WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Monday announced the nomination of Dr. Regina Benjamin as the next United States surgeon general.

Benjamin is a rural Alabama family physician who made headlines with fierce determination to rebuild her nonprofit medical clinic in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, according to The Associated Press.

The surgeon general is the people’s health advocate.

“I am honored and I am humbled. This is a physician’s dream,’’ Benjamin said on Monday after Obama announced the nomination. “But to me, it’s more than just a job.’’

Benjamin became the first black woman and the youngest doctor elected to the American Medical Association’s board, according to the AP. She also received the Nelson Mandela Award for Health and Human Rights in 1998, and Pope Benedict XVI awarded her the distinguished service medal Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice.

Her nomination for surgeon general requires Senate confirmation.

Pictured above is Dr. Regina Benjamin.