Sandra Kizior

Thanks to Sandy Kizior, who shared several photographs from her working life.  I smile every time I read this comment she left on the blog:

Rachel I love you. Finally a “place” online I can feel like one of the crowd (of techie grandmas that is). Retired since 2007. Miss my work. I’m looking for pictures etc to share.

Sandy came through with the photos and here they are!

This is a picture of me with Dr. Michael Roche  in our lab at Argonne National Lab.  We worked in the Chemical Engineering Division. This is some of the equipment used to study electrochemical systems.   I believe Mike passed away a few years ago.

kizior_4_hp_scanDS_1454225216This picture was taken circa 1975.

I do not have current photo capability. The photos were scanned using 2003 Apple/HP technology.

My colleagues took me to a Polish restaurant in Chicago (I am Polish) for a farewell luncheon. Mike left the gift in the trunk of his car which was parked in Bldg 205 parking lot. After returning from the luncheon, the whole group gathered in the Argonne parking lot for the gift opening.

The photos are unique to say the least.  Here I am with Mike opening the card…


Next photo has the gift…

kizior 2_hp_scanDS_14542315154

My colleagues at Argonne gave me a briefcase filled with $100 in singles, labeled the Polish National Bank of Argonne. I couldn’t stop laughing.


The position at Argonne was my best job with the lowest compensation. I did real research, published several papers in the Journal of the Electrochemical Society (using 3 different names) and got one patent.

I just need to share one more little tidbit.

The first time I presented my work was at a symposium at Argonne. I don’t remember the year. It was probably around 1977. The talk was scheduled very last, after supper on the final day. Much to my dismay it seemed like everyone stayed to hear my talk. There were about 250 people in the audience, with only one other technical woman. I was able to defend my work without help from “the boss”, and I even threw in a couple of jokes to start. Needless to say, it was the hit of the conference.

After the reorganization at Argonne in the 80’s, I moved to Hughes Electrodynamics in California and worked on space batteries for a few years. Then, I went to Lockheed Martin to work on electrochromics and coatings technology until I retired.

I could not publish when I worked for the defense companies, but I was able to get one or 2 patents.

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Nagambal “Swarna” Shah


Thank you to Prof. Natasha Brewley, who shared the photo above and post below on the occasion of Dr. Nagambal “Swarna” Shah’s Retirement Party May 3, 2014.

Dr. Swarna Shah has been a source of inspiration and support for many Spelman students who are products of its Mathematics Department. Today she had her retirement party to celebrate 40 years of teaching at Spelman College. Through her guidance, she has helped to turn out many young black women undergraduates in mathematics, with interests in Statistics, who have gone on to earn PhD’s. We love you Dr. Shah and wish you wellness and continued happiness in this next phase of your life’s journey!

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Evelyn Boyd Granville


Today is the 90th birthday of Evelyn Boyd Granville, who was the second African American woman to earn a PhD in Mathematics.  To celebrate the occasion, Evelyn Lamb gave her a call and created this post about Granville for her Scientific American blog, Roots of Unity.  Thanks to Evelyn, who blogged about GGSTEM on her own grandmother’s birthday, for the heads up!

The photo above is of Evelyn Boyd Granville in 1997. Photo by Margaret Murray, via Mathematicians of the African Diaspora by Scott W. Williams.

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Catherine Munson


nmij0305munsonThanks to Todd Plummer who suggested Catherine Munson for GGSTEM.  The picture above appeared in the Marin News soon after she passed away.

The article says

Mrs. Munson, a native of Omaha, Neb., grew up in the Midwest and studied microbiology and biochemistry at the University of Nebraska, earning master’s degrees in both. After marrying Bill Munson in 1948 and moving to San Francisco, she worked for the Atomic Energy Commission before quitting to raise three daughters.

Here’s a video with Mrs. Munson discussing her career in real estate.

Video published on Mar 7, 2014

Excerpt from an oral history interview by the Anne T. Kent California Room, Marin County Free Library, for the North San Rafael History Project.
Interview conducted on May 31, 2013.

Over the years, Catherine Munson sold more than 3,250 Eichler homes. She worked until two weeks before her death, on March 3, 2014, at the age of 86.

Project Director: Laurie Thompson
Interviewer: Marilyn L. Geary
Humanities Advisors: Shirley Fischer and Kay Noguchi
Video Production by Paul Kagawa.

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GGSTEM Art? Finally some STEAM on this blog! (STEAM = STEM + ARTS)

Thank you to GGSTEM contributor  Else Høyrup, who pointed us to this Scientific American article featuring 15 works of art depicting women in science.  Since this project initially began as a collection of pictures, this project seemed to fit right in.  Many of the women featured in the art have already been discussed on this blog.

As a bonus, Else also found this Smithsonian article on 10 historic female scientists.


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Annie Easley

NASA Science and Engineering Newsletter Annie Easley.jpg

Thanks to blogger My Purple Glasses, who called attention to programmer Annie Easley in this blog post.  Check it out!  There’s a link to a NASA interview…

According to Wikipedia, the picture above is the cover of Science and Engineering Newsletter featuring Easley at the Lewis Research Center.





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Florence Barbara Seibert

Thanks to Deb Hirsch, who pointed out this tweet from the Smithsonian archives.  Anyone know more?


Here’s more information:

Thanks for sharing! Here’s a tad bit more about her –
Cheers, Effie Kapsalis, Smithsonian Institution Archives


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