After receiving her Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania in 1958, Dr. Florence L. Denmark-Wesner joined the faculty of the City University of New York (CUNY) in 1959. Serving Hunter College in the early stages of her career, she elevated from instructor to professor and was eventually named the Thomas Hunter Professor of Psychology, as well as the executive officer of psychology at the Graduate Center of CUNY. Shortly thereafter, Dr. Denmark-Wesner began serving Pace University in 1988 as a Robert Scott Pace Distinguished Professor and chair of Pace University’s psychology department. She remains in these positions today.
Encapsulating her expertise in psychology and drawing upon her advanced psychology degrees, Dr. Denmark-Wesner is recognized globally as one of the founders of the field of psychology of women, having co-founded the Association for Women in Psychology in 1969. She taught the very first doctoral course in the world on the psychology of women and, supported by her staunch advocacy of women’s rights, she was a pioneer in shedding light on women’s issues and catapulting them to the face of psychological studies.
Demonstrating versatility in her field, Dr. Denmark-Wesner has edited several journal issues, co-edited numerous textbooks, and lectured extensively at national and international meetings. Credited as an editor of the journal articles “Who Discriminates Against Women?” and “Psychology: The Leading Edge into the Unknown,” she further co-edited the textbooks “Engendering Psychology,” “Females and Autonomy: A Life-Span Perspective,” “Violence and the Prevention of Violence” and “Women: Dependent or Independent Variable?” Furthermore, Dr. Denmark-Wesner was a co-editor, alongside Dr. Michele Paludi, of four editions of the handbook “Psychology of Women.”
Outside of her primary educational endeavors, Dr. Denmark-Wesner is a past president of the American Psychological Association, the International Council of Psychologists, International Psi Chi, and the Eastern and New York State Psychological Associations. Since 1971, she has sat on the psychological advisory committee of the New York Academy of Sciences, having previously served the Academy as vice president.
As a testament to her success in the field of psychology, Dr. Denmark-Wesner has been honored with a myriad of accolades. Most recently earning recognition for mentoring and co-founding the Association for Women in Psychology in 2019, she has also received numerous awards from the American Psychological Association, including the 1996 and 1999 Distinguished Contributions to International Psychology Award and the 1992 Centennial Award. Likewise, Dr. Denmark-Wesner received the 1998 Gold Medal for Public Interest from the American Psychological Foundation, the 1996 Distinguished Career Award from the Association for Women in Psychology, and the 1994 Allen V. Williams Jr. Memorial Award, 1992 Carolyn Wood Sherif Award and 1988 Wilhelm Wundt Award, all from the New York State Psychological Association.