Dr. Luz Amarilis Lugo is an assistant professor of medicine and infectious diseases at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. As a physician at Mount Sinai’s comprehensive HIV clinic, Dr. Lugo works tirelessly to spread the word about HIV/AIDS prevention among her patients, especially Latinos. Alongside her colleagues, Dr. Lugo works on highly disseminated HIV/AIDS research. Dr. Lugo graduated Magna Cum Lade from the University of Puerto Rico with a Bachelor in Science, and went to the Ponce School of Medicine, obtaining certification in both Internal Medicine and Infectious Disease. Dr. Lugo is an integral part of several committees and she continues to give back to the community through her volunteerism through multiple health based organizations.
1. Share the greatest impact of your childhood.
My parents and the values they thought me: compassion, honesty and dedication.
2. Define your experience growing up?
I grew up in Ponce, Puerto Rico as an only child with a large extended family, filled with love and a strong sense of “familia”. My parents served our community through various organizations which inspired me to follow a career of service.
3. Tell us some of the challenges you’ve had to overcome.
As a Latina living in New York, I missed my family dearly as I integrated into a new culture and way of living.
4. What would you say was the greatest positive influence on your career?
Very early in my career, I met Dr. Michael Mullen, now Acting Chief of Infectious Diseases Mount Sinai. His dedication, intelligence and talent inspired me. It was around the time when medication started to show efficacy in improving mortality and quality of life for people with HIV. Dr. Mullen always said “This is life saving therapy.”
5. As an honoree, what do you hope that being a trendsetter will inspire you to accomplish?
I would like to motivate and inspire young Latinos in the importance of education. Knowledge is something no one can take away from you. As our presence in this country grows, so should our desire to thrive in leadership positions to demonstrate that our culture enriches the nation.