Lillian Wald was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on March 10, 1867, the daughter of Max and Minnie Wald. She graduated from the Training School for Nurses at New York Hospital and became a registered nurse. She also attended the Women's Medical College in New York City. In 1893, she founded the Henry Street Settlement with which her name has been associated ever since. In addition to Windows on Henry Street, from which an excerpt, she wrote The House on Henry Street and articles on "nursing, social subjects, human betterment." She served as a member of President Wilson's Industrial Council and participated in President Hoover's White House Conference on Health and Protection. She received honorary LL.D. degrees from Mount Holyoke College in 1912 and from Smith College in 1930. She also received gold medals from the National Institute of the Social Sciences and from the Rotary Clubs of America in recognition of her lifelong services as sociologist, organizer, and publicist.