REBECCA BLUNK
1953 - 2014
BORN
1953
DIED
2014
FUNERAL HOME
Levine Chapels
470 Harvard Street
Brookline, MA
BLUNK, Rebecca Of Brookline and Provincetown, died on June 22, 2014, at the age of 60. She was the beloved spouse of Marcie Hershman for 27 years. Born in Kansas to Robert and Katherine Blunk, sister to Scott and Judd, she moved to Boston in 1985 to be the director of performing arts for the New England Foundation for the Arts; in 2004, she became NEFAs Executive Director and for the past ten years worked regionally, nationally and internationally; accomplishments include the National Dance Project, Native Arts programs, National Theater Project, and Center Stage. She was a passionate and inspired advocate for the creative economy. She rejoiced in her large, loving circle of family and friends. No flowers, but contributions in Rebeccas memory, may be sent to The Rebecca Blunk Fund, NEFA, 145 Tremont St, 7th Fl, Boston MA 02111. A celebration of Rebeccas full life will be held at a later date. Levine Chapels, Brookline 617-277-8300 www.levinechapel.com
Published by Boston Globe from Jun. 23 to Jun. 24, 2014.
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66 Entries
Though I never worked with Rebecca closely in any capacity, every time our paths crossed, she greeted me with warmth and interest and a genuine desire to connect. I have always looked forward to those occasional reconnections -- both because of Rebecca's insights into the field and her/NEFA's important contributions, and because it was genuinely so nice to see her. She will be missed by many!
Bryony Romer
August 13, 2014
We had the pleasure to live next door to Rebecca and Marcie for five years. They were the best neighbors and friends that one could ask for. I still remember Rebecca introducing herself to me on the T, and being immediately drawn to her warm, intelligent, interesting and interested nature. She will be greatly missed.
Daryl and Chris Andrews
July 31, 2014
Rebecca was one of the kindest, most generous, patient, and good-natured people I've been privileged to know. She was a champion of the arts and artists. Marcie, your love for Rebecca, and hers for you, was and remains a model for the rest of us. My deepest, deepest sympathy and condolences. Eileen
Eileen Pollack
July 4, 2014
I am forever grateful to Rebecca Blunk and her generous capacity for taking artistic risks. I experienced the affirmation of her support in making Arts Afloat possible and with that the pleasure of transforming Ft Point Channel into a tidal, floating exhibition space in the summer of 1998.
Diane Willow
July 1, 2014
Rebecca was a role model. She was kind, patient, intelligent, quick to laugh, and absolutely committed to the artists she served. It was a privilege to know and to work with her. My most sincere condolences to Marcie. I'm going to miss Rebecca so much.
Cecily Cook
July 1, 2014
I had the great fortune of working with Rebecca when I was at NEFA in the early 90s, and always admired her dedication to the arts and artists, and also to presenters and audiences—the whole cultural ecology was so important to her, and it benefited greatly from her leadership and sense of innovation and collaboration. Rebecca's warmth and sense of humor made working with her such a pleasure. I can't imagine a better legacy than what she accomplished locally, nationally and internationally—and personally, too, with the many colleagues, friends and family members who loved and cherished her.
Thomas Lee
July 1, 2014
In a recommendation letter for us, which we treasure, Rebecca wrote that NEFA was proud to have been associated with us. Well Inca Son was VERY VERY PROUD to have been associated with Rebecca and with the distinguished organization she developed for our great community of artists over the years. Through Rebecca's support and guidance, groups like ours were able to reach out, teach and perform for thousands of students across New England, and beyond. We are so saddened to hear of her passing, and our deep condolences go out to her spouse and family. Rebecca, que descanses ahora en paz eterno. Love from Marianne Ruggiero, from César Villalobos and from the entire Inca Son family of musicians and dancers.
July 1, 2014
I am so sorry, Marcie.

Love, Jane Williams
Jane Williams
July 1, 2014
The same light was in her eyes, that was in her heart, that was in her voice, that was in her expansive need to give and to love…her generous spirit and courage and grace will inspire me to stay open, to stay engaged in life, to never lose sight of my passion, to fight for what I believe in. And the love between Marcie and Rebecca will always keep me aloft and encourage me to hold on to faith.
