Mary White Stewart
Reno - Mary White Stewart , University of Nevada-Reno Professor Emerita and Social Psychologist, was born on February 11, 1945 and died on April 13, 2021. She left this earth fighting, just as she fought for her family, friends, and her values.
Mary was the daughter of John A. White and Helen T. Stewart, both of whom preceded her in death. Mary' s survivors include daughters Tyler Stewart (Tom) and Kate Stewart Hudson, her beloved grandson Hudson Stewart, her siblings John White, Jr., Stewart White (Patricia), Holly English and Geoffrey White (Sally), as well as many accomplished and wonderful nieces and nephews. Her loyal and protective dogs, Addie and Mickey, were with Mary when she died.
Mary's academic career was long and productive. After earning her bachelor's and graduate degrees at UNR and Temple University, respectively, Mary taught sociology and social psychology at the University of Northern Colorado-Greeley, the University of Nebraska -Kearney, the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and her alma mater, the University of Nevada-Reno.
Dr. Stewart was a visionary. At UNR, she developed an interdisciplinary program dedicated to the study of power, injustice, and identity in our society. This resulted in the formation of UNR's Gender, Race, and Identity (GRI) Program and UNR's offering a Masters and Graduate Certificate in Gender, Race, and Identity, one of her many academic accomplishments. In addition to inspiring and facilitating collaborations across disciplines and departments, Dr. Stewart was an outstanding mentor and advocate for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as faculty members, throughout the University. Dr. Stewart was first appointed Director of Women's Studies in 2002. At that time the program included a lecturer, an administrator and a group of committed affiliated faculty across many UNR departments. Her vision and years of hard work ultimately led to the formation of the Gender, Race, and Identity Program in 2007. That trail blazing program allowed UNR students to major or minor in Women's Studies, and minor in Ethnic Studies, Holocaust, Genocide, Peace Studies and Religious Studies. Dr. Stewart fiercely protected the Women's Studies and GRI programs from cuts during the 2007-2009 recession, and the program grew in the years that followed. Extending Dr. Stewart's foundational work, Gender,. Race, and Identity became a new UNR Department in July 2020, and is currently home to nine faculty and staff members, more than 50 faculty associates, and 13 existing and soon-to-be launched undergraduate and graduate programs, offering minors in Black Studies, Indigenous Studies, Latinx Studies, and LGBTQ Studies. The University of Nevada is forever indebted to Dr. Stewart for her vision to build such a vibrant community of students, scholars, and community partners.
Dr. Stewart was an author. Among her many publications were several books, including Portraits of Change: Unparalleled Freedoms, Unanticipated Consequences (2012), Ordinary Violence: Everyday Assaults Against Women (2001 and a revised second edition was also recently published), Silicone Spills - Breast Implants on Trial (1998), and Organized Miracles: A Study of a Contemporary Youth Communal Fundamentalist Organization (1979). She was working on another book at the time of her death.
Dr. Stewart served as a Trial & Jury Consultant for several Reno law firms, where she utilized her skills as a social psychologist to prepare witnesses and help attorneys pick juries in their cases.
Mary was known for her wit, grace, intellect, and never-ending love of her family, especially her two daughters Tyler and Kate. She loved travel, reading, entertaining and time spent with friends and family. Mary's friends and family loved her, and offered great support to her during her illness.
The family would also like to thank the doctors, nurses and caregivers who devoted their skills to dealing with Mary's lengthy illness and its consequences, including Dr. Peter Lim and his staff.
The family asks that contributions be made to the UNR Gender, Race and Identity Department for a scholarship honoring Mary.
There will be a funeral service for Mary at 1pm on Tuesday, April 27 at Mountain View Mortuary, 425 Stoker Avenue, Reno. Following that service and Mary's graveside service at Mountain View Cemetery, an informal reception for family and friends of Marys will be held outdoors at The Grill At Quail Corners, 6520 McCarren Blvd, Reno. A memorial service and celebration of Mary's life is being planned for June. The exact date and location will be announced at that time.
I was something that lay under the sun and felt it,…and i did not want to be anything more. I was entirely happy. perhaps we feel like that when we die and become part of something entire, whether it is sun and air, or goodness and knowledge. At any rate, that is happiness; to be dissolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep —-from My Antonia
Published in the Reno Journal-Gazette and Mason Valley News from Apr. 21 to Apr. 25, 2021.