Sandra Featherman Papers, 1967-2008

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Volume: 3.75 linear feet

Organization/Arrangement: This collection is organized into seven series:
I. Biographical Information, 1967-2008, undated
II. Correspondence, 1967-2006, undated
III. Organizational Involvement, 1973-2007
IV. Presentations, 1973-2007
V. Temple University, 1978-2006
VI. University of New England (UNE), 1996-2005
VII. Publications, 1976-2004, undated

All materials within the collection are arranged chronologically within each series, with the exception of Series 3, which is arranged alphabetically.

Biographical Note: Dr. Sandra Featherman was born in Pennsylvania in 1934. She received her B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from the University of Pennsylvania. Trained as a political scientist, Dr. Featherman’s areas of expertise are in urban politics, ethnic voting, diversity issues, women’s leadership, and healthcare.

Dr. Featherman’s academic career and public service spanned over three decades. Her career in academia began at Temple University in Philadelphia in 1974, where she taught political science and later served as president of the faculty senate, director of the Center for Public Policy and assistant to the president. From 1991–1995, Featherman was vice chancellor for academic administration and professor of political science at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). In 1995, Featherman became president of the University of New England (UNE) in Portland and Biddeford, Maine. Upon her retirement in 2006, the University of New England’s Board of Trustees named her President Emeritus. Featherman published more than 50 academic publications, as well as numerous magazine and newspaper articles. She also lectured on the topic of women and leadership at several national organizations.

In addition to her work in academia, Featherman was an active member of many non-profit organizations, such as the American Association of University Women (AAUW), American Council on Education (ACE), American Osteopathic Association (AOA), City of Philadelphia School Board Nominating Panel, Samuel Fels Fund, Maine Community Foundation and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the (Maine) Governor’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on Health Care. Her awards include the Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania, Administrator of the Year from Minnesota Women in Higher Education, and the Woman of Distinction Award from the International Women’s Forum.

Dr. Featherman married Bernard Featherman and had two sons, Andrew and John. At the time of her death in 2018, she resided in Highland Beach, Florida and Kennebunkport, Maine.

Description: The Sandra Featherman papers consist of published academic papers, correspondence, speeches, news clippings and conference programs documenting her academic career and public service from 1967-2008, as well as a small amount of personal correspondence. The collection is arranged into seven series.

Series 1, Biographical Materials, is primarily comprised of newspaper clippings containing quotes from Dr. Featherman on the topics of Philadelphia politics, public education, ethnic voting and women in academia, as well as articles regarding her time at Temple University, UMD and UNE. Many articles are personal interviews from local newspapers in Minnesota and Maine.

Series 2, Correspondence, is the most comprehensive series within the Sandra Featherman papers. The materials within this series include letters, e-mails, invitations, notes and cards from Featherman’s colleagues at Temple University, UMD and UNE, academics at other institutions, George Herbert Walker Bush, Maine politicians, former students and colleagues at non-profit organizations. This series also contains a small amount of outgoing correspondence from Dr. Featherman. 

Series 3, Organizational Involvement, includes meeting minutes, news bulletins, newsletters and annual reports from Featherman’s affiliation with many non-profit organizations, such as the AAUW, American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, Pennsylvania Humanities Council and the Blue Ribbon Commission Panel on Dirigo Health. 

Series 4, Presentations,contains conference agendas, itineraries and programs, lecture flyers, and speeches made by Dr. Featherman. In addition to her lectures at Temple, UMD and UNE, Dr. Featherman was also a frequent speaker at many conferences, including those hosted by the AAUW, ACE and the Pennsylvania Humanities Council.

Series 5, Temple University, contains flyers and press releases on Dr. Featherman’s lectures and courses and the Featherman Lecture Series. This series also includes minutes from Faculty Senate meetings, and miscellaneous memos and notes from Temple faculty and staff. 

Series 6, University of New England (UNE), is comprised of various publications such as annual reports, commencement programs, magazines, newsletters and internal administrative reports.

Series 7, Publications, is the second largest series of the collection and is comprised of 58 folders. These folders include academic papers, newspaper and newsletter articles, abstracts and handwritten notes published by Dr. Featherman. 

Access Restrictions: There are no access restrictions.

