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Women's Health Month 2021 Honoree: Kathryn Hall Trujillo

March is celebrated as Women's History Month in the U.S., during which time women are honored and recognized for the impact they have made on society throughout history.

It is fitting that we would pay tribute to an important Arkansas woman who has made and contributions to the body of information about the birthing community of people of color - Kathryn Hall Trujillo.

Kathryn is the founder of Birthing Project, USA, an international Maternal and Child Health organization which is conceptualized and operated by women of color. Born in Arkansas, Kathryn would experience many lives changing events, including living homeless in a bus station with two children. She went on to attend UCLA in Los Angeles, California. From there she became a Public health Administrator in the California Department of Health and Human Services. She founded the Birthing Project, which began as a social experiment, in Sacramento California over 30 years ago. The Birthing Project has now been replicated in over 100 locations across the US and the world. Its impact upon the Black Woman’s Birthing Movement is unmeasured and the “Sister Friend” movement it began predates the current advocacy for Doula support for women of color during their birth journeys.

Kathryn is an independent, certified scholar of the Cuban Public Health System and serves on the Medical Advisory Board of the Interreligious Foundation for Community Organizing (IFCO), the administrator of the US/Cuba Medical School Scholarship Program. As faculty at the University of San Francisco, she is helping to develop the Public Health Leadership Program for the Sacramento campus. In 200,7 she became an Ashoka Fellow. She has been honored by the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame, is a CNN Hero and was one of “Twenty-One Leaders of the 21st Century” as recognized by Women E-News.

Kathryn Hall Trujillo’s experience in understanding, translating and bridging policy, administration, services delivery, and client cultures sets the stage for a world in which women of color have the freedom to define ourselves, birth our babies and live our healthiest lives. We are thankful for her vision!