Dianne Bret Harte

Honored By

Honored by: Healy, Ginny
Date submitted: February 25, 2010
Gift: Engraved Paver, Small

Born January 2nd 1932, Dianne Bret Harte is a name that can be linked to many titles. Before she became the Executive Director of the Southwestern Foundation for Education and Historical Preservation in 1997 she served as Editorial Assistant at the Arizona Historical Society. Such positions became possible due to the practice she gained serving as a journalist and editor at the Tucson Citizen (1953-54, 1956-58) and Arizona Republic (1954-56). She also served as the Editor of Lo Que Pasa (the U of A faculty newspaper) between 1984 and 1995, a memorable time in the newspaper's history. Dianne never gave precedent in her career as to which job was most significant. She felt each job provided her with different opportunities, and was grateful for the education and experience she garnered along the way. A career journalist, Dianne let one tenet direct her profession; do your research, do your homework. It was this discipline that led her to be the Executive Director of the Southwestern Foundation for Education and Historical Preservation, a capstone position that utilizes her accumulative career skills and historical perspective of Tucson.

Dianne has an infectious appreciation for Tucson, and her fit in the desert community is a snug one. Witness to over four decades of Tucson evolution Dianne holds high regard not simply for what Tucson is, but what it was. Promoting that awareness is her daily battle, and why she bemoans the decline of print journalism as, 'reading a local newspaper is the best thing a local citizen can do'. Life in a multicultural, multigenerational, unassuming city located in the middle of a natural beauty as unique as the Sonoran desert is something to be thankful for, and someone doesn't have to spend a lot of time around Dianne to realize this. She hopes and works daily to pass on the weaving of culture and history in and around Tucson that is so crucial to the city. A special day around Tucson needn't be spectacular at all. A bowl of menudo at el Minuto and a stroll around the old, adobe houses on Main to the Wishing Shrine. Getting lost in a a book in the desert. Dianne cherishes Tucson not for some glaring attraction, but for its many simple and distinctive pleasures.

If one's aim in a career is simply to mark their own place and time on Earth than Dianne Bret Harte has succeeded. Instead she has exceeded that aim thanks to a career that has marked a certain place in a specific time.