Ruth S. (Stolper) Malenka

Born: Wed., Jun. 23, 1926
Died: Thu., Aug. 6, 2015

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MALENKA, Ruth S. (Stolper) of Belmont, entered into rest on Thursday, August 6, 2015 in the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.  She was 89 years of age.  She was born in New York, New York and lived in Belmont for many years.  Daughter of the late Isaac Stolper and Mollie (Cooper) Stolper.  Beloved wife of Bertram J. Malenka.  Dear and devoted mother of David J. Malenka and his wife, Ann M. of Etna, NH and Robert C. Malenka of Palo Alto, CA.  Loving grandmother of Jacob C., Emma C., Benjamin J., and Nicholas S. Malenka.  Ruth graduated from high school in Brooklyn at the age of 16 and went on to get her BA at Brooklyn College graduating in 1946. She then completed a Masters at Teacher’s College Columbia. In 1948 she began her 67 year marriage to Bertram J. Malenka and moved to Boston to join him as he pursued his doctorate in physics while she obtained a MSW at Boston University. She spent more than 60 years in social services passionately helping those in need beginning as a case worker at the Margaret Fuller House in Cambridge, the Cambridge Jewish Community Center and the Boston Association for Retarded Children. She moved on to administrative roles running Catalyst in Social Work, as director of Cambridge/Somerville Social Services and then director of Brookline/Newton/Wellesley Social Services. During the Dukakis administration she was Assistant Secretary for Social Services for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. In her late ‘70s and ‘80s she returned to case work as a social work for VNAs affiliated with Mt. Auburn hospital. She had many other interests including politics, both local in Belmont and on the national level with the Democratic Party. She was a fierce defender of human rights and gave freely of her time and money to support social justice. Together with her husband Bert she assembled an important collection of art and was a strong supporter of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.  She cared passionately for her family and friends and this “force of nature” will be missed by all who knew her. A memorial service will be scheduled at a later date.  Arrangements by the:  Short, Williamson & Diamond Funeral Home, 52 Trapelo Road, Belmont, Massachusetts, 02478.

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