Black History Month has ended, but we don’t adhere to the 28 day limit on recognition of African American excellence.
Dr. Jane Cooke Wright was a pioneer in cancer treatment. She spearheaded the treatment of chemotherapy as a standard treatment for cancer patients. She died at home in Guttenberg, New Jersey at the age of 93 on February 19.
Medicine was in Wright’s blood. Her father, Dr. Louis Tompkins Wright, was also a well-respected physician who was the first African American doctor to be appointed to a staff position at a New York municipal hospital. He also became the first African American police surgeon, according to the Afro’s report from the National Institutes of Health.
Dr. Jane Cooke Wright started experimenting with anti-cancer agents on leukemia in mice with her dad while he was the director of the Cancer Research Foundation at Harlem Hospital. After his death in 1952, she succeeded him as director. President Lyndon B. Johnson appointed her to the President’s Commission on Heart Disease, Cancer and Stroke and in the same year, Dr. Wright founded the American Society of Clinical Oncologists (ASCO).
Her career is filled with accomplishments in medicine including 75 published research papers on chemotherapy during her illustrious 40-year career. Thank you for your influence on medicine and our children. R.I.P. Read more on Dr. Wright here.