Marie Maynard Daly overcame racial & gender barriers to become the first African American woman to earn a PhD in Chemistry before embarking on a career in medical science that changed the way we understand the human body.
Marie was born in 1921 in Queens, New York. She was the oldest child and only girl in her family. She got her love of science from her dad. When he was a young man he wanted to be a scientist and had earned a scholarship to study science at Cornell University. Despite the scholarship he couldn’t afford his room & board and so sadly he was forced to drop out. Marie later said, “My father wanted to become a scientist but there weren’t opportunities for him as a black man at that time.” Instead he became a postal worker and worked hard to provide for his family.