Arlington — Sharon Stanton Russell, 68, died peacefully on February 27, 2013, after a prolonged illness.
She is survived by her husband, Robert Mitchell Russell; a daughter, Kimberley Russell Slate, her husband, Bjorn Slate, and their children, Henry and Lucy Slate; a daughter, Brooke Russell and her children, Grace and Catherine Littell; two sisters, Diana Stanton-Thornbrough and Pamela Stanton. Sharon's son-in-law, Andrew Littell died in December 2012.
Born in Oceanside, N.Y., Sharon was a graduate of Wellesley College (BA 1966), University of Chicago (MA 1974), Harvard's Kennedy School of Government (MA 1982), and MIT (Ph.D. 1987).
A prominent and pioneering academic in the field of international migration who advised governments around the world, Sharon was a Senior Research Scholar at the Center for International Studies at MIT. Her research and publications focused on global migration trends and policies, the relationship of migration to economic and social development, and forced migration. Sharon was an active member of numerous academic and professional societies, and she worked with governmental organizations, including the United Nations and World Bank.
Sharon's early engagement in political causes led to a lifetime of strong advocacy for progressive policies. Her dedication to the advancement of opportunities for women and her belief in sisterhood were evident in her devotion to friendships, and her boundless enthusiasm for mentoring many young women whom she nurtured professionally.
The importance of family and community was a value that Sharon held deeply. A loving wife, mother and grandmother, she possessed an inspiring generosity of spirit, always seeking to forge connections and embrace friends both new and old. Graceful and beautiful, she was also fun-loving and took particular joy in sailing, dancing and choral singing. These essential qualities remained vibrant in her final years, despite her illness. She will be greatly missed.
ARRANGEMENTS: A memorial service will be held on Saturday, March 23 at 11 a.m. at the Annisquam Village Church in Gloucester. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Sharon may be made to, the Myeloma Research Fund, Tufts Medical Center or The Association for Frontaltemporal Degeneration.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Pike-Grondin Funeral Home, 61 Middle Street, Gloucester. For online condolences, please visit www.grondinfuneralservices.com.