Mary Frances Fenton
April 25, 2006
Mary Frances Fenton, associate professor emerita of education and professional development at Western Michigan University, died April 12 at Rose Arbor Hospice in Kalamazoo. She was 68.
Fenton came to WMU in 1963 as a television graphics artist. Three years later, she joined the Faculty Graphics Service in the College of Education, becoming the unit's director in 1988.
Before her retirement in 1991, the WMU alumna forged a diverse career as an educator, researcher, artist, women's advocate and lecturer. In 1972, she became the first president of the University's Commission on the Status of Women and in 1977, she was a founding member of Matrix, Kalamazoo's first feminist art group. More recently, she was well known in the local area as an organic gardener.
Fenton was born in Pittsburg, Kan., July 23, 1937. She earned a bachelor of fine arts degree in design from the University of Oklahoma in 1959 and received a master's degree in the teaching of art in 1967 from WMU.
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