Dorothy Lavinia Brown was born in 1919 in Philadelphia, PA. She was brought up as an orphan and had a tough childhood, going back and forth between custody of her mother and orphanages. She said she never had real parents until she was in her mid teens. The family that took her in gave her love and asked that she finish school, which she did. She was the top of all her classes from her days at the orphanage to high school and later Bennett College. She got an internship at a hospital in New York. And when she was denied a residency there as a doctor she went back to school at Meharry College and got her residency there. In he late 50’s she became the chief of surgery at a hospital in Tennessee, a first for the state and the entire south. She also became the first un married parent to be authorized as an adoptive parent and was the first Black woman to represent Tennessee in the state legislature. She is an award winning doctor and activist who also gave back to the orphanage where she was raised, advocated for women’s right to abortion, and helped with the establishment of the first Black history week, which late became Black history month. She passed away in 2004.
Sources: Findagrave.com, Black Past -Abysinnia Baptist Church, Wikipedia