Dr. Thelma Reese
I was born in 1933 – making me what was known in my parents’ era – a Depression Baby. Although I still live in Philadelphia, where I was born, I have traveled the world extensively for pleasure and for work. My husband and I now spend part of each year in California’s Bay Area, where our daughters and twin grandchildren live. As with so many women, most of my professional life just seemed to happen unplanned: teaching, because it fitted in with children’s schedules, led to graduate school to improve teaching skills, which led to a doctorate, which led to being an educational psychologist and professor, which led to directing the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy in Philadelphia, which led to consulting for Hooked on Phonics and educational products and publishing companies. Personal passions were expressed in leading the board of Children’s Literacy Initiative and Philadelphia Young Playwrights, which I helped to found, and chairing a Youth Aid Panel of the District Attorney’s Office at a police station every two weeks.
Dr. Barbara Fleisher
I’m Bobby Fleisher, (aka Barbara M. Fleisher BA, MA, and much later, EdD). I’ve worn many hats in my life: public school teacher, learning disabilities/reading specialist, child advocate, college professor in San Francisco, Milwaukee, and Philadelphia, and most importantly, wife, mother, and grandmother. Because my physician husband Dan Fleisher’s work took the family to Europe and the Far East, our three children, Wendy, Jane, and Peter grew up believing that the whole world was their playground. My children now live in England, California, and Massachusetts. My seven grandchildren are grown now, and span the globe from China, through the US, and England. Despite the distances and the recent death of my husband, the family has remained close and hasn’t missed an annual reunion in twenty-five years.
Juggling family and career was no walk in the park for any of us women in my generation. My career was really an afterthought –something I could attend to as long as the cooking and chauffeuring were done. I’ve now retired from that professional part of my life but I’m still finding new hats to try on. Stay tuned.
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