Evelyn Figueroa

Dr. Evelyn Figueroa is a Professor, UIC Family Medicine Residency Program Director, and the Director of the UI Health Pilsen Food Pantry at the University of Illinois at Chicago. In 1999, Dr. Figueroa earned her medical degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and subsequently completed her residency training in Family Medicine at Lutheran General Hospital. In 2007, Dr. Figueroa completed the UIC Scholars for Teaching Excellence Faculty Fellowship. She is board certified in family medicine and focuses her primary care practice in vulnerable populations work, such as reproductive justice, LGBTQIA* health, substance use disorders, maternity care, and the care of children.
Dr. Figueroa spent her early career focusing on women’s health and maternity care, but presently devotes substantial energy to social determinants of health work, education, and activism. She does this through the direction and coordination of service learning programs in homelessness and food justice in addition to leading bias in healthcare educational sessions for her department. Dr. Figueroa believes that health equity cannot be achieved unless the impacts of racism, heterosexism, sexism, poverty, violence, and unequal social opportunities are addressed for patients. For her social justice teaching and advocacy, Dr. Figueroa has been honored with multiple awards, such as the 2012 Illinois Academy of Family Physicians Teacher of the Year, the 2014 UIC-COM Rising Star in Family Medicine Award, the 2015 Urban Health Program Social Justice Award, the 2017 Health and Medicine Research Policy Group Medicine Award, and the 2019 Society of Teachers of Family Medicine President’s Award.
Dr. Figueroa founded and directs the UI Health Pilsen Food Pantry, serves as volunteer medical director for the Pacific Garden Mission homeless shelter medical clinic, and was recently inducted as a fellow into the Institute of Medicine-Chicago. In addition, Dr. Figueroa is the Executive Co-Director of the Figueroa Wu Family Foundation, a non-profit organization that conducts anti-poverty work. The Foundation supported a 2017-18 medical social brigade in remote southwest Puerto Rico and, in January 2018, founded the UI Health Pilsen Food Pantry. The Pantry services a large undocumented immigrant population and distributed over 500,000 pounds of food and household items last year. The Pantry expanded into literacy activism with the Pilsen Little Free Library in 2019. Planning is underway to develop a medical legal partnership to better support the Pilsen community.


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