November 25, 1999
Phoebe Rhea Berman, a philanthropist who endowed the Johns Hopkins Bioethics Institute, died of heart failure Saturday at Fernwood, her Green Spring Valley home. She was 89.One of Baltimore's most celebrated hostesses, she owned a thoroughbred racing stable, published a newspaper and collected modern art."She possessed what has become a lost sense of civic duty," said Doreen Bolger, director of the Baltimore Museum of Art. "She supported the fabric of the community."In 1988, Mrs. Berman presented the museum with a painting by artist Mark Rothko, "Black on Red," which Ms. Bolger called "a staggering gift."