Former Penn interim president Claire Fagin, 1st woman to lead an Ivy League institution, dies at 97

Claire Fagin, a former interim president of the University of Pennsylvania and the first woman to lead an Ivy League institution, has died, the university announced Tuesday. She was 97.

Fagin, longtime dean of the university’s school of nursing, served as interim president of the University of Pennsylvania from July 1993 through June 1994. Judith Rodin then assumed the post as the first permanent female president of an Ivy League institution.

Fagin served as dean of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing from 1977 to 1992, and after serving as interim president returned to teaching and research among the nursing faculty until her 1996 retirement, the school said.

“As dean of Penn Nursing, she was a passionate advocate for universal health care, nursing education, and the advancement of women in health-related fields,” interim president J. Larry Jameson said Tuesday. The university plans a celebration of her life and achievements this spring.

  • January 16, 2024
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