(Jan. 12, 1871-Jan. 28, 1943). One of the first women physicians to practice in Indianapolis, Keller was born in Cleveland, Ohio, but came to Indianapolis while a young girl, where she lived for the rest of her life. She graduated from Indianapolis High School (later Shortridge High School), attended the Woman’s Medical College of Chicago, and earned her medical degree from the Central College of Physicians and Surgeons in Indianapolis in 1893. In addition to a busy general practice, she lectured on eugenics and public health. As the first paid female faculty member at the Indiana University School Of Medicine, she served as associate professor of diseases of children.

Keller was best known for her leadership in the movement for Women’S Rights And Suffrage. As the first president of the Woman’s Franchise League of Indiana, serving from 1911 to 1917, she broadened the league’s work to cover the entire state of Indiana, with thousands of members and an efficient statewide organization. (The league played a significant role in the General Assembly’s ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920.) Keller also served as editor of the suffrage department of the Citizens League of Indiana’s monthly magazine, The Citizen.

Keller served as the first president of the Woman’s Rotary Club of Indianapolis, organized on April 28, 1919. She led the group’s effort to promote the business interest of all its members and provide financial assistance to women of non-traditional age seeking undergraduate or graduate degrees. The organization was nonpolitical.

After the suffrage battle was won, Keller became active in the Republican Party. She worked with many women’s organizations within the party and made speeches for party candidates. She also continued her club work, serving as first vice president of the Indiana Federation of Clubs and president of the Indianapolis Council of Women.

Revised February 2021

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