Anita (Bradshaw) Barker, 94

November 30, 2023

Anita (Bradshaw) Barker passed away peacefully on November 21, 2023 in the company of her family at her home in Concord, MA.

Every one of her 94 years reflected her passionate dedication to her family, friends, and the causes and organizations that shared her progressive view of local and global society.

Anita was born in 1929 in Milwaukee, WI, to Anita Mann Bradshaw and James Syre Bradshaw. 

Her older brother Walker Syre Bradshaw died in 1950.

Anita attended Milwaukee Downer Seminary and The Masters School in Dobbs Ferry, NY (class of 1947) before attending Smith College (including a treasured year in Geneva, Switzerland), from which she graduated as a government major in 1951.

Anita’s embrace of New York City began immediately afterward.  She met her husband Francis Meserve Barker in New York and Quogue, Long Island, and they were married in 1958.  Their daughter Anita Penniman (Penny) Barker Weeks was born in 1959 and their son Francis Bradshaw Barker arrived in 1962.  The young family made lifelong friends and memories in New York and Quogue.

Anita and Francis began their long, enjoyable tenure in Massachusetts in 1971 when they moved to Williamstown.

Both Anita and Francis participated in a wide range of Williamstown-area governance and development, with Anita’s leading civic roles including the Williamstown Finance Committee, the Board of Selectmen, the Planning Board, several successive Williamstown Master Plans, and the Affordable Housing Committee.  Her board memberships included the Visiting Nurse/Hospice, the League of Women Voters, the Williamstown Community Chest, the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation, the Smith Club of Berkshire County, and the Kimball Farms Retirement Community (Lenox, MA).

In 2002, the Williamstown Community Chest honored Anita and Francis as Citizens of the Year.

Anita was a dedicated recreational athlete, including golf at the Taconic Golf Club, tennis, paddle tennis, snowshoeing, and walking with her dogs – first Pumpernickel and then Cym.

In 2008, Anita and Francis moved eastward to Newbury Court, independent living in Concord, MA. 

Francis passed away in 2009.

In Concord, Anita continued many of her civic and political passions, including the Newbury Court Residents Committee, the League of Women Voters, the Smith College Alumni Association, and the Concord Land Conservation Trust.  She continued to enjoy quilting and bridge with friends and neighbors.

Anita was a dedicated world traveler, visiting dozens of destinations on five continents with her family and friends.

Anita’s family celebrating her energetic and outspoken life include her daughter Penny Barker Weeks and her husband Robert Freeman Weeks of Arlington, MA and their children Helen Weeks Peterson of Cambridge, MA and Peter Bradshaw Weeks of Watertown, MA; and Anita’s son Francis Barker and his wife Sylvie Laroche Barker of New York, NY, and their children Alexandre Laroche Barker and Nicolas Laroche Barker of New York, NY and Sara Laroche Barker of New York, NY and Melbourne, Australia.

Anita was proud to donate her body to researchers at Harvard Medical School.

At a later date, Anita will be laid to rest next to her husband Francis in Westlawn Cemetery in Williamstown, MA.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Anita’s name to:

Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation

671 Cold Spring Road 

Williamstown, MA  01267

Phone: (413) 458-2494

Smith College – Class of 1951

Smith College Gift Accounting

33 Elm Street 

Northampton, MA  01063

Phone: (413) 585-2036

Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts

Attn: Development

1055 Commonwealth Avenue 

Boston, MA  02215-1001

Phone: (617) 616-1600

Arrangements under the care of Concord Funeral Home, Concord, MA.  To share a memory or offer a condolence visit