Cathy Arden
June 30, 2014
So sorry to hear about Rebecca's passing. She was a very special accomplished champion of the arts and will be sorely missed. Sympathy to her family and friends.

Jeannette Gardner, Gardner Arts Network
June 29, 2014
I was so saddened to hear of Becky's passing. My memories of her were mostly of her growing up years in southeast Kansas when she and my oldest daughter were school mates. Even then you knew she was going to do great things. Bob,my deepest sympathy to you and the boys and their families and to Marci, my deepest condolances.
June 29, 2014
So sad to hear about Rebecca's passing. Such a wonderful human being; thinking of you Marcie and hoping you find solace in friends and family,

Ann Rogers
June 27, 2014
Marcie, I am so sorry to hear of Rebecca's passing. You have my deepest condolences. Jean
Jean Hrostman
June 26, 2014
I first met Rebecca in Omaha when she worked for the Nebraska Arts Council. I was impressed with her wit and intelligence, and her knowledge and appreciation of all things artistic and creative. But my favorite thing about her was her ready smile and sense of humor. She was brilliant, but never took herself too seriously. A rare person, indeed. And one who will be sorely missed by all who had the pleasure to know her. I send my sincere condolences to her spouse and her family.
Deneve David
June 25, 2014
For the past few years, Rebecca and I were enjoying an emerging friendship. I will miss the spirit and light she brought to all she did.
Carol WISHCAMPER
June 25, 2014
I'm so sad for you Marcie - You and Rebecca were so loving to each other - so so perfect. I don't have words to express my sadness and loss you must feel. Please lean on your friends and family - as you have done in the past. We love you and care so much about you. Love, Lindsay
June 25, 2014
My deepest condolences, Marcie. I am so sorry for your loss.
Debra Quinn
June 25, 2014
I'm so saddened to learn of Rebecca's passing. I barely knew her, but from what I knew, she was such a quietly indomitable force for good in the worlds of creativity and the arts. She will be sorely missed.
Marda Kirn
June 25, 2014
Judd,
I know it has been a difficult struggle for your sister. She touched so many, not just in the Boston community but with artists around the world. Thinking of you and Cyndy during this difficult time.
Sammi and Gary King
June 25, 2014
Rebecca's warm and generous smile and her kind eyes opened every conversation I ever had with her...personal and professional. Deeply committed, quietly insightful, she was an artist...She was the kind of leader this world sorely needs. She touched many, many people, and inspired us all. Her work is lasting.
Judith Eissenberg
June 25, 2014
I am so sorry to hear this news. Rebecca was a champion of dance and a lovely person. She will be missed.
Heidi Latsky
June 25, 2014
Rebecca, your passion for and championship of the arts touched us, all the way here in India. We are blessed to have known you and will continue to be inspired by you. Thank you for changing our lives forever!
We are deeply saddened to hear of your leaving and send our condolences and prayers to Marcie, your family, friends and everyone at NEFA.
You will be missed.
Lynne Fernandez
June 25, 2014
I just learned of Rebecca's passing from a mutual friend, Shelley Cohn. Rebecca and I were colleagues at the Nebraska Arts Council from 1980 to 1984. She was a dedicated arts administrator and beautiful human being. My heartfelt condolences to Marcie and the Blunk family. Bless you Becky !!
Phil Jones
June 24, 2014
A graceful tree has fallen.
Karen Allen Baxter
June 24, 2014
A brave cultural warrior and colleague, Rebecca will be deeply missed by our field. Sending prayers for comfort and peace to her family; thank you sharing Rebecca with us. Suzan Jenkins
Suzan Jenkins
June 24, 2014
So very saddened by the loss of our friend and colleague. Over 20 years of shared commitment to our field. Great conversations, challenges to one another, panels, laughter and personal and professional sharing. Your light will shine on forever and we promise to continue your good work Rebecca. Rest now. Pam
Pamela Green
June 24, 2014
We are so blessed to have had your beautiful presence on this earth. Thank you for sharing your light. It will shine on in our hearts. Sending sympathy, love and prayers to you, Marcie and Rebecca's family.
Lynn Fisher
June 24, 2014
My heart goes out to Marcie, family, friends, and so many colleagues. Thank you for your incredible and invaluable legacy in strengthening support of artists in this country. We will miss you.
