Martha Peterson, 1916–, American educator, b. Jamestown, Kans., grad. Univ. of Kansas (A.B., 1937; Ph.D., 1959). She served as instructor in mathematics, assistant dean of women, and dean of women at the Univ. of Kansas. In 1956 she became dean of women at the Univ. of Wisconsin at Madison and later special assistant to the president of that university. She was named university dean for student affairs in 1963. From 1967 to 1975 she served as president of Barnard College; she then became president of Beloit College until her retirement from academic life in 1981.