SHREWSBURY, Massachusetts – The 17th Annual Spirit of Shrewsbury Fall Festival’s Grand Marshall is Isabelle Change. Isabelle has lived in the town of Shrewsbury for over sixty years. The former Isabelle Chin grew up in Boston, the daughter of an import/export tea merchant. One of nine children, she was the fifth child in a bustling household.
Isabelle (Chin) Chang met her Chinese-born husband Min Chueh Chang in 1948. It was shortly after he moved to the United States, in the library of Yale University where Isabelle was studying to get her Master’s Degree that they met. Isabelle assumed the role of housewife in the pair’s marriage, allowing M. C. Chang to delve into his work. (Later in life, Isabelle’s husband became world renowned for his collaborative inventing of the birth control pill and In- Vitro Fertilization at the Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology, on Maple Avenue.) They had two daughters and a son together, Claudia Chang Tourtellote, Pamela O’Malley Chang, and Francis Hugh Chang…affectionately known as ‘Poncho’. One daughter and son reside in California and her other daughter lives in Virginia. Isabelle is the grandmother of four grandchildren.
Education has been a priority in Isabelle’s life. She holds several Master’s degrees from Yale University, Clark University and Anna Maria College. Her degree in library science is from Simmons College. For many years, Isabelle worked at the Shrewsbury Public Library and the Shrewsbury Junior- Senior High School library. She has enriched and touched the lives of many Shrewsbury students.
Not only has library work been one of Isabelle’s passions, but history has also played a major role. The combination of the lure of historical Shrewsbury and history itself, inspired her to write a book about Artemas Ward, our first Commander-in-Chief before George Washington. (Isabelle will have the book available for sale for five dollars at the Spirit of Shrewsbury Oak St. Expo, Senior Center, Town Hall, and Artemas Ward House. All of the proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to the Shrewsbury School Department.)
Isabelle Chang’s volunteer contributions to the town of Shrewsbury include: member of several committees for the Spirit of Shrewsbury Fall Festival, Shrewsbury Historical Society’s cemetery tours, and Artemas Ward open house. Currently she volunteers at the Senior Center as part of the Council on Aging. At the Senior Center, she is involved in the Writer’s Club, as well as many groups which include book discussion, current events, and scrapbooking.