Situational awareness:

  • President Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen plans to tell Congress about "irrefutable" proof that Trump had committed "illicit acts," and will allege Trump knew that his ally Roger Stone was talking to WikiLeaks about a release of hacked DNC emails. (Axios)
  • Pakistan's military shot down "two Indian aircraft inside Pakistani airspace" in the disputed Kashmir region, the worst escalation of conflict since the 1971 war. (Bloomberg)
  • The CBO says the U.S. will run out of cash by September without a debt limit increase. (CBO)

History: Alice Augusta Ball was the first woman to graduate from the University of Hawaii, graduating in 1915 with a master's degree in science. She was the first African-American research chemist and the first female chemistry professor in the college's history.

At the age of 23, Ball discovered and developed the most effective treatment for leprosy, which at the time was a life-ending disease with no chance of recovery.

She was the first person to successfully develop a water-soluble, injectable form of chaulmoogra oil that was used for decades to relieve the symptoms of the disease.

Her technique involved isolating ester compounds from the oil and chemically modifying them, resulting in a substance that retained the oil's therapeutic properties and was absorbed by the body when injected.

Ball also studied chemistry at the University of Washington, previously earning a bachelor's degree in pharmaceutical chemistry and a second degree in pharmacy 2 years later.

The University of Hawaii did not recognize Ball's work for nearly 90 years. In 2000, the university dedicated a plaque to her, and the state's former lieutenant governor declared Feb. 29 "Alice Ball Day," which is celebrated every 4 years.