Barbara Ryan d 9/26/2020

Barbara Ryan was hired as the United Faculty Secretary in 1982-1983.  She was hired when the U.F. had no permanent space at DVC; she worked out of Bill Harlan’s faculty office.  According to Bill, “she worked under trying circumstances, often without even a chair….She was the presence of the U.F. for many years at DVC.”  Many people who knew her respected her and appreciated her cheerfulness, understanding, patience and encouragement.  Barbara passed September 26, 2019.

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Tributes for Barbara Ryan

Nancy Zink:

Barbara was bubbly, friendly, knowledgeable and very kind.  I remember her as a wonderful representative for the UF.  I could go to the office and always find a cheerful, positive individual.  She listened and helped me get the answers I needed.  I felt welcome and respected each time I came into the office; she was attentive to my concerns when I was a part time faculty member as she was when I was a full time faculty member.

Marge Lasky:

Barbara was industrious, dependable, caring, willing to go the extra mile, incredibly kind and sweet.  A really fine, nice human bein
Tina Levy:
I recall Barbara Ryan was a wonderful friend to many of the faculty.  She was a lot of fun.

She was often invited and attended faculty parties and events.  I think of her as an ” honorary” women’s programs person.  I would often stop by and chat with her on campus.

A sweeter person you could not find.

Irene Menegas:

Barbara was a wonderful person.  So friendly and eager to help in any way she could.  She was always busy in that office, but it was great fun to stop by because she was so cheerful and always had a way of understanding whether you needed a happy face or someone to gripe with or a shot of encouragement and support.  She was a delight and great fun to work with.

Patricia Derickson:

Yes, Barbara Ryan was a sweetheart.  I started a book club with some of my co-workers when I retired so we could keep in touch, and Barbara was a member of that group.  We take turns providing the entrée for the meeting, and she put a lot of effort into her casseroles by getting recipes from her family gatherings.  She passed away on September 26, 2019.

What I miss about Barbara was her enthusiasm for current events.  She was a regular participant in the Emeritus Program and always learning about new subjects. She used to send me newspaper clippings of events for which I had expressed an interest.  I really miss getting them.  We were on the same liberal wave length, and I miss being able to vent with her about the failings of various Republican administrations.

She was a good friend and a good listener when I needed a sympathetic ear.  Some folks are harder to lose than others.  She was a hard one to lose.

Gina Gruber:

I remember Barbara at DVC.  She worked at the UF office below my office (Math/Computer Science Division) and was very friendly and easy to talk to. Later on she was a member of a book club with me and I got to know her even better. She had a lot of interests, which included traveling, gardening, reading and cooking ( I still remember this delicious salmon dish she cooked for our club meeting a few times).  She was a humble woman but when you knew her–she was extremely sophisticated, lived in Japan for several years, constantly traveling with her daughters and friends, probably read more books than anyone I know.  Yes, she also sent me newspaper clippings about Puerto Rican recipes and events, which I found interesting.  I miss her still!!!

Bill Harlan:

I am devastated by the news. I met Barbara in 1982 or 1983 when she applied as the first secretary of the United Faculty. This was not as big a deal as you might think; the UF was my faculty office, and Barbara was the only applicant. 

She worked under trying circumstances, often without even a chair. She was a bright and competent. She was the presence of the UF for many years at DVC. 

Most of all Barbara was a good friend. She and I enjoyed those early years of struggle and the triumph.  I called her “BR” and she called me “Great Leader.”