Executive director of the Country Schools Association of America, Lucy Townsend is also curator emerits of the Blackwell History of Education Museum at Northern Illinois University, where she is professor emerita of Educational Foundations. She has served as president of the Society for Educating Women (SEW) in 2008, Midwest History of Education Society (now known as the Organization of Educational Historians), president (twice) of the International Society of Educational Biography, secretary of the American Educational Studies Association, and co-editor of Vitae Scholasticae. Project director of the Emma Willard Papers, she and Barbara Wiley published The Emma Willard Papers, 1787-1870(2004), a microform collection of some 15,000 pages of documents and texts, as well as a 64-page guide (2005). She has published a biography of the founder of Rockford College (The Best Helpers of One Another, 1988) and edited, with Gaby Weiner, Women: A Global Perspective (2002). She and Weiner have just published Deconstructing and Reconstructing Lives: Using Auto/Biography in Educational Settings (Althouse Press, University of Western Ontario, 2011). She is currently researching the lives of the first two hundred women to earn the American doctorate. Having served as 2008 Conference Chair of the Society for Educating Women, Prof. Townsend has edited a special issue of Vitae Scholasticae and Educational Studies, both of which featured selected articles from the inaugural SEW conference. She has also edited, with Susan Franzosa, the inaugural issue of the online Journal of The Society for Educating Women.

To order a copy of Deconstructing and Reconstructing Lives, visit




Professor and Dean of Education and Allied Professions at Fairfield University, Fairfield CT, Susan Douglas Franzosa was president of both the Society for Educating Women and the American Educational Studies Association in 2009. A past Associate Editor of the National Women's Studies Association (NWSA) Journal with a long history of participation in Women's Studies and leadership on campus women's issues,she was involved in early development of Summer Institutes on women's studies across the curriculum for school teachers, funded by the National Endowment of the Humanities. She edited Ordinary Lessons: Girlhoods of the 1950's, to which all founders of the SEW contributed. With Karen Mazza she co-authored Integrating Women's Studies into the Curriculum: An Annotated Bibliography; also, she authored Civic Education: Its Limits and Conditions. She is currently at work on an educating woman's biography, organized the SEW's conference on "Changing the Educational Landscape for Girls and Women" in 2009, and (with Lucy Townsend) edited a special issue of Vitae Scholisticae featuring SEW authors as well as the inaugural issue of SEW's new e-journal Educating Women.




Susan Laird authored Mary Wollstonecraft:  Philosophical Mother of Coeducation (2008), along with many articles and book chapters, including "Befriending Girls as an Educational Life-Practice" (2002), which will be republished in Thayer-Bacon and Stone's forthcoming Classic and Contemporary Readings in Education Feminism (SUNY Press).  President-elect of the Society of Philosophy & History of Education (to serve in 2013), she was president of the Philosophy of Education Society (PES) in 2007.  For various kinds of support in 2008-2012, the Society for Educating Women thanks the University of Oklahoma, where Laird is Professor of Educational Leadership & Policy Studies, of Women's & Gender Studies, and of Human Relations-- with particular gratitude to Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education Dean Joan K. Smith and to World Literature Today.   A Faculty Development grant from the University of Oklahoma's Faculty Senate supported Laird's participation in the first work of imagining the SEW in 2006.  Since then, numerous graduate students in Oklahoma's Educational Studies program who were also pursuing the graduate certificate in Women's and Gender Studies with advisement from Laird have participated extensively as junior scholars and field stewards in all aspects of SEW's development.  After Lady Branham (2008) and Janet Handwerk (2009) initiated SEW's web presence with instructive guidance from technology staff consultant Scott Watkins and Professor Amy Bradshaw, Catherine Kinyon designed the website, to which she and Kendra Davis (SEW student representative, 2012) contributed their art; Kinyon has served also as web manager, especially of SEW's Open Conference System in 2010-2012.  In 2010, when Laird served as SEW's third president, Jean Cate of Oklahoma's K20 Center provided consultation for her preparation of a white paper, "Educating Women: A Survey of Ideas," which Connie Titone of Villanova University and Laird co-authored and presented both to AAUW and to SEW.  Also in 2010, Julie M. Davis and Deborah S. Shinn collaborated with Susan Birden of SUNY-Buffalo State College and feminist author and educator Demetria Martinez of Albuquerque to lead and organize the SEW's third conference there, "Educating Women Again: Crossing the Borderlands of Town and Gown," featuring musicians, poets, activists, teachers, and scholars, with a book fair organized by Kristen Holzer and child care organized by the Oklahoma Mothers & Educators Collaborative.  Upon that occasion keynote speaker Susan Sherman donated the SEW's first archive, consisting of all issues of the journal Ikon which published early theoretical and artistic writings by founding leaders of the late twentieth-century women's movement; this archive represents a vital resource for future historians and philosophers of educating women in the late modern U.S.  Kara Morgan established the SEW's first treasury, with fundraising help from Julie Davis, who received a substantial gift from novelist Rudolfo Anaya to SEW in 2010.  Virginia Henson donated legal services to prepare the SEW's application for 501(c)3 status, author the organization's by-laws, and create needed copyright documents.  With Laird's support as General Editor, Julia Daine and Johnnie-Margaret McConnell worked with Kinyon's guidance to learn, construct, and design the Open Journal System platform for the SEW website in 2011, and in 2012 Sharon Peelor learned and used that system to edit and publish Educating Woman, an inaugural archive of the SEW's 2008-2009 conference keynotes compiled and edited by SEW founders Lucy F. Townsend of Northern Illinois University and Susan Douglas Franzosa of Fairfield University.  Holzer has served also as site coordinator for the SEW's fifth conference (2012), while other Oklahoma students, alumnae, and alumni have served as presenters, reviewers, and officers, most notably SEW president Susan Birden (2011) and SEW secretary Michael Surbaugh  (2012).


To order a copy of Mary Wollstonecraft: Philosophical Mother of Coeducation, visit