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Pam Bird, 1928-2015

1 June 2015

Pamela Bird (née Cobb), an administrator at the Graduate School of Education for almost 20 years, died peacefully in May, aged 87. Sara Meadows offers a tribute.

Pam was Joint Secretary at the School of Education from 1973 to her retirement in February 1992. She was one of the excellent administrative staff who have been the mainstay of the Graduate School of Education.

Pam ran the support systems for students taking advanced courses and was a mentor and a resource for staff. She always provided clear, viable and balanced solutions to problems, and saw both the necessary details and the broad picture. She was generous, patient, rigorous, fair and helpful. She supported the school and its staff and students through thick and thin: students from the 1990s still remember her from their early careers and ask after her. 

Pam was also warm and genuinely interested in people. She contributed to the social life of the school (she started the Senior Common Room walking group who went for Sunday treks together) and of the University and the city. Her informal talks about her botanical holidays, socials for international students, and active membership of Bristol Civic Society, amongst others, are still fondly remembered.

Pam lived up to high ideals of loyalty, responsibility, and collegiality. And she was excellent company. It was a privilege to know her and work with her, and she will be remembered with both respect and fondness. Pam was married to Professor Michael Bird (Engineering), who became a PVC of the university and who pre-deceased her.


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