Karen Fischer
June 24, 2014
Rebecca was a true inspiration, offering encouragement and support to me in my endeavors. She was a blessing.
Semenya McCord
June 24, 2014
A great, great loss to New England's arts community. My condolences to her family.
Megan Whilden
June 24, 2014
I am saddened by Rebecca's passing. I did not know her well but had the best respect for this lady.
June 24, 2014
Rebecca, Thank you for being a wonderful friend and mentor. I'll always be so grateful that you were in my life, and for all you did for the arts. All my best to your loved ones.
Jason Schupbach
June 24, 2014
The Arts in New England and around the country have flourished under your leadership and passion. We will carry on your torch!
Shannon Mayers
June 24, 2014
Oh Rebecca, what a generous spirit, lovely person with such dedication to our dance field, sad loss to us all.
Muna Tseng
June 24, 2014
Dear Rebecca:
We will always be grateful to you.
Our love today and ever for you.
You were one of the most important people in our lives.
Adriana y Alejandro
Adriana León
June 24, 2014
I am so sad to hear this news. Rebecca was certainly a hero of the arts, I am so grateful to have crossed her path and gain any knowledge I could from her. Thank You for all you did- a celebration of life indeed.
Mathew Janczewski
June 24, 2014
Sad news indeed for the arts world!
Deni Hirsh
June 24, 2014
May the family, love ones and friends reflect on the many contributions that their love one and friend, Ms. Rebecca Blunk left behind for them to best remember of her. With the deepest concern that family, love ones and friends be strengthen ever more with the many expressions of warm love that are extended to them during their loss.
Mary Godfrey
June 24, 2014
Please accept my sincerest condolences. Would that we all could live the kind of life Rebecca led, with tremendous passion and vision - oh, what a world it would be.
Maureen Boyd
June 24, 2014
I have never meet a more inspired and kind funder of the Arts than Rebecca. She had vision and passion that she held to without sacrificing a sense of humor and basic human caring. I learned a tremendous amount from her while we worked at NEFA. I valued this leaning more and more as time went on. I will miss knowing she is in the world doing what she did best-supporting with caring, kindness, and passion the ability of artists to make their work.
Anita Lauricella
June 24, 2014
Rebecca was a champion of artists and all people who strive for, work towards and make creative work. Although it has been any years since we have worked together, I celebrate her life, accomplishments and all her good deeds. My heart goes out to all who kew and loved her. Lisa Thorson
June 24, 2014
An absolute gem of a human being. Love and sympathy to Rebecca's family.
John and Carol Farrell
June 24, 2014
As a performing artist in New England this is a great loss to our community and to all communities across the country. A woman who did great things for the arts and the art economy! Thank You Rebecca you will be missed. Such an honor to have had you in our midst. Sending love and prayers to your family and friends. Sincerely, Bronwyn Sims
Bronwyn Sims
June 24, 2014
Dear Rebecca:
We will always be grateful to you.
Our love today and ever for you.
You were one of the most important people in our lives.
Adriana León y Alejandro Vera
Adriana León
June 24, 2014
The arts thank you Rebecca.
Sali Gill-Johnson
June 24, 2014
One of the most elegant, gracious, and EFFECTIVE people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. I'm grateful to have been in her sphere of influence.
Sabrina Hamilton
June 24, 2014
Marcie, I am so very sorry. What a terrible loss to you and the world.
JoeAnn Hart
June 24, 2014
Marcie, Words do not exist to express how shocked and saddened we are to hear of Rebecca's passing. We are so fortunate to have spent some special times with the two of you as neighbors and friends on Washington Avenue - Rebecca was a special person of the world! Ralph and Paul
Ralph Fuccillo
June 24, 2014
As everyone remembers the sophisticated, classy, Bostonian Rebecca Blunk, I must mention the long-haired, red-headed Becky, who ran the Fredonia Stone House Gallery on a CETA grant, in Kansas. That's when we became friends for life, a life I expected to be so very much longer. Even then her taste was impeccable (as demonstrated in her earrings), her enthusiasm contagious, her smile generous. Much of our early time was documented on the back of jackalope postcards, which we took such delight in finding and sending. -- My sincerest condolences to Marcie, whom she loved so very deeply, and to her family, especially her father Robert, to whom I send a very special hug.
