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February 17, 1912

Social worker and reformer Julia Lathrop ’80, soon to be appointed the first woman to head a federal bureau, was elected as a new trustee, succeeding Florence Cushing ’74, one of the first alumnae trustees. Speaking the following June at the alumnae reunion, after her appointment in April by President William Howard Taft as chief of the Children’s Bureau in the Department of Commerce and Labor, she praised her predecessor, saying “Miss Cushing by virtue of being Ms. Cushing should be a permanent trustee.” Turning to her new responsibilities to the nation’s poor children, she called pity “a rebel passion, it does not respect the traditions of society, it does not respect the forces of society, but it is nevertheless the kingdom of God working within us.” She urged her fellow alumnae to turn pity as an emotion into pity as a motive, saying it would do a great work.

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