First woman on the national staff of a Lutheran denomination. Mary Markley, duaghter of the Reverend A. B. Markley, was born in Millerstown, Pennsylvania. She graduated from Ursinus College (1902) and received a master’s degree in English from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia, before becoming supervisor of the Service House for the National Commission for Soldier’s and Sailors’ Welfare (1918-1919). Markley became secretary for the Board of Education of the United Lutheran Church in 1919 and served until 1946. Her responsibilities included visitation to colleges and seminaries and recruiting missionaries for overseas work. She was a board member of the Lutheran Nurses Guild, the Women’s Missionary Society, the Lutheran Student Association, and the National Christian Council. Her efforts opened doors for other women to enter professional church work.