Redefining what's possible.
Verna Marie Greenlee, MSW ’57, who passed away on January 26, 2011, at the age of 85, has bequeathed $260,000 to the School’s scholarship fund for graduate-level social work students. Says Verna’s longtime friend Maribeth McKinney: “My sense is that Verna probably struggled as a single woman putting herself through school, and she wanted to help students who may face a similar struggle. Verna’s education was truly a life-changing event for her -- a change that she hoped others would be able to experience.”
Verna Greenlee was born in Berkeley, California. Her father was a minister and the family often faced financial hardship. As a young girl, Verna wore clothes donated to her father’s church, and she worked picking lettuce and peas in the neighboring farms. She was highly independent and believed education was essential to a living a fuller and more expressive life.
After completing her studies at the UW School of Social Work, she had a long and successful career as a social worker for Santa Clara County. Outside of work, Verna enjoyed tennis, golf, chorale singing, symphonic music and travel. Verna was a resident of San Jose, California for more than 40 years. She is survived by three loving nephews and a wide circle of friends.
The Verna M. Greenlee Endowed Social Work Fellowship will help educate tomorrow’s social work leaders.