Byrnina B. Barker, 76, construction firm executive

September 06, 2004

Byrnina B. "Nicki" Barker, a retired construction company vice president, died of lung cancer Saturday at Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care in Towson. The Towson resident was 76.

Born Byrnina Baugher in Dallas, she was raised in Baltimore and graduated from Eastern High School.

She took business classes at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School and courses offered by the American Management Association and the Dale Carnegie training company.

She worked briefly for a telephone company and then took a clerical position with the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. There she met Roy Lyman Barker, who lived near her in Waverly. The two were married in 1948. Shortly afterward, Mrs. Barker left her job to raise their son. The family lived in Catonsville for 16 years before moving to Towson.

In 1966, Mrs. Barker returned to the work force, taking a clerical job with John H. Hampshire Inc., a Baltimore construction company.

She became an executive secretary and then office manager before becoming the company's first female vice president in the late 1970s. She retired in 1996 as vice president of administration.

Mr. Barker said his wife was an avid reader who "would amaze people with her knowledge." After she retired, she took German and French lessons at Bykota Senior Center in Towson, where she was a frequent visitor.

Services will be private.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by her son, Mark Stephen Barker of Catonsville; two sisters, Doris Cates of Baltimore and Jean Boyd of Philadelphia; a brother, Harry Baugher of Baltimore; and two grandchildren.

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