At the age of five, Dr. Anita Figueredo decided she wanted to be a doctor. She did just that, thanks to a savvy mother who moved her from Costa Rica to the United States, and became the first female surgeon in San Diego.

Figueredo’s daughter, Dr. Sarita Eastman, tells her extraordinary story in a new book. Figueredo, now 93, mothered nine children and had an influential friendship with Mother Teresa. She also became one of the first women to perform cancer surgery.

In this wekeend’s Q&A, we talk to mother and daughter about Figueredo’s remarkable life.

In other news:

  • We now know who’s on Councilwoman Marti Emerald’s advisory committee, which she refers to as a kind of “kitchen cabinet,” borrowing a very old political term. The members are 20-34 people who “just talk about issues that are important to them,” Emerald told us. “I don’t want to get myself cut off from the community.”

    She said they supported plans for a downtown library, despite some polls saying the public is more skeptical.

  • SDG&E officials met yesterday with supporters and opponents of the company’s rejected wildfire-prevention-via-power-outage plan, but didn’t get very far. Another meeting is planned, where there will be more discussion of bringing in a mediator.
  • We need your help.

    We’d like to see your photos of the city’s streets at their worst: Is there a crack in front of your house the size of Mission Valley? A pothole large enough to swallow your Buick? Here’s our contribution.

    Also: biotech and high-tech firms have plenty of influence over the local economy, but do they have any sway at City Hall? We’re exploring this issue and want to hear your input.

    Elsewhere: San Diego’s unemployment rate dipped slightly in September, but is still more than 10 percent.

    The rate is four points higher in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. To the east, Imperial County’s rate — 30.1 percent — tops the state and is one of the highest is one of the entire country. (LAT)

    A guilty verdict is expected in the SPAWAR bribery case, which we chronicled in August. (U-T)

    And up in San Francisco, today’s 20th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake is an occasion for preparedness and potato salad. There’s no such anniversary down here: As this map shows, the immediate San Diego area is not an epicenter for big quakes, although we sure do feel them when they’re nearby.

    Check the little dot in the ocean: it indicates the July 1986 5.4 magnitude earthquake that caused $720,000 in damage, killed one and injured 29, including an 87-year-old man who was buried alive under thousands of books in his 12-foot-square downtown San Diego hotel room. He was rescued after 12 hours.

  • The Coffee Collection:

    A Legacy of Distrust: J. David Dominelli, the unassuming man whose 1980s Ponzi scheme collapsed spectacularly, died in obscurity, we learned this week. Swindled investors haven’t forgotten him, nor have journalists who helped foil his brazen escape to an island paradise.

    Unbreakable: One man, seven bullets, one miracle: The story of Noe Garcia Chavez.

    Quote of the Week: “Kevin, there’s going to be a lawsuit. There is going to be a lawsuit, Kevin.” — Caryl Iseman, president of the East Village Community Action Network, confronting Councilman Kevin Falcouner after a tense vote regarding a downtown homeless shelter.


Leave a comment

We expect all commenters to be constructive and civil. We reserve the right to delete comments without explanation. You are welcome to flag comments to us. You are welcome to submit an opinion piece for our editors to review.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.