Rebecca R. Rosen, government worker, veteran

October 09, 2008|By FREDERICK N. RASMUSSEN

Rebecca R. Rosen, a former Equal Employment Opportunity Commission compliance officer and World War II veteran, died of heart failure Oct. 2 at her home in Boca Raton, Fla. She was 88.

Rebecca Rosen was born in Baltimore and spent her early years in Mitchellville before moving with her family to Towson in the early 1930s.

She was a 1937 graduate of Towson High School and earned a bachelor's degree in education in 1940. In 1980, Ms. Rosen earned a master's degree in sociology and urban studies from the University of Baltimore.

During World War II, she enlisted in the Marine Corps Women's Reserve and served as an administrator at Parris Island, S.C. She was discharged with the rank of sergeant in 1945.

After the war, she married, raised four children and briefly taught elementary school in Baltimore.

In 1956, she established Travel Consultants, a Pikesville travel agency, and operated the business until the 1960s, when she accepted a federal appointment to the EEOC as a compliance officer for the agency's affirmative action program. She retired in 1978.

Ms. Rosen moved to North Dade, Fla., in 1980, where she studied at the University of Miami's Graduate School of International Studies.

After becoming a friend of Maggie Kuhn, founder of the Gray Panthers, Ms. Rosen established the Gray Panthers' North Dade, Fla., chapter in 1989.

Ms. Rosen was a founding board member of the Community Partnership for the Homeless in Miami and helped establish the Camillus House for the Homeless. She also founded a breast cancer clinic for indigent women of Dade County.

Services with full military honors will be held at 11 a.m. Nov. 14 at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va.

Surviving are a son, Mark Birnbaum of Dallas; three daughters, Nancy Birnbaum of Pompano Beach, Fla., Deborah Boldt and Lauren Rose, both of Santa Fe, N.M.; a brother, Herbert Rosen of Lutherville; two sisters, Sylvia Beser of Baltimore and Jean Stockheim of Miami; and two grandchildren. Her marriage to Zalmen Birnbaum ended in divorce.

Frederick N. Rasmussen

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