Mildred Jefferson's hat

Courtesy of Schlesinger Library

Among her many firsts, Mildred Jefferson (1927–2010) was the first African American woman to graduate from Harvard Medical School and the first woman employed as a surgeon by Boston University Medical Center. Her involvement in the right-to-life movement began in the 1970s. Among the groups she helped to establish and to lead were the Value of Life Committee, Massachusetts Citizens for Life, and the Right to Life Crusade, Inc.

Her commitment to the antiabortion movement led to her political activism in the Republican Party. A self-described Log Cabin Republican, she campaigned for pro-life candidates and twice ran—unsuccessfully—to represent Massachusetts in the US Senate.

Mildred Jefferson Papers

 

Mildred Jefferson's hat