“Baseball Card Book” Documents First Women Ordained in the Presbyterian Church

“Baseball Card Book” Documents First Women Ordained in the Presbyterian Church

As a woman in seminary, Caroline Leach (’72) only wanted the same respect accorded to other students. Here, she shares about the challenges of being a student at Columbia Theological Seminary at a time when women were just starting to be ordained in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.).

After working as a college chaplain, she teamed up with Diane Tennis who came from the North to work at the PC(US) offices in Atlanta, GA. They created the “Baseball Card Book” in an effort to network with other women who were ordained in the Presbyterian Church.

Listen as she tells her story below! And feel free to share your own story HERE.

Names listed by ordination dates with graduate schools list:

Diane Tennis, 1959, Union Theological Seminary in New York City

Catherine Gunsalus Gonzalez, 1965, Boston University School of Theology

Rachel Henderlite, 1965, Biblical Seminary in New York (New York Theological Seminary) and Yale Divinity School

Betty Lindsay Blanton, 1967, Lexington Theological Seminary

Patricia McClurg, July 9, 1967, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Louise H. Farrior, July 1967: Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, and Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Jacqueline Rhoades, January 1969, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond, Union Theological Seminary in New York City, and Emory University

Abigail Rian Evans, June 1, 1969, Princeton Theological Seminary and University of Basel (Switzerland)

Liz Hill, 1969, Union Theological Seminary

Elizabeth Johnson Pense, July 13, 1969, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Elizabeth Stephenson Johnson, July 13, 1969, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Mary Lee Daugherty, Union Seminary and Presbyterian School of Christian Education

Barbara Jean Shaw, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Laura Buzard, 1970, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Carolyn Clapp, June 17, 1971

Paige M. McRight, 1971, Princeton Theological Seminary

Sandra R. Brown, September 19, 1971, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Brenda Keel Springer, December 5, 1971, Pacific School of Religion

Jeanne E. Clark, January 8, 1972, Colgate Rochester Divinity School and Episcopal Seminary in Alexandria, VA

Winsome Munro, February 1972, William Temple College (England) and Union Theological Seminary in New York City

Linda E. Jordan, May 13, 1973, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Lorene S. White, June 1972

Caroline Leach, June 24, 1973, Columbia Theological Seminary

Renee Huie, 1973, Columbia Theological Seminary

Joyce Rimes, September 16, 1973

Susan Thornton, August 30, 1973, Union Theological Seminary in New York City

Judith C. Gere, 1974

Alice Ogden Bellis, 1974, Howard University School of Religion

Nancy J. B. Clark, June 30, 1974

Jeannine Murphey, 1974, Eden Theological Seminary

Carol Miller Lipscomb, July 7, 1974, Duke Divinity School

Dorothy Annette Vaughn, September 8, 1974, Columbia Theological Seminary

Edna C. (Neddy) Mason, September 8, 1974, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Susan Andrews, September 29, 1974, Harvard Divinity School

Lucy A. Rose, February 16, 1975, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Carol S. Brown, June 1975, Pittsburg Theological Seminary

Joyce Cummings Tucker, August 3, 1975, Yale Divinity School and Columbia Theological Seminary

Nancy Ramsay, August 3, 1975, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Margaret M. Balcom, September 14, 1975, Princeton University Divinity School

Elizabeth Fairleigh, November 2, 1975, Columbia Theological Seminary

Winifred R. Legerton, November 23, 1975, Yale Divinity School

Hazel M. Berry, December 14, 1975

Marilyn Cook Rabb, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Mary Hutcheson Johns, February 8, 1976, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Agnes D. Kuentzel, February 15, 1976, Princeton Theological Seminary

Patricia H. Lovelace, 1976

Lorene S. White, May 30, 1976, Vanderbilt Divinity School

Pansie Cameron Evers, May 30, 1976, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Margaret G. Adams (Margee), June 13, 1976, Union Theological Seminary in New York City

Louise U. Lawson, June 20, 1976, Princeton University Divinity School

Linda Blessing, July 25, 1976, Columbia Theological Seminary

Monica Styron-McKig, October 30, 1976, Princeton Theological Seminary

Etta Carlton Rossman, October 31, 1976, Columbia Theological Seminary

Andrea Ahlers, November 1976

Carole F. Chase, November 1976, Presbyterian School of Christian Education and Duke University

Stella Clarke, Interdenominational Theological Center

Mille B. Mattison, February 13, 1977

Carol Chou Adams, March 21, 1977, University of Dubuque Theological Seminary

Vicki V. Yates, April 24, 1977

Doris J. Hill, June 5, 1977

Alice A. Johnson, July 24, 1977, Columbia Theological Seminary

Moffett D. Swaim, July 24, 1977, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Alice Winters, July 24, 1977, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

Wendy E. Roberts, July 30, 1977

Dorothy Franklin Carpenter, September 10, 1977, Inter-Met

Mary E. Gaines, September 18, 1977, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Nancy J. Duff, 1977

Ruth Kelly Nunnery, October 9, 1977, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Deborah L. Dodson, October 11, 1977, Vanderbilt Divinity School

Aline Gaston Russell, October 16, 1977, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Beverly White Cushman, October 23, 1977, Vanderbilt Divinity School

Caroline Wylie Smith, October 30, 1977, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Helen Fisher, October 30, 1977, Columbia Theological Seminary

Ann Hoch West, October 30, 1977, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Aline Gaston Russell, October 16, 1977

Caroline Wylie Smith, October 30, 1977

Debbie Cannedy, January 8, 1978, Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Beth Johnson, March 12, 1978, Princeton Theological Seminary

Joan S. Gray, March 12, 1978, Columbia Theological Seminary

Fran Phillips, June 27, 1978, Duke Divinity School

Joanna M. Adams, July 1, 1978, Columbia Theological Seminary

Barbara Horney Rodgers, Union Theological Seminary in Richmond

Anna Case Winters, July 9, 1978, Columbia Theological Seminary

Nancy R. Blakely, July 5, 1978

Nancy Rowland McCann, July 23, 1978

Ann Reed Held, October 15, 1978, Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Mary McClintock Fulkerson, August 13, 1978, Duke Divinity School

Roxana Mebane Atwood, October 8, 1978, Protestant Episcopal Seminary in Virginia

Linda K. “Kitch” Shatzer, November 12, 1978

Barbara Horney Rodgers, February 25, 1979

Vicky E. Jones, June 27, 1979

Cynthia Weeks, July 1, 1979, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

June Hicks, July 1979

Rebecca Reyes, July 22, 1979, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Eleanor H. Alexander, July 22, 1979

Eleanor Cherryholmes, August 5, 1979

Jean Louise Messerve, September 16, 1979

Phyllis Hoekstra Kort, October 1979

Daisy Holt, November 18, 1979

Marie Palmer, May 1980

Margaret McLellan, July 27, 1980

Pamela Lee Daniel, July 27, 1980

Carol Seaton Snyder, July 27, 1980

Ginny Simmons Ellis, August 10, 1980

Jean Rodenbough, September 7, 1980

Wendy Jaine Summers, November 2, 1980

Mary Crist Brown, November 2, 1980

Ginny Barksdale, Not ordained

Ann Holland Heuer (Holly), November 9, 1980

Laura S. Mendenhall, 1981, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, San Francisco Theological Seminary, and Presbyterian School of Christian Education

Annie Jane Ackerman, March 8, 1981

Mary Jane Cornell, August 1981

Leila L. Power (Lee), October 11, 1980

Agnes L. Brady, October 1981

Peggy Bright, December 13, 1981

Joanne C. Sizoo, February 28, 1982

Lynn Gant, August 1982

Catherine Mason, October 24, 1982

Dianna Pohlman Bell, July 1, 1983

Guinn Blackwell-Eagleson, October 16, 1983

Jane Guthrie Rhodes, Columbia Theological Seminary

Emily Ramsay Cheney, Vanderbilt Divinity School

Cheryl L. Maddox, International Theological Center

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17 thoughts on ““Baseball Card Book” Documents First Women Ordained in the Presbyterian Church”

  1. Rev Charlotte O’Neil says:

    Is there any hope in recovering some of the early missing names. I’m wondering about Rev Marideen Visscher. She was among the first in the Northern Church. I believe she the first church she served was in Cleveland, Ohio.

    1. That’s part of why we’re interested in collecting more stories. We will preserve all this information–original to the book and submitted through our form–for archives. We may also run additional stories.

  2. nibs Stroupe says:

    Thanks, all, for this great start in recognizing women ordained as ministers in the Presbyterian Church! You should add Katie Cannon, who was ordained in 1974 as the first African-American Presbyterian woman. I’m sure that there are others, too, but this is a wonderful foundation!

  3. Murphy Davis says:

    (Martha) Murphy Davis
    Ordained March28, 2976
    Columbia Seminary Class of 1974

  4. Daniell Hamby says:

    I thought about MaryJane Winter, and Shirley Adams (CT’s alum) and Winnie DuCille.

    This is a great project.

  5. Judy A McKay says:

    Judy Aileen McKay (Walther then) was ordained June 19, 1977 by San Jose Presbytery, a graduate of San Francisco Seminary. She is now a member of Boise Presbytery as Judy A McKay.

  6. Rebecca Blackwell says:

    It looks like you missed one of my dear mentors, Rev. Evlyn Wehling Fulton. Here is her obit: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/stltoday/obituary.aspx?n=evlyn-fulton&pid=145771437

  7. Rebecca Blackwell says:

    Another saint that I don’t see mentioned Rev. Joreen Jarrell… Obit: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/name/joreen-jarrell-obituary?pid=1736171

  8. Rebecca Blackwell says:

    I think you omitted one of my mentors, Rev. Evlyn Wehling Futon. Here is her obit with ordination details: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/stltoday/obituary.aspx?n=evlyn-fulton&pid=145771437

  9. Please add Rev. Evlyn Wehling Fulton. Attached is her obit with ordination details.

    1. Thank you for all these additions, Rebecca!

  10. Linda M Coye says:

    Presbyterian Outlook magazine, in their current issue on women in ministry, lists Margaret Towner as the first woman ordained in the United Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. in 1956 by the Cayuga-Syracuse Presbytery (N.Y.)

    1. Linda, Outlook is most certainly correct. Of course the Baseball Card book was created at a particular point in time to network women who (especially in the South) felt isolated. We will do our best to preserve all the names brought to our attention through this effort. Thank you.

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