Early AIDS researcher to speak in Rochester

Dr. Mary Guinan

Early AIDS researcher Mary Guinan, PhD, MD, will present the second in a series of talks on leadership when she speaks on Women’s Leadership in Medicine at 7 p.m. on Friday, September 28, at the Royal Park Hotel in Rochester. Admission is free. The lecture is presented by the The Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm’s Broomfield Center for Leadership.

Guinan’s early AIDS research is captured vividly in And the Band Played On, author Randy Shilts’ bestseller on the history of AIDS. She earned her MD from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and her Ph. D. in physiology from the University of Texas. She is board certified in internal medicine, infectious diseases and preventive medicine and public health.

Guinan was the first woman to serve as Chief Scientific Advisor to the Director of the US Centers for Disease Control. She participated in the worldwide smallpox eradication program and was a member of the first CDC task force that investigated the emerging AIDS epidemic in 1981. She is the founding dean of the University of Nevada’s School of Community Health Sciences and has served as Nevada’s chief public-health officer, acting State Health Officer and as a consultant for the Nevada State Health Division.

Guinan is a past president of the American Medical Women’s Association, which was founded in 1915 by Bertha Van Hoosen, MD, who was born and raised on the Van Hoosen Farm that is now the Rochester Hills Museum. Van Hoosen (1863-1952) founded the AMWA at a time when women were a small minority in the medical profession. Its vision is to empower women “to lead in improving heath for all within a model that reflects the unique perspective of women.”

Van Hoosen paid her own way through the University of Michigan medical school, which she attended against her parents’ wishes. In 1892, after several residencies, she opened a private practice in Chicago. A surgeon, she specialized in obstetrics and gynecology and taught extensively. She advanced the causes of hygiene and anesthesia in surgery, particularly in childbirth.

Coming soon: Barn raising

The museum is also making progress toward the reconstruction of a 1927 barn on the museum site. City council has approved the first phase of the project, which is being funded by private donors. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the roof of the barn, which served as a calf barn for the Van Hoosen dairy farm, collapsed in 1990. The foundation and walls are all that remain. Funds are still being sought to complete the project and for the museum’s endowment fund, which will support a full-time archivist. Work on the barn adaptive reuse is underway.

The barn will eventually serve as home to the Broomfield Center for Leadership. The center is named for former Congressman William Broomfield, who served Oakland County in the House (1957-1993). His mother was a member of the Taylor family, which was among the early settlers of Stoney Creek Village, where the 16-acre museum complex is located. The Broomfield Charitable Foundation has committed $100,000 toward the adaptive reuse project.

To register for the lecture, contact the museum at (248) 656-4663 or [email protected]

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