Mary Hilda Counselman, Hopkins administrator

January 03, 2009|By JACQUES KELLY

Mary Hilda Counselman, a retired Johns Hopkins executive assistant, died of lymphoma Thursday at the Blakehurst Retirement Community in Towson. She was 86.

Born in Baltimore and raised on Augusta Avenue, she was a 1941 Mount St. Agnes High School graduate and earned a bachelor's degree at the College of Notre Dame of Maryland in 1945.

Miss Counselman spent 32 years of her career at the Johns Hopkins Medical School as executive assistant to Dr. Vernon Mountcastle and then as executive administrator of the Department of Physiology, family members said.

In a memoir, Dr. Mountcastle praised her education and efficacy as an administrator, as well as her "charming and winning personality." He recalled her kindness to medical students who arrived from abroad and were making the transition to life in America.

"She was a wonderful person, and we all admired her greatly," Dr. Mountcastle said.

Before 1969, Miss Counselman worked for Alex. Brown & Sons in Baltimore and Washington and taught fourth grade at Saint Leo's Parochial School in Little Italy.

Miss Counselman made religious pilgrimages to Rome, the Vatican and Lourdes, France. She was also active all her life helping elderly or ill family and friends.

A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, 5200 N. Charles St.

Survivors include a brother, Charles C. Counselman Jr. of Baltimore; a sister, Ethel Reese of Baltimore; three nieces; and three nephews.

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