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Grad’s gift to Ursuline College funds new Women’s Center

September 06, 2018

yearbook picture of katherine lockwood allenA 1955 graduate of Ursuline College has made a $250,000 gift to fund the College’s new Women’s Center over the next several years. Katherine A. (Lockwood) Allen’s recent gift will fund the center’s day-to-day operations as well as special initiatives such as workshops and guest speakers.

Allen said she made her gift in appreciation for the education and encouragement she received at Ursuline College. “Ursuline College educated me to be an active citizen and member of my community, well prepared for my family and career responsibilities,” she said. 

Ursuline College President Sister Christine De Vinne, OSU, PhD expressed her thanks. “We are very grateful for Mrs. Allen’s support and generosity, shared over the course of many years, and for her recent gift to fund our new Women’s Center initiative. Mrs. Allen’s provision will benefit and inspire countless future students.” 

“Women’s and children’s issues are close to my heart,” Allen added. “Ursuline College has also been a tremendous influence on my career and my daily life. Supporting the new Women’s Center, therefore, is an excellent match for my and my husband’s philanthropy.” 

Ursuline’s new Women’s Center opened in its Bishop Anthony M. Pilla Student Learning Center with the beginning of fall semester on Aug. 20 to provide both academic and practical support to students. Some 90% of Ursuline undergraduates are women.

The center’s co-directors support scholarly inquiry into topics including successful women leaders, specific challenges women face worldwide, and the role of women in 21st century society. They present workshops and events focused on these topics and on promoting women’s leadership. The Center also provides practical assistance and referrals to help students who are balancing the competing demands of school, work, and family obligations.

Allen was active in several student organizations at Ursuline including Student Council, the Red Cross group and French Club. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English at Ursuline in 1955 and married Joseph V. Allen in 1956. The couple raised seven children in Rocky River.

Katherine Allen earned a master’s degree in library science at Case Western Reserve University in 1981 and served a media specialist at Lutheran West High School before enrolling in Cleveland Marshall College of Law, where she earned her law degree in 1991.

True to her Ursuline College roots, in later years, Katherine Allen volunteered as a Guardian ad Litem for Broward County, Florida children who were under the supervision of the state because of neglect, abuse, or abandonment. “As the child's court appointed guardian, I represented the best interest of the child at his twice yearly mandated judicial hearing,” she explained.

The Allens live in Florida.

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