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Tamil Origin Physician Celine Gounder Part Of Joe Biden’s COVID-19 Task Force

Celine Gounder, Indian-Origin Dr Celine Gounder

Tamil origin physician Celine Gounder is set to become a part of United States President-elect Joe Biden’s COVID-19 task force. The advisory board consisting of 13 members from diverse backgrounds has been formed by Joe Biden to shape his “approach to managing” the surge in coronavirus cases and the search for a vaccine. The task force will be co-chaired by former US Surgeon General Dr Vivek Murthy.

My people in Tamil Nadu, India are very proud: Gounder

Gounder tweeted about the same yesterday writing that is was an honor and privilege for her “to be called on to serve and support President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris.”

“We must care for one another. We must heal. We must unite against COVID,” Celine Gounder wrote in her tweet.

 “My people in Tamil Nadu, India are very proud,” Gounder wrote in a separate tweet.

Celine Gounder’s father, Dr Raj Natarajan Gounder, hails from Modakurichi village in Erode. He moved to the United States and served with Boeing in Seattle for two years after having completed BE in Metallurgy.

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In another tweet, Gounder wrote, “Many ask why I use the caste name Gounder as my last name. My father immigrated to the USA in the 1960s. Americans had a hard time saying Natarajan. Gounder was easier for them to pronounce… My father changed his name to Gounder in the early 1970s before I was born. My name is my name. It’s part of my history and identity, even if some of that history is painful. I didn’t change my name when I got married, I’m not changing it now.”

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MK Stalin, who is Tamil Nadu’s Opposition party DMK’s President, congratulated Celine Grounder on her appointment. “Happy to hear about the appointment of a woman of Tamil origin to this crucial task force,” he wrote.

About Celine Gounder

Celine Gounder is a practising HIV/infectious diseases specialist. She is also an internist, epidemiologist, medical journalist and a filmmaker. In 2016, she was appointed as a fellow for the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Gounder was named one of People Magazine’s 25 Women Changing the World in 2017 owing to her contributions to medicine and public health.

Image Credit: Princeton Alumni Weekly

 Shikha Chandra is an intern with SheThePeople.TV.