Betty Holpert

obit_holpertBetty Kay Holpert, 92, died July 26, 2015.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., Mrs. Holpert grew up in a multi-generational immigrant family. She graduated from Brooklyn College in 1944 with a Bachelor of Arts in history and graduated from Pratt Institute in 1945 with a Bachelor of Library Science. She met her husband, Merrill, at age 14 and they married in 1945. They moved to Tucson in 1952 and she served as a volunteer at the Peter Howell, Alice Vail Jr. High and Rincon High School PTAs; the Tucson section of the National Council of Jewish Women, Information & Referral; the Rincon chapter of the American Field Service and Tucson East Community Mental Health Center. In 1966, she became a cataloger for the Tucson Public Library. From 1968-74, she was manager of the Wilmot Branch of the Tucson Public Library, and from 1974-85, she was manager of the Main Library Region. She retired from the Tucson Public Library in 1985 and appointed herself “Public Library Advocate at Large” soon after, educating state and local political figures and the business community about the role public libraries play in protecting democracy, contributing to economic development and promoting community literacy and livability. In 1987, Mrs. Holpert was honored by the Arizona State Library Association with its Distinguished Service Award, and in 1998, she co-founded the Tucson-Pima Library Foundation. The Wilmot Library Reading Room was named in her honor in 2009.

Mrs. Holpert was preceded in death by her husband of 63 years, Merrill Holpert. Survivors include her children, Terry (Alan Stein) Holpert of Cardiff-by-the-Sea, Calif.; Peter (JoAnn Tamez) Holpert of Tucson; four grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Services were held at Evergreen Mortuary with Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon of Temple Emanu-El officiating. Interment followed in the Temple Emanu-El section of Evergreen Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Pima Library Foundation, P.O. Box 13245, Tucson, AZ 85732-3245.