Local Government and Politics, News

Salem State center will embody legacy of Frederick Berry

SALEM — A Peabody political legend and giant who loomed over Massachusetts' social service landscape, the late Frederick E. Berry's work will continue through a planned political studies institute.

With planning for its construction underway, the Frederick E. Berry Institute of Politics and Civic Engagement at Salem State University (The Berry Institute) will be paid for in part with a $200,000 state appropriation.

The institute will be overseen by Salem State University's Center for Civic Engagement with an advisory board carrying out its mission to engage and inspire a diverse community of learners to pursue careers in political and public service. 

"Fred's family and I are so pleased that his former colleagues in the legislature, (Salem State University) President (John) Keenan and the University community have come together to honor and recognize his legacy," said Berry's wife, Gayle. 

Fred Berry served 30 years in the state Legislature as a vocal advocate for the disabled. He died last November. 

The center will encompass programs including week-long institutes for students to hone their political knowledge and skills; podcasts to broadcast current issues, policies, and interviews with political candidates.

"The Frederick E. Berry Institute of Politics and Civic Engagement will highlight those values that Fred held most dear and pass them on to future generations of Salem State students," said state Sen. Joan Lovely.

Keenan said in a statement the Berry Institute of Politics and Civic Engagement will provide additional opportunities to bring in political leaders, policy makers, and public officials, which will expand the breadth and depth of the political discourse on campus and inspire students to get involved in politics and public service.




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