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Mary Cathryne Park

1947 Ph.D. Graduate
Dissertation Advisor(s): Frank Alan Laurie, Jr.
"Joseph Priestley and the Problem of Pantisocracy"

Mary Cathryne Park, Ph.D., 81, of Merritt Island, Florida and Dry Run, Pennsylvania, died Saturday, January 29, 2000 at Merritt Island.

She was born June 18, 1918, in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, the daughter of the late Dr. J. Theodore and Lucie Coons Park.

She graduated from Chester (Pa.) High School and then earned a B.A. degree from University of Pennsylvania. She subsequently received M.A. and Ph.D. degrees, the latter in 1947. She was the recipient of numerous scholarships, including the Frances F. Bennett Scholarship in English. Her Ph.D. dissertation titled “Joseph Priestley and the Problem of Pantisocracy,” was published in an issue (Vol. 11, No. 1, 1947) of the Proceedings of the Delaware County Institute of Science (Media, Pa.). She joined the Delaware County Institute of Science as a Junior Member in 1937.

She began her career at Catawba College, N.C., and included positions at Stetson University and Florida Southern College. Subsequently, she was a professor of communications at Brevard Community College and was honored in 1999 for 40 years of service. In 1988, she was awarded the William H. Meardy Award (U.S. Teacher of the Year in Community Colleges). The Dr. Mary Cathryne Park Classroom building was dedicated to her in 1987. As a member of numerous educational honor societies, she was named in many publications honoring outstanding people. She contributed articles and papers to a variety of professional journals.

She served as an Accreditation Consultant for Southern Association and Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools and governor of Brevard Community College Foundation. She chaired the Florida Academy of Sciences for 4 years and was a member of Space and Missile Pioneers.

She also served as director of the Florida Cancer Society; Brevard County YMCA; Cocoa, Fla., Salvation Army; Brevard County Community Services Council; and Brevard County Council of Aging. She was a Governor Appointee to Brevard County Historical Commission and Florida Commission of History.

She often entertained Kiwanis Clubs in Florida and Pennsylvania as a pianist. She also provided guidance and support for the Valley Community Medical Center in Dry Run.

She was a member of Upper Path Valley Presbyterian Church, Spring Run, Pa.