In Memory of

Ann

T.

Ackerman,

PhD

Obituary for Ann T. Ackerman, PhD

Ann Trugman Ackerman PhD, 76, a longtime resident of Nashua, NH, died peacefully on Saturday, April 22, 2023 with her children by her side. She was the widow of Philip M. Ackerman who passed on March 11, 2000.

Ann was born on July 1, 1946, a fourth generation native of Dallas, Texas. Her mother, Sylvia Margules Trugman divorced when Ann was very young and was determined that her daughter would have as many advantages and opportunities as Sylvia could give her. Sylvia was a particularly important influence on Ann’s educational achievements. Sylvia also helped raise two nephews, Edward and Stanley Dayton, who Ann considered her brothers. Ann graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in Dallas and went on to earn her B.A., MA, and ultimately a PhD in history from University of North Texas (then North Texas State University).

Ann was a lifelong educator, starting her career as a history and social studies teacher. Ann loved to travel and hoped to work in Europe in the Department of Defense schools, but needed several years of teaching experience first, so took a job teaching high school social studies at Leilehua High School in Hawaii. It was in Hawaii that Ann was set up on a blind date with Philip M. Ackerman, a US Army officer stationed in Hawaii. They wed in 1971 in Dallas, and, though Ann did not end up teaching in Europe, Phil’s military career would take them to many places all over the world and in the United States. Theirs was a partnership built on love, shared interests, and respect. Together Ann and Phil were the devoted parents of Erin and Reuben. Ann was a community volunteer and stay at home mother while Erin and Reuben were very young and delighted in creating fun adventures and cultural experiences for them such as nature walks, museum trips, and tea parties.

After Phil’s retirement from the military, the Ackermans moved to New Hampshire in 1980, where Ann and Phil became involved with local, state and Democratic Party politics, hosting many presidential candidates at their house over the years and amassing a very impressive photo collection. Ann won election four times to the Nashua Board of Alderman, representing Ward 1 and working on a number of important city projects over the years. Ann was one of the founders of the Mayor’s Ethnic Awareness Committee. She valued getting to know and serving her constituents and the greater Nashua Community. Her children remember her maintaining a list of Ward 1 residents with medical and mobility needs so she could work with the city’s public works departments and first responders to prioritize these residents for snow plowing and other emergencies, as well as hearing Ann make calls to thank city workers for a job well done after a tough snowstorm or big city event. She was known for congeniality and listening to others, engaging in reasonable discussion, and facilitating and moderating conversations among varying viewpoints.

Ann returned to teaching and had a long and distinguished career as a teacher, administrator, and professor at many educational institutions, including Hollis-Brookline High School, Nashua (South) High School, Daniel Webster College, Salem High School, Rivier College, and Nashua Community College. Among her many accomplishments, Ann educated and mentored pre-service teachers, helped develop curriculum and standards for social studies education in New Hampshire, and was awarded several fellowships for international travel and educational exchanges to Korea, Germany, Greece and Bulgaria. Ann was also a small business owner, founding and running Images and Ideas, a printing and publishing company, with her husband, Phil. She also served as the editor of the New Hampshire Jewish Reporter, a paper published by the New Hampshire Jewish Federation.

Although she was not a fan of cold weather and joked about moving back to a warmer climate, Ann’s ties to the Nashua community made it difficult to imagine calling anywhere else home. In addition to her political service and involvement, Ann was an active member of Temple Beth Abraham, the Nashua College Club, and the NH Chapter of the Fulbright Association.

Ann and Phil raised two children, Erin and Reuben, and instilled in them an appreciation for education, open mindedness, advocacy, and service to others. She was very proud and supportive of her children, visiting and showing up to help whenever needed. Ann was blessed with two additional children later in life, Christine (Reuben’s wife) and Brian (Erin’s husband). Ann adored and was adored by her grandchildren, Ryan, Eli, Maya, and Joshua, and one of the greatest joys of her life was attending their activities and supporting them, which also meant the world to the grandkids. There was no one faster than Grandma Ann on the “Like” button for a social media post or photo about her grandchildren.

Ann was predeceased by her husband, Philip M. Ackerman; her mother, Sylvia Trugman; and her cousins/siblings Edward and Stanley Dayton. She is survived by her children, Erin Ackerman and Brian Arbour of Glen Ridge, NJ and Reuben and Christine Ackerman of Natick, MA; her grandchildren Ryan, Eli, and Maya Ackerman and Joshua Arbour; her sisters in law Lourdes Corman Ackerman (Louisville, KY) and Teddie Ackerman (Orlando, Florida); close cousins Joyce Susman (Dallas, TX), Ann Shaver (Honolulu, Hawaii), Richard and Sheri Trugman (Berkeley Heights, NJ), and Elaine and Susie Sofman (Cranford, NJ), as well as many cousins, nieces, and nephews.

SERVICES: The funeral will be held on Tuesday, April 25th at 11 AM at Temple Beth Abraham, 4 Raymond St., Nashua NH 03064, with burial to follow at the Temple Beth Abraham Cemetery, 428 W Hollis St., Nashua. The family will sit shiva at Ann’s condo on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evening. IN LIEU OF FLOWERS, the family welcomes donations in her memory to the Temple Beth Abraham of Nashua, NH www.TBANashua.org/donate and the Nashua Soup Kitchen 2 Quincy St., Nashua, NH www.NSKS.org/donate. Arrangements in care of the DAVIS FUNERAL HOME, One Lock St., Nashua, NH 03064. An online guestbook can be found at www.DavisFuneralHomeNH.com (603)883-3401 “ONE MEMORY LIGHTS ANOTHER.”