Gertrude Cornish Milliken (1880-1969) was born in Worcester, Massachusetts and graduated from Middlebury in 1901. She taught Science and Mathematics at various New England schools and completed graduate work at Clark University. In 1911, she founded House-in-the-Pines, a private school for girls in Norton, Massachusetts, and acted as principal until 1944.
After 34 years as a member of the Advisory Board of the Women’s College at Middlebury, Milliken understood that women needed more than advisors recommending change – they deserved a seat at the table, and in 1947 asked President Stratton “to consider the possibility and the appropriateness of appointing one or more women to serve on the Board of Trustees.” The Board of Trustees listened, and on June 14, 1947, voted to add women to its membership, and appointed Milliken as Middlebury’s first woman trustee in 1948. With Alumnae represented, the Advisory Board was discontinued in June 1949, and Milliken served until her death in 1969.