Beverly Cassara

Personal Vita


Compiled by Roger Hiemstra and Annamary Zappia Allen


Beverly Cassara

[Beverly Benner Cassara; Beverly Benner; Mrs. Ernest Cassara]

[source: Edited by Roger Hiemstra from data gathered by Annamary Zappia Allen, ATE 611 student, Fall, 1990, and by compilers for published resource guides]

Strategy Hints

Some information may be found in the AEA and CPAE collections at Syracuse University, Arents Library.

Bio/Historical Notes

Born in Hanover, MA, daughter of the Reverend Guy Percy Benner and Julia Caroline Whitney Benner. Married Ernest Cassara, February 7, 1949. Children: Shirley Cassara, Catherine Cassara, Nicholas Ernest Cassara. Named as "Woman of Achievement" by WETA, Washington, DC, 1978. Citation for outstanding service to adult education by the District of Columbia Public Schools, 1976. Recognition Award, Vermont Council for the Social Sciences, 1968. President's Merit Award, Adult Education Association of the USA, 1978. Directed adult education students who worked in the Jubilee Housing Project on Columbia Road. Directed a similar project at the Montana Terrace Housing Project, Washington, DC. Has directed several international adult education conferences. Retired and living in Cambridge, MA.

Birth Date

August 2, 1922

Source of Birth Date

Who's Who of American Women, 1975-76; Personal Vita of Beverly Cassara.


1944-1947--A.B., Colby College, ME.

1954--M.A., Bridgewater State University.

1962-63--Visiting Scholar, Cambridge University, England.

1970--Ed.D., Boston University, Boston, MA.

Work History

1947-48--News Editor and Broadcaster, WBET Radio Station, Brockton, MA.

1951-54--Teacher, Public Schools in Hanson and Abington, MA.

1961-62--Teacher, Bartlett School, Arlington, MA.

1963-64--Director of Personnel and Counselor to Students, Albert Schweitzer College, Churwalden (GR), Switzerland.

1966-70--Director of Adult Education, Goddard College, Plainfield, VT.

1970-90--Professor of Adult Education, University of the District of Columbia, Washington, DC.

1971--Instructor, Fairfax County Adult Education Program, Fairfax, VA.

1971-72--Instructor, Northern Virginia Community College, Fairfax, VA.

1971-72--Instructor, University of Virginia Center for Continuing Education, Falls Church, VA.

1972-76--Acting Director, Institute for Continuing Education for Women, Federal City College, Washington, DC.

1975-76--Fulbright Fellowship, Berlin, Germany

1979--Producer, two series on women's education, NBCTV, Washington, DC

1973-85--Dean, Graduate Studies, University of the District of Columbia, Washington, DC.

1982--Member of the Research Institute, Adult Education Research, University of Siegen, Germany

1974-79--Adjunct Professor, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA.

1990-1995--Adjunct Professor of Adult Education, University of So. Maine

1995-present--Co-founder and Co-Chair, Cambridge Senior Volunteer Clearinghouse, Cambridge, MA (the organization trains managers for 90 governmental and non-profit agencies as professional personnel directors dealing with senior citizens, interests seniors in volunteering for various community tasks, and generally enhances the role and status of older citizens

Associated Subjects

Adult Education.

Adult Learners.

International Adult Education.

Women as Adult Learners.

Associated People

Marcie Boucouvalas

John Niemi

Associated Organizations

Adult Education Association of Metropolitan Washington.

Adult Education Association of the United States [AEA-USA].

Adult Education Association of Virginia.

Adult Education Peace Network.

American Association of Adult and Continuing Education [AAACE].

American Association of Higher Education [AAHE].

American Society for Training and Development [ASTD].

Coalition of Adult Education Organizations [CAEO].

Commission of Professors of Adult Education [CPAE].

Committee on Illiteracy, National Program of the United Way.

Committee on Issues and Planning of the Conference of Southern Graduate Schools.

Conference of Deans of Black Graduate Schools.

Council for the Advancement of Experiential Learning [CAEL].

Council of Graduate Schools of USA Board.

Fulbright Alumni Association.

Graduate Record Examination Board.

Higher Education Group of Washington, DC.

International Associates in Adult Education Board.

International Congress of University Adult Education [ICUAE].

International League for Social Commitment in Adult Education.

National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges.

National Association of Black Adult Educators.

National Science Foundation Forum.

Planning Committee of the United States Council of Commission on the Status of Women.

Society for International Development/Women in Development.

Southeast Fairfax (Virginia) Civic Association (Membership Chair, 1976-77; President, 1973-74).

State Advisory Council on Adult Education.

Vermont Governor's Commission on the Status of Women (Chair, 1969-70).

Washington Women's Forum.

Women's Equity Action League.

Associated Events/Projects

Co-founder and President, Washington Women's Forum, 1978-87.

Associated Places

University of the District of Columbia (formerly Federal City College), Washington, DC


Numerous articles, monographs, books, and book chapters. Some of her most important works are as follows:

Cassara, B. B. (Ed.). (1962). American women: The changing image. Boston: Beacon Press.

Cassara, B. B. (1979). The lifelong learning act--an assessment. Convergence, 12.

Cassara, B. B. (Ed.). (1994). Adult education in a multicultural society. London: Routledge.

Cassara, B. B. (Ed.). (1995). Adult education through world collaboration. Malabar, FL: Krieger.

In addition, in 1995, Dr. Gretchen Bersch, University of  Alaska, Anchorage, Department of Adult Education, produced a video for the Theory and practice of adult education in North America series that included an hour-long video of Dr. Cassara in conversation about the adult education field.

[Postscript: Dr. Cassara was inducted into the International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame in 2003.]

Modified on September 26, 2003

-- Cross-reference to Project Vitae in Adult Education

-- Cross-reference to Adult Education History Project

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