New York, NY
United States
Washington Heights 157 St & Broadway Ilka Tanya Payán Park since 1 March 2002
one name
Ilka Tanya Payán (January 7, 1943 – April 6, 1996) was a Dominican-born actress and attorney who later became a prominent HIV/AIDS activist in the United States.
Payán was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and immigrated to the United States at the age of thirteen, settling permanently in New York City. She became widely recognized for her role in the Spanish-language telenovela Angelica, Mi Vida ("Angelica, My Life") and was a founder of the Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors (HOLA). Payán studied law at Peoples College of Law in Los Angeles, California, and became an attorney in 1981, practicing immigration law.
She tested positive for HIV in 1986 but did not publicly disclose her status until 1993. Payán spent the final three years of her life educating the public about the realities of AIDS. On December 10, 1993 she was given the honor of being chosen as the featured speaker at the United Nations panel for World AIDS Day. Payán died from AIDS-related complications at her Hell's Kitchen home on April 6, 1996.

Payán was honored by her native country when Dominican president Joaquín Balaguer awarded her the Medal of Honor in recognition of her activism.
Since 1999, the Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors (HOLA) has given out the HOLA Ilka Award for Humanitarianism in her honor.
On March 1, 2002, New York City renamed a park in the predominantly-Dominican Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights in her honor. The "Ilka Tanya Payán Park" is located on the Greenstreet bounded between 156th and 157th Streets, and Broadway and Morgan Place.
On September 27, 2005 the "Ilka Tanya Payán Theatre" located at the Times Square Arts Center was dedicated. The playhouse will serve as an experimental theater for Latino actors and productions.

New York City Parks