Romalyn Tilghman
June 24, 2014
So grieved to read this news. Rebecca was a wonderful supporter for arts and arts education at Nefa and a gracious woman. She will be sorely missed by all in the arts field and as a personal friend.
Ranjanaa Devi
June 24, 2014
I am so sorry, thinking of Marcie and her family. She taught me a great deal and I admired her idealism, creativity and heart.

BJ Larson
June 24, 2014
Thank you, Rebecca, for championing the causes many felt weren't worth the time. Condolences to your family... We will miss you!
Sabrina Aviles
June 24, 2014
I was privileged to have known Rebecca as a cherished arts New England colleague for the past 27 years. My deepest sympathies to her family. This is an untimely loss. She will be missed. We all want to make a difference in this life. Rebecca, in her quiet way, did just that. With sadness, Becky Lawrence
June 24, 2014
Oh Marcie! I'm so sorry to hear this! I hope you are making it through this time with the love of family and friends. You're both in my heart and head. XO
Lisa Segall
June 24, 2014
My kind and dear mentor... I'm so sorry I didn't see her before she left us. My deepest, heartfelt sympathy to Marcie.
June 24, 2014
Of the many qualities we will all miss in Rebecca, the first that comes to my mind is grace. In my years working with R, she displayed a quite, graceful, clear strength about the work she was leading. An incredible woman....an incredible person...an incredible colleague...and a great strength whose loss will be felt by many. Our condolences and prayers go to Marcie, her family and to everyone at NEFA during this very sad time. Love from Michigan, Michael Kondziolka and the entire UMS Family.
June 24, 2014
Such a gift Rebecca was and will be. Her vision was matched by kindness, warmth, respect for art and artists- but I suspect this was her way with all humans, animals, flora and fauna. I turned to her over the last 25 years at times when I needed honest, clear advice. Always gracious and giving, and she always had an ear available. As many are this day, I am very sad, very sad.
Peter DiMuro
June 24, 2014
I'm so sorry for Becky and all her loved ones. No words. Rochelle Carr Needham
June 23, 2014
Rebecca was my cousin. She has always been one of those fascinating people with whom there is never enough time to talk, share, and just "be with." I will miss her a huge bunch. My thoughts go out to Marcie, Bob, and the rest of the famly.
Brooke Collison
Corvallis, OR
Brooke Collison
June 23, 2014
Rebecca was a beautiful and generous person. I learned with her, I learned about respect. She will be deeply missed. My condolences to her family.
Nicole Birmann Bloom
Nicole Birmann BLoom
June 23, 2014
I am immensely saddened to learn of Rebecca;s passing. She was a dedicated, visionary arts leader and advocate with a great sense of humor who loved serving artists. She will be sorely missed.
June 23, 2014
I have many fond memories of my interactions with Rebecca through the National Dance Project. She exuded warmth and generosity of spirit. I looked up to her as someone who was deeply invested in dance and it's reach to all corners of the U.S. I feel lucky to have known and worked with her. I'm saddened and shocked by her passing. Deepest sympathies to her family.
Mollie McFarland
June 23, 2014
This is a very sad day--Rebecca was an amazing individual who inspired everyone she came in touch with. A tremendous loss.
Walter Jaffe
June 23, 2014
Rebecca gave me a push and support for my work at a critical time. She was a brilliant and generous supporter of arts and artists. We have lost a great woman, friend and advocate.
Paula Josa-Jones
June 23, 2014
Rebecca was one of my dearest friend and important colleagues over the last 30 years. She was a remarkable individual who dedicated her tremendous gifts to creating opportunities in the arts. It is hard to imagine the world without her bright spirit. I will miss her enormously. I send loving thoughts to Marcie in this great time of loss.
Laura Faure
June 23, 2014
Rebecca was a very dear friend and colleague who's generosity and kindness I will never forget. I loved her like my family and carry a very heavy heart today. Love and very deepest condolences to Marcie, Family and the whole NEFA family. I will celebrate you soon dear Rebecca, today I mourn you with a profound sadness in my heart. Your friend forever, Michael
Michael Reed
June 23, 2014
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