneth Lawless,  Harold E. Farmer, Robert E. Fullilove Jr, Frances J. Bonner, Effie O'Neal Ellis, Harold May, Charles E. Brown, Vivian W. Pinn, Chester M. Pierce, Juan Taveras, Ernesto Gonzalez, Hector Manuel Tarraza, Jonathan Woodson, Francisco Cigarroa, Raphael Lee, Juanita Merchant, Tina I. Young Poussaint, Winfred W. Williams, Edward M. Barksdale Jr., Lynt Johnson, Carlos Fernandez del Castillo, Walter R. Frontera-Roura, Vilma E. Ortiz, Paula O'Connor, Michael Watkins, Joan Y. Reede, J. Carl Pallais, Marcella del Carmen, William T. Curry Jr, Margarita (Maggie) Alegria, R. Roberto (Gil) Gonzalez, Emery M. Brown, Karen Winkfield, Valerie Stone, Carlos A. Carmago, Elsie Taveras, O'Neil Britton, Julie Price, Joseph Betancourt, Seun Johnson-Akeju

Firsts for Women Physicians at MGH


Dr. Willey Glover Denis – assistant chemist at MGH and first woman elected to MGH staff

Meites S. Willey Glover Denis (1879-1929), pioneer woman of clinical chemistry. Clin Chem. 1985 May;31(5):774-8. PubMed PMID: 3886198.



Dr. Loretta Cummins – first woman Assistant in Dermatology at MGH

Cheever A, Rockwood E. Loretta Joy Cummins, 1883-1958. AMA Arch Derm. 1958 Oct;78(4):512. PubMed PMID: 13582200.



Dr. Mary Wright - first woman member of the House Staff, who was appointed as a House Pupil or Intern in the Children's Medical Service at MGH 

Annual report of the trustees of the Massachusetts General Hospital, 1917

Faxon, Nathaniel W. The Massachusetts General Hospital, 1935-1955. Cambridge [Mass.]: Harvard University Press, 1959. [Online access requires a free username/password.  For the print edition, contact MGH Archives for use.]  p. 255.


Dr. Marian Wilkins Ropes Fielding - first woman admitted to a medical residency at MGH

Changing the Face of Medicine (National Library of Medicine)

Mills JA. Marian W. Ropes, MD, 1903-1994. Arthritis Rheum. 1995 Jun; 38(6):866.


Dr. Julia Arrowood – first woman Resident in Anesthesia at MGH


Dr. Carrie E. Chapman -first House Pupil [equivalent to Intern] in Anesthesia at MGH


Dr. Dera Kinsey -first Assistant Resident in Medicine at MGH


Dr. Margaret Shipley - first Medical House Pupil [equivalent to Intern] at MGH


Dr. Vivian [Allison] Tenney -- first Assistant Resident in Gynecology at MGH

Source for 1936-1943: Faxon, Nathaniel W. The Massachusetts General Hospital, 1935-1955. Cambridge [Mass.]: Harvard University Press, 1959. [Online access requires a free username/password.  For the print edition, contact MGH Archives for use.], p. 256.


Dr. Celia White Tabor -- first female physician-scientist intern in MGH’s Department of Internal Medicine

Tabor CW, Tabor H. It all started on a streetcar in Boston. Annu Rev Biochem. 1999;68:1-32. PubMed PMID: 10872442.


Dr. Catherine R. Michie – first woman Resident in Pathology at MGH

Chapter Five: The Mallory Era, p. 67. IN: Keen Minds to Explore the Dark Continents of Disease : A History of the Pathology Services at Massachusetts General Hospital, edited by David N. Louis and Robert H. Young. Boston, Mass.: Massachusetts General Hospital, 2011.


Dr. Frances Jones Bonner - Psychiatrist - both the first African American woman Resident and first African American woman faculty member (1949) at MGH

Department of Psychiatry Center for Diversity’s Frances J. Bonner Award



Dr. Lucy Frank Squire - first woman to be enrolled as a resident in MGH’s radiology program

Changing the Face of Medicine (National Library of Medicine)

Gunderman RB. Lucy Frank Squire's legacy of collaborative learning in radiology education. Acad Radiol. 2007 Feb;14(2):121-4. PubMed PMID: 17315330.


Dr. Harriet Louise Hardy - first woman at MGH to be appointed Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at HMS

Changing the Face of Medicine (National Library of Medicine)

Papers at the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute


Dr. Janet Ward McArthur – first woman at MGH to be accorded full Professorship at HMS, as Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology

Harvard Gazette: Memorial Minute

Papers at Countway Library, Harvard Medical School

Oral history interview with Janet McArthur (video and transcript)


Dr. Eve Elizabeth Slater – first woman to become Chief Resident in Medicine at MGH

Changing the Face of Medicine (National Library of Medicine)

Eve E. Slater. Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2006; 5(1):14


Dr. Mary Kraft - first female Chief Resident in Anesthesia at MGH

"This is no humbug!" : Reminiscences of the Department of Anesthesia at the Massachusetts General Hospital : A History, edited by Richard J. Kitz, Hassan Ali ... [et al.].  [Ashland, Ohio : Atlas Books, 2003?], p. 261.


Dr. Patricia Kilroy Donahoe – first woman to lead an MGH Surgery Division (Pediatric Surgery) and first woman Professor of Surgery at HMS -- Chief of Pediatric Surgery

Transcript of interview with Patricia K. Donahoe, M.D., Chief of Pediatric Surgical Services, Emeritus



 Dr. Anne Buckingham Young - first woman to be appointed chief of service (Neurology) at MGH

Anne B. Young Papers, Countway Library, Harvard Medical School

Young AB. Massachusetts General Hospital honors Anne Young for two decades as chief of neurology service: world-renowned researcher enters the next phase of her career by focusing on mentoring of the next generation. Ann Neurol. 2013 May;73(5):A7-8. doi: 10.1002/ana.23919. PubMed PMID: 23749744.


Dr. Theresa Claire McLoud - first woman in Radiology at MGH to hold the rank of Professor at Harvard

European Society of Radiology


Dr. Anne Klibanski -- first woman promoted to full professor of medicine at Harvard from MGH.  In 2019, she was named the Interim President and Chief Executive Officer of Partners HealthCare, the first woman to hold that title.  Several months later was named the President and Chief Executive Officer of Partners HealthCare.

Outstanding Mentor Award

The Endocrine Society 2002 Annual Awards. Endocr Rev. 2002 Aug;23(4):582-93. PubMed PMID: 12202474 (4th PDF page)

2009 Dr. Joan W. Miller - first woman appointed as chief of ophthalmology at both Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and MGH.


Dr. Katrina Armstrong – first woman to lead the Department of Medicine, MGH