All of us at the Public Interest Law Center are mourning the loss of our colleague and dear friend, Barbara Grimaldi, on June 14. She was 32. Barbara begin working with us in 2013 as a communications associate, served for several years as our director of development and communications, and was most recently our chief strategy officer. Her contribution to our organization was extraordinary, helping us expand our base of support, our public advocacy efforts, and our ability to help communities create systemic change. Those who had the fortune of knowing and working with Barbara will remember her kindness, generosity of spirit, courage, strategic brilliance, and deep commitment to the people we serve.
Below, we are sharing the obituary that Barbara wrote over the last year, including information on her visitation and memorial services. The Philadelphia Inquirer also published an obituary highlighting Barbara’s dedication, passion and impact, “Barbara M. Grimaldi, 32, nonprofit executive who fought systemic injustice.”
Barbara Christine Macholz Grimaldi (September 15, 1986 – June 14, 2019), died peacefully surrounded by loved ones following her three year, eight month barrage against metastatic breast cancer. Dear wife of Matthew John Grimaldi, beloved daughter of John and Linda Macholz; little sister of Zachary (Jasmin Farsi and Gloria); daughter-in-law of Janet and Dominick Grimaldi, sister-in-law of Dana Condon (Ben) and Catherine Spicer (Chad). Barbie was born and raised in New York, before moving to Pennsylvania to secure her Bachelor’s Degree in English and Spanish from Muhlenberg College. After college, she spent time in New York City and Chicago pursuing work in development and communications for non-profit organizations focused on alleviating poverty. In addition to spending time with her loved ones, Barbie was proud to be a Lutheran, loved the island of Martha’s Vineyard, and thought sheep and dogs were the creme de la creme. Also-Wegmans is the best-Always!
In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia. (www.pubintlaw.org/donate). The Public Interest Law Center develops innovative legal strategies to advance the civil, social, and economic rights of communities facing discrimination, inequality, and poverty. Beyond solving an individual’s situation, the Center’s combined use of litigation, community education, advocacy, and organizing, has efficiently helped communities design and secure their own systemic access to fundamental resources and services since the Civil Rights Movement.
Contributions may also be made to Atonement Lutheran Church, 1900 Westfall Road, Rochester, NY 14618. Atonement is the congregation in which Barb grew up and which has been such a blessing to her and her family, especially during these past years of her battle.
Barb’s family wants to thank all of the staff (especially Dr. David Mintzer) from the oncologists to the people who transported Barb in wheelchairs or hospital beds or prepared her trays of food during hospital stays – at both Pennsylvania Hospital and Memorial Sloan Kettering – for their immense care and kindness throughout the course of Barb’s disease.
Visitation with the family will take place on Friday, June 28 at Atonement Lutheran Church from 6-8:30 pm. A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, June 29 at 11:00 am at The Lutheran Church of the Incarnate Word, 597 East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607. A reception will follow.
The Barbara Christine Macholz Grimaldi Memorial Fund
All contributions honoring Barbara will be placed in the Barbara Christine Macholz Grimaldi Memorial Fund, which will be used toward our healthcare work. In the past, Law Center cases in four different states have helped hundreds of thousands of children enrolled in Medicaid access critical medical and dental care.
To find out how to contribute, please view our donation page. Mention that you would like your gift to be included in the Memorial Fund in the special instructions section of our PayPal link.
Today, we are continuing the fight to break down systemic legal barriers that harm the well-being and health of people most affected by poverty and discrimination, including the gun violence epidemic in Philadelphia.