Barbara Zirkin, a lifelong educator, a former partner dean of Stevenson University and an early developer of online studying packages, died June 20 from lung most cancers in a hospice close to her Baltimore County home.
Mrs. Zirkin turned into seventy-five.
“Barbara changed into by no means about herself, ever,” stated Barry Ronald Zirkin, her husband of fifty-four years. “Her awareness turned into by no means approximately her, however about the things she turned into doing or the humans she was doing them with. The phrases ‘I’ and ‘me’ had been almost alien to her.”
The former Barbara Gottlieb changed into born in Columbia, S.C., in 1943, the daughter of Robert Gottlieb, an engineer, and Mildred Gottlieb, a homemaker. The circle of relatives becomes Jewish and Mr. Zirkin stated his destiny father-in-law moved his wife and children often to get away the anti-Semitism hampering his career.
“Barbara changed into in the main protected from it, but she found out what changed into occurring,” said Mr. Zirkin, a professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Johns Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health.
The couple met whilst attending the former Harpur College (now Binghamton University) in southern New York.
“Barbara usually appeared to be out of doors the door of some thing class I had simply finished,” Mr. Zirkin recalled. He became smitten by using the vibrant and impartial younger woman who always said precisely what she concept, though he later learned that she became involved romantically no longer in him, but in his roommate.
“She turned into told by her girlfriends no longer to bother with me due to the fact she could never be capable of separate me from my basketball,” he said.
Though Barbara Gottlieb in no way did discover ways to respect the intricacies of the star offense, the couple were married in 1965, the year after she graduated from New York’s Hunter College. Their eldest son, William, changed into born in 1969; now, he’s an emergency care health practitioner in Towson. Their youngest son, the Bobby, became born in 1971; a Democrat who represents Baltimore County inside the country Senate.
The younger family moved to Baltimore in 1973 when Barry Zirkin was supplied a one-yr settlement at Hopkins. At the time, he becomes fielding an overture to be an assistant professor at Brown University in Rhode Island. Nonetheless, Mrs. Zirkin didn’t hesitate while her husband admitted that he wanted to accept the excessive-danger, a hard task in Maryland.
“It changed into a desire between absolute security and quicksand,” Mr. Zirkin said. “When I introduced the quicksand lower back to Barbara, she said, ‘You need to discover who you’re.’”
An avid, lifelong reader, Mrs. Zirkin earned a master’s degree in English from The University of Rochester in the late 1960s, a 2nd grasp’s degree in education from Hopkins inside the mid-1970s and a doctorate in training from Hopkins in 1984.
She taught high school for a few years in New York and Maryland but quit after becoming frustrated by using the academic forms. After earning her graduate ranges, she started focusing on the administrative positions that have become her calling.
“Barbara favored being capable of make a difference,” her husband said. “She cared approximately the students, she cared approximately the faculty, and he or she liked being able to parent out the way to do things better. She turned into innovative and she was organized.”
In 1994, Mrs. Zirkin frequents an element-time process at Hopkins developing a web getting to know the software.
“Barbara introduced on line gaining knowledge of to the Bloomberg School of Public Health,” Mr. Zirkin said, “though no one is aware of she did it because she refused to take credit for it.”
Because on line schooling becomes so new, there were no regulations and Mrs. Zirkin, in the end, had the freedom to innovate.
“She had ideas about stuff,” Mr. Zirkin stated. “Not just why the prevailing things had been no accurate — that’s the clean part, however, what can be achieved alternatively. When you have lots of thoughts, some of them are certain to be awful. Barbara wasn’t afraid of that.”
Her knowledge later proved helpful when her husband began a component-time, absolutely on-line Master of Arts degree application in public fitness biology on the Bloomberg faculty.
“The most effective motive I knew how do it become because I spent 5 a long time years sitting on the alternative side of the kitchen desk from Barbara taking notes,” he said.
She later held an increasing number of senior administrative posts on the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy and on the Baltimore Hebrew Institute earlier than turning into accomplice dean of Stevenson in 2009. She retired final summer.
In Mrs. Zirkin’s spare time, she studies the New York Times cover to cover each day — from time to time surprising her husband with a piece of sports minutiae. Her tuneful soprano becomes a staple of the choir at Beth El Congregation in Pikesville, and she or he overjoyed in her sons and four grandchildren.
“She changed into constantly out doing something she cared about, such as handing over food to the terrible,” Mr. Zirkin said. “And she had a gorgeous sense of humor, although it changed into generally directed at herself.”
A funeral provider becomes held June 23; Mrs. Zirkin is interred at Beth El Memorial Park in Randallstown.
In addition to her husband and two sons, who all are Baltimore County residents, Mrs. Zirkin is survived with the aid of a brother, Jim Gottlieb of Fairfax, Va.