Ivers, Louise (Ruma) died suddenly on February 11th, at home in Arlington, Massachusetts. Born December 26, 1938, Louise grew up in Winchester, MA. The daughter of Dominic and Geraldine (Meagher) Ruma, she attended the Bartlett School and Marycliff Academy and was a graduate of Winchester High School, and Lasell Junior College. She lived in Arlington since 1961, and, at her death, was a realtor and Vice President at Coldwell Banker, CRB, CRS, GRI, having been an Arlington broker for almost 50 years.
An entrepreneur all her adult life, she founded many businesses, including a high end children’s fashion apparel line, Originals by Louise, and, in 1977, Ivers and Stein Realtors (with Dorothea Stein). A very successful businesswoman, she will be remembered, also, as a pioneer in today’s real estate profession for her leadership in bringing her professional experience in real estate to fair housing.
In 1992 she received the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Recognition Award in Arlington, citing “ the aggressive manner she used her visibility and prestige to advocate for the justice of fair and equal housing opportunities in the Greater Boston neighborhoods.
Louise led the way as: Governor of the Massachusetts Women's Council of Realtors, Director of the Greater Boston Real Estate Board and member of their Equal Opportunity Committee. Louise was the first female invited to join the Arlington Chapter of the Rotary International. She was also the charter member of the Arlington Fair Housing Advisory Board.” Louise was a leader in promoting equality for those denied such opportunities and served as a role model for all of us to do more in our community.
She first got her real estate license in 1969, learning the business by working at small real estate firms, then co-founded her own firm with Dorothea Stein, Ivers and Stein, bringing more women into the real estate business. The firm specialized in real estate sales, rentals and market analyses/appraisals and employed 20 real estate agents. A few years after the death of her partner, Dot Stein, Louise decided to focus her attention and expertise solely on people, and she sold her company to Coldwell Banker in 1995. She was their leading Broker for many years, including being the recipient of the Hunneman Gold Circle Designation for achieving the highest level of sales in 1996. She was so trusted that, over her 50 years in real estate, she was known to sell four houses to members of a single Arlington family.
Active in fair housing within the community, she was an original member of the Town Manager appointed Arlington Fair Housing Advisory Committee and a lifetime member of the Arlington Civil Rights Committee. As a member of the finance committee of Zonta, she was responsible for structuring Zonta’s first Annual House Tour in Arlington. From 1980 to 1991 she was a Member (and Vice Chairman in 1985) of the Arlington Historic District Commissions. Her other memberships over the years included the Arlington Historical Society, the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, and Rotary International, (former Director). From 1992 to 1994 she was a member of the Arlington Vision 2020 Committee, Co-Chairperson-Business Visibility Committee.
She is survived by her children: Richard of Arlington and Elisabeth, of Brooklyn, NY, by her sister, Rosemarie Pitman, her brothers, James and Joseph Ruma, and by nieces, and nephews.
A memorial service for Louise will be held at the First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church in Arlington, 630 Massachusetts Avenue, at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 23rd. Contributions in her memory can be made to the Arlington Historical Society, 7 Jason Street, Arlington 02476. Please designate: Louise Ivers Education Fund. Arrangements under the care of DeVito Funeral Home 1145 Mass. Ave., ARLINGTON. Visit devitofuneralhome.com to send an online condolence.