The Barbara J. Sinnott '55 Memorial Scholarship
Criteria: Up to 3 $500.00 Awards.
Throughout her life, Barbara Sinnott ’55 was an inspirational leader who made a difference in her community as a businesswoman, public servant, committed alumna, and a cherished mother and wife. She broke down gender barriers and pursued leadership positions that supported women’s rights at all levels, and left a legacy reflecting her sparkling spirit and infinite energy. Barbara graduated from Worcester State Teachers College and worked as a teacher for several years before starting a family with her husband Joseph A. Sinnott ’55, who passed away in 2004. The Sinnotts raised four children, Denise (Pisegna), Valerie (Quitadamo), Jeffrey, and Jonathan.
Years later, she used her leadership skills to give back to Worcester State, serving on the Board of Trustees for two terms, from 1995 to 2005. While a member of the Board, she served as chair from 2004 to 2005 and served as vice chair from 2001 to 2004, and was a member of various committees. Barbara was one of the first three women ever elected to the Worcester City Council, a group voted onto the council in 1973. She also served the public in many other capacities, including as a member the Governor’s Commission on the Status of Women and as vice chair of the Massachusetts Republican party. She was appointed to the U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Service’s Provider Reimbursement Review Board and served for eight years on the Worcester License Commission.
She was president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau for 15 years, retiring in 2003. Because she valued education and wanted future generations to have access to educational opportunities, she remained on the Board of Directors for the BBB’s Consumer Education Foundation until her death. To honor her service, the BBB created the Barbara J. Sinnott Scholarship Fund, which each year provides $4,000 in scholarships to students in Central and Western Massachusetts who demonstrate a commitment to the ideals of the BBB.
She created the Julia Mack Scholarship Fund for WSU students in urban studies to honor her mother, another ground-breaking woman who inspired with her energy. Julia Mack ‘89 graduated at the age of 80 from Worcester State and became WSU’s first director of elder affairs.
The Barabara Sinnott ’55 Memorial Scholarship will support the next generation of female leaders who aspire to push society’s boundaries with the goal of achieving equal rights for all.