February 8, 1961 - October 22, 2018
Brenda Diane Brinton, 57, of Davis California, former collegiate volleyball player, artist, and graphic design artist, died October 22, 2018 from complications after surgery for brain cancer. She was born in Lincoln on February 8, 1961 to Robert and Lois Brinton.
Brenda was an athlete, an avid artist, a lover of art, a sharp wit, and a loving partner. As a youth, Brenda loved sports and in high school she excelled in volleyball. In 1977, as a starting setter, her Lincoln East volleyball team won the Nebraska class A state championship. While her team did not repeat in 1978, she was named to the Nebraska super-state volleyball team.
She began college at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) and played on the junior varsity team as a freshman. In 1980, she transferred to the University of Missouri and became the starting setter for Missouri's varsity volleyball team.
1980 was a major life turning point for Brenda, she decided that there were more important things in life than sports and returned to UNL to major in Women's studies and began her life-long interest in art. In 1981, Brenda met her future husband, Jeff Schank, by chance at the UNL Student Union.
In 1984, Brenda graduated from UNL with a Bachelor's degree in Women's Studies and decided to pursue graduate work in feminist philosophy at the University of Cincinnati, while at the same time, Jeff moved to the University of Chicago to pursue a Ph. D. in the philosophy of science.
For three years, Brenda and Jeff took turns riding the Greyhound bus to see each other, but in 1987, Brenda decided to move to Chicago. In Chicago Brenda began her career as a painter. Soon after Brenda and Jeff were married in Lincoln on August 17, 1988.
In 1994, Brenda and Jeff moved to Bloomington Indiana, where Brenda continued to develop her skills as an oil painter, becoming involved with the art community at the University of Indiana. In 1998, Brenda and Jeff moved to Davis, California (Jeff was hired as a faculty member at the University of California, Davis).
In Davis, Brenda continued her art, learning the medieval painting technique of egg tempera, and exhibiting her paintings in several local art exhibitions. Brenda taught herself graphic design and was a graphic design artist for the Plant Sciences Department at the University of California, Davis.
As a graphic design artist, one of her specialties was designing logos and t-shirts for scientific meetings. The logo she designed for the Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior at Indiana University in the early 1990s, is still their logo.
Brenda loved to travel to Europe where she would visit many of the major art museums. She especially loved traveling to Vienna, Austria and visiting her friends Uli, Elisabeth, and Werner, who she first met in Lincoln.