Justina Ford, M.D.
The Lady Doctor
Justina Ford, M.D. (1871-1952). Settling in Denver in 1902 with a degree from Hering Medical College in Chicago, she was truly a medical pioneer. Courage and determination shielded her from the discrimination that she would face even as she applied for her Colorado medical license. The licensing examiner told her, "I feel dishonest taking a fee from you. You've got two strikes against you to begin with. First of all, you're a lady, and second, you're colored."
Regardless of those obstacles, she established what was to become a long and notable practice in Denver, specializing in gynecology, obstetrics and pediatrics. The "Lady Doctor" as she became familiar and lovingly known, delivered more than 7,000 babies of varied ethnic backgrounds and from all walks of life. Dr. Ford was denied hospital privileges for a good number of years, thus her home delivery practice was essential. against these odds, and faced with other barriers of race and gender, she persisted in her commitment to bring medical service to the disadvantaged and underprivileged of Denver. Dr. Ford was a true humanitarian.
Four months before her death, she is quoted as saying, "...When all the fears, hate, and even some death is over, we will really be brothers as God intended us to be in this land. This I believe. For this I have worked all my life."