Merelyn Lee Reeves was born on August 29, 1922 in Garden City, Kansas. She earned a bachelor's degree at Northwestern University, and her master's and Ph.D. degrees in speech at the University of Denver. She began her career at Dartmouth in 1974 after teaching several years at the University of Denver. At Dartmouth, she developed and taught a course on effective communications to more than 300 faculty and administrators. She was also the founding advisor of Cobra, the first secret society for women at Dartmouth. She authored several books, including The Speech Handbook for Teachers, A Time to Live, and Women Present at the Creation, which is about the wives of Dartmouth's presidents. Reeve hosted a weekly radio program broadcast from the Hanover Inn for the League of Women Voters called "Upper Valley Insight." She was active with the Hood Museum of Art and the Hopkins Center for the Arts, both at Dartmouth, and with the University Presbyterian Church in Chapel Hill. She served on the board of the University of Denver's Library Association, and was a visiting professor at Cambridge University in Cambridge, England, and at Wellesley College in Wellesley, Mass. Reeve died on November 22, 2005.