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Gertrude Geraldine Michelson

Gertrude Geraldine “G.G.” Michelson’s trailblazing corporate career included a number of important firsts, from the first female member of the New York State Financial Control Board to the first female chair of the board of trustees of an Ivy League school. Michelson earned a BA in industrial psychology from Pennsylvania State University in 1945 and a law degree from Columbia two years later. Seeing opportunities for advancement in the retail world, she joined a Macy’s training program and by 1963 was vice president for employee personnel, the company’s only female vice president at the time. She regularly dealt with internal and external labor issues, negotiating with the Teamsters and other unions until her retirement in 1996, and was praised for her ability to get vastly different groups to work together. Over her career, she served as a director of companies ranging from General Electric and Goodyear Tire to the RAND Corporation, and chaired Columbia University’s board of trustees from 1989–1992. She later chaired the Helena Rubenstein Foundation, served as deputy chair of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, and from 1998–2000 was president of the board of TIAA–CREF.

More on Gertrude Geraldine Michelson
Date of Birth
June 3, 1925
Place of Birth
Jamestown, New York
Date of Death
January 10, 2015

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Gertrude Geraldine Michelson." (Viewed on November 15, 2018) <>.


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