Dorothy Bendetti

A native New Yorker, Dorothy Bendetti married a Californian and moved West. She is a long- time supporter of Republican political candidates, and organized the social events surrounding the opening of the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda in 1990, for which her husband Don had had an important role as a former chairman and member…

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Catherine Paris Biskind

Catherine Paris Biskind trained as an architect receiving her bachelors, masters and PhD from Yale University. A resident of Cleveland, she has been active in various philanthropies including the Cleveland Art Museum. She served as vice president of the Board of Directors of the Friends of Fashion benefitting the Kent State University Museum and the…

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Barry Bradley

Barry Bradley served as curator of costume at the Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland from 1975 – 1997. Although born in Kansas, he became an encyclopedic authority on Cleveland society. He came to Cleveland to study metalsmithing and enameling at the Cleveland Institute of Art, and later joined the staff of the Cleveland Museum…

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Mary Broadbent

Mary Broadbent continues her interest in the Kent State University Museum – which would not exist except for the efforts of her husband Robert. As Higbee company executives, Bob Broadbent and Herb Strawbridge believed in the creation of the museum and used their considerable political and economic power to advance its interests. Bob remained a…

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Savanna Vaughn Clark

Savanna Clark was born in Hutchinson Kansas and graduated from Prairie View A&M University in Texas. She received a MEd from the University of Oklahoma at Norman and did postgraduate work at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater. In 1972 she married Dr. Charles Warfield Clark of Washington D.C. where she has been active in a…

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Joanne Toor Cummings

Joanne Toor Cummings was an acknowledged philanthropist and patron of the arts with her husband Nathan Cummings, the founder of the Consolidated Foods Corporation. An active alumna of Connecticut college, she served there as a trustee during the 1980s. She received a master’s degree from Columbia University’s School of International Relations and was a member…

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Zita Davisson

Zita Davisson is a practicing portrait artist specializing in society portraits. Her paintings have been exhibited at the Guggenheim Gallery in London, the Newport Museum in Rhode Island, the Palm Beach Gallery in Florida, and the Galerie Michel-Ange in Monaco under the royal patronage of S.A.S. Princess Grace.

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Leamond Dean

Originally from North Carolina, New Yorker Leamond Dean became a well-known knitwear designer. In 1981 he was named the in-house designer for Bonwit Teller. His knitted suits and dresses ranged in price from $400-$700 at that time, and were described by John Duka in the New York Times on September 8, 1981, as “simple, tasteful…

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Kitty Carlisle Hart

An American singer, actress and ardent supporter of the arts, Kitty Carlisle Hart served for 20 years on the New York State Council of the Arts. In1991 she received the National Medal of Arts from President George H. W. Bush, and in 1999 she was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame. Her career…

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Mitchell Kahan

Mitchell Kahan retired after 26 years as the director of the Akron Art Museum. During his tenure, he oversaw the museum’s $35 million expansion and renovation. He articulated a passion for cutting edge contemporary art that found an enthusiastic response from Akron citizens.

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Joyce La Pine

Joyce La Pine’s successful career in advertising, sales promotion and women’s fashion included work for Macy’s in Kansas City, Rothschild’s in Chicago, Halle Brothers in Cleveland and Giddings, which she co-founded, in Cincinnati. She was on the National Advisory Council for the Kent State University Museum when it was founded. An early advocate for Geoffrey…

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Bea Shaheen McPherson

Bea McPherson has supported the Kent State University Museum since its inception, volunteering her energy and providing financial support. A graduate of Kent State University, where her papers are held by the Kent State University Libraries Special Collections and Archives, Bea was an elementary education and geography major. One of her geography professors suggested that…

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Aileen Mehle

Aileen Mehle, a glamorous society gossip columnist, wrote under the pseudonym “Suzy” for fifty years. A part of the wealthy society on which she reported, she was out and about nearly every night. Her generosity to the Kent State University Museum began in 1986 and continued into 2009 with gifts of extraordinary couture gowns and…

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Martha Phillips

Enid Nemy wrote in the New York Times obituary on September 10, 1996, that Martha Phillips was a “notable force in luxury fashion retailing for more than 60 years, and was an early supporter of many of today’s leading designers.” In the 1980s there were four elegant Martha shops with sales approaching $40 million: Park…

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Judy Price

Judy Price reported on business for Time Magazine for 25 years as well as founding Avenue Magazine, and the National Jewelry Institute of which she is president. She formed a partnership between the Institute and Parson’s School of Design to teach intensive courses on jewelry in New York and Paris. Avenue was an elegant, glossy,…

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Florence Randall

Actor Tony Randall’s wife of over 50 years, Florence Randall, died of cancer in 1992. Tony Randall gave a collection of her wardrobe to the Kent State University Museum in her memory. Although there are numerous images of Tony and Florence Randall together, Tony Randall never publicly discussed his private life and little is known…

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Nancy Reagan

During her husband’s presidency, Mrs. Reagan’s office contacted Ann Kagey, then the head of Parsons School of Design’s fashion program in New York, and asked for assistance in donating pieces from her wardrobe to various institutions. Mrs. Kagey compiled a list including the Kent State University Museum. In 1986 Mrs. Reagan signed a letter of…

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Lyn Revson

During the 1960s and 1970s, Lyn Revson was often found on the best-dressed lists and society pages. From 1964 – 1974 she was the wife of Charles Revson the demanding and controlling president of Revlon. During their marriage, he insisted on approving each item in her wardrobe: only dresses with high necklines, many designed by…

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Robert Rimsky

Robert Rimsky, former chairman of Lucerene Textiles, “changed the textile industry through his revolutionary business approach” according to his obituary in the New York Times, April 22, 2008. He had followed his father into the garment industry. His first wife, Jeanne Meyers Rimsky died in 1994. The Jeanne Rimsky Theatre at the Landmark on Main…

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Shannon Rodgers

By virtue of their careers in the New York fashion industry, Museum founders Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman received many gifts for the museum from colleagues in the industry. Their original gift to the museum in 1983 included some 4000 garments and accessories, 1000 objects of decorative art and 5000 volumes for the library. Shannon…

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Arnold Scaasi

Arnold Scaasi was a Canadian-born designer who began his career in New York City during the 1950s, changing his last name from Isaacs to Scaasi to be more exotic. His creations are characterized by their bright colors, prints, ruffles, beading, feathers, and fur, and epitomize maximalism. Scaasi’s fashionable frocks attracted a throng of famous ladies…

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Frances B. Todman

Frances Holmes Burson Todman was the wife of acclaimed television producer William S. Todman, who, with Mark Goodman introduced quiz and audience-participation programs such as “What’s My Line?”I’ve Got a Secret” and “To Tell the Truth” among many others in the 1940s and 50s.  

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Pauline Trigère

A great friend of Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman, designer Pauline Trigère donated pieces from her collections from the first days of the Museum. Ultimately she presented the Museum with her complete archives of the drawings that recorded her collections over her career and garments that included some of her earliest designs. The Kent State…

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