I'm sorry to have to report, that Bernard "Bernie" Francis Downey, who
served as IMLR's Librarian for nearly three decades from 1959-1988, passed
away on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 27th, 2008 at the age 87.
Bernie was a vital part of building the library as a core part of the
Institute's activities. Under his guidance, the Library fostered research
relationships between the labor movement, the business community, Rutgers
University, and the state of New Jersey to acquire unique materials that
supported the School's activities and to make these materials available to
the labor and business communities of New Jersey as well as to academics.
Bernie was a leading figure in CIRL, the Committee of Industrial Relations
Librarians, the national association of labor relations information
Bernie was born August 17th, 1921, in Somerville, MA and found his way to
New Brunswick, NJ in 1962. He graduated from Boston College with a BA in
English, received a certificate in library sciences from Simmons College.
He co-authored "Library Services to Labor" with Dorothy Kuhn Oko in 1963.
Bernie also served as vice-president of the Friends of the New Brunswick
Public Library and was an active tutor with the New Brunswick Public
Schools Adult Learning Center. He was also an avid gardener at home and in
the New Brunswick Community Garden. Bernie was a devoted member and Reader
at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in New Brunswick
Bernie is preceded in death by wife Gloria K. Downey; parents Bernard and
Elizabeth Downey; and sister Catherine Downey. Survived by son Stephen
Downey and daughter-in-law Kathryn Hearne, Nashville, TN; daughter Anne
Downey, Philadelphia, PA; and grandchildren Brenna Downey, St. Louis, MO,
and Guy Bayan, Philadelphia, PA.
A funeral Mass will be held on Friday, December 5th, 11 am at Sacred Heart
Church in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Visitation will be held at the church
immediately prior to the funeral from 9:30 am - 11 am. A private interment
will be held.
Please join me in extending condolences to the family and celebrating
Bernie's life, including 29 years of faithful service to School of
Management and Labor Relations.
Dean David Finegold
School of Management and Labor Relations Library
50 Labor Center Way
New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901