Container List

I.  Biographical Information (1976-2008, undated)

This series contains biographical information on Dr. Sandra Featherman, as found in newspaper clippings, magazine articles and newsletters. In these materials, Dr. Featherman discusses her life as a feminist and political analyst, sharing her insights and expertise experience on topics such as the role of race and gender in higher education and politics. The series consists of 17 folders, beginning with her early work academia in the 1970’s on ethnic voting patterns and residential abandonment in Philadelphia while at Temple University. Featherman left Temple to serve as vice chancellor for academic administration and professor of political science at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Shortly after she accepted the position at UMD in the summer of 1992, she received several written threats from an anonymous individual in an attempt to discourage her from promoting diversity and improving conditions for women and minorities at the University. This incident was widely covered in the Minnesota press. Other highlights of this series include a 1991 Applause magazine article on Philadelphia political analysts featuring Dr. Featherman. The series also contains many newspaper clippings from the Maine press regarding Featherman’s 1995 presidential inauguration at University of New England, the 1996 merger of UNE and Westbrook College and her retirement from UNE in 2005. 

001.  Articles and Newsletters, 1976-1979
002.  Articles, Newsletters and Programs, 1980-1989
003.  Articles from Temple University, 1985-1991, undated
004.  Article re: Successful Overturn of Chester County At-Large Elections, 1987
005.  Articles, Magazines and Newsletters, 1990-1994
006.  Articles from University of Minnesota Duluth, 1991-1994
007.  Articles re: Harassment at University of Minnesota Duluth, 1992
008.  Articles re: Appointment as president of the University of New England and Inauguration, 1994-1996, undated
009.  Articles and Newsletters, 1996-2000
010.  Articles re: Merger of Westbrook College and the University of New England, 1996, 2001
011.  Articles re: The Deborah Morton Convocation and Luncheon (UNE), 1996-2002
012.  Portland Press Herald Articles on Sandra Featherman and the University of New England, 1996-2007
013.  Articles re: Retirement from the University of New England, 2004-2005
014.  Newspaper Clippings Blue Ribbon Panel on Dirigo Health, 2006-2007
015.  Correspondence and Newsletters re: Bernard Featherman, 2008
016.  Curriculum Vitae – Publications, undated
017.  Miscellaneous Articles, undated

II.  Correspondence (1967-2006)

The correspondence series represents the largest series within the collection and is comprised of 47 separate folders. Materials within this series include typewritten and handwritten letters, cards, notes and e-mail messages from Dr. Featherman’s academic colleagues, employees and studentsspanning nearly forty years. Featherman corresponded with several well-known political figures, including Wilson Goode, Philadelphia’s first African-American mayor, Maine Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, and former US President (and fellow Kennebunkport resident) George Herbert Walker Bush. Also of note is Featherman’s correspondence with W.T.M. Johnson, with whom she provided research on at large elections within the African-American community of Chester County, PA. The result of her research was instrumental in the Stively Decision of September 1987, which overturned At Large elections in West Chester, Chester County, PA.
001.  Philadelphia Schools, 1967-1981
002.  Regarding Presentations, 1969-1986
003.  Thank You Letters, 1967-1998
004.  Regarding Publications, 1970-1997, undated
005.  Board and Committee Affiliations, 1970-2004
006.  Awards, 1970-2006
007.  Personal, 1971-2001
008.  Invitations, 1971-2006, undated
009.  Miscellaneous, 1976-2006, undated
010.  Philadelphia Bar Association, 1978-1990
011.  American Association of University Women (AAUW), 1979-2001, undated
012.  Temple University, 1979-2002
013.  Students, 1980-1989, undated
014.  Outgoing Correspondence Miscellaneous, 1980-2006
015.  Outgoing Correspondence - American Association of University Women (AAUW), 1981–1994, undated
016.  Outgoing Correspondence Letters of Recommendation, 1982-2001
017.  Joint Center for Political Studies, Inc., 1983-1987
018.  Wilson Goode to Sandra and Bernard Featherman, 1983-1987
019.  Outgoing Correspondence The Fels Fund, 1984-1990
020.  Pennsylvania Humanities Council, 1984-1991
021.  W.T. M. Johnson to Sandra Featherman [Regarding Wards Decision in West Chester, Pennsylvania Case], 1986-1987
022.  W.T.M Johnson to Sandra Featherman, 1986-1991
023.  American Council on Education, 1986-2006
024.  Regarding Presentations, 1987-2004, undated
025.  Cards and Notes, 1986-2006, undated
026.  Outgoing Correspondence Temple University, 1988-1991
027.  Appointment as Vice Provost for Academic Affairs University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD), 1991
028.  Harassment Incident at University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD), 1991-1993
029.  University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD), 1992-2000
030.  Outgoing Correspondence University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD), 1992-1993
031.  Appointment as President of the University of New England (UNE), 1995-1996
032.  University of New England (UNE), 1995-2004
033.  State of Maine Commission on the State Ceiling on Tax-Exempt Bonds, 1999-2000
034.  Thank You Letters, 1999-2006
035.  State of Maine Referendum Questions #6, 2000
036.  Regarding September 11, 2001, 2001
037.  New England Association of Schools & Colleges, Inc. (NEASC), 1996-2003
038.  George H. W. Bush to Sandra Featherman, 1996-2006
039.  Maine Senators and Representatives, 1997-2006, undated
040.  Outgoing Correspondence University of New England (UNE), 1997-2006, undated
041.  Cards and Notes, undated
042.  Outgoing Correspondence to George H.W. Bush, 2006-2007
043.  Retirement for the University of New England (UNE), 2004-2006
044.  State of Maine Judicial Compensation Committee, 2004-2006
045.  University of New England (UNE), 2005-2006
046.  State of Maine Blue Ribbon Commission on Dirigo Health, 2006
047.  University of New England (UNE), undated
III.  Organizational Involvement (1973-2007)

