Page 15 - Scene Magazine 46-02 February 2021
P. 15

 Tribute to Mary
 Butler
Gilruth
“Her brilliant mind and her knowledge of handling collections became a cornerstone for HSBC to protect and grow these treasures.
 BY ELIZABETH NEUMEYER WITH JODY OWENS AND BILL WHITE
HOWto cover all of Mary was not known for “suffering fools a little one, Katherine. We are lucky she
gladly.”
The Butlers came to Battle Creek in
1977 because Mary’s husband, Jim,
was in the Avanti String Quartet. Mary thought that a Suzuki music program was needed and became Jim’s executive director. Jim told me that when he was
in the San Antonio Orchestra, Mary was the symphony office organizer. Members referred to her as “super mother” because she always knew everything. I asked Jim why they stayed in Battle Creek. He said Mary was tired of moving especially with
Mary’s (1940-2020) accomplishments in one article? When I had a
writing challenge, I consulted Mary. She was a superb editor. One of her favorite quotes was, “No passion in the world is equal to the passion to alter someone else’s draft.” So we will do the best we can to do justice to Mary and her legacy to Battle Creek history and community, knowing that somewhere out there, she is probably giving us “the look.” (see above)
decided that because she had wonderful credentials. Mary graduated with honors from Swarthmore, a liberal arts college known for its academic rigor. Then she was in the Master’s program at Winterthur Museum/University of Delaware, an exclusive group of less than 12 admitted every year. She served as executive director of the Baltimore, Maryland Historic District Commission and Assistant director of Territorial Restoration in Little Rock, Arkansas.
continued
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