bryn mawr college notable alumni

Bryn Mawr College, a small liberal arts institution nestled in the picturesque suburbs of Philadelphia, has garnered significant attention for its rich history, academic excellence, and commitment to empowering women. This article explores why Bryn Mawr is famous, its prestige, notable alumni, its accessibility for international students, and the kind of students who thrive at this esteemed institution.

GSSWSR graduates nominated their peers and colleagues for inclusion in a list of our 100 Distinguished Alumni. We are pleased to list them below and recognize their accomplishments and their dedication to the service of others.

Ann A. AbbottMSS ’69, PhD ’77Former chair, Graduate Department of Social Work, West Chester University and Associate Dean, Rutgers University School of Social Work

Faith AngellMSS ’65U.S. Magistrate Judge, Eastern District, PA

Khary M. AtifMSS ’97, MLSP ’98Program Administrator for Staff Development Support, Philadelphia DHS

Beth I. BarolMSS ’86, PhD ’98Associate Professor, Director of the MSW program, Widener University Center for Social Work Education

Linda R. BarthMSS  ’73Clinician working with children, families and individuals

Joyce O. BeckettMSS ’69, PhD ’77Professor Emerita, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Social Work

L. Diane BernardPhD ’67Retired social work educator and CDWE leader; advocate bringing women’s and LGBTQ issues to the forefront of social work education

Sharon BishopMSS ’71Co-founder of Calibre Associates, consulting organization on human services and human resource issues

Joretha BourjollyPhD ’96Associate Professor, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Penn School of Social Policy and Practice

Yvette BradfordMSS ’90, MLSP ’90Former senior administrator with Liberty Lutheran Services and Philadelphia Corporation for Aging; community volunteer

Lynette M. Brown-SowMSS ’81Vice President, Marketing and Government Relations, Community College of Philadelphia

Page Walker BuckMSS ’04, PhD ’08Associate Professor, Director of MSW program, West Chester State University

Patricia Millar BurlandMSS ’56Retired GSSWSR professor of clinical social work; leader, PA Society for Clinical Social Work

Jean CampbellMSS ’13Outpatient therapist, behavioral specialist consultant and mobile therapist

Patricia L. ChapmanMSS ’81Philanthropist supporting women balancing education and family

Lewis C. ChartockPhD ’74President and CEO, Metropolitan Employment and Rehabilitation Services/Missouri Goodwill

Darla Spence CoffeyPhD ’99President, Council on Social Work Education

Soraya Davis ColeyMSS ’74, PhD ’81President, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona

Sandra S. CorneliusMSS ’68, PhD ’76President, Elwyn

Adelaide CromwellCERT ’43Professor Emeritus, Boston University

Philip W. DamianiMSS ’76Executive Director, Delaware County Court System (Retired)

Joan K. DavittMSS ’93, MLSP ’94, PhD ’03Associate Professor and Hartford Geriatric Social Work Scholar, University of Maryland School of Social Work

Merle M. DrakeMSS ’82Founder, CEO of Supportive Older Women’s Network (SOWN) 1983–present

Fanita BlumbergEnglish MA ’42, CERT ’42Transactional Analysis theorist, training analyst and practitioner

JoAnne FischerMSS ’73Executive Director of Maternity Care Coalition (1989-present)

Anna S. ForbesMSS ’92Global women’s health activist and policy analyst

Ellen W. FreemanMSS ’73, PhD ’76Research Professor, Co-director of the Human Behavior Reproduction Unit, University of Pennsylvania Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Mariah Fenton GladisMSS  ’72Founder and Director, Pennsylvania Gestalt Center

Judith GreenMSS ’90, MLSP ’90Coordinator, Family to Family program, National Alliance on Mental Illness, Main Line

Laura Cohen GrovesMSS ’95, PhD ’06Associate Professor and Chair, Social Work Department, Cabrini College

Gloria M. GuardMSS ’78, MLSP ’80Executive Director of People’s Emergency Center (1983-2010)