The materials in the Organizational Involvement series consist of eight folders filled with meeting agendas, newsletters, certificates, e-mails and annual reports from various organizations in Pennsylvania and Maine. Dr. Featherman was active in many civic, academic and national organizations throughout her working career and even after retirement. Featherman served as president of the American Association of University Women, was a member of the American Council on Education’s Commission on Women in Higher Education, Community College of Philadelphia Board of Trustees. She also served on the American Osteopathic Association’s Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation and was active on the State of Maine Commissions on the State Ceiling on Tax-exempt Bonds (1999), Judicial Compensation Committee (2004) and Blue Ribbon Commission on Dirigo Health (2006). In2004, Featherman received the Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania Award. This series is arranged in alphabetical order. 

001.  Other Organizations 1/2, 1973-2007
002.  Other Organizations 2/2, 1973-2007
003.  Philadelphia Past, Present & Future Newsletter, 1981
004.  United Way, 1982-1997
005.  American Association of University Women (AAUW), 1984-1998
006.  State of Maine - Commission on the State Ceiling on Tax-exempt Bonds, 1999
007.  American Council on Education Commission on Women in Higher Education, 2005-2006
008.  State of Maine - Blue Ribbon Commission on Dirigo Health, 2006

IV. Presentations (1973-2007)

Throughout her career, Dr. Featherman’s expertise in higher education management and as a political scientist has made her a frequent speaker at many conferences. In addition to speeches given at Temple, UMD and UNE, Featherman has given lectures for groups such as the AAUW, ACE and the Pennsylvania Humanities Council on the topics of the U.S. Constitution, public policy, women’s leadership in academia and ethnic voting patterns. She has also provided commentary for radio programs and television programs. In 1986, Featherman had the distinction of introducing anti-apartheid activist and Nobel Prize Laureate Bishop Desmond Tutu at a Temple University event, where he was bestowed with an honorary degree. Her remarks from this event are included within this series. Also of note is a lecture Dr. Featherman presented in conjunction with Temple University and the Jewish History Museum of Philadelphia on her experience as a panelist at the 1985 United Nations’ “Decade for Women” Conference in Nairobi, Kenya, where she spoke on the importance of designing an electoral system for women’s maximum legislative participation.

