Claudia Lynn Thomas is an orthopedic surgeon, civil rights activist, and change agent. She was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1950 and raised in Queens, New York. She studied classical ballet with Bernice Johnson at the Bernice Johnson Cultural Arts Center in Queens. Thomas graduated from the High School of Music and Art in New York City in 1967 and entered Vassar College, where her class of four hundred had only six Black students and one full-time African American professor.
In 1971, Thomas graduated from Vasser College and enrolled in Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, and in 1975, she received her medical license. Thompson is the first woman to graduate from the Yale University Orthopedic Program, which she did in 1977. She is the first African American woman to practice as an orthopedic surgeon in the United States.
In 1989, Thomas was in Charlotte Amalie, Virgin Islands, during Hurricane Hugo and was able to lend support to the rescue efforts in St. Croix. In 2003, Thomas received a Florida State Medical License and became a partner at Tri-County Orthopedic Center in Leesburg, Florida.
Thomas released God Spare Life: An Autobiography, published by WME Books, in 2007.