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Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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City, especially Mr. David Pyle. However, I was never able to be of any use in this area until after I married Albert Lasker.


What did you think you could accomplish at that point?


Well, I always felt that I could be useful in the promotion of an idea. All my life I've felt that sometimes I was a catalytic influence or that I could help to sell an idea. However, I was working at this time and it wasn't feasible for me to do anything.

After my marriage to Albert Lasker in '40, I thought more about this area, and, as you know, initially started to work in the planned parenthood field. In about 1942 a man I did not know, called Winslow Carlton, phoned me and said that in order to start a group health insurance plan, which he and others were attempting to get going, they needed an additional $10,000. He asked if I would supply it. After some hesitation and conferences with him, I persuaded Albert to give the $10,000 to this group, an organization called Group Health Insurance, started in New York City. It now has maybe six to seven hundred thousand subscribers, and it provided medical care and was sold in association with Blue Cross insurance in New York. It was more liberal than the Blue Shield arrangements in New York at that time.


Blue Shield was in effect at that time?

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