Téllez-Girón Salazar Receives City-County Humanitarian Award
MADISON - Patricia Téllez-Girón Salazar, family practice physician at Access Community Health Centers Wingra Family Medical Center, received the 2011 City-County Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award at the 26th Annual City-County Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance. The program was held January 17 at the Overture Center Capital Theater.
Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk and City of Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz announced the award winners, who were selected by the City-County Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission. Téllez-Girón Salazar, as well as the recipient of a related youth award - Elena I. Aleman - were chosen because they reflect the values of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., including his non-violent philosophy.
"This year’s recipients honor the legacy of Dr. King through their service to our community," Cieslewicz said. "Dr. PatriciaTéllez-Girón Salazar has worked tirelessly to improve health and quality of life in the Latino community, both through her practice and extensive volunteer service. And Elena Aleman is a leader who is already making a difference in our community at a young age. Both Patricia and Elena reflect the best of Madison and I am proud to have this opportunity to recognize their work."
"Both Dr. Patricia Téllez-Girón Salazar and Elena Aleman have made countless contributions that have made our county a better place," Falk said. "Their commitment to community service, volunteerism, and willingness to help their fellow citizens succeed make them most deserving of these honors. They are leaders who strive for excellence both for themselves and their community."
Téllez-Girón Salazar is the Chair of the Latino Health Council of Dane County (LHC). She is an untiring advocate for health issues affecting the Dane County Latino population. In her practice at the Wingra Clinic, a true community clinic, she provides hands-on care of Latino patients everyday. She knows first-hand the issues and struggles that many Latinos in our community face.
In addition to providing culturally and linguistically competent medical care, Téllez-Girón Salazar volunteers countless hours in the community. She is the main organizer of an annual Latino Health Fair, the annual Latino Mental Health Summit and the annual Latino Cardiovascular Disease Summit. She also coordinates and is the main host of the Nuestra Salud Radio program aired on La Movida radio station every first Monday of the month and writes a bi-weekly. health-related educational article for the Spanish language newspapers. Téllez-Girón Salazar is an active member of the Latino Support Network.
She came to Madison from Mexico, already trained as a physician and having practiced for a number of years in rural Mexico. However, her MD degree from Mexico was not valid in the US. As a new immigrant, facing language barriers and a complete change in her life circumstances, she had to learn English and work as an assistant in clinics and not practice medicine for years.
She never stopped dreaming about being able to practice medicine in Madison. She studied hard to pass her medical board exam and to apply for residency in the UW Family Medicine Department. Through hard work, she achieved both. From day one of her residency, she stayed true to her roots and never forgot where she came from. She always remembers her personal immigration experience and struggles, and thus has dedicated her life to helping improve the health of other immigrants.
Date Published: 01/27/2011