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July 28, 2003

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Shirley Mewborn, one of Tech’s first female graduates, dies

Shirley Clements MewbornShirley Clements Mewborn, one of the first two women to graduate with a Tech degree, died on July 10, 2003, after a battle with colon cancer. She was 68.

Transferring to Georgia Tech in 1953, Shirley earned a degree in electrical engineering in three years.

“Tech offered a wonderful opportunity for education at an affordable price,” she said during a recent radio interview.

A sample of her affiliations affirms her dedication to Tech: the first woman to serve as president of the Georgia Tech Alumni Association; a member of the Georgia Tech Foundation Board since 1989; a member of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Advisory Board; and chairperson of the Georgia Tech Research Corporation and the Georgia Tech Advisory Board. In addition, she established the Shirley Mewborn Perseverance Scholarship Fund for female students at Tech and the Francis and Shirley Mewborn Endowment Council Fund.

Shirley was inducted into the Georgia Tech Engineering Hall of Fame and was a recipient of the 1994 College of Engineering Distinguished Alumnus Award. In March, she received the Joseph Mayo Pettit Alumni Distinguished Services Award, the highest award conferred by the Georgia Tech Alumni Association.

Earlier this month, Shirley was unanimously elected to the Georgia Technology Hall of Fame, a prestigious award for leaders who have shaped the growth of technology in Georgia.

“Shirley Mewborn was a pioneer at Georgia Tech,” said President Wayne Clough. “We will miss her fine leadership, her excellent judgment, her tireless energy and her warm smile. She was the embodiment of a Georgia Tech education.”

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Last Modified: July 28, 2003