Dvora ‘Debbie’ Parker
Dvora “Debbie” Parker passed away on June 10, 2023, at home and among family after a 5-year battle against cancer. A 50-year resident of Tiburon, she raised her three sons, was happily married to Neil Boorstyn and practiced law.
Debbie was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on July 26, 1940, the first-generation daughter of immigrant parents Fred and Ruby (née Koz) Parker. They immigrated to Canada from Ukraine in 1920, fleeing the pogroms and persecutions of the Jewish people. She grew up in Winnipeg with her brother, Jacob “Jerry” Parker, and extended family in a culturally rich neighborhood shared by Russian, Polish, Ukrainian and Jewish immigrant families. Debbie left Winnipeg at 18 years old to study theater arts at the University of Minnesota, subsequently moving to San Francisco and later Los Angeles, where she performed in local theater. There, she met and married her first husband, Aubrey Swartz, in 1963 with whom she had three sons: Daniel, Jason and Joshua.
The family moved to Tiburon in 1973, where she remained for the rest of her life. Her first marriage ended in 1976, after which she studied law at Hastings College of the Law, graduating in 1981. Debbie practiced family law and founded the family law clinic at Golden Gate University, where she taught for several years. In 1986, she married Neil Boorstyn, the love of her life; by trade, he was a copyright attorney and professor of law. The pair had 30 happy years together until his passing in 2016.
An avid patron of the arts, Debbie volunteered as a docent at the SF Museum of Modern Art, was a gifted oil painter and attended innumerable ballets, operas and theater shows. She loved to travel, with some of her favorite locations being Europe, Morocco, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and more. She and Neil were fortunate to share the close friendship of five other couples with whom they traveled and socialized frequently.
Debbie is survived by her brother and sister-in-law, Jerry and Ann-Marie Parker; her son and daughter-in-law Daniel Swartz and Dineshi Liyanage; her son and daughter-in-law Jason Swartz and Jeanne Henzel Swartz; and her son Joshua Swartz. She is also survived by her step-daughters and step-sons-in-law Hallie and Stuart Friedman and Sarah and Ken Schwartz. She is also survived by eight grandchildren: Mandika Swartz, Devin Swartz, Oona Swartz, Gabriel Friedman, Lody Friedman, Harry Friedman, Sam Schwartz and Emma Schwartz, as well as two great-grandchildren, Waverly-Neil Friedman and William Friedman. Debbie loved her family and close friends, with whom she shared the many wonderful experiences of a rich and meaningful life.