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Beloved Philanthropist Linny Fowler Dead at 73

Linny Fowler died Monday at the age of 73, according to reports.

Philanthropist Linny Fowler died Monday of natural causes, according to a report in The Morning Call. She was 73.

UPS heiress Fowler was known locally for giving generously to the arts and to the poor. Several buildings in the Lehigh Valley are named in her honor, including the Fowler Family South Side Center of Northampton Community College in Bethlehem. She also was a major benefactor of ArtsQuest.

NCC spokesman Heidi Butler said, "As the news traveled across campus this afternoon, there was shock and sadness, followed by spontaneous sharing of memories, not only of how generous Linny was, but also of how down-to-earth she was and about the personal interest she took in students and the encouragement she gave them. She was beloved."

Fowler had been a long-time supporter of NCC. Her financial support enabled the college to purchase and refurbish an abandoned Bethlehem Steel office building into the “Fowler Family Southside Center, " now a hub for literacy, fine arts, workforce training, community education and medical care.

 Fowler also was a member of the ArtsQuest Board of Trustees, the ArtsQuest Foundation Board of Trustees and the Visual Arts Board. She was instrumental in helping to build and open the Banana Factory and its Fowler Family Visual Arts Education Center.

ArtsQuest notified its board of Fowler's death in an email Monday.

"Everyone at ArtsQuest is deeply saddened by the loss of such a caring, compassionate person and an amazing woman whose generosity and love for children and our community knew no boundaries," it said. "Linny Fowler was one of those rare individuals whose actions matched the size of her heart….she was a woman who truly made a difference in our community and in the lives of so many.

"Linny gave tirelessly to our community over the decades, supporting dozens of youth, community and arts organizations through her volunteerism and philanthropic efforts, inspiring thousands through her hard work, dedication and passion. Her passing leaves a void in our community that will be impossible to fill."

Kathleen O'Donnell February 05, 2013 at 01:58 PM
As a result of your article, I read more about Linny in the MC. How sad is her passing, but what a joy to hear about someone who lived her life lovingly and with great generosity. She touched so many lives....... I happened to meet a young woman from South America (at the Zoellner Theatre) one evening, who told me about a Bethlehem woman who had financed this younger woman's college education. The young woman was now married with two children, living in NY. She, her husband and children had come to have lunch with her older friend. ... the friend who had changed the trajectory of their lives.... I now wonder if she was Linny.
Kim McDougall February 05, 2013 at 05:51 PM
I only met Mrs. Fowler once, but I admired her for years. The Lehigh Valley has lost a treasure. RIP Linny.
Carmen February 06, 2013 at 08:14 PM
RIP Linny-you were a beautiful, loving and giving soul and if more people could be as generous as you with their love for others this would be a beautiful world-you helped my neice when she was struggling to pay her college and my family will always remember you
Rachel Thompson February 10, 2013 at 01:46 PM
Now that she's gone Artsquest, the propagator of corporate interests, can stop pretending to be a community organization and go whole hog after Jeff Parks' bloodless fantasy.

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