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Board of Trustees
Berthé M. Gaines
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Spacer graphic Appointed to the position in 1984 and reappointed in 1990, Berthé M. Gaines is the first African-American woman to serve as a trustee of the Boston Public Library and only the fourth woman to serve in the history of the Library, which was established in 1848. Her appointment followed a time of fiscal crisis for the city (1981-1984) when she was actively involved in SAVE OUR LIBRARIES, a citywide multi-racial, multi-ethnic, multi-cultural group of men and women committed to keeping neighborhood libraries open. In 1990, Mrs. Gaines served as the first female president of the Board of Trustees and in 1999, Mrs. Gaines received an Honorary Doctorate from Simmons College, Boston, MA.