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Collections | Digital Collections | Vanderbilt University History

Firsts for Vanderbilt Women

Alphabetical by Name | Chronological by Year

1875 - Cutter, Emma B. One of two first faculty women at Peabody College.

1875 - Sears, Julia. One of two first faculty women at Peabody College.

1879 - Lupton, Kate. First woman to receive a Vanderbilt degree (Master of Arts).

1891 - Paschall, Annie. First woman to receive an entering scholarship at Vanderbilt.

1900 - Hunnicutt, Martha E. First woman winner of the Founder's Medal.

1902 - Brown, Anna. First Vanderbilt Alumna to be elected Phi Beta Kappa.

1902 - Martin, Amelia Baskervill. One of the first three undergraduate women elected to Phi Beta Kappa at Vanderbilt.

1902 - Maslin, Martha Maney. One of the first three undergraduate women elected to Phi Beta Kappa at Vanderbilt.

1902 - Tuttle, Daisy. One of the first three undergraduate women elected to Phi Beta Kappa at Vanderbilt.

1913 - Haggard, Mary W. First woman named university registrar at Vanderbilt.

1918 - Gilbreth, Christine Marie. First woman to graduate from Vanderbilt Dental School.

1919 - Allen, Clara Marie Weber. First woman to receive L.L.B. degree.

1919 - Loomis, Dorothy Bethurum. First woman editor of The Commodore.

1919 - Means, Marie Hackle. First woman to earn a Ph.D. from Peabody.

1922 - Bowie, Anna Mary. First woman faculty member in the Vanderbilt School of Medicine.

1925 - Stapleton, Ada Belle. First dean of women and first woman appointed professor of English at Vanderbilt.

1929 - Beard, Louise Allen. One of two first women to graduate from Vanderbilt School of Medicine.

1929 - Bowie, Thelma Byrd. One of two first women to graduate from Vanderbilt School of Medicine.

1929 - Earle, Imogene Phelps. First woman to earn Ph.D. (Biochemistry) at Vanderbilt.

1930 - Kachelhoffe, Susie C. First woman to earn Bachelor of Divinity at Vanderbilt.

1930 - Titus, Shirley C. First dean of the Vanderbilt School of Nursing.

1933 - Rhea, Linda. First woman to earn a Ph.D. in English at Vanderbilt.

1942 - Freeman, Betty. First woman editor of The Hustler.

1945 - Jones, Vera Jane. First woman to receive B.E. from the Vanderbilt School of Engineering.

1964 - Quarterman, Elsie. First woman Chair (Department of General Biology).

1964 - Werthen, Mary Jane. First woman on the Vanderbilt Board of Trust.

1966 - Gray, Susan. Founder and first director of the Peabody Demonstration and Research Center for Early Education.

1968 - Poindexter, Portia. First African-American woman to be awarded a graduate degree at Vanderbilt (M.A.T. in History).

1970 - Perdue, Bobbi. First African-American woman to graduate from the Vanderbilt School of Nursing.

1973 - Cuninggim, Margaret. First woman to hold the title of dean for student life at Vanderbilt.

1973 - Wolfe, Marice. First woman named University Archivist at Vanderbilt.

1973 - Zibart, Ruth G. First woman named associate dean of the Vanderbilt College of Arts and Sciences.

1974 - Lee, Eve. First African-American woman to receive a Ph.D. from Vanderbilt (German).

1974 - Stahlman, Mildred. First woman to chair the Vanderbilt Faculty Senate.

1975 - Daughtrey, Martha Craig. First faculty woman at Vanderbilt Law School, 1972. First woman judge in Tennessee (Associate Justice, Court of Criminal Appeals).

1975 - McFague, Sallie. First woman dean of the Vanderbilt Divinity School and first woman dean of a theological school in the United States.

1976 - Mauksch, Ingebord. First woman awarded an endowed chair at Vanderbilt (Valere Potter Distinguished Professor of Nursing).

1977 - Higgs, Mary Egerton (Skipp). First woman editor of University Publications, 1977.
           Davis, Henrietta Rose - First woman Director of Personnel, 1977.

1978 - Dailey, Darlene. One of two first African-American women to graduate from Vanderbilt School of Medicine.

1978 - Higgs, Mary Egerton (Skipp). First director of University Publications.

1978 - Jones, Janice. One of two first African-American woman to graduate from Vanderbilt Medical School.

1978 - Ransom, Nancy. First director of the Vanderbilt Women's Center.

1978 - Shafer, Kim. First woman elected president of the Vanderbilt Student Government Association.

1979 - Holliday, Bertha. First African-American faculty member of Peabody College.

1980 - Fischer, Charlotte. First woman tenured in Vanderbilt School of Engineering.

1980 - Wynn, Lillian. First African-American to graduate from the Vanderbilt Divinity School, 1980

1981 - Pierce, Pat. First woman director of Vanderbilt Opportunity Development Center.

1983 - Chandler, Joan. First African-American woman department head (director of materials distribution) in Medical Center.

1983 - Karzon, Allaire Urban. First woman to become tenured at Vanderbilt Law School.

1985 - Edwards, Francis. First woman elected president of the Vanderbilt Alumni Association. (BSN, 1953; MSN, 1976)

1986 - Katahn, Enid. First woman professor at Blair School of Music (professor of piano).

1987 - Bowen, Barbara. First woman to chair a department (French and Italian) in the Vanderbilt College of Arts and Sciences.

1987 - Fluker, Sharon. First African-American woman to become an assistant dean of the Vanderbilt Graduate School

1999 - Briskey, Lauren. First woman Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive Officer (Administration).
        - Ingram, Martha R. First woman to serve as chairman of the Board of Trust (1999-2011)