AMHERST - David Reinhard Bloodsworth of Amherst, a professor of Labor Studies at the University of Massachusetts and a noted arbitrator, died Friday, Oct. 11, 2012 at his home. He was 75, and had lived in Amherst since 1972.
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Bloodsworth began his career in labor relations after graduating from the University of Massachusetts in 1968 with a master's degree in labor studies. In 1972, after working for the National Center for Dispute Settlement in Boston, he returned to the university to become assistant director of its Labor Relations and Research Center, a graduate program, where most of his time was devoted to teaching.
While maintaining his academic schedule, Bloodsworth was also an active arbitrator, overseeing labor dispute cases throughout New England. He was known for his balanced approach to the arbitration process, and a steadfast belief in the adherence to law. Throughout his career, he settled a number of important labor cases, including a 1994 pay dispute between the Carmen's Union and the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority, which involved ridership and the Authority's bottom line. He also volunteered his time to the town of Amherst, twice helping the town to reach accord with the Teachers' Union during protracted and sometimes intense battles in the 1980s.
Bloodsworth was a keen researcher into municipal and private-sector systems, publishing his studies in academic review journals, and he was regarded as a clear, concise and fair reviewer of current books and papers in his field. In 1978, he was elected to the National Academy of Arbitrators. He was also a member of the American Arbitration Association and the Labor Guild of the Archdiocese of Boston.
After his official retirement in 1997 from the university, where he had served for 25 years as assistant director of the Labor Relations and Research Center, Bloodsworth remained active in local and national labor affairs. He helped to organize labor actions on campus, including one for the United Farmworkers. He also used his expertise in serving on Amherst's Landlord-Tenants Committee and on the UMass Parking Commission.
Born in Arlington to Frederick and Agnes Bernice (Coyne) Bloodsworth, Bloodsworth was a 1956 graduate of the Belmont Hill School. After attending the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, he spent 18 months in the U.S. Army at Fort Jackson, S.C. during the Vietnam War. He then returned to school, earning a bachelor's degree from Suffolk University and master's degree from UMass.
An unabashed liberal with a dry wit and a mischievous streak, he was the guy you wanted to sit next to at a party, the one with whom you could trade observations and comment on the current state of politics, pomposity and fashion. Among friends and family, he was regarded as a wonderful storyteller who always had a joke, an anecdote, or a slightly off-color song to share for any occasion.
He leaves his wife, Carolyn (DiVenere) Bloodsworth of Amherst; a son, David Hayden Bloodsworth and his wife, Jocelyn, of Brockton; a daughter, Sarah Bloodsworth, of New York City; a brother, John, of Edina, Minn.; a sister, Lois Marello of Emerald Isle, N.C.; two granddaughters, and many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
A memorial service will be held next summer on Cape Cod.
Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation, or the Catholic Labor Guild.
Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com
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Douglass Funeral Home
87 North Pleasant Street
Amherst, MA 01002
Published in Daily Hampshire Gazette on Oct. 15, 2012