Dr. Robert Rodriguez Named to President-Elect Joe Biden’s COVID-19 Advisory Board

Dr. Robert Rodriguez is ready to fight the coronavirus pandemic in a big way…

The Latino doctor, a native of Brownsville, Texas, is among the health officials named to President-elect Joe Biden‘s COVID-19 advisory board.

Dr. Robert Rodriguez

Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris received their first briefing from the board on Monday morning in Wilmington, Delaware.The team will be led by three co-chairs: former Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, former Food and Drug Administrator commissioner Dr. David Kessler and Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, a professor of medicine at Yale University.

Thirteen co-chairs and members will comprise the board, including Rodriguez.

He graduated from Harvard Medical School, returned home to the Rio Grande Valley as the number of people dying from coronavirus soared over the summer. He volunteered to help with the critical surge in the ICU.

He told ABC News in July that he saw at least one person die daily from the virus.

“Everybody is wearing masks here. The spread is not because people aren’t being responsible. I think it’s largely due to socioeconomic issues,” Rodriguez said at the time. “The best way you can take care of frontline providers and everybody else here in the hospital is by taking care of yourself.”

Currently, Rodriguez serves as a Professor of Emergency Medicine at the UCSF School of Medicine, where he works on the frontline in the emergency department and ICU of two major trauma centers.

According to a release from Biden’s transition team, Rodriguez has authored over 100 scientific publications and has led national research teams examining a range of topics in medicine, including the impact of COVID-19 on the mental health of frontline workers.

It’s not clear whether or not President Donald Trump‘s administration will work with Biden’s task force. However, Biden says he plans to reach out to governors about a state mask mandate as soon as possible.

Hudes Claims Pulitzer Prize for Drama

Quiara Alegría Hudes is probably still celebrating her professional success by the spoonful

The half-Puerto Rican playwright and author has won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for drama with her play Water by the Spoonful, according to Columbia University.

Quiara Alegría Hudes

Hudes, best known for writing the book for the Tony Award-winning musical In the Heights, was awarded $10,000 for the play that reflects the return to civilian life of an Iraq War veteran.

The jury of the 96th annual Pulitzer Prizes wished to honor Hudes’ “imaginative playwhich is set in her native Philadelphia.

Water by the Spoonful was produced last fall at the Stage Company in Hartford, Connecticut.

Hudes, who earned a bachelor’s degree  in music from Yale University and an M.F.A. in playwriting from Brown University, was a finalist for the 2007 Pulitzer with Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue. She’s also the creator of other musicals like Barrio Grrrl!, which premiered in 2009 at Washington’s Kennedy Center.

At the age of 12, Hudes’ first play was produced by the Philadelphia Young Playwrights Festival and she still returns home to lead workshops for young scribes.