(The photo below was taken by LeCora Okeagu at La Casa Azul Bookstore in East Harlem, NY)
I was born in Keene, New Hampshire, and raised with my two brothers in Windsor Locks, Connecticut. While studying at the University of Connecticut, I started working summers at the Museum of the City of New York. In the fall of 1969 I joined the staff as a fulltime employee, starting in the Education Department and holding a variety of positions over the years, ending as an exhibitions and publications project manager. I retired in May 2012.
Between 1968, when I met my late husband Jim Haskins, and 2005, when he died, we worked together on some 150 books—mostly for children and young adults, but a few of them for the adult trade audience—on some of which I was listed as co-author. I was sole author of one fiction and one non-fiction book for young people in the 1980s. I also had several crossword puzzles published in the daily New York Times.
In January 2015 my book Draw What You See: The Life and Art of Benny Andrews, was published by Clarion Books. The artist Benny Andrews, who died a year after Jim did, had illustrated the last two children’s books on which Jim and I worked, and I had come to know him through that collaboration.
While at the Museum of the City of New York, I worked on exhibitions with a great variety of the city’s myriad of ethnic communities and with the local community of East Harlem, and in retirement I have transitioned smoothly into working for free. I serve on the boards of Hope Community, an affordable housing organization in East Harlem, and East Harlem Preservation and have served on the East Harlem Holiday Tree Committee for over a decade. I also chair the board of Community Works, an arts-in-education organization that presents programs all over the city but with a special concentration in northern Manhattan.
I take advantage of all the wonderful cultural opportunities New York City has to offer, travel domestically and abroad, and enjoy the company of Jim’s and my daughter, Margaret Emily.