Co-owner of iconic D.C. bookstore
Carla Cohen, 74, a community activist who co-owned a Washington, D.C., bookstore that became a city institution and a key stop for writers ranging from Bill Clinton to J.K. Rowling, died Monday of cancer, the Politics and Prose bookstore announced on its website.
A former city planner, congressional aide and federal housing official, Cohen founded the store in 1984 and ran it with co-owner Barbara Meade.
During an era when thousands of independent stores closed, Politics and Prose expanded from a crowded storefront to a two-story location with more than 10,000 square feet.
Born in Baltimore on April 11, 1936, Cohen graduated from Antioch College. In the late 1970s, she was an aide to Robert Embry Jr., assistant secretary during the Carter administration for the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
After Ronald Reagan defeated Carter in 1980, Cohen was out of a job and decided to start a bookstore. The money side was handled by Meade, who had answered a classified ad for a store manager.
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-- Times staff and wire reports