Iowa State University

Inside Iowa State
May 21, 1999


Ellen Parks

Ellen Rowe Sorge Parks, Iowa State's "first lady" for 21 years, died of pneumonia May 9 at her home in Ames. She was 85.

Born in Reedsburg, Wis., she was the first woman to earn a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Wisconsin. She met her future husband, Robert Parks, at the university and they married in 1940.

When Robert Parks was appointed president of Iowa State in 1965, Ellen Parks set out to broaden the scope of the university's library, which was named after the Parkses in 1984.

Memorial contributions may be sent to the ISU Foundation and designated for support of Parks Library.

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