Tulane Alumni Association




Distinguished Alumnus/a Award 1992


Mary Louise Mossy Christovich

New Orleans author, historian, and preservationist Mary Louise Mossy Christovich has been selected by the Tulane Alumni Association as recipient of the 1992 Distinguished Alumna Award. Born in New Orleans, Mrs. Christovich graduated from Ursuline Academy in 1945 and then attended Tulane University, where she majored in journalism and history. She received a bachelor of arts degree in 1949.

Mrs. Christovich's career has been devoted to education and to the preservation of Louisiana architecture. She began as an elementary public school teacher in New Orleans and then worked in the public relations department of the New Orleans Public School Board. She has served as secretary of the Newcomb Alumnae Association, board member of Metairie Park Country Day Corporation, and president of their parent association. On numerous occasions, she has been asked to speak to historical and educational organizations such as the National College Art Association, Tulane's School of Architecture, and Newcomb College.

Louisiana and the city of New Orleans have benefited greatly from Mrs. Christovich's dedication and enthusiasm. For almost 30 years, she served in various capacities as a volunteer with the Louisiana State Museum, and was a charter member and past president of the Friends of the Cabildo. She has also served as a board member for the New Orleans Junion Philharmonic Society, the New Orleans Public Library, and the Louisiana Wolrd Exposition.

Mary Louise Christovich is best known, however, for her leadership in preservation organizations. She co-founded and has presided over the Louisiana Council for the Vieux Carre, the Central Business District Improvement Association, and the Preservation Resource Center.

As newly appointed president of the Kemper and Leila Williams Foundation, Mrs. Christovich is responsible for overseeing the operation of the Historic New Orleans Collection. She continues to work with the State Review Committee, which selects properties to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

A published writer, Mrs. Christovich has co-authored and edited six volumes of New Orleans architecture: The Lower Garden District (1971), The American Sector (1972), The Cemeteries (1973), The Creole Faubourgs (1975), Esplanade Ridge (1977), and Faubourg Treme (1979).

Her untiring efforts in architectural preservation have been rewarded by her peers. She received the Outstanding Alumna Award in 1982 from Newcomb in recognition of her work. She won the State and Local History Award in 1974 for her involvement in the New Orleans Architecture series, and the Alice Hitchcock Book Awards in 1975, '76, and '77 for her scholarship in the history of architecture. She also received the Friends of the Cabildo Award of Excellence in 1981, the Louisiana Landmarks Society Harmett Kane Award in 1985, and the Save Our Cemeteries Grace King Award in 1986.

Mary Lou Christovich is married to William Kearney Christovich (L '50), an attorney with the law firm of Christovich and Kearney. They have two daughters, Terry and Kitten, two sons, Michael (L '79) and Jeffrey (L '85), and seven grandchildren.

Alumni Relations, Tulane University, 6319 Willow Street, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5901