Mary Patterson McPherson is President Emeritus of Bryn Mawr College and former Vice President of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Before joining Bryn Mawr College as an assistant and fellow in the department of philosophy in 1961, she was an instructor in philosophy at the University of Delaware. At Bryn Mawr she served as assistant dean of the college, associate dean and lecturer in philosophy, dean of the undergraduate college, deputy to the president and associate professor of philosophy.
She currently serves on the board of directors of Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, JSTOR, and The Philadelphia Contributionship. She is on the board of trustees at The Brearley School, Emeriti Retirement Health Solutions, The Teagle Foundation and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. She has also served previously on the boards of numerous other institutions, organizations, and companies including Amherst College, Smith College, The Agnes Irwin School, Shipley School and Exeter Academy, The Brookings Institution, The National Humanities Center, The Carnegie Corporation and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, and the Dayton Hudson Corporation.
She is a member of The American Philosophical Society and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
She received her AB and LLD from Smith College, an MA from the University of Delaware and a PhD from Bryn Mawr College. McPherson holds numerous honorary degrees.