Barbara Jean Keith was born on July 1, 1933 in Los Angeles California and raised by her grandmother in Beaver, Utah. Her formative years were challenging and Barbara, as many of her age, was determined to make a much better life for herself.
Married at a young age, Barbara's early adult life was spent on a dairy farm and in raising her young family - and she found time to pursue an education. Fate brought her to Washington State where the family continued farming. Barbara was an avid reader, had a thirst for knowledge and knew that education opened the door to the better life she wanted for herself and her children. Barbara continued her educational pursuits by attending community college and finally enrolling in the University of Washington where in 1969 she earned a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology.
In 1974, life moved Barbara to Tempe, Arizona where she began her decade's long career as an art dealer.
Barbara's career path led her to Carmel, California, opening a successful small gallery; eventually leading to a larger space. Barbara's business acumen was rewarded when she sold that business and relocated back to Washington State, the place where she wanted to spend her life.
Gallery Mack opened in Bellevue, moved to Pioneer Square in 1979 and in 1984 settled near the Pike Place Market, where the gallery Barbara created as "a positive environment for people to come enjoy art at a gallery without high pressure" is open today.
Life was not always easy and business ebbed and flowed. With strength and determination Barbara navigated all the ups and downs along her path. Through the years Barbara's hard work, determination, generosity, loyalty and integrity kept the doors open. She could be seen walking to the gallery every day, and continued working to the end.
Barbara's courage, creativity, great love and determination is an enduring example to her 5 children, 11 grandchildren, 30 great grandchildren, many, many friends and admirers all over the world too numerous to count!
She is survived by her dearest friend and life partner of 40 years, Michael Peterson.
Barbara Mack Keith has enhanced people's environments for over 43 years with the beauty of art - and even more so by her extraordinary presence.
In lieu of flowers please direct donations in her memory to:
Pediatric Interim Care Center, Kent, WA or Science and Management of Addictions (SAMA) Foundation, Seattle, WA