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Biochemist, 85, Honored as a 'Woman of the Year'

April 02, 1987

An 85-year-old Glendale biochemist was the eldest of nearly five dozen women honored by state lawmakers Monday during "Women's History Month" ceremonies at the state Capitol.

Dr. Blanche Bobbitt, a silver-haired research geneticist, was named "Woman Of The Year" for the district of Assemblyman Pat Nolan (R-Glendale).

"It was really very lovely in every way," Bobbitt said of the awards ceremony.

In 1941 Bobbitt became the first woman to receive a doctorate in biochemistry from the USC Medical School. She later became involved in genetic research at USC, directed the health education program for city schools in Los Angeles and taught science and health courses at four universities, including USC and UCLA.

Since retiring she has been active in a number of community service organizations, including the March of Dimes, the American Cancer Society and the Glendale Symphony. Each year she donates a musical instrument to Glendale schools for loan to children who cannot afford an instrument of their own.

Other local "Women of The Year" winners include:

Tammy Metcalf of Silver Lake, for launching the Silver Lake Residents Assn.'s Graffiti Removal Program last summer.

Sandra Figueroa of Echo Park for her volunteer work and leadership of El Centro del Pueblo, a community service youth program that attempts to keep youngsters away from street gangs.

Barbara Romey of Northridge for her role as a community leader in support of local schools and for her work with Boy Scouts of America.

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