Pickett was promoted from instructor to assistant professor at Mount Holyoke in 1934, to associate professor in 1940, and to full professor in 1945. She received the Camille and Henry Dreyfus endowed chair in chemistry in 1955 and became the first Mary Lyon professor of chemistry in 1958. She served as chair of the chemistry department from 1954 to 1962.
In 1957, Pickett was named the recipient of the prestigious Garvan Medal, awarded by the American Chemical Society, for her research in molecular spectroscopy. She also received honorary D.Sc. degrees from Ripon College in Wisconsin in 1958 and from Mount Holyoke in 1975.
Upon her retirement from Mount Holyoke, the Lucy Pickett fund was established by her colleagues and students to bring noted speakers to the department. The first of these was Robert S. Mulliken, 1966 recipient of the Nobel Prize in chemistry, with whom Pickett had collaborated on a paper in 1954. During the 1970s she requested that the Lucy W. Pickett speakers be women; and in a letter written in 1993 she expressed her delight in the list of women scientists who had spoken under the auspices of the fund named for her. 6
Pickett retired to Bradenton, Florida, where she said, "I lead a rather quiet but pleasant life."7 During her retirement years she traveled to Africa, South America, Russia, and Greece and also did volunteer work tutoring disadvantaged students.
Of her life as a chemist at Mount Holyoke, Pickett recalled, "I just felt that I was with a group of remarkable people. . . . I really felt a part of a dedicated and hard-working group that was having fun together."8
Fleck George. "Lucy Weston Pickett," in Women in Chemistry and Physics: A Biobibliographic Sourcebook. Edited by L. S. Grinstein, R. K. Rose, and M. Rafailovich . Westport, Conn., Greenwood Press, 1993.
Jennings Bojan. "The Professional Life of Emma Perry Carr." Journal of ChemicalEducation 63
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: Notable Women in the Physical Sciences:A Biographical Dictionary. Contributors: Benjamin F. Shearer - Editor, Barbara S. Shearer - Editor. Publisher: Greenwood Press. Place of publication: Westport, CT. Publication year: 1997. Page number: 314.