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Bucksbaum, Carolyn


Carolyn Swartz, known by her nickname Kay, was born in Des Moines, Iowa on February 17, 1929 to Mose Swartz and Ethelyn Cohen Swartz. She was educated at Hubbell elementary and Roosevelt junior and senior high schools in Des Moines, graduating from high school in 1947. Swartz then attended her father´s alma mater Grinnell College, where she majored in English and journalism and edited the college newspaper before graduating with honors in 1951. Following a 700-mile bicycle trip in Europe, Swartz was working on the executive training program of the Meredith Publishing Company in Des Moines when she met Matthew Bucksbaum of Marshalltown, Iowa. The couple married within the year and Kay Bucksbaum became a homemaker in Marshalltown. A daughter, Ann Louise Bucksbaum, was born in 1954 in Marshalltown. The family moved to Cedar Rapids, building the state´s first shopping mall in 1955, where a son, John Louis Bucksbaum was born. In 1959 the family moved to Bettendorf and built Duck Creek Plaza. In 1964 the family relocated to Des Moines and formed the basis of the publicly held real estate development company that became General Growth.

Formative experiences for Bucksbaum included summer camp counseling for five years in various parts of the country, a number of American Athletic Union state swimming championships, and continuous membership in the League of Women Voters from her college days onward. Bucksbaum served as president of the League of Women Voters of Scott County, Iowa and vice-president of the League of Women Voters of Iowa. She has served as both president and as a board member for the Des Moines Symphony Association, chairman and trustee on the Grinnell College Board of Trustees, vice-president of the Jewish Welfare Federation, a board member for Des Moines United Way, a board member for the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, a board member for DanceAspen, and a trustee for the Des Moines Art Center. Bucksbaum has also served as the first "outside" director for the Des Moines Register and Tribune Company, director of Hawkeye Cablevision, president of the Grinnell Communications Corporation, vice-president and board member for the Foundation in National Public Radio, and a founder of Friends of Iowa Educational Broadcasting.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Carolyn "Kay" Bucksbaum papers

Identifier: IWA0591
Abstract Civic activist involved in the Jewish community, the Des Moines symphony, the League of Women Voters, and the Proteus Club.
Dates: 1949-1998