Born January 12, 1916
Method for Producing Resilient Cotton Fabrics Through Partial Esterification
Patent #: 3,432,252
Chemist Ruth Rogan Benerito is widely recognized for the development wrinkle-free cotton.
Born in New Orleans, Benerito studied at Sophie Newcomb College, the women’s college of Tulane University, earning a B.S. in chemistry in 1935. She received her M.S. from Tulane in 1938, and her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1948. Early in her career, Benerito taught at Randolph-Macon Women’s College and also at Tulane University. In 1953, she began work with the U. S. Department of Agriculture’s Southern Regional Research Center where she remained for over 30 years.
Benerito also developed an intravenous fat emulsion that could be used for intravenous feeding, contributing to the care of long-term medical patients. Throughout her career, she has received over 55 patents and many honors, including the Garvan Medal from the American Chemical Society and the Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award.