Beach Walk 106 – An Original Feminist

Meet my friend and former college professor, Mary Lou Coulston.

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Mary Lou is visiting from the Virgin Islands where she owns an EPA-certified water quality lab. She was the first woman hired in the Zoology department at my alma mater, UC Berkeley. It may have been 1971 and there may have been radical happenings on campus, but over in the halls of science life was incredibly conservative and chauvinistic! Mary Lou came in with outstanding credentials and a fire-cracker personality that pretty much drove the stodgy male noble scientists mad.

I learned today that prior to that Mary Lou helped set up programs in the Peace Corps to protect young female volunteers from being abused by tribal chiefs in Africa. It may have been the romantic and liberal Peace Corps, but it was also apparently run by male chauvinists.

Mary Lou took me on sabbatical with her in my senior year, and off we went to the University of Michigan, the Virgin Islands, and Wood’s Hole. She was the more fun-loving and daring of the two!

Hawaiian words
Kipi: rebel

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