Aaron Shirley, the first African American resident at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, died on November 26 in Jackson, Mississippi. He was 81 years old.
Dr. Shirley was a native of Gluckstadt, Mississippi. He was a graduate of Tougaloo College in Mississippi and Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee.
Dr. Shirley served as a clinical instructor in the department of pediatrics at the University of Mississippi for more than 40 years. He was a the co-founder of the Jackson-Hinds Comprehensive Health Center and was chair of the Jackson Medical Mall, a collaboration of the Jackson State University, Tougaloo College, and the University of Mississippi.
In 1993, Dr. Shirley was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship, commonly known as a genius award, for his creative approach to bringing medical care to the poor and underserved.