001.  Other Organizations 1/2, 1975-1999
002.  Other Organizations 2/2, 1975-1999
003.  American Association of University Women (AAUW), 1974-1997 
004.  Temple University, 1980-1988
005.  Pennsylvania Humanities Council, 1988-1991
006.  American Council on Education (ACE), 1990-2005
007.  Women in Management, 1992-1994
008.  Speeches 1992-2006, undated
009.  University of New England (UNE), 1995-2005
010.  United Nations Decade for Women World Conference in Nairobi, 1997
011.  Miscellaneous, undated
Series V.  Temple University (1978-2006)

This small series contains materials from Featherman’s long career at Temple University. The eight folders which comprise this series also contain meeting minutes, teaching evaluations and flyers for the Featherman Lecture Series on Public Policy, established by Featherman and her husband, Bernard. Featherman was initially hired at Temple as a Political Science professor, then went on to serve in administrative roles as president of the Faculty Senate, director of the Center of the Public Policy and assistant to the president. While at Temple, she frequently lectured on housing affordability for middle-class families, environmental policy, and ethnic voting patterns. During this time, she and her husband, Bernard, established the Featherman Lecture Series on Public Policy.

001.  Publications, 1978-1986
002.  Teaching Evaluations, 1980
003.  Memo and Notes, 1979-1989, undated
004.  Courses and Lectures, 1979-1990, undated
005.  Minutes from Faculty Senate Meetings, 1985-1986
006.  Publications, 1985-1991
007.  Memo and Notes, 1987-1998
008.  Featherman Lecture Series, 1996-2006, undated
Series VI. University of New England (1996-2005)

The University of New England series includes 23 folders, containing newsletters for UNE’s alumni constituencies (The Brook for Westbrook College alumni, The Insider for St. Francis College and UNE) Inside UNECOM (for the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine) and Nexus. Also included are programs of UNE events such as Commencement, student orientation and student awards ceremonies. During her tenure at UNE, she and Bernard established a second Featherman Lecture Series, which focused on “promoting humanistic values.” Topics of these lectures included civic engagement, Islamic law and the Chinese Revolution.
001.  The Brook Westbrook College Campus Newsletter, 1996-1999
002.  The Brook Westbrook College Campus Newsletter, 2001-2004
003.  Commencement Programs, 1999-2005
004.  Farewell Address from Connie Pare, 2006
005.  Featherman Lecture Series, 2001-2006
006.  The Insider (UNE and St. Francis College Alumni Newsletter), 1998-2002
007.  Inside UNECOM Newsletter, 1998-2006
008.  Invitations, 1996-2006, undated
009.  Miscellaneous, 1995-1996, undated
010.  Miscellaneous Publications, 1995-2004, undated
011.  News and Events, 1996-2006
012.  Nexus magazine, 1998-2001
013.  Nexus magazine, 2004-2005
014.  Joan Whitney Payson Gallery of Art, 1977-1996, undated
015.  Programs, 1995-2000
016.  Programs, 2001-2004
017.  Programs, 2005-2006
018.  Reports 1/2, 2005
019.  Reports 2/2, 2005
020.  Speeches, 1997-2002
021.  Speeches, 2004-2007, undated
022.  UNE Annual Reports, 1996-1999
023.  Westbrook College Publications, 1983-1997, undated
Series VII.  Publications (1976-2004, undated)

