Rose A. Doherty, author of Katharine Gibbs: Beyond White Gloves
Katharine Gibbs: Trailblazing Woman in Business
Katharine Gibbs created her school from nothing. She was a 46-year-old widow with no income, two sons to support, and only a high school education when she began her school in 1911. She was CEO of three schools two years before women had the vote. She was an entrepreneur who educated women for business when they were not welcome.
After her death, the family fostered the icon of Gibbs excellence worldwide and added campuses including Bermuda. The last owners were large corporations who kept the core tradition of excellence. Multiple campuses, new programs of study, the introduction of degrees, and the return of male students remade Gibbs with adaptability reminiscent of the founder.
The Gibbs family motto “Hold to Your Purpose” motivated graduates from 1911 to 2011. Graduates include a college president, US ambassador, CIA operatives, bank president, lawyers, writers, business executives and owners, graphic designers, and professionals in many fields. Those who care about business history, education history, or women’s history will be interested in this illustrated talk.