GBWC Featured Profile

Margy Bratschi

Wheaton Class of '78

by Cynthia L. Rodday '92
August 2008

The Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women recently celebrated the contributions of women in the Commonwealth. Margy Bratschi, Class of 1978, was one of this year’s honorees on May 14, 2008. "Our Unsung Heroines are women who don’t make the news, but make the difference in their communities, businesses, or volunteer endeavors,” stated Linda Brantley, MCSW Executive Director, in an official press release. Elizabeth Charney and Gretchen Grozier, docents for Boston By Foot, each nominated Margy for this special citation. Gretchen states Margy “has always been an inspiration to me—just her breadth of knowledge, her commitment and her capacity are astonishing.” Margy also received a special certificate from Mayor Thomas M. Menino.

Graduating Wheaton College with a B.A. in Biology, Margy attended the University of Cincinnati where she earned a M.A. in Speech Pathology. How did this biology major find a career as a law librarian? Her career choice is understandable since her mother was one of the earliest computer-engineering librarians in the country and a docent at Valley Forge. After graduate school, Margy found a paralegal position at a Boston law firm. Soon she pursued a law librarian position. While working full-time, Margy earned her M.S. in Library & Information Science at Simmons College. She now serves as Library Director at Posternak, Blankstein & Lund LLP. She is also a member of the Association of Boston Law Librarians.

During her spare time, Margy is a docent at numerous institutions—the Boston Athenaeum, Boston Public Library, John Adams Courthouse, and Boston By Foot—delivering commentary on various Boston landmarks. Margy is widely recognized for her work at Boston By Foot, a nonprofit educational organization. Docents must fulfill strict requirements prior to full-time status including five-hour sessions, on five consecutive Saturdays; four research papers; as well as a two-part final exam. In her nomination of Margy, Elizabeth Charney writes, “Margaret has a natural ability to be a team player, a mentor and teacher…Margaret has given tours to 200,000 people and trained at least 1,200 docents” during the twenty years she has volunteered at Boston By Foot.

Further exemplifying Margy’s commitment to Boston By Foot, she regularly contributes to tour manuals. She co-authored the following manuals: Bulfinch Birthday Bash (1998), Literary Landmarks: A Walking Tour of Literary Boston in Victorian Times (2000), and The Financial District (2001). Manuals she researched and wrote exclusively include Oliver Wendell Holmes (1988), Harvard Yard (2003) and The Dark Side of Boston (2008). John Morrison, a friend and colleague from Boston By Foot states, “She is personable, reliable and knowledgeable—a quiet and confident leader. [Though raised a Philadelphian,] she has become a Boston treasure. I am truly enriched by knowing her, as we all are.”

On September 20, 2008, Margy will give a special Walking Tour of the Flat of Beacon Hill to the Greater Boston Wheaton Club. More information will be provided on the club’s web site as the date approaches.

As the Greater Boston Wheaton Club’s Club Coordinator since 1998, she regularly attends GBWC events. Many lucky lottery winners of Wheaton’s Night at Fenway Park have greeted Margy to obtain passage into Fenway Park. Ironically, she has never attended a Boston Red Sox game.

Now that our Unsung Heroine was rewarded for her volunteerism, perhaps we can finally convince her to attend a Boston Red Sox game. At the very least, we should persuade her to take a Walking Tour of Fenway Park. What better way to cement her knowledge of Boston’s history then a guided tour of one of America’s Most Beloved Ballparks.


To learn more about Boston By Foot, please visit their web site.