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First female president of Rollins College passes away at 88

Borstein passed away at 88.
Rollins College
Borstein passed away at 88.

Former Rollins College President Rita Bornstein has passed away.

She was the first female president of the college in Winter Park, Florida.

In a statement, President Grant Cornwell said under her leadership entering students’ SAT scores rose, along with annual rankings of the college.

She also helped usher in new courses of study at the college including sustainable development and introduced the signature Rollins College Conference for first-year students.

Borstein, a native New Yorker, began her life as a dancer studying under legends like Martha Graham and Katherine Dunham. She later became a high school teacher and administrator. She became the president of Rollins in 1990.

A celebration of her life will be held at the Knowles Memorial Chapel on campus.

Bornstein is survived by her children, Rachel Setear and Mark Bornstein; her granddaughters, Ariel and Hayley Setear; her stepson and daughter-in-law, Per Bloland and Anne Roma, and their children, Signe and Ezio; and her brother, Arnold Kropf, and his wife, Dee.

Read her obituary here.

Danielle Prieur is WMFE's education reporter.