Mary Jo Lake Memorial Fellowship in Optical Sciences

Mary Jo Lake

Mary Jo Lake was born in St. Paul, Minn., in 1920 and passed away in July 2000. Due to her husband's work as a metallurgical engineer, she established homes in various areas of the western United States. Before settling in Arizona, she spent a few years in Greenwich, Conn., and Cleveland, Ohio. She enjoyed traveling; during her lifetime, she visited remote areas of Africa, Malaysia and Finland.

Lake did a great deal to encourage the talents and interests of her daughters, both of whom are now active in fine arts. The oldest, Nancy Benson, is a trustee of the Denver Art Museum and spent a number of years as a volunteer assistant to the museum in various activities. The youngest, Mary Lake Thompson, has established with her husband a very successful giftware company based on her artistic designs.

Before her death, Mary Jo Lake and her husband, James, established a fellowship for female students in the University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences. The pair also established a number of foundation programs for education at the Colorado School of Mines.


The Mary Jo Lake Memorial Fellowship in Optical Sciences is offered to an outstanding female applicant enrolled in the graduate degree program at the College of Optical Sciences.


  • Avalon McLeod
  • Justina Bonaventura

  • Clarissa DeLeon
  • Laura Sawyer

  • Shelbi Jenkins
  • Kira Purvin

  • Jilian Nguyen
  • Micaehla May

  • Page King

  • Lauren Schatz

  • Maryam Tanbal

  • Nirantha Balagopal

  • Kerry Nierenberg

  • Amanda Chatterton

  • Ashley Warren Valdez

  • Elizabeth Jesse

  • Raisa Trubko

  • Samantha White

  • Katie Schwertz

  • Lori Moore

  • Julia Craven

  • Paula Smith

  • Leah Lucas

  • Meredith Whitaker

  • Kristin Lundgren Loychik