Throughout her career, Featherman was a prolific writer, authoring many academic papers and articles. This series contains nearly 60 of her published works, which were commissioned or published by organizations such as the American Jewish Committee, Center for Public Policy at Temple University and the Duluth News-Tribune, where she provided frequent commentary on government and politics. The topics covered in this series reflect her wide-ranging interests on public and higher education, race and gender in politics and women’s leadership. Highlights of the Publications series include the following articles “Philadelphia Elects a Black Mayor: How Jews, Blacks and Ethnics Vote in the 1980s,” “Perspectives on Third World Women,” “Women and the College Presidency,” and “Highly Successful Women Administrators: Inside Stories of How They Got There.”
001.  “Early Abandonment: A Profile of Residential Abandonment in its Early Stages of Development,” 1976
002.  “Residential Abandonment: Its Early States of Development,” 1977
003.  “A Look Behind the Board and Bars of Abandoned Houses,” 1978
004.  “Models of Income Redistribution: Congress vs. Pure Democracy,” 1978
005.  “A Social Choice Model of Urban Governance,” 1978
006.  “Jews, Black and Ethics: The "Vote White" Charter Campaign,” 1979
007.  “Newspaper Articles 1979-1999,” undated
008.  “Ethnic Voting Patterns: Divergent Perspectives in a Local Charter Change Referendum,” 1981
009.  “The Future of Public Education in Philadelphia,” 1981
010.  “The Loss of Political Support for Big City Public School Systems,” 1982
011.  “Ethnicity and Ethnic Candidates: Vote Advantages in Local Elections,” 1983
012.  “Jewish Politics in Philadelphia, 1920-1940,” 1983
013.  “Observations on Electing Black Candidates in Areas with White Majorities,” 1983
014.  “How Ethnics Vote: Support and Avoidance of Candidates of Other Ethnic Groups,” 1984
015.  “Philadelphia Elects a Black Mayor: How Jews, Blacks and Ethnics Vote in the 1980s,” 1984 
016.  “Pluralistic Models of Public Sector Collective Bargaining: Proposals for Public Education,” 1984
017.  “What is the Role of a Foundation Trustee?” 1984
018.  “Designing a Course on Women in American Politics: A Focus on Power and Conflict,” 1985
019.  “The Effects of Registration and Electoral Rules in the United States on Black Voting and Candidacies,” 1985
020.  “Paths to Leadership: Gender in Department Head, Dean and Presidential Selection in the United States,” 1985
021.  “Forum '85 The NGO Conference in Kenya,” 1986
022.  “Black Vote Dilution and At-Large Elections: The Fight Moves North,” 1987
023.  “Building a Base of Volunteers in Philadelphia,” 1987
024.  “Jews, Blacks and Urban Politics in the 1980s: The Case of Philadelphia,” 1988
025.  “Voting Rights: The Fight Moves North,” 1988
026.  “Statements from the Grass Roots: Women Breaking the Continuum of Poverty,” 1989
027.  “Empowering Our International Fellows,” 1990
028.  “Italian American Voting in Local Elections: The Philadelphia Case,” 1990
029.  “Redesigning LORL's System of University Contacts and Development of Policy Support Research Compatibilities in LORL,” 1990
030.  “Philadelphia and Pittsburgh: Big City Politics,” 1991
031.  “Barriers to Representing Women and Blacks in Pennsylvania: The Impacts of Demography, Culture and Structure,” 1992
032.  Duluth News-Tribune Articles, 1992–1995
033.  “Gender and Caste in Higher Education Leadership: Women's Voice in Setting the Agenda for Higher Education,” 1993
034.  “Maximizing Flexibility for Tenured Faculty Positions with CQI,” 1993
035.  “Women in Higher Education Management,” 1993
036.  “Women and the College Presidency,” 1993
037.  “Developing and Supporting Faculty Grant Success: Building Research Capacity at Medium-Size Colleges,” 1994
038.  “Increasing the Number of Women Presidents,” 1994
039.  “The Representation of Women in Higher Education Leadership: Increasing the Opportunities,” 1994
040.  “Gender and Music Administration in Higher Education,” 1995
041.  “Highly Successful Women Administrators: Inside Stories of How They Got There,” 1997
042.  “Preparing Women as Senior Leaders on Today's Campuses,” 1997
043.  “Race and Politics at the Millenium: The 1999 Mayoral Race in Philadelphia,” 2000
044.  “What I Learned as a New College President,” 1997
045.  “Uneasy Alliances: Race and Party Competition in America Book Review,” 1999
046.  “Final Report to the Joint Standing Committee on Business and Economic Development,” 2000
047.  “Visiting/Living in Maine,” 2000
048.  “Notes 2002,” undated
049.  “Emotional Rescue: New Generation of Troubled Students Strains College Services,” 2004
050.  “Active Learning Requires Active Teaching,” undated
051.  “American Jewish Congress, Greater Philadelphia Council and Jewish Community Relations Council,” undated
052.  “A City of Schools Articles,” undated
053.  “Ethnic Voting in the 1991 Philadelphia Mayoral Election,” undated
054.  “Filing in the Blanks: A Historical Approach to Optimal Legislative Decision Rules,” undated
055.  “Gift Home Programs: Goal Conflict, Political Environment and Self Help,” undated
056.  “Higher Education in the United States: Changing Markets and Evolving Values,” undated
057.  “One Member's View of World Congress of Women,” undated
058.  “Perspectives on Third World Women,” undated