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Antonio Fernós-Isern
Antonio Fernos-Isern.jpg
Member of the Senate of Puerto Rico
In office
1965–1969
Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico
In office
September 11, 1946 – January 3, 1965
Preceded by Jesús T. Piñero
Succeeded by Santiago Polanco Abreu
Personal details
Born (1895-05-10)May 10, 1895
San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico
Died January 19, 1974(1974-01-19) (aged 78)
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Political party Popular Democratic Party (PPD)
Occupation Politician, Senator, Cardiologist
First Puerto Rican cardiologist
Puerto Rico's longest serving resident commissioner
Bust of Fernós-Isern at the Capitol of Puerto Rico.

Dr. Antonio Fernós-Isern [note 1] (May 10, 1895 – January 19, 1974) was the first Puerto Rican cardiologist and its longest serving resident commissioner.

Early years[edit]

Fernos-Isern born in San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico and attended primary and intermediate schools in Caguas. His family moved to Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania during his mid-year in high school. He finished his high school education in the "Pennsylvania State Normal School". After completing his pre-medical training, he applied and was accepted in the College of Physicians and Surgeons of the University of Maryland and earned his doctor's degree in May 1915.[1]

Fernos-Isern returned to the island and settled in the city of Caguas where he practiced medicine for two years. between the years 1918-1933, he held various administrative positions in the health services of Puerto Rico. In 1918, he was the Director for the City of San Juan; from 1919 to 1921, he was the Under-Secretary of Health; from 1921-23 the Director of Health in city; from 1923-29 he was once again Under-Secretary of Health and from 1930-33 the Secretary of Health of Puerto Rico.[2]

First Puerto Rican cardiologist[edit]

In 1933, Fernos-Isern resigned as health commissioner and went to New York, here he completed his residency in cardiology at Columbia University and thus became the "first" Puerto Rican cardiologist. Upon his later return to Puerto Rico, he became a professor at the "Public School of Tropical Medicine of Puerto Rico",where he had previously served as assistant and associate professor.[2]

Political career[edit]

In 1937, Fernos-Isern joined Luis Muñoz Marín organize the "Popular Democratic Party" (Partido Popular Democratico). In 1941, he served as the Director of civilian defense for the San Juan Metropolitan Area. In 1942 he returned to head the Department of Health and the Administration of Public Housing, as Director of the War Effort Office for Puerto Rico. From 1943 to 1946 Dr. Fernos-Isern was also the acting governor of Puerto Rico, during the Governorship of Rexford G. Tugwell under appointment as Permanent Acting Governor approved by president Franklyn D. Roosevelt.[1]

Resident Commissioner[edit]

In 1946, the governor of Puerto Rico, Jesus T. Piñero, appointed Fernos-Isern as his replacement for the Resident Commissioner to the U.S. Congress after unanimous endorsement from the legislature. Fernos-Isern was re-elected for six consecutive years, serving a total of nineteen years. As Resident Commissioner, Fernos-Isern played a very important role in convincing the Government of the United States to give Puerto Ricans the right to govern their island. In 1947, the "Crawford Project", allowing Puerto Ricans to elect their governor was approved by Congress and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman.[1]

On June 8, 1950, the United States Senate approved the "Public Law 600", allowing Puerto Rico to establish its own constitutional local government. Fernos-Isern served as president of the Constitutional Convention, which formulated the Constitution of the "Commonwealth" (Estado Libre Asociado).[3]

Later years[edit]

Fernos-Isern did not seek re-election in 1964. He returned to Puerto Rico from Washington, D.C. and was elected to the Puerto Rican Senate, serving between 1965-1969. After he retired from politics, he returned to the University of Puerto Rico as Resident Scholar where he wrote his monumental work in three parts: The Estado Libre Asociado...(the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico), and Filosofía y Doctrina del Estadolibrismo Puertorriqueño (Philosophy and doctrine of the Puerto Rican Commonwealth).[1]

Antonio Fernos-Isern died in San Juan, Puerto Rico on January 19, 1974 and was buried with full state honors in the Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery located in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico.[2]

Legacy[edit]

His memory is honored at the Capitol building in San Juan with a bust facing the urn preserving the original Constitution of Puerto Rico. His collected papers are held in trust at the Fernós-Isern room at the Inter American University Law School in Hato Rey, San Juan.[3]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^
    This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Fernós and the second or maternal family name is Isern.

See also[edit]


References[edit]

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Jesús T. Piñero
Resident Commissioner to the U.S. House of Representatives
from Puerto Rico

1946-1965
Succeeded by
Santiago Polanco Abreu



Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonio_Fernós-Isern — Please support Wikipedia.
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Presentación del Libro: Antonio Fernos Isern de Médico a Constituyente P. 1/5

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Presentación del libro "Fernós Isern, de médico a constituyente”.

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14 news items

 
El Nuevo Dia.com
Thu, 04 Dec 2014 01:00:00 -0800

Así, las aportaciones a la vida pública, de puertorriqueños como Jesús T. Piñero, Luis Negrón López, Jaime Benítez, Roberto de Jesús Toro, Santiago Polanco Abreu, Arturo Morales Carrión, Antonio Fernós Isern, Leopoldo Figueroa Carreras, Antonio (Toño) ...
 
Huffington Post
Thu, 25 Jul 2013 06:03:13 -0700

In Washington, D.C., the island's representative in Congress — Resident Commissioner Antonio Fernos Isern — introduced a bill in March 1950 to the House of Representatives, asking the U.S. for authorization for Puerto Ricans to redact their constitution.
 
El Nuevo Dia.com
Thu, 25 Aug 2011 02:10:01 -0700

En el lugar se congregaron independentistas, populares, estadistas y soberanistas para presentar sus respetos al hijo de Antonio Fernós Isern, uno de los arquitectos del Estado Libre Asociado (ELA), y cuya “agenda inconclusa” de desarrollo de esta ...
 
El Nuevo Dia.com
Mon, 22 Aug 2011 02:08:58 -0700

... Antonio García Padilla, y el presidente del Senado, Thomas Rivera Schatz, entre otros. De estirpe conocida, su padre, Antonio Fernós Isern fue comisionado residente en Washington y uno de los arquitectos de la Constitución del Estado Libre Asociado.
 
El Nuevo Dia.com
Sat, 04 Feb 2012 20:30:20 -0800

El esfuerzo constituyente incorporó muchos de los mejores talentos del país. La presidencia de las comisiones permanentes y los puestos en la misma son reflejo del trabajo de ese equipo. Veamos: Antonio Fernós Isern, Presidente. María Libertad Gómez ...
 
El Nuevo Dia.com
Fri, 28 Sep 2012 02:11:15 -0700

Las enmiendas a la Ley de Relaciones Federales se lograrían tras el comisionado residente Antonio Fernós Isern aseverar a los congresistas que no habría cambios fundamentales entre las relaciones de Estados Unidos y Puerto Rico y que el Congreso ...

Diario Metro de Puerto Rico

Diario Metro de Puerto Rico
Tue, 28 May 2013 11:58:02 -0700

Durante diez semanas asistiendo cada viernes desde el 8 de marzo al 24 de mayo en la Biblioteca Virtual Dr. Rafael Marcano Blanco unos 20 jóvenes de las escuelas públicas José Campeche, María Cruz Buitrago y la vocacional Antonio Fernós Isern, ...
 
El Nuevo Dia.com
Mon, 09 Jan 2012 01:00:00 -0800

Durante la aprobación de la Ley 600, el comisionado residente Antonio Fernós Isern declaró que “HR7674 would not change the status of the island of Puerto Rico relative to the United States… It would not alter the powers of sovereignty acquired by the ...
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