Anne B. HageleMSS ’75Executive Director, Philadelphia Senior Center, Retired

Raheemah Shamsid-Deen HamptonMSS ’02Southeast Regional Director, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Office of Children, Youth and Families

Lina HartocollisMSS ’89, PhD ’99Dean of Students and Director of the Doctorate in Clinical Social Work Program, Penn School of Social Policy and Practice

Julius A. HayesMSS ’87, MLSP ’88National Officer/Local leader, National Association of Black Social Workers; supervisor, Philadelphia DHS

Ethel B. HillMSS ’65Social Security Administration Federal Women’s Program Manager (Retired); Howard County, MD, civic leader

Stephen M. HoldenMSS ’67, PhD ’75New Jersey Superior Court Judge 

Linda Denise HouserPhD ’10Associate Professor, PHD Program Director, Widener University Center for Social Work Education

Demetrius S. IatridisPhD ’55Professor Emeritus, Boston College Graduate School of Social Work (1966-2012)

Roberta R. IversenMSS ’82, PhD ’91Associate Professor, Director, Master of Science in Social Policy Program, Penn School of Social Policy and Practice

Carrie JacobsMSS ’83Executive Director and co-founder of The Attic Youth Center for LGBTQ youth

Celeste M. JohnsonMSS ’78, PhD ’06Associate Professor, Widener University Center for Social Work Education; research focus on urban adolescents and trauma

Aulikki KananojaMSS  ’71Awarded the first Finnish presidential honorary title for social work—the highest honor for a profession (2012)

Stephen E. KauffmanPhD ’92Associate Professor, Widener University Center for Social Work Education; Teagle Assessment Scholar of Center for the Inquiry of Liberal Arts based at Wabash College

Nancy J. KirbyMSS ’65Coordinator of Alumni Connections, GSSWSR, former Assistant Dean and Director of Admission, GSSWSR (1983-2010)

Carole LandisMSS ’95Chairwoman, Landis Foundation for Social Action

John G. LoebMSS ’69Senior Vice President, Public Health Management Corporation, retired (1971-2011); Chairperson GSSWSR Board of Advisors

Robin S. MamaMSS ’84, MLSP ’84, PhD ’90Dean and Professor, Monmouth University School of Social Work; Representative of the International Federation of Social Workers at the United Nations

Marcia L. MartinPhD ’82Co-Dean (2002-2009); Associate Dean, Director of Field Instruction, adjunct faculty, GSSWSR

Thaddeus P. MathisMSS ’68Professor Emeritus, Temple University School of Social Administration; Founder, Institute for Africana Social Work

Ruth W. MaydenMSS ’70Dean, GSSWSR (1987-2002); NASW President (1999-2001); Annie E. Casey Fellow (2002-2013)

Patrick T. McCarthyPhD ’81President and CEO, Annie E. Casey Foundation

Judith L. M. McCoydPhD ’03Associate Professor, Rutgers University School of Social Work; research focus on trauma and bereavement

Suzanne M. McMurphyMSS ’84, MLSP ’85, PhD ’93Associate Professor, Social Work, University of Windsor; focus on community research

Justine McNamaraPhD ’04Senior Research Fellow, NATSEM, University of Canberra

Susan A. MessinaAB ’86, MSS ’91, MLSP ’92Social justice advocate and activist for LGBTQ issues and childbirth education

Honora Rose MillerMSS ’99, MLSP ’99Director,Commission on the Status of Women and the LGBTQ Commission, San Mateo County, CA

Judith Dabney MillerMSS ’85, MLSP ’86Associate Director, Women’s Law Project

Tselane MokuenaMSS ’94, MLSP ’94Deputy Executive Director, Tripartite Secretariat-South Africa, Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo; former South Africa Consul to Canada and to Germany

Jean Campbell MooreMSS ’49Associate Professor Emerita, Temple University School of Social Administration; founder, Career Ladders Program; program host, WRTI

Anthony MorelliMSS ’12Director of Off-Site Programming, Peter’s Place—a Center for Grieving Children

Alice MuludiangMSS ’05, MLSP ’06Advocate for Sudanese refugees in the US and for capacity building in South Sudan; board member, Global Education Motivators

Sabina N. NeemMSS ’07, MLSP ’07Associate Director, Office of Multicultural Affairs, Seattle University; Co-Chair, Seattle LGBT Commission

Sheila Nielsen, MSS ’73President, Nielsen Career Counseling—executive coaching firm

Dolores G. NortonMSS ’60, PhD ’69Professor Emerita, University of Chicago School of Social Administration; first African American tenured professor at Bryn Mawr College

Ann O’BrienMSS ’03, MLSP ’03CEO, Montgomery Early Learning Centers; former Senior Vice President, United Way of Southeastern PA

Catherine OrmerodMSS ’99, MLSP ’99Founding director, Non-Profit Executive Leadership Institute (NELI), GSSWSR; Vice President Programs and Partnerships, Living Beyond Breast Cancer (LBBC)

Cheryl Ann ParksPhD ’97Dean and Professor, Simmons College School of Social Work

Belle B. ParmetMA ’40, CERT ’40Former Director of Psychiatric Social Worker at Carrier Foundation; early pioneer in family therapy practice

Joan T. PennellPhD ’90Professor of Social Work and Director of Center for Family and Community Engagement, North Carolina State University

Felice PerlmutterPhD ’69Professor Emeritus, Temple University School of Social Administration; pioneer in social work administration

Linda Cherrey ReeserMSS ’60, PhD ’69Professor, Director of BSW Program, Western Michigan University

Lawrence S. RootMSS ’71Professor and Director of Office of Global Activities, University of Michigan School of Social Work

Tawana Ford SabbathMSS ’71, PhD ’86Community elder, clinician and mentor; local and national NABSW leader

Allyson Y. SchwartzMSS ’72Former PA US Representative and PA State Senator; President and CEO, Better Medicare Alliance

Deena SchwartzMSS ’65Social worker and advocate for persons and families dealing with longer-term intellectual disabilities

Nicholas C. ScullMSS ’02Clinical Director, Fawzia Sultan Rehabilitation Institute; Assistant Professor and Assistant Dean, American University of Kuwait

Carol ShapiroMSS ’78Founder and President of Family Justice, community centered re-entry program; Ashoka Fellow

Valerie ShapiroMSS ’05Assistant Professor, co-director of Center for Prevention Research, UC-Berkeley School of Social Welfare

Corey ShdaimahPhD ’05Associate Professor, Academic coordinator of MSW/JD program, University of Maryland School of Social Work

Edmund A. ShermanPhD ’67Professor Emeritus, SUNY-Albany School of Social Welfare

James H. SillsPhD ’81Former state representative, city councilman and two term mayor of Wilmington, DE

Paula T. SilverPhD ’92Dean and Professor, School of Professional Studies, Widener University

Basha A. SilvermanMSS ’12Vice President for Strategic Planning, Jewish Family and Children’s Services of Greater Philadelphia

Barbara L. SimonMSS ’76, PhD ’81Associate Professor, Columbia University School of Social Work

Rosa Lee SmithMSS ’51Retired counselor, LaSalle University, mentor to countless social workers; collaborator with Dr. Warren E. Smith, community psychiatrist

Deborah SpungenMSS ’89, MLSP ’90Founding Director of Families of Murder Victims and Anti-Violence Partnership of Philadelphia

Harold E.StaffordMSS ’73Former Secretary of Labor, State of Delaware; more than 30 years of management of Delaware state agencies

Gail S. SteketeeMSS ’73, PhD ’87Dean and Professor, Boston University School of Social Work

Patricia A. StewartMSS ’81Advocate and national consultant on HIV/AIDS issues in the African American community; clinician and social work mentor

Jennifer StotterMSS ’99, PhD ’10Director of EEO/AA, University of Hawaii at Hilo; former Director of AA/EEO, CVS Caremark Corporation

Emiko Anne TajimaPhD ’99Associate Professor and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, University of Washington School of Social Work

Tony ThurmondMSS ’95, MLSP ’96Representative, 15th Assembly District, California; former Richmond, CA, council member; youth services advocate

Niambi Robinson-TillmanAB ’92, MSS ’94, MLSP ’95Assistant Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Dallas, TX

Theresa Peaches ValdesAB ’99, MSS ’03, MLSP ’03Dean of Undergraduate Admissions, Bryn Mawr College

Shirley Waites-HowardMSS ’77Social work educator, bereavement counselor and longtime community activist

Nina Wall-CoteMSS ’00Director, Bureau of Autism Services of the PA Department of Public Welfare

Bertha S. WatersMSS ’79Community advocate and activist for social justice and social change

Elizabeth WerthanMSS ’73Dedicated advocate for women’s health and rights; former Executive Director of CHOICE and Board Chair of Women’s Way

Henry L. WestrayMSS ’74Former State Coordinator and Chair, Maryland Governor’s Commission on Suicide Prevention

Scott M. WilsonMSS ’65, PhD ’76Social work education consultant, Senior Educational Specialist, Division of Standards and Accreditation, Council on Social Work Education

Robert E. YoungMSS ’57Retired Clinical Social Worker and Researcher, Eastern Virginia Medical School


Is Bryn Mawr a Prestigious College?

Yes, Bryn Mawr College is undoubtedly prestigious. It consistently ranks among the top liberal arts colleges in the United States. Its reputation is built on a legacy of rigorous academic programs, distinguished faculty, and a commitment to academic and social progress. Bryn Mawr is a member of the prestigious Seven Sisters colleges, a group of historically women’s liberal arts colleges known for their academic excellence.

What Famous People Went to Bryn Mawr College?

Bryn Mawr College boasts a notable list of alumni, including some influential and accomplished individuals. One of the most celebrated alumnae is Katharine Hepburn, the legendary Hollywood actress known for her iconic performances and Academy Awards. Other notable Bryn Mawr graduates include Emily Greene Balch, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and the distinguished anthropologist Margaret Mead.

Is Bryn Mawr an Elite College?

Bryn Mawr College is indeed considered an elite institution, primarily due to its rigorous academic programs, world-class faculty, and small class sizes. It is highly selective, accepting a limited number of students each year, and its academic reputation ensures that its graduates are well-prepared for successful careers and advanced studies.

Does Bryn Mawr College Meet Full Need for International Students?

Bryn Mawr College is dedicated to providing financial support to international students. While it does not guarantee to meet the full demonstrated financial need of every international student, it offers various forms of financial aid, including scholarships, grants, and work-study opportunities. Prospective international students are encouraged to reach out to the financial aid office to explore the available options and determine the aid package that best suits their needs.

What Kind of Student Goes to Bryn Mawr?

Bryn Mawr College attracts a diverse group of students who share a passion for academic excellence, intellectual curiosity, and a commitment to social change. The institution is known for its inclusive and empowering environment, where students from various backgrounds come together to engage in intellectual discourse, foster leadership skills, and challenge traditional norms.

Which School Accepts the Most International Students?

While it’s difficult to pinpoint a single institution that accepts the most international students, many prestigious colleges and universities in the United States are known for their diverse student bodies. Ivy League schools like Harvard, Yale, and Princeton, as well as other elite institutions, often enroll a substantial number of international students. Bryn Mawr College also maintains a commitment to global diversity and welcomes international students from various countries.

How Much is the Application Fee for Bryn Mawr College for International Students?

As of my last knowledge update in September 2021, the application fee for international students at Bryn Mawr College was approximately $60. However, it’s crucial to note that application fees can change over time, so it’s essential to check the most up-to-date information on the college’s official website or contact the admissions office for the latest details regarding application fees and requirements for international students.


Bryn Mawr College has earned its fame and prestige through a legacy of academic excellence, distinguished alumni, and a commitment to inclusivity and empowerment. Its dedication to providing financial aid for international students, coupled with its strong academic programs, makes it a sought-after destination for students from around the world. The diverse and intellectually vibrant community at Bryn Mawr continues to attract those who seek a top-tier education within a supportive and progressive environment.

About the author

Study on Scholarship Today -- Check your eligibility for up to 100% scholarship.

Leave a Comment