Elizabeth Reiman Simons, PhD


Elizabeth R. Simons
September 1, 1929 – March 25, 2019

Elizabeth Reiman Simons, PhD, 89, passed peacefully on March 25, 2019.  Liz was a resident of Newton, MA since 1953, raising her children in the same house that she lived in until the fall of 2017 when she moved to Lasell Village.  She loved the time spent at her home on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire, preferably with family and friends. Liz was the only woman to graduate in her class at Cooper Union in 1950 with a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering degree.  She went on to earn her PhD in Physical Chemistry at Yale in 1953 where she met her beloved husband Harold Simons (deceased 1999).  Liz is survived by her two children, Lee Simons Mulert (Mark) and Bob Simons (Patrice) as well as her five grandchildren, Claire and Kevin Mulert and Wesley, Josh and Drew Simons, all of whom she loved very much, and by her faithful companion, LuLu the boxer.

As a woman scientist, Liz was a pioneer, performing cutting edge biochemistry research, running a large research laboratory at Harvard Medical School and then becoming a full professor at Boston University School of Medicine. Her career was marked by an amazing record in teaching, grant awards and publications.  Liz inspired many young scientists, including generations of young women whom she mentored to balance success in science with a fulfilling family life.  When they faltered, she was always there to lend an ear, a word of advice or even the voice of reality, for which they continue to be grateful.

Even in “retirement” Liz was very active, teaching literature classes and taking others each semester.  She volunteered at Newton At Home and as a tutor at both Lasell Village and Lasell College.  Liz was also an avid fan of classical music and the arts, actively involved in the Boston Artists Ensemble, and regularly attended events at the Gardner Museum. Her vitality and knowledge will be missed by many of all ages.

In the spirit of her zeal for women in science, in lieu of flowers, the family asks that you consider donating to the Elizabeth Simons Memorial Fund established at the Association for Women in Science by clicking on this link AWIS: Elizabeth R Simons Memorial Fund.

Memories/Thoughts: Many have told us they wish to contribute a thought or memory of Elizabeth, or Liz as many of you knew her. We would love to be able to enjoy these.  Please share them by clicking on this link Memorial for Elizabeth Simons and share for all to enjoy.

Thank you,

Lee (Simons), Mark, Claire & Kevin Mulert
Bob, Patrice, Wesley, Josh & Drew Simons

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