Pearl Bernstein Max directed the staggering work of fusing four different colleges—City, Hunter, Brooklyn, and Queens—into the City University of New York. Max studied history and political science at Barnard College. After several years of substitute teaching and volunteering for the League of Women Voters, she eventually became coordinator of their municipal affairs committee. She also worked with the Women’s City Club of New York and the Citizens Budget Commission, and wrote a series of articles for the Sunday World explaining the city’s budget to the public. This work brought her to the attention of Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, who appointed her in 1938 as the first administrative director of the city’s Board of Higher Education. In that role, she planned the administrative and financial work of fusing four colleges into one unified system, and served as liaison to CUNY’s Administrative Council of College Presidents. In 1967 she became founding coordinator of CUNY’s Office of Institutional Research, running studies on teacher education, admissions procedures, and other issues that shaped the workings of the complex network of universities. While she retired in 1969, she remained active in civic life until her death.
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Jewish Women's Archive. "Pearl Bernstein Max." (Viewed on March 8, 2021) <https://jwa.org/people/max-pearl>.