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Remembering Kay Langan ’46, P’82

Kay Holman Langan ’46, P’82

It is with great fondness that we remember former AAVC president Kay Holman Langan ’46, P’82, who died peacefully at her home on Christmas Day. 

Kay was an extraordinary leader and a very special friend, having served Vassar in numerous capacities throughout her lifetime. She was president of the alumnae/i association—then 25,000 strong—from 1978 to 1982, but that was only the tip of a very large iceberg. As summed up by Frances Fergusson, Vassar’s President from 1986-2006: “It’s hard to imagine any alumna who did more for Vassar and its graduates.”

For all of her efforts, Kay earned AAVC’s Outstanding Service Award in 2004, and in her acceptance speech talked about the enormous range of experiences she had had as a volunteer:

I have exhorted club mates, classmates and a whole range of other folk in person or by phone, letter, fax, or email. I have cajoled newspaper and magazine editors and radio and TV station managers. I have balanced checkbooks and written articles, reports, agendas, minutes, invitations, and thank you notes. I have chaired many meetings and warmed chairs at many others. I have rewritten bylaws, given speeches, and spent a lot of time trying to lead the disgruntled one-by-one through their pique and out into the sunshine. I have conferred, advised, consented and dis-sented, too, because I am, after all, a Vassar girl.

She said when people would ask why she put so much time and effort into a place she spent such a short time, she told them it was because she believed passionately in the power of education.

I encourage you to read the speech and be inspired, as I was, by her voice, her inimitable humor, her love for the college, and her deep understanding and appreciation of all that Vassar stands for.

We’ll miss Kay, and we are grateful for her hard work on behalf of the college and alumnae/i. Her legacy will surely live on. Kay’s dedication to the college and her lasting impact on it epitomize our motto Semper Vassar—she was always Vassar, and Vassar thrives today, and always, thanks to grads like Kay.


Steve Hankins ’85, P’13, ’17
President, Alumnae/i Association of Vassar College

Posted by Office of Communications Monday, January 14, 2019