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Nan Robertson

After graduating from Medill, Chicago native Nan Robertson (BSJ48) moved to Europe and wrote for the Milwaukee Journal and the New York Herald Tribune. She later joined the staff of The New York Times in 1955 to cover women’s interests. Robertson transferred to the Washington bureau of The Times in 1963 and left the capital ten years later to become a Parisian correspondent for the newspaper.

After two and a half years of living in Paris, Robertson returned to New York to write for The Times’ Style and Living pages. In 1981, at the age of 55, Robertson became ill from toxic shock syndrome and went into a coma for two days. Gangrene spread to her hands and eight of her fingers were subsequently amputated.

Robertson wrote a New York Times article on her experience with toxic shock syndrome in 1982. A year later, she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing.

Robertson taught journalism at the University of Maryland following her retirement from The Times in 1988. It was in Maryland that she died in 2009, at the age of 83.