Campus & Community

Radcliffe Institute announces distinguished alumnae award winners

4 min read

The Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University has named 11 recipients for its annual alumnae awards. Selected by the Radcliffe Institute’s Alumnae Recognition Awards Committee, winners have distinguished themselves in both their service to Radcliffe and in their careers. The awards will be presented and the recipients will speak at the “Women Shaping Power: From the Grassroots to Head of State” symposium on June 8. This event, scheduled for 10:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the American Repertory Theatre, 64 Brattle St., occurs annually as part of Harvard-Radcliffe Commencement Week.

“Through their diverse and extraordinary accomplishments, these alumnae exemplify Radcliffe’s mission to extend the boundaries of knowledge and to advance women in society. For their achievements and for their dedication to Radcliffe, we express our sincere gratitude by honoring them with this year’s alumnae awards,” said Drew G. Faust, dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study and president-elect of Harvard.

Following are the 2007 award winners in their respective categories.

Alumnae Recognition Award recipients

Alumnae Recognition Awards are presented to Radcliffe and Harvard alumnae “whose lives and spirits exemplify the value of a liberal arts education.”

Megan Marshall is the author of the prize-winning biography “The Peabody Sisters: Three Women Who Ignited American Romanticism,” which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in biography and memoir in 2006 and was awarded the Francis Parkman Prize, the Mark Lynton History Prize, and the Massachusetts Book Award in nonfiction. While a 2006–07 Radcliffe Institute fellow, she began a book on Elizabeth Hawthorne, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s older sister. She earned her undergraduate degree from Radcliffe and Harvard colleges in 1977.

Ruth Messinger is president of the American Jewish World Service (AJWS). Prior to assuming her position at AJWS in 1998, Messinger worked in public service in New York City for 20 years. She served 12 years in the New York City Council and eight years as Manhattan borough president. She was the first woman to secure the Democratic Party’s nomination for mayor in 1997. She graduated magna cum laude from Radcliffe College in 1962 and earned a master’s in social work from the University of Oklahoma in 1964.

Lynne Perry-Böttinger is an assistant professor of clinical medicine at Columbia University and a clinical assistant professor of medicine at Cornell University. She is a board-certified clinical and interventional cardiologist who started her own successful cardiology practice. Perry-Böttinger has received numerous awards, among them the Dr. Walter M. Booker Sr. Health Promotion Award from the Association of Black Cardiologists in 2003. She earned her medical degree with honors from Yale Medical School and graduated cum laude in 1982 with an A.B. in history from Radcliffe and Harvard colleges.

Graduate Society Award recipient

The Graduate Society Award medal is presented to alumnae of Harvard and Radcliffe graduate Schools and Radcliffe’s fellowship programs for outstanding contributions to their professions.

Martha Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, with additional appointments in classics, divinity, law, philosophy, and political science. She is a visiting professor of law and the Sidley Austin Visiting Professor of Law at Harvard University and the Susan S. and Kenneth L. Wallach Visiting Professor at the Radcliffe Institute. Nussbaum earned her B.A. from New York University in 1969 and her A.M. and Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1971 and 1975, respectively. She was a Bunting fellow at Radcliffe in 1980–81.

Jane Rainie Opel ’50 Young Alumna Award recipient

The eponymous Jane Rainie Opel ’50 Young Alumna Award, named for the former Radcliffe College Alumnae Association executive director, is presented to an alumna in the 10th reunion class for an outstanding contribution to the advancement of women, her profession, or the Radcliffe Institute.

Serena Mayeri is an assistant professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Prior to joining that faculty in 2006, she was a Samuel I. Golieb Fellow at the New York University School of Law and served as a law clerk to Judge Guido Calabresi on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit. Her scholarship has focused on the historical impact of progressive and conservative social movements for legal and constitutional change. Mayeri earned her A.B. from Radcliffe and Harvard University in 1997, her J.D. from Yale Law School in 2001, and her Ph.D. in history from Yale in 2001.

Distinguished Service Awards recipients

The Distinguished Service Award is given for outstanding service to Radcliffe. The 2007 winners are Frederica Shoenfield Brenneman ’47, Ann Rand Eldridge ’57, Lucia Stein Hatch ’57, Barbara Newman Kravitz ’52, Ellen Guild Moot ’52, and Marlene Rehkamp ’82.

The awards will be presented and the recipients will speak at the ‘Women Shaping Power: From the Grassroots to Head of State’ symposium on June 8, 10:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at the American Repertory Theatre, 64 Brattle St. This event occurs annually as part of Harvard-Radcliffe Commencement Week.