On New Year’s Day 1933, Alicia Lardé was born in San Salvador, El Salvador to a prominent upper-class family. The daughter of physician Carlos Lardé, she was named for her mother, Alicia née Lopez-Harrison, and had two brothers. Her father had been familiar with the United States as the family travelled a great deal, and in the 1940’s, the Lardés moved to Mississippi while Alicia was still a young girl, but eventually moved on to New York City. Alicia entered the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) and graduated class of 1955, one of only sixteen women in a class of 800. (Although M.I.T. had been admitting females since 1871, the environment was so inhospitable towards women, even the undergraduate dean of women – a woman – advised them not to attend).
At one time, Alicia’s dream was to become another Marie Curie. Her marriage to noted mathematician John Nash after her graduation, put an end to that, but led to her becoming a mental health advocate in later years.
Jennifer Connolly won an Oscar for best supporting actress for playing Alicia in the Academy Award winning movie A Beautiful Mind.