Felisa Rincón de Gautier

Career:Mayor of San Juan, 1946-1969
State:Puerto Rico
Party:Popular Democratic Party

Felisa Rincón de Gautier was a Puerto Rican suffragist and the first female mayor of San Juan.

Rincón de Gautier was born on January 9, 1897, in Ceiba, Puerto Rico. She was active in the campaign to win Puerto Rican women the right to vote, which finally succeeded in 1932. She was one of the first women to vote in Puerto Rico and was later elected the first female mayor of San Juan, serving from 1946-1969. Her social programs were widely supported and were focused on childcare programs, centers for the elderly and legal aid for the poor.

Rincón de Gautier was deeply loved and admired by the people of San Juan for all of the work she did for the city. She received worldwide recognition in 1953 and 1956 because of her goodwill efforts. She was awarded the Gold Medal of Honor, the Don Quixote Medal, the Simon Bolivar Medal and the Medal of Isabella the Catholic Queen from Spain. Eleanor Roosevelt also presented Rincón de Gautier with the Hebrew Philanthropic Award in 1961, and she won the 1953 Woman of the Year award from the League of American Women.

Rincón de Gautier passed September 16, 1994, at age 97.

“Felisa Rincon De Gautier Museum, San Juan.” PuertoRico.com. PuertoRico.com, November 1, 2018. https://www.puertorico.com/attractions/museums/felisa-rincon-de-gautier/.

Pace, Eric. “Felisa Rincon De Gautier, 97, Mayor of San Juan.” New York Times, September 9, 1994. https://www.nytimes.com/1994/09/19/obituaries/felisa-rincon-de-gautier-97-mayor-of-san-juan.html.