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Felicity Paxton: Director of Penn Women’s Center
September 16, 2008 , Volume 55, No. 4


Dr. Felicity Paxton has been named director of the Penn Women’s Center, effective September 1, according to the the Division of the Vice Provost for University Life (VPUL).

Dr. Paxton previously served as assistant director of the Center, in addition to her ongoing roles as faculty fellow for Stouffer College House and adjunct assistant professor in English, communications, and women’s studies.

Dr. Paxton holds a PhD in American Studies from Penn, with master’s and undergraduate degrees from the University of East Anglia. Her research and teaching interests include the influences of ritual and gender in contemporary American life. Dr. Paxton has received numerous awards and honors for her research, including Fulbright and Thouron fellowships. Dr. Paxton also received a Distinguished Service Teaching Award at Penn in 2006.  Previously, she taught at Emory University and at the University of East Anglia.

During her more than a dozen years at Penn, Dr. Paxton has also worked in a variety of capacities across the University, including coordination of international student orientation, alcohol monitoring, and teacher education. 

“I’m thrilled to have this opportunity and excited to help respond to the evolving needs of all Penn women,” Dr. Paxton said. “I especially welcome the challenge of ensuring that the Penn Women’s Center continues as a dynamic resource center, and as a vibrant and welcoming space for women to meet, study, network, and relax for generations to come.”

Dr. Valarie Swain-Cade McCoullum, VPUL, praised Dr. Paxton’s hiring. “Litty has been a fabulous partner for the Women’s Center and our campus community for many years. We’re elated to have her in this new role, and I look forward to her tremendous energy and efforts on behalf of Penn women and our community-at-large.”

Associate Vice Provost for Student Affairs, Dr. Ajay Nair, also expressed excitement for Dr. Paxton’s appointment. “Litty cares deeply about the Penn community, and she is uniquely qualified to lead the Women’s Center.”

Founded in 1973, the Penn Women’s Center (PWC) provides a central locus of activity, advocacy, and activism within the campus community.  PWC supports students and other Penn community members through advising, advocacy, counseling, educational programs, networking, policy development, referrals, social events, and workshops.



Almanac - September 16, 2008, Volume 55, No. 4