Aurelia H. Reinhardt

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Aurelia Henry Reinhardt
Aurelia Henry Reinhardt, in academic garb, from a 1922 publication
Born Aurelia Isabel Henry
April 1, 1877
San Francisco
Died January 28, 1948(1948-01-28) (aged 70)
Palo Alto, California
Nationality American
Education University of California, Berkeley (1898)
Ph.D., Yale (1905)[1]
Known for President, Mills College, 1916-1943
Moderator, American Unitarian Association, 1940–1942
Spouse(s) George Frederick Reinhardt, M.D.
Children G. Frederick Reinhardt, Paul Henry Reinhardt, M.D.

Aurelia Henry Reinhardt (1877-1948) was an educator, social and peace activist, and leader of numerous organizations. She was president of Mills College for more than a quarter century and was the first female moderator of the American Unitarian Association.[1]


Early life[edit]

Aurelia Henry was born on April 1, 1877 in San Francisco, California. She spent part of her childhood in San jacinto and Escondido, California. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 1898 and earned a PhD in English at Yale in 1905.

Career and honors[edit]

She taught at Lewiston State Normal School in Idaho from 1903 to 1908, taking one year off to revise her dissertation for publication and to travel abroad as a recipient of an Association of Collegiate Alumnae Fellowship. In 1914 she became a lecturer in English in the Extension Division of the University of California. She served from 1916 to 1943 as president of Mills College in Oakland, California, through a period of substantial growth. She was active in local, national and international organizations and lectured widely, often on international cooperation. She served as president of the American Association of University Women from 1923 to 1927 and helped strengthen that organization significantly. In the 1940s she served as moderator of the American Unitarian Association and on the board of trustees of Starr King School for the Ministry.[2]

She received honorary degrees from the University of California (1919), the University of Southern California (1924), Colorado College (1931), Williams (1937), Mt. Holyoke (1937), and Oberlin (1937).

Personal life[edit]

In 1909 she married George F. Reinhardt, M.D., the founder and director of the student health service at the University of California, Berkeley. Upon his untimely death in 1914 she was left with two sons to support.[2] The elder son became the American diplomat G. Frederick Reinhardt. His brother Paul Henry Reinhardt became an ophthalmologist in Palo Alto, California and taught ophthalmology at Stanford University.[3]

Aurelia Squier Harwood, the first female president of the Sierra Club, was a first cousin of Aurelia Henry Reinhardt.[4][1]


She died on January 28, 1948 in Palo Alto, California. Her funeral was held at the First Unitarian Society of San Francisco.


  1. ^ a b Clare B. Fischer, "Aurelia Henry Reinhardt: President of Mills College 1877-1948", Notable American Unitarians, Harvard Square Library, archived from the original on 2012-10-03, retrieved 2013-05-29 
  2. ^ a b "Guide to the Aurelia Henry Reinhardt Papers, Mills College". Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  3. ^ "Obituary". Stanford Magazine. 28: 116. 2000. 
  4. ^ Sierra Club Bulletin, Vol. XIV, No. 1, February, 1929

External links[edit]

Academic offices
Preceded by
Luella Clay Carson
President of Mills College
Succeeded by
Lynn Townsend White, Jr.