Ms. Barbara D. Brown is a true gift and treasure to the University of Illinois at Chicago. Ms. Brown is an alumna of the Class of 1957 and in 2010 she was recognized by UIC for 50 years of service. As the laboratory scientific manager of the neuroscience laboratories for the Department of Psychiatry she is the glue that holds it together. She has been a constant beacon of excellence in research practices, laboratory operation, and University laboratory endeavors.
As laboratory manager she serves as a constant source of scientific knowledge and as a source of calm in a chaotic environment. She teaches by example and encourages both scientific excellence and personal growth in others. She trains and mentors all laboratory researchers, technicians, scientist, young and old. She always has time to listen despite running her own experiments, performing administrative functions, serving on various safety committees, assisting with the design of new laboratories and relocations of other labs.
Ms. Brown not only shares her gifts with Academia, but also in the community serving in several organizations that inspire and encourage others to be their best as well as those that embody equality for all. In 1966 she marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Chicago’s Marquette Park neighborhood, protesting racially selective housing. She was a part of Rev. Jesse Jackson’s Operation Breadbasket movement that targeted chain stores that did not deal fairly with blacks. She has served as a volunteer in distributing food and clothing with Operation Push as well as taking part in many protest and marches to denounce racial discrimination not only in Chicago but in many other cities and states. In 1983 she served on the campaign committee to elect Mayor Harold Washington and the next year she campaigned for Rev. Jesse Jackson to become a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination. She continues to participate as a volunteer in many political campaigns local and nationwide.
Moreover, she is “eye-candy”a stunning and gracious individual. She has an outer beauty and an inner spiritually that transcends the ordinary. Her colleagues describe her as loving, giving, sharing, intelligent, selfless and enthusiastic. “She is energetic and NEVER provides the onlooker with traces of lack-luster or fatigue. Her middle initial is D. We think it stands for